Yesterday it was reported that three teams were in contact with the Pittsburgh Pirates on starting pitcher Paul Maholm. Those three teams were the San Diego Padres, the Los Angeles Dodgers, and the New York Mets.
Tom Krasovic of FanHouse tweets that there is no potential for Paul Maholm to be traded today, which removes one of those options. The Dodgers, who have had the most interest, seem to prefer Ted Lilly. Jayson Stark tweets that the Cubs are likely to send Lilly and shortstop Ryan Theriot to the Dodgers, which would most likely remove the Dodgers from the Paul Maholm race.
That would presumably leave the Mets, assuming the Mets had a strong interest in Maholm. It was rumored earlier today that the Mets asked about Octavio Dotel, but according to Jon Heyman of SI, the Mets balked at the Pirates’ request of Robert Carson. Carson was the 16th best prospect in the Mets’ farm system at the start of the season. The 21 year old left-handed starter put up a 4.17 ERA in 86.1 innings in high-A this year, with a 7.2 K/9 and a 3.4 BB/9, before being moved up to AA.
Since the Mets have shown an interest in Maholm and Dotel, there could be a possibility of a package deal, although New York has also been eyeing other starters. The Mets inquired on Brett Myers from Houston, according to Heyman, but wouldn’t give up Bobby Parnell and Josh Thole. Thole was the number eight prospect in the Mets system, and platoons as a backup catcher. He’s hitting for a .350/.469/.450 line in 40 at-bats in the majors this year, although he’s only a career .289/.376/.381 hitter in his minor league career. Parnell is a 25-year old reliever who has an 0.96 ERA in 18.2 innings this year in the majors, with a 9.2 K/9, and a 2.4 BB/9.
That return wouldn’t be of much value to the Pirates, since they don’t need bullpen help, and don’t need a catcher like Thole. Myers is only under team control through the end of the season, with a mutual option for the 2011 season. Maholm would likely command more of a return, but New York doesn’t seem likely to give up the value the Pirates would want for Maholm, much less Maholm and Dotel.
It seems more and more likely that Maholm will stay with the team beyond the deadline at 4:00 today.
UPDATE 2:06 PM: The Dodgers have acquired Ted Lilly from the Cubs, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post. That takes them out of the mix for Maholm. It seems the only option now will be the Mets, unless another team emerges wanting a starting pitcher. At this point, the only player I expect to be traded would be Octavio Dotel, and even that isn’t a guarantee.