By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
UPDATE (Tuesday, 1:33 p.m.): Soon after this story was first published, USA Today's Bob Nightengale reported that Machado is expected to be traded to the Dodgers on Wednesday.
The All-Star Game could be the last time Manny Machado wears a Baltimore Orioles uniform. He's been tangled up in all kinds of trade rumors for weeks, and now it sounds as though he may return from the All-Star break with a new team.
Jon Heyman's latest report on FanCred says that the process of trading Machado is moving "toward a conclusion" with the Los Angeles Dodgers emerging as the "leader" to acquire the shortstop, who will start and bat seventh for the American League in Tuesday night's All-Star Game in D.C.
Heyman notes that the Arizona Diamondbacks are still "active" in the running for Machado, and the Milwaukee Brewers and Philadelphia Phillies are also still in the hunt. For the Red Sox, the important detail here is that all of Machado's potential suitors reside in the National League; it appears that the Orioles are not interested in trading their franchise shortstop within the AL East, whether to the Yankees or Boston.
However, the Dodgers wouldn't necessarily be a destination for Machado to sign long-term. He's made it clear that he wants to play shortstop and L.A. already has 2016 Rookie of the Year Corey Seager, who is out for the season after undergoing Tommy John surgery. So he could be just a rental for the Dodgers, and end up signing with an AL team as a free agent this winter.
The Red Sox, like the Dodgers, would have to make a decision on their own shortstop if they wanted to acquire Machado in any fashion. They'd probably need to outbid everyone else, too. But for now, it appears that the Sox won't have to deal with Machado in pinstripes this season.
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at [email protected].