It may seem like MLB rosters are settled now that spring training is underway, but we all know teams will look different once games start mattering most.

There are relevant players on current rosters with question marks over their futures, and contenders are going to be tempted to poach these players from teams otherwise burning daylight.

Think of rumored trade targets this past offseason who never moved, like the Pirates' Bryan Reynolds and the Brewers' Corbin Burnes, two players unhappy with their contract status with respective teams.

In this exercise, we touch on both of them and more while predicting where the top players involved in MLB trade rumors will finish the 2023 season.


Chris Sale to Philadelphia Phillies

If the Red Sox are sellers at the deadline, it would only make sense to deal one of their best players who could yield assets.

Sale fits that profile, and the Phillies could use another starter, even with Zack Wheeler and Aaron Nola at the top of their rotation. A Phillies rotation with those two and Sale would make them strong contenders for a repeat National League pennant.

Having Taijuan Walker and Ranger Suárez on the back end would make this one of the better rotations in baseball.

MLB Network's Jon Heyman reported on Christmas Day that the Red Sox are not looking to trade any of their starters but would be willing to listen to offers because of their depth at the position. Sale does have a full no-trade clause, but a deal to Philly would be an opportunity for him to consider.

The Phillies have already shown their willingness to be aggressive with the Trea Turner signing. They are in a competitive NL East division where it seems like almost everyone is going all-in.


Josh Donaldson to Texas Rangers

The Rangers have a promising young third baseman in Josh Jung, but the organization's No. 1 overall prospect is still unproven. He finished with a .204 average over 26 games after homering in his first big league at-bat in September.

Texas had seven different players play third base for them last season, none of them playing more than 51 games. It's a position that's been in flux for the Rangers since Adrián Beltré retired after the 2018 season.

Finding a landing spot for Donaldson is challenging because the Yankees themselves have struggled to find a trade partner for the former AL MVP.

But if there is a sensible trade partner, it would be one that's shown a recent willingness to make bold moves with an obvious need at the position like the Rangers.