A week has passed since general manager Jon Daniels revealed that the next few Texas Rangers seasons might not be particularly heavy on wins.
(Psst. The Rangers, who are off Thursday, are 0-6 since his multi-year extension was announced last week.)
Those weren't his direct words, of course, but it became apparent as he detailed the Focus on Development Plan for at least another season and likely two. If teams come calling ahead of the July 31 trade deadline, Daniels said that he will be listening.
Now that the MLB First-Year Player Draft is over, teams are going to be calling.
The Rangers aren't teeming with trade candidates, though their primary two have some definite star power. They also aren't ideal candidates for various reasons.
That also goes for Nos. 3 and 4 on list below. The fifth? There are no signs that he's even on the trading block, but this might be a time when just about anybody could be had.
He can't go more than a day or two without his name appearing in a national notes column or on mlbtraderumors.com.
He's the leading Rangers candidate to be dealt ahead of the deadline, and he has experience going from a non-contender and lifting a team to the playoffs. He did it for the Rangers in 2015 after coming over from the Philadelphia Phillies.
Among the teams that could use him are the New York Yankees, who could also afford his salary and have prospects to spare. Hamels, though, has an extensive no-trade clause that could come into play, along with his age (34) and the miles on his left arm.
This one might not be the slam dunk people think.
Beltre is a future Hall of Famer, a slick fielder and a capable hitter at age 39. But he's 39, his legs have 21 seasons on them and he has twice been to the disabled list this season.
Contenders want productive players, but they need durable players.
Beltre also has a full no-trade clause, courtesy of his 10-and-5 rights. As badly as he wants to win a World Series, he understands there are no guarantees that a trade would result in a ring.
As contenders look at build indestructible bullpens, the Rangers could make Diekman available.
He's left-handed, which always seems appealing at the deadline, and he can be a free agent after the season.
A few problems: 1. Lefty batters have a .321 average and .486 on-base percentage against him, though righties are hitting only .172, and 2. Rental relievers don't fetch much in return.
His remaining contract could turn clubs away, but Choo is one of the hottest hitters in the game and looks to be in the midst of another solid season.
He has been an on-base machine the past month, having reached in an MLB-best 28 straight games, and he is showing plenty of pop with a slugging percentage above .500 since the middle of last month.
Choo would make a contending team's lineup better. At a price.
Admittedly, this is a long shot for many reasons and there is no indication the Rangers are even thinking about trading one of the team's bright spots this season.
The Rangers waited patiently for the right-hander to show if he could be a closer, and he has done well with the job and the media attention that comes with it.
He also has two years of club control left after this season.
Long shot, right?
Well, Daniels traditionally doesn't place a lot of value on bullpen pieces, and Kela will be a free agent about the time the Rangers believe they will be contending again. Throw in his financial status and closer-type stuff, and he could shake free a couple quality prospects now.