MLB trade rumor roundup: Mariners and Orioles looking for lineup help, Nathan possibly available

USA TODAY Sports

Taking a look at the latest MLB trade deadline rumors.

The MLB trade deadline is only three days away, and rumors continue to swirl about who may switch teams before the deadline has passed:

Athletics lead Peavy aweepstakes

The Oakland Athletics are the leading candidates to acquire Chicago White Sox starter Jake Peavy before the deadline, reported Dan Hayes of CSNChicago.Com.

Chicago is rumored to be looking for MLB-ready pitching in return for Peavy. The Athletics have a number of young starters that they could move in return for the veteran. The St. Louis Cardinals, Boston Red Sox and Atlanta Braves are all rumored to be still interested in Peavy.

Rangers may deal Nathan

The Texas Rangers have held internal discussions about trading closer Joe Nathan, first reported by Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports. Nathan has been excellent for Texas this season, posting a 1.73 ERA and recording 32 saves.

The Rangers have been frustrated in their search to add more offense, which fueled their decision to discuss trading their closer despite a winning record. Texas should have a number of options to replace Nathan if he is moved before the deadline; former Kansas City Royals closer Joakim Soria is the current Rangers set-up man, while former Texas closer Neftali Feliz should return from the DL in one month.

Mariners interested in Blanks

The Seattle Mariners are interested in acquiring San Diego Padres outfielder Kyle Blanks, according to Rosenthal. Blanks, however, has not played since July 11, and is currently on the disabled list with Achilles' tendinitis in his left heel.

Given the outfielder's injury, Blanks is unlikely to move before the July 31 deadine, but could be a target for the Mariners in the future. Seattle enters Monday with a 50-55 record, 12 games behind the Oakland Athletics for first place in the AL West.

Orioles looking at Morneau

The Baltimore Orioles want to upgrade their designated hitter spot before the deadline, and have looked at Minnesota Twins first baseman Justin Morneau. Baltimore, however, does not want to surrender too much in return for Morneau.

The Orioles are third in the AL in runs scored, but have received the second worst production out of their DH, behind the New York Yankees. Morneau has hit .264/.324/.396 in 411 plate appearances.

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