Kansas City, Mo. — J.D. Martinez and Justin Wilson — if the topic is trade rumors, those are the first two Tigers players that come up. They are the two most likely to be dealt by general manager Al Avila before the July 31 deadline.
It’s become a bit old hat to Martinez, who, because he will be a free agent after the season, has been linked to trade talks since last winter. He will be the first to tell you, the distraction is worse for Wilson.
“It’s definitely getting down to it and you are hearing it a lot more,” Martinez said. “Every time you look at the TV, MLB Network or whatever, you are constantly seeing it. But I think it’s more for a guy like Justin than me right now.”
The Dodgers, Cardinals, Diamondbacks, Rockies and Royals are among the teams that have been reported to have interest in Martinez. Wilson has drawn interest from as many as 14 teams, according to various reports.
“That’s the need right now, that’s the market,” Martinez said of back end relievers. “There’s not that many teams that need a player like me. There are a lot that could use a player that could help, but as far as that need, I feel like he has it worse right now.”
Wilson doesn’t completely agree with that.
“The biggest difference between me and J.D. is he’s a free agent and I have another year of (team) control,” he said. “As far as teams looking at me, it’s not just for the rest of this season. They have another year with me. And maybe more.”
It’s also true that more teams need late-inning relievers, especially one with experience closing games, than power-hitting outfielders. But both seem resigned to their fate.
“I try not to think about any of that,” Wilson said. “I just try to think about tonight’s game. I know I have no control over it. If it happens, it…