Cleveland Indians: 5 starting pitchers to target at MLB trade deadline

Alex Cobb #38 of the Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
Alex Cobb #38 of the Los Angeles Angels (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /
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Cleveland Indians, Jon Gray
Starting pitcher Jon Gray #55 of the Colorado Rockies (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /

Cleveland Indians Trade Target #2: Jon Gray, Colorado Rockies

The Rockies have the opportunity to win the trade deadline more than any other franchise in baseball, with Trevor Story and German Marquez likely to be on the move now that All-Star festivities are in the past. It’s difficult to say what Colorado plans to ask for in return for players like Story and Marquez since they haven’t replaced their General Manager after Jeff Bridich gave Nolan Arenado away, but that might help an arm like Jon Gray fly under the radar.

Gray is in his age 29 season, and all eyes are likely on his rotation mate, but Gray is a hard-throwing right-handed pitcher who avoids a lot of solid contact (4.9 Barrel%) and has flashed ace potential in his seven seasons with the Rockies.

So far Gray has registered 16 starts in 2021, mustering a 6-6 record, a 3.77 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP across 86 innings. Like Anderson, he’s only allowed more than three earned runs in three starts this season which is impressive pitching in Denver.

Even more surprising, he’s better at Coors than he is out of the low altitude (3.22 ERA at home, 4.54 on the road), but that shouldn’t discourage a team from trading for him. Gray is currently on an expiring $6M deal and will hit free agency going into his age 30 season, and that’s what makes him an intriguing option.

Gray is a player who has shown significant flashes, and it’s entirely possible a change of scenery and a new pitching staff can help to unlock that potential. Should the Tribe make a push for him, there’s the possibility that Gray would consider signing on another year in Cleveland to work with this pitching staff beyond the second half of 2021, and it should be possible under the team’s free agency approach of buying low.