Report: Braves, Twins, Rangers, and Padres are in on Sonny Gray
Yankees right-hander Sonny Gray is reportedly up for grabs this season after a disappointing performance in the Bronx, and there appears to be no shortage of suitors vying for the starter’s services. In addition to the Reds, who were linked to the team by Jon Heyman earlier this month, Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe reports that the Athletics, Braves, Twins, Rangers and Padres have all expressed interest in the righty, though no one team has emerged as a frontrunner in trade talks yet.
Gray’s stock has fallen considerably from his days as a 2.73-ERA, 3.8-fWAR hurler in the Athletics’ rotation. The 29-year-old was dealt to the Yankees for Dustin Fowler, Jorge Mateo and James Kaprielian at the 2017 trade deadline and completed his first full season with the club in 2018 with a 4.90 ERA, 8.5 SO/9 and career-worst 3.9 BB/9 through 130 1/3 innings out of the rotation and bullpen. After several shaky starts in July and August, he was officially booted from the rotation to make room for right-hander Lance Lynn and finished out the Yankees’ regular season in the ‘pen.
While Gray’s struggles caused some consternation as the Yankees pushed for a playoff berth in 2018, there’s nothing to suggest that he’s incapable of bouncing back in his final arbitration-eligible season. His poor performance was largely linked to Yankee Stadium, where he limped to a 6.98 ERA, 6.8 SO/9 and 5.3 BB/9 through 15 appearances and 59 1/3 innings while maintaining fairly solid numbers on the road.
No one team has taken the lead on negotiations so far, but the Athletics appear to have a more vested interest as Gray’s first major-league club -- and the only one that’s personally benefited from his Cy Young-caliber performance in recent years. The Braves and Twins could also make a serious play for the righty, with both clubs poised to make a run at their respective division titles in 2019. The Rangers, Reds and Padres, meanwhile, figure as clear outliers as 95+ loss teams who have long-term rebuilds still ahead of them.