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Wednesday, February 28, 2024

New Teams Linked To Dylan Cease Trade Rumors

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Over the weekend Jon Morosi of MLB Network called the market for Dylan Cease “robust”. With the Winter Meetings underway, Cease is expected to be traded by the end of the week. The Dodgers, Braves, and Cardinals are among the teams that reportedly are in the mix for Cease but in recent days some new teams have thrown their hat in the ring. 



Morosi listed the Orioles alongside the Dodgers and Braves as one of several teams involved in trade talks with the White Sox. The Mets have also been linked to Cease in recent days. The New York Post’s Jon Heyman reported that the Mets have shifted their focus from free agent Shohei Ohtani and are now exploring other avenues to upgrade their rotation. According to Heyman, the Mets are digging into “nearly every available frontline stater” including arms such as Blake Snell, Jordan Montgomery, Eduardo Rodriguez and Dylan Cease. 

Baltimore Orioles

The Orioles should come as no surprise. They are in desperate need of starting pitching and were one of the teams who made the White Sox an offer during last year’s trade deadline. The Orioles have plenty of assets to get a deal done in their farm system. 

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MLB Pipeline has the Orioles as the number one ranked farm system in the MLB. Baltimore boasts six top 100 prospects including the MLB’s No. 1 prospect Jackson Holliday. Don’t expect Holliday to be included in any package for Cease but there is no reason to believe the White Sox can’t snag one of the Orioles’ top 100 names. 

Joey Ortiz seems like the leading candidate. The No. 50 ranked prospect is coming off a monster season in Triple-A where he slashed .321/.378/.507 with nine home runs and 58 RBIs in 88 games. He made his MLB debut last season, appearing in 15 games and notching seven hits. 

Ortiz is a shortstop by trade but scouts rave about his great hands and instincts in the field. There is no reason why the White Sox couldn’t turn him into their second baseman of the future. 

Samuel Basallo is another interesting name to monitor. Basallo is the Orioles’ fourth-ranked prospect and No. 46 overall in the MLB. The 19-year-old is a left-handed power bat who plays catcher and first base. Basallo hit 20 home runs and drove in 86 between three different levels last season as he worked his way up to Double-A. Scouts say he has a plus arm and an average exit velocity that jumps off the page. Given how young he is the White Sox would have plenty of time to develop him into their catcher of the future.

New York Mets

The Mets currently have three solid arms in their rotation in Kodai Senga, Jose Quintana and recently signed right-hander Luis Severino. Adding Cease to the mix would be a good way to help further bolster the rotation after the team shipped out Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer during last year’s trade deadline. 

The Mets have five top-100 prospects to their name. The most intriguing in a potential Cease trade is Ronny Mauricio. Mauricio can play second base, shortstop, and outfield which is in line with two of the holes the White Sox still need to fill. He is the No. 87th-ranked prospect in the MLB. 

Mauricio struggles to make consistent contact but what he lacks in batting average he makes up for in power. The 22-year-old has hit 20-plus homers in each of his last three seasons in the minor leagues. Last year he 23 homers and drove in 71 in Triple-A Syracuse. He also posted an OPS of .852. 

There are some concerns about his plate discipline given his large strikeout rate and below-average walk rate. However, his 6-3 frame makes him an intimidating presence in the box and worth a flier in a potential Cease deal.

Considering the other three prospects ahead of Mauricio include a former first-round pick and two names acquired last year in the Verlander and Scherzer trades it seems unlikely the Mets would part with Luisangel Acuna, Drew Gilbert, or Jett Williams.

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BW
BW
Dec 4, 2023 10:40 pm

The Sox should just keep Cease if teams offer the low returns described in this article. He’d be an ace pitcher on any staff named here and is a strikeout pitcher on Chris Sale’s level. Plus he’s at least twice as durable. He’s worth two extremely high prospects, not just one. The Sox should trade with the Dodgers if they’re willing to pony up Rushing/Stone or Cartaya/ Frasso. That’s what Cease is worth and no less. Just keep him otherwise. The Sox have a good glove at 2nd in Lopez and a good place keeper at SS in DeJong. RF… Read more »

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