MLB Trade Rumors: Should the Tampa Bay Rays Move Chris Archer Before the Deadline?

Archer could become the top starter on the market if the Rays decide to make him available

The Tampa Bay Rays have shown that they will not shy away from trading their better players if they feel that they will get good value in return no matter how the move may be perceived by people on the outside.

As evidence of that, several prominent players have been traded away by the Rays over the past few years, including one-time ace David Price and former face of the franchise Evan Longoria.

Now, there are people around the Majors wondering if starting pitcher Chris Archer could be the next Rays' star who ends up getting traded.

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The case for the Rays trading Archer this season is simple: the haul they may get for him could be quite substantial.

Archer's numbers on Fangraphs may not seem that impressive at first, but a closer look would suggest that some bad luck on balls put in play is hurting him to some degree. Once the batting average on balls in play or BABIP number he allows regresses back to league-average levels, his numbers will likely look better.

Add to that the fact that he's under team control through 2021 and that he is also still just 29 years old, and he could be the top pitcher available this year if the Rays show they are willing to make a deal.

Now, the case for the Rays hanging on to Archer is simple as well.

As Rays' senior vice president of baseball operations Chaim Bloom recently told's Mark Feinsand, Archer is "the type of guy that we need more of." Bloom added that they can win with Archer and also build around him.

The good news for the Rays is that they don't really have to make a final decision regarding Archer's stint with the team just yet.

If they get blown away by an offer from a team desperate to add a starter of Archer's caliber, then they should probably take that deal. However, if a no-brainer deal doesn't emerge, then they can hang on to Archer and take comfort in the idea that they have a reliable starter to lean on.

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