2. Matthew Boyd
Yeah, you’re, uh … not getting Gleyber Torres for Matthew Boyd this time around, Detroit.
The 2021 Tigers are yet another humorous example of the trade deadline suddenly reversing the narrative and making bad teams seem chock-full of viable additions for contenders. “The worst team in the AL Central has 5-6 solid options for your rotation or outfield.” Think about what you’re saying! Suddenly in a sport where tanking has run rampant, there’s battle-tested talent everywhere? But I digress.
Boyd has been an extremely popular trade target for eons, though he’s been valued by his own GM Al Avila so highly that dealmaking has never really been an option — especially for the Yankees, of whom Torres was demanded when the two sides talked back in 2019. Yeah, “Next Man Up,” our whole team’s injured, but sure, we’ll trade your our star 22-year-old. Gotcha.
This season, the 30-year-old Boyd (still with 1.5 years of control!) is getting closer to the trade precipice, though Avila probably should’ve been reasonable and sold him in ’19 with the extra years (and would’ve made out like a king with 2020’s near-cancellation). He’s posted a 3.44 ERA and 1.203 WHIP, though with fewer strikeouts than a contender would like to see (56 in 70.2 innings).
Also … he’s hurt, too, and nobody in Detroit expects him back before the break, either. The lefty hit the IL last Tuesday with left arm discomfort, and though he was determined not to have structural damage, he won’t be doing any pitching for at least the next month.
Regression in strikeouts, nebulous arm discomfort, Tigers asking for the moon … yeah, we probably would’ve passed here anyway, but the injury rules him out.