The Athletics are known to be actively shopping the young right-hander, with rumored interest from the Brewers, Astros, Braves, Indians and others. Gray, 27, finished third in AL Cy Young voting in 2015, and has rebounded from a rough 2016 to produce a solid 3.66 ERA (3.36 FIP) in 91.0 innings this year. Owed less than $2 million in 2017 and controlled through 2019, Gray is a perfect target for clubs searching to compete in the near future. Gray stands as one of the only names on a weak pitching market that has just gotten lighter with the Twins' pending acquisition of Jaime Garcia and the Cubs' deal for Jose Quintana.
Although Gray's 'named price' is unknown, his controllability should command a similar package to that of Quintana, who was acquired for two top-100 prospects and more. Yet Yankees GM Brian Cashman has expressed desire to hold onto his most developed prospects, which could make a match unlikely between the two sides. Baseball America's no. 36 prospect and outfielder Blake Rutherford would've been a good candidate to be dealt in a potential Gray trade, but he was sent to the White Sox earlier this week in a package deal for Todd Frazier, David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle.
Jon Morosi reported Thursday morning that Gray talks between the Astros and A's were "heating up,” but reports later Thursday indicated that no deal was close between the division rivals. With injuries to Dallas Kuechel and Lance McCullers earlier this season, Houston is looking to add starting pitching ahead of the deadline. Obviously buyers, the Astros have shown prudence in dealing top prospects Francis Martes, Kyle Tucker, or Forrest Whitley. However, Houston's system is deep and a deal could materialize if A's GM Billy Beane is interested in a quantity-over-quality type return for the ace.
While the Yankees and A's may not match up on a deal involving Gray, the two clubs were known to be discussing a deal for first baseman Yonder Alonso earlier this week.