The non-waiver trade deadline for Major League Baseball is July 31st. One player that has been central to a lot of gossip is Sonny Gray of the Oakland Athletics. Joe Giglio, writing at NJ.com, said that Gray was "in demand" in an article from earlier today. Not only is Gray being looked at by a lot of prospective buyers, but he is enjoying a very solid month of July that has put him in contention for the American League's Pitcher of the Month Award. If he wins the award, it's possible that he might receive it while playing for another team.

What makes him a trade prospect?

A big reason that Gray is a trade prospect at this time is certainly how well he has been playing.

While he started his season rough, he has lowered his ERA considerably since ending May at 4.72. Entering Monday, it is now down to 3.66 and his record is at 6-4. In July specifically, Gray has gone 3-0 and he has posted an ERA of 1.96 in 18.1 innings pitched. He looks as though he has two starts remaining this month. Currently, Gray is listed as the probable starting pitcher for Oakland in their Tuesday game against the Toronto Blue Jays. He should start one more game this month after that. The team that he will start that game with has been debated a lot due to the impending trade deadline.

But Gray is also on the auction block right now, because Oakland are quickly becoming sellers in Major League Baseball.

They are in last place in the AL West division, a full ten games below .500 heading into Monday with a record of 44-54. All hope of catching Houston is long lost as the Athletics are 21 games back of the Astros in the division. On paper, they might look like they are in the AL's Wild Card race with a 6.5-game deficit to make up.

The truth is that when you are behind nearly all teams in the league, too much has to go right for you in order to make up even just a mid-sized deficit. The Athletics are chasing nearly all teams in the standings.

Brad Peacock also contending

Another pitcher that is in the mix for the American League's Pitcher of the Month for July is Houston's Brad Peacock.

He has gone 3-0 this month to improve his overall record to 8-1. On Monday, he has a start against the Philadelphia Phillies in opposition to Vince Velasquez. With a 1.89 ERA in July, Peacock can certainly hope to contend for the individual award as well. A game against the Phillies might help him as they are a team that has struggled basically all season, including at home where they are just 18-26.

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