We're officially in July, baseball fans.

That means we're about halfway through this Major League Baseball season, the All-Star Game is approaching, and trade rumors are flying like wildfire. With the exception of the final month of the season, July offers possibly the most excitement of the baseball year for fans.

All things considered, the Yankees have been playing very good ball this year with a 41-37 record, good enough for third place in the American League East. But, things haven't been great lately. The Baltimore Orioles are on fire and the Tampa Bay Rays are in second place.

The Bronx Bombers have to add some pitching depth before the trade deadline. They currently rank 22nd in team ERA, CC Sabathia is pitching worse than ever before, and Masahiro Tanaka doesn't appear to be fully 100 percent healthy. Fortunately for the Yankees, their offense ranks near the top, and they have options this year.

Cincinnati Reds pitcher Johnny Cueto has been in trade rumors for years. Don't let his 4-5 record fool you. The 29-year-old Dominican pitcher is still a workhorse having led the league in strikeouts and innings pitched last year, but doesn't have great run support. It wouldn't be surprising at all if the Reds traded Cueto away. Cueto is in the final year of his contract, and the Reds need hitters. Might be wise for the Reds to get value while now they still can. The Reds and Yankees play in separate leagues, so they would not have to worry about facing off frequently.

Michael Pineda is playing well this year, but the Yankees need to build a deeper rotation around him.

The Philadelphia Phillies have the worst record in the league this year, but some MLB experts and analysts believe they could very well trade Cole Hamels. Hamels is just 5-6 this year and has a 3.22 ERA. The biggest issue here for the Yankees is money. Hamels still has four more years remaining on his contract with more than $80 million attached to it. Hamels is also set to turn 32 years old this December.

The wildcard here is White Sox pitcher Jeff Samardzija. Samardzija is having one of his worst statistical seasons of his career. He's allowed a league-high 123 hits in his 16 starts, and he has just four wins in nine decisions. Maybe playing in the Southside of Chicago just isn't for Samardzija. Maybe (another) change of scenery is needed. The good thing here for the Yankees is little risk. Samardzija is in the final year of his contract. Yankees general manager Brian Cashman could simply trade for Samardzija soon, and if he plays poorly, let him walk as a free agent this offseason. If Samardzija does play good for the Yankees (if traded) then a new deal could be worked out.

Another White Sox player who may be on the move is ace Chris Sale. Yes, even him. Sale recently tied Pedro Martinez's MLB record for most consecutive games with at least 10 strikeouts, but the White Sox need to get value and more hitting depth. The Chicago Tribune suggests that Sale could be for sale despite the fact that he's leading the league in strikeouts and he's just 26 years old. Sale currently has five (including this year) more years left on his contract. The last two years have a team option.

No talks have been confirmed between the Yankees and White Sox for a Sale deal yet, but other teams such as the New York Mets have shown interest.

The MLB trade deadline is Friday, July 31.

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