04 Jul

trade winds

Garrett Crochet and Matt Wallner picked up some nice awards on Wednesday. Rumor has it that both might soon have to pick up and move to new organizations. Crochet, the former Ocean Springs High (and Tennessee) standout, won the American League pitcher of the month award for June; the left-hander posted a 1.91 ERA and struck out 56 batters in 37 2/3 innings for the Chicago White Sox. Wallner, Southern Miss’ all-time home run leader, was named the Triple-A International League hitter of the month; the lefty slugger batted .324 with 12 homers, 28 RBIs and 27 runs for St. Paul in the Minnesota system. Crochet, 25, making just $800,000 this year and three years from free agency, is considered by some the most attractive pitching target for buyers. The Los Angeles Dodgers reportedly already have made an offer for Crochet, and San Diego and Baltimore have been mentioned as possible suitors. In his first season as a starter, Crochet is 6-6 with a 3.02 ERA for a weak White Sox club. He is a likely All-Star. Wallner, sent to the minors in mid-April because he wasn’t hitting, has perked up at St. Paul (.255, 19 homers, 53 RBIs), and the Twins are said to be “getting calls” on the 26-year-old outfielder. Wallner’s power is intriguing; he has 17 MLB homers in 107 games. Plus, he has a big throwing arm. He is making just $746K in 2024 and is six years from free agency. … The Dodgers, among other clubs, are also said to be interested in Oakland outfielder Brent Rooker, the ex-Mississippi State standout who hit his 17th homer on Wednesday. The MLB trade deadline is July 30. P.S. Austin Riley did not win a player of the month award — and definitely isn’t on the trade market — but the former DeSoto Central star had a June worthy of mention. The Atlanta third baseman, sluggish out of the gate this season, hit .289 (.373 OBP) with six homers, 13 RBIs and 17 runs for the month. With 144 career homers, including one in July, he has caught Charlie Hayes for 11th place on the all-time home run list for Mississippians.

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