7 starting pitchers the Cleveland Guardians should target at the trade deadline

The Cleveland Guardians are consistently ranking among the top teams in baseball and lead the AL Central, but starting pitching woes will need to be addressed by Cleveland at the trade deadline.
Colorado Rockies v Minnesota Twins
Colorado Rockies v Minnesota Twins / David Berding/GettyImages
7 of 8

6. Jack Flaherty, Detroit Tigers

Jack Flaherty
Detroit Tigers v Boston Red Sox / Maddie Meyer/GettyImages

Moving back to the AL Central, another former first-round pick on a one-year deal might be on the table for the Cleveland Guardians. On his third team in two years, it wouldn't be the first time Jack Flaherty was a deadline addition for a team after Baltimore added him just a year ago.

Detroit has shown improvement this year, there's no question about that. Even still, they sit 11.5 games back of Cleveland in the standings and are five games below .500. They are still in "future mode" and while Flaherty is only 28-years-old, his one-year deal makes him a prime candidate to be moved at the trade deadline.

Through 13 starts for the Tigers, Flaherty is looking like a different type of pitcher than we're used to. His numbers haven't been this good since 2019 when he led the National League in WHIP. So far, Flaherty is working with a 3.01 ERA and 0.95 WHIP. He's also averaging 11.6 strikeouts per nine innings.

On the money side of things, Flaherty is on just a one-year deal that's worth $14 million. It would essentially be a rental for Cleveland, but adding a 28-year-old pitcher that's having the year Flaherty is might be worth it.

The hold-up for Cleveland may be the price of the deal. Given his age, Flaherty is set to be one of the hottest names on the market. A team that has the space to try and negotiate a long-term deal might come into the picture and be willing to offer more. Either way, it's something Cleveland should at least check in on.