Oakland Athletics’ Top Four Trade Destinations For Scott Kazmir

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Apr 26, 2015; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays left fielder Dalton Pompey (45) at bat against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Toronto Blue Jays

Why Toronto?

The Blue Jays are in a position where they are in the race to win their division despite having one of the worst starting pitcher ERA’s in baseball. Blue Jays starters are pitching a lousy 4.37 ERA, which ranks 23rd in the Majors.

This is because Drew Hutchison and R.A. Dickey have not been living up to expectations, and Matt Boyd is currently filling in that fifth spot of the rotation. Mark Buehrle and Marco Estrada are the only Blue Jays starters that have maintained an ERA of under 4.00, and that is not a situation a contending team wants to be in.

At 42-38, the Blue Jays are only one game behind division-leading Baltimore, so adding a solid starter to their rotation will be a very crucial goal for them to achieve before the trade deadline. They have smashed their way into still being in the race, scoring the most runs in baseball by a wide margin, but that is not a sustainable strategy. The Blue Jays are several starters short of being a championship club, and they will certainly be hunting for one this month.

What do the A’s get in return?

Josh Donaldson.

Just kidding.

But the A’s could make a case for acquiring Dalton Pompey, the Blue Jays’ top rated position prospect. Pompey got off to a slow start during his Major League debut in 2014, and that continued into 2015, but he continues to punish minor league pitching at Triple-A Buffalo.

The emergence of Chris Colabello has made this plausible. The Blue Jays probably did not expect him to produce as much as he has after two mediocre seasons in Minnesota. As it stands, Colabello, Kevin Pillar, and Jose Bautista have given the Blue Jays one of the best hitting outfields in baseball this year. This makes Pompey a more tradeable piece.

Remember that the A’s are going to be hungry for outfielders in a couple of years, and one upgrade they will be interested in making is having a left fielder that hits well. Ever since the departure of Cespedes, there has been a noticeable lack of hitting from that position by Sam Fuld and Coco Crisp. Pompey has average power, but if he is able to put the ball in play at the Major League level, he would be a starting outfielder on most clubs.

Next: The New York Yankees