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The Hunt for Bryce Harper

I was planning on doing a ~weekly feature on the worst teams in baseball and how the fight for the number one pick was heating up, but then I noticed the Nationals have essentially clinched the position. Washington is doing a wonderful job and is well ahead of the pack. At this point you have to wonder when the Nats will start resting players like Ryan Zimmerman and Adam Dunn, just in case.

Let's look at the win totals to date:

Team W
WSN 26
CLE 35
SDP 36
OAK 37
KCR 37
PIT 38
ARI 38

A few of the teams could still make this interesting.

  • If Cleveland were to trade Cliff Lee and Victor Martinez, then replace both with replacement level players, they could find themselves losing ~5-7 WAR in the second half.
  • The Padres need to sell on Jake Peavy and Heath Bell while batting Brian Giles leadoff and Adrian Gonzalez ninth.
  • Oakland helped San Diego by taking Scott Hairston and giving them no immediate reward. If Billy Beane has his heart set on Harper, trading Matt Holliday, Adam Kennedy, and Ryan Sweeney would help.
  • Kansas City could ... actually; I think they're doing just fine.
  • The Pirates shipping off Freddy Sanchez and Jack Wilson would leave four of their top five positional player WAR values to traded players.
  • Arizona, stop playing Justin Upton, stop pitching Dan Haren, and play Jon Garland at shortstop.  

With any luck, this race will be the one to watch down the stretch.