The Winter Meetings are reliably a source of almost unparalleled intrigue and drama across all of baseball, as the entire league can be flipped upside down thanks to a blockbuster trade or free agent signing that no one saw coming. With the Meetings approaching and plenty of big trades left unconsummated, expect to see these five big names bandied about on the market in the near future.
5. Starling Marte to the Mets
This one has been fermenting in the rumor mill for quite some time, and the fit is obvious. On a Mets team lacking speed, defense, and consistency at the top of the lineup, Marte would provide all of that in bunches, as evidenced by his .295 average, 23 home runs, career-high 82 RBI, and 25 stolen bases. The Mets didn't have a ton of success giving up top prospects for established veterans last offseason, but not at least entertaining a Marte trade would be some serious negligence from Brodie Van Wagenen. He's an upgrade on Juan Lagares, Brodie.
4. Noah Syndergaard to the Padres
It seems like Syndergaard has been mentioned as a potential trade target for San Diego for years now. However, now that the Padres are going to start competing with their young core of Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr., adding the flamethrowing Thor to their rotation would instantly make them Wild Card contenders. He might not have had the best season in 2019, but gambling on Syndergaard's stuff is always a wise bet to make. This destination has seemed fated, as much as the Mets have promised not to pull the trigger.
3. Josh Hader to the Twins
The Brewers, thought to be among the favorites in the NL Central this season, are reportedly listening to offers on the two-time NL Reliever of the Year. Taylor Rogers was a more than solid reliever at the end of the Minnesota bullpen, but adding Hader and his unequalled strikeout stuff would give Minnesota one of the best back ends in all of baseball, which would fix their biggest weakness from a year ago. The price may be astronomical, but Hader has proven he's worth it, and the Twins have the prospect capital to match.
2. Francisco Lindor to the Braves
Now that the Twins have leapfrogged the Indians in the AL Central hierarchy, Lindor could be on the move as the Indians seek to retool and rebuild. One win-now team that could pounce on Lindor, who hit 32 home runs and stole 22 bases last season, is the Atlanta Braves. Dansby Swanson is a fine shortstop, but "fine" isn't going to beat the Dodgers, Cardinals, or Nationals. The Braves have plenty of prospects and expendable parts to coax Cleveland into trading away their star shortstop.
1. Mookie Betts to the Nationals
Betts could be on the move, as the Red Sox' hesitancy to splurge on the 2018 AL MVP could see him traded elsewhere in exchange for nothing short of a king's ransom. One of the few teams in the league that has a hole in the outfield, is competing for a championship, and has the pros and prospects necessary to trade for Betts is the defending champion Washington Nationals. They might miss out on bringing Stephen Strasburg or Anthony Rendon back, but adding Betts would keep them right in the thick of things.