Any deals for big bats Holliday, Teixeira will go down to wire
If Matt Holliday or Mark Teixeira are traded, the deals probably won't go down until hours, minutes or even seconds before the 4 p.m. July 31 trade deadline.
The Rockies have been looking around for potential deals for Holliday, while the Braves are putting out signals they are going to make a playoff push and thus hold onto Teixeira.
Both players appear to be in a similar spot. They could be traded, but their teams will likely wait to see how they fare in the final 10 days before the trade deadline before deciding.
If anything, the Rockies have greater reason to keep Holliday (16 home runs, 55 RBIs, .332) because he's contracted to play 2009 in Colorado. Teixeira (19 HRs, 72 RBIs, .278) is almost surely gone as a free agent from Atlanta after this season, so it wouldn't make sense to hold onto him if the Braves are out of the race come July 31.
Rockies GM Dan O'Dowd has scoured baseball, talking to the Mets, Angels, Phillies and many others (the Dodgers make sense, if owner Frank McCourt would approve a trade), and he's shooting for a pretty good-sized haul. O'Dowd wanted Carlos Beltran as part of a package from the Mets, a request that was rejected by New York. And, according to a report in the Los Angeles Times, O'Dowd sought second baseman Howie Kendrick, pitching prospect Nick Adenhart and either Ervin Santana or Joe Saunders for Holliday, a proposition the Angels also rejected.
If the Braves are calling around, that talk has stayed quiet. The Angels also would make sense for Teixeira, as might the Diamondbacks, who tried for him last summer when the Braves sent a pretty good prospect package to Texas to acquire him.
Both the Rockies (third place and 6 games out in the NL West) and Braves (fourth place, 6 1/2 games behind in the tightly-packed NL East) are on the cusp of the race, giving them incentive to wait as long as possible to make a deal. Stay tuned.
Yankees not in Bonds market
A canvassing of the star veterans in the Yankees clubhouse found no objections to Barry Bonds. And while a few stars wanted to stay out of it, Johnny Damon, who conceded "it's up to [the front office],'' seemed to endorse Bonds.
"Barry knows how to hit home runs, and he knows how to get on base. And I'm sure he wants to prove a lot of teams wrong,'' Damon said.
Alex Rodriguez, always a Bonds supporter, was more careful. A-Rod said, "Any team that signs a great player would be lucky.''
It doesn't look like the Yankees will have that sort of luck. "Although I think Barry would be a perfect fit in New York ... I'm not holding my breath,'' Bonds' agent Jeff Borris told SI.com. "If [Yankees GM] Brian Cashman has a change of heart, he knows where to get hold of me.''
Cashman, when asked about Bonds, said only, "He was a great player.'' The use of the past tense doesn't seem to bode well for Bonds' chances of coming to the Bronx.
The probable loss of Hideki Matsui for the season hasn't spurred the Yankees to even consider Bonds to this point. Cashman wouldn't comment on the reasons for that, but other Yankees people indicate that Bonds' age and the fact he hasn't been playing are part of their reluctance to take the plunge. The federal investigation may be another negative.