Imagining the Return of the Montreal Expos

The Protected:

National League West:

Los Angeles Dodgers:
Clayton Kershaw – SP
Kenta Maeda – SP
Brandon McCarthy – SP
Hyun-jin Ryu – SP
Corey Seager – SS
Adrian Gonzalez – 1B
Joc Pederson – OF
Yasiel Puig – OF
Yasmani Grandal – C
Justin Turner – 3B
Howie Kendrick – 2B
Kenley Jansen – RP
Trayce Thompson – OF
Julio Urias – SP
Jose De Leon – SP

No surprises here as Clayton Kershaw, Julio Urias, and Corey Seager all stay protected. The Dodgers are the NL version of the Red Sox in this scenario, as they keep their present and future assets all protected.

San Francisco Giants:
Madison Bumgarner – SP
Buster Posey – C
Joe Panik – 2B
Brandon Crawford – SS
Brandon Belt – 1B
Matt Duffy – 3B
Denard Span – OF
Hunter Pence – OF
Angel Pagan – OF
Johnny Cueto – SP
Jeff Samardzija – SP
Tyler Beede – SP
Chris Heston – SP
Andrew Susac – C
Clayton Blackburn – SP

The Giants are right behind the Dodgers, though, as they keep perennial MVP candidate Buster Posey, their homegrown infield, and a solid rotation.

Arizona Diamondbacks:
Zack Greinke – SP
Paul Goldschmidt – 1B
A.J. Pollock – OF
Yasmany Tomas – OF
Jake Lamb – 3B
Shelby Miller – SP
Patrick Corbin – SP
Archie Bradley – SP (#2 prospect)
Braden Shipley – SP (#1 prospect)
Socrates Brito – OF
Jean Segura – SS
Nick Ahmed – 2B
Chris Owings – 2B/SS
David Peralta – OF
Brandon Drury – SS (#3 prospect)

In all honesty, the NL West remains very competitive as the Diamondbacks retain their high-priced acquisitions and the offense will always click as long as A.J. Pollock and Paul Goldschmidt are around.

Colorado Rockies:
Nolan Arenado – 3B
Trevor Story – SS
Charlie Blackmon – OF
DJ LeMahieu – 2B
Gerardo Parra – OF
Carlos Gonzalez – OF
Mark Reynolds – 1B
Ben Paulsen – 1B
Jon Gray – SP
Jake McGee – RP
Jorge De La Rosa – SP (10-5 rights)
Chad Qualls – RP
Brendan Rodgers – SS (#1 prospect)
Jeff Hoffman – SP (#5 prospect)
Jordan Lyles – SP

The NL’s version of the Tigers, the Rockies would have to keep the lineup together seeing as it is the only plus on their team.

San Diego Padres:
Tyson Ross – SP
James Shields – SP
Andrew Cashner – SP
Wil Myers – 1B
Matt Kemp – OF
Derek Norris – C
Austin Hedges – C
Manuel Margot – OF (#1 prospect)
Cory Spangenberg – 2B
Travis Jankowski – OF (#7 prospect)
Yangervis Solarte – 3B
Alexei Ramirez – SS
Colin Rea – SP (#6 prospect)
Fernando Rodney – RP
Kevin Quackenbush – RP

The Padres can’t really afford to lose any assets, so they are sure to protect essential future pieces like Manuel Margot and Tyson Ross.

NL Central:

St. Louis Cardinals:
Adam Wainwright – SP (10-5 rights)
Carlos Martinez – SP
Matt Carpenter – 3B
Yadier Molina – C (10-5 rights)
Kolten Wong – 2B
Matt Holliday – OF (10-5 rights)
Stephen Piscotty – OF
Randal Grichuk – OF
Tommy Pham – OF
Michael Wacha – SP
Mike Leake – SP
Jhonny Peralta – SS
Trevor Rosenthal – RP
Alexander Reyes – SP (#1 prospect)
Matt Adams – 1B

Those darn Cardinals, always finding a way to be good. Thankfully this expansion draft will be around to weaken them. Actually not so much, as the Cardinals keep their “aging core” of Randal Grichuk, Stephen Piscotty, Tommy Pham, Carlos Martinez, and Kolten Wong around for the future. The rest of the pitching staff stays as well, although the Cardinals could conceivably lose one of their farm aces Luke Weaver or Jack Flaherty to the new team.

Chicago Cubs:
Kris Bryant – 3B
Anthony Rizzo – 1B
Jake Arrieta – SP
Jon Lester– SP
John Lackey – SP
Addison Russell – SS
Ben Zobrist – 2B
Kyle Schwarber – C
Jorge Soler -OF
Jason Heyward – OF
Kyle Hendricks – SP
Willson Contreras – C
Gleyber Torres – SS
Duane Underwood – SP (top pitching prospect)
Dexter Fowler – OF

The Cubs’ future has already arrived, and they can ensure many years of success with the players they protect. They also protect three of their top four prospects in this situation, and while thanks to Theo Epstein’s elite class of prospects the Cubs are likely to lose a few high-level prospects, they are still bound for success.

Pittsburgh Pirates:
Andrew McCutchen – OF
Starling Marte – OF
Gregory Polanco – OF
Jung Ho Kang – SS
Josh Harrison – 2B
Gerrit Cole – SP
Francisco Liriano – SP
Mark Melancon – RP
Tony Watson – RP
Francisco Cervelli – C
Josh Bell – 1B (#3 prospect)
Tyler Glasnow – SP (#1 prospect)
Jameson Taillon – SP (#4 prospect)
Reese McGuire – C (top catching prospect)
Alen Hanson – 2B (#10 prospect)

Pittsburgh’s outfield is it’s most important asset to protect, closely followed by the quartet of starting pitchers and the lights-out duo of Watson and Melancon. The Pirates would still be sitting pretty in this scenario.

Cincinnati Reds:
Brandon Phillips – 2B (no-trade clause)
Joey Votto – 1B
Zack Cozart – SS
Devin Mesoraco – C
Jose Peraza – 2B/SS
Eugenio Suarez – 3B
Jay Bruce – OF
Billy Hamilton – OF
Jesse Winker – OF (#1 prospect)
Raisel Iglesias – SP
Homer Bailey – SP
Brandon Finnegan – SP
Robert Stephenson – SP (#2 prospect)
Cody Reed – SP (#3 prospect)
Anthony DeSclafani – SP
Tony Cingrani – RP

As a rebuilding team, the Reds would want to protect their young players and prospects for the most part but they do get stuck with Brandon Phillips still.

Milwaukee Brewers:
Ryan Braun – OF
Jonathan Lucroy – C
Orlando Arcia – SS
Jeremy Jeffress – RP
Taylor Jungmann – SP
Jimmy Nelson – SP
Will Smith – RP
Wily Peralta – SP
Scooter Gennett– 2B
Domingo Santana – OF
Chris Carter – 1B
Garin Cecchini – Inf.
Keon Broxton – OF

Another rebuilding team, the Brew Crew would just be worried about protecting future assets like Arcia and Santana as well as trade chips Jonathan Lucroy and Ryan Braun.

NL East:

New York Mets:
Noah Syndergaard – SP
Matt Harvey – SP
Jacob deGrom – SP
Steven Matz – SP
Zack Wheeler – SP
Yoenis Cespedes – OF
Michael Conforto – OF
Travis d’Arnaud – C
Lucas Duda – 1B
Neil Walker – 2B
Asdrubal Cabrera – SS
Curtis Granderson – OF
Jeurys Familia – RP
David Wright – 3B (10-5 rights)
Bartolo Colon – SP

The rotation, of course, is the top priority — was there any doubt? The Mets remain powerhouses in the NL East.

Washington Nationals:
Bryce Harper – OF
Max Scherzer – SP
Stephen Strasburg – SP
Gio Gonzalez – SP
Joe Ross – SP
Lucas Giolito – SP
Jonathan Papelbon – RP
Michael Taylor – OF
Daniel Murphy – 2B
Trea Turner – SS
Anthony Rendon – 3B
Wilson Ramos – C
Tanner Roark – SP
Ryan Zimmerman – 1B (no trade clause)
Jayson Werth – OF (no trade clause)

As long as Bryce Harper and Max Scherzer are around, the Nationals have a fighting chance at the playoffs.

Miami Marlins:
Giancarlo Stanton – OF
Jose Fernandez – SP
Dee Gordon – 2B
Christian Yelich – OF
J.T. Realmuto – C
Adeiny Hechavarria – SS
Martin Prado – 3B
Marcell Ozuna – OF
Wei-Yin Chen – SP
Tom Koehler – SP
Carter Capps – RP
A.J. Ramos – RP
Jarred Cosart – SP
Tyler Kolek – SP (#1 prospect)
Josh Naylor – 1B (#2 prospect)

The Marlins keep their dynamic duo of Fernandez and Stanton together as well as the rest of their maturing core and still look to the future by protecting their top two prospects.

Philadelphia Phillies:
Maikel Franco – 3B
Aaron Nola – SP
J.P. Crawford – SS (#1 prospect)
Vincent Velasquez – SP
Jerad Eickhoff – SP
Odubel Herrera – OF
Ryan Howard – 1B (no-trade clause)
Carlos Ruiz – C (no-trade clause)
Peter Bourjos – OF
Jeremy Hellickson – SP
Charlie Morton – SP
Nick Williams – OF (#3 prospect)
Mark Appel – SP (#4 prospect)
Jake Thompson – SP (#2 prospect)
Jorge Alfaro – C (#6 prospect)

Another rebuilding team that is just trying to protect future assets, but trade chips Charlie Morton and Jeremy Hellickson remain. Ryan Howard is stuck on the list thanks to a no-trade clause as well.

Atlanta Braves:
Dansby Swanson – SS (#1 prospect)
Freddie Freeman – 1B
Jace Peterson – 2B
A.J. Pierzynski – C
Hector Olivera – OF
Nick Markakis – OF
Ender Inciarte – OF
Julio Teheran – SP
Jason Grilli – RP
Arodys Vizcaino – RP
Erick Aybar – SS
Mallex Smith – OF (#11 prospect)
Sean Newcomb – SP (#2 prospect)
Ozzie Albies – SS (#3 prospect)
Aaron Blair – SP (#4 prospect)

See Phillies, Philadelphia.

2 Responses

  1. Zach

    You’d be crazy to think that the Cubs would be willing to let Javier Baez go like that. No way in hell they keep Ben Zobrist or John Lackey over him. Baez will be with the Cubs for years, while Zobrist and Lackey are both towards the end of their careers.

    Reply
  2. Deez nutsenthal

    OMG OMG PLEASE PLEASE BRING BACK THE EXPOS I COULD GUARANTEE I WOULD BUY SEASON TICKETS AS SOON AS THEY WERE ANNOUNCED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111!!!1

    Reply

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