3 Players the Pirates Could Move Prior to the MLB Trade Deadline

PITTSBURGH, PA - JULY 02: Felipe Vazquez #73 of the Pittsburgh Pirates delivers a pitch in the ninth inning during the game against the Chicago Cubs at PNC Park on July 2, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
Justin Berl/Getty Images

Despite a 44-45 record at the All-Star break, the NL Central division crown is well within striking distance for the Pittsburgh Pirates, as they sit just 2.5 games behind the division-leading Chicago Cubs.

The Pirates will have the remainder of the month to figure out how they'll approach the MLB Trade Deadline, but it's likely that Pittsburgh will end up selling off its top talent if the rest of the division begins to pull away by July 31.

With that in mind, here are three players the Pirates could move at the MLB Trade Deadline.

3. Melky Cabrera, RF

PITTSBURGH, PA - MAY 07:  Melky Cabrera #53 of the Pittsburgh Pirates hits a two run double during the fourth inning against the Texas Rangers at PNC Park on May 7, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Texas Rangers v Pittsburgh Pirates | Joe Sargent/Getty Images

Melky Cabrera has been great for the Pirates this season. So great, in fact, that he just might have played his way out of Pittsburgh. The 34-year-old switch-hitter has been doing some serious damage at the plate in 2019, batting .312 with six homers, 31 RBI and a .807 OPS at the break. Cabrera should easily function as a strong fourth outfielder and bench bat for any contender looking for depth.

2. Francisco Liriano, RP

PITTSBURGH, PA - JUNE 22: Francisco Liriano #47 of the Pittsburgh Pirates delivers a pitch in the seventh inning during the game against the San Diego Padres at PNC Park on June 22, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
San Diego Padres v Pittsburgh Pirates | Justin Berl/Getty Images

With a 3.09 ERA and 1.33 WHIP across 42 appearances (43 2/3 innings), Francisco Liriano has had a pretty solid year out of Pittsburgh's bullpen in 2019. Those numbers above are by no means elite, but the 14-year veteran should still carry a good amount of value on the trade market. With 300 career starts to his name, Liriano could be a valuable swingman out of the bullpen for any contender looking to give their starters some much-needed rest down the stretch.

1. Felipe Vazquez, RP

PITTSBURGH, PA - JULY 07: Felipe Vazquez #73 of the Pittsburgh Pirates delivers a pitch in the ninth inning during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers at PNC Park on July 7, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
Milwaukee Brewers v Pittsburgh Pirates | Justin Berl/Getty Images

Felipe Vazquez is arguably the best trade chip the Pirates have on their roster right now. The All-Star closer has had an excellent season in 2019, successfully converting 20 of his 21 save opportunities with a 2.11 ERA and 60 strikeouts in just 38 1/3 innings pitched. Elite closers are always a hot commodity at the trade deadline and with two years left on his contract, Pittsburgh could rake in quite the haul from a contender looking to beef up their bullpen for the stretch.

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Mike Esposito is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Mike Esposito also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username espo6891. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.

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