Though the National League West isn't as stout a division as, say, the two groups of Eastern teams, there's little inclination that either the Dodgers or the Giants will be sellers come the trade deadline.
In fact, both could be buyers (and so too could the Diamondbacks): with the news that Matt Kemp could miss a month of the season, the Giants window is only opening wider. Meaning the Giants might want to make a move and the Dodgers might want to do the same in order to close said window.
And there's a guy out there in Kevin Youkilis who, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, could be an option for all of the Giants, Dodgers and Diamondbacks. Cafardo was asked in his mailbag if the Reds would be interested in Youk.
"Yes. I think a few teams are interested, including Arizona, the Dodgers, Giants to name a few," Cafardo writes. "Problem is always salary. The Red Sox would have to eat some money and then the toughest part -- what do you get in return? A starting pitcher, a bullpen piece, another hitter? Or do you try to pick up prospects. And there's always the issue -- why trade him at all?"
The Sox are currently in dead last in the AL East, but they're also above .500 at 26-25 and have a 0.4 runs per game differential. Just three games back, there's no reason to think Boston will start worrying too much about the future when they could add a piece to a team that's still capable of winning now.
In that sense, the Giants could make for a logical trading partner. The Dodgers might actually need Youkilis more than Bruce Bochy's team, because their lineup is borderline embarrassing when Kemp's not listed.
But nabbing Youk would do several things for San Francisco. One, get a guy with power who can get on base. Two, fill a hole at first base with a legit threat. Three, give them some backup at third base if Pablo Sandoval needs rest and/or gets injured again. And four, block him from going to LA.
It's unlikely the Giants will make a deal with the Red Sox if Boston's looking for a prospect in return (the Giants don't have any is the main reason), but if they're simply looking to swap a bullpen piece in return, it's possible Brian Sabean could consider making the move.
Or maybe they'll just take Barry Zito back. His curveball does look especially scary in those Fenway shadows ...