The Baltimore Orioles currently lead the American League East. Baltimore features a talented roster but would benefit from making a big splash prior to the 2023 MLB trade deadline. With limited time left on the clock to make a deal though, the Orioles have one specific last-minute trade they should make. Baltimore must trade for SP Dylan Cease of the Chicago White Sox.

The White Sox are clearly sellers. Chicago has already traded plenty of key players including SP Lucas Giolito and SP Lance Lynn. Many reports have stated that Cease likely won't be traded though. That said, Chicago is reportedly willing to listen on Cease.

There aren't many franchises capable of putting together a trade package tempting enough to convince the White Sox into trading a 27-year old with two more years remaining on his contract, per Spotrac. The Orioles are one of the few teams with the necessary prospect capital to make it happen though.

Orioles must trade for Dylan Cease ahead of the 2023 deadline

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Baltimore has built a tremendous farm system, rivaled only by teams such as the Los Angeles Dodgers and Cleveland Guardians. LA is also a potential landing destination for Cease. They are currently focused on trading for Justin Verlander of the New York Mets, however.

The O's need a frontline starter and Cease fits the bill. His age and team control make him a prime trade target, so the Orioles will still face competition in dealing for him. They must lean on their prospect capital and not shy away from making a trade though.

It should be said that Cease isn't having a great year. Nevertheless, he's still worth the risk.

Cease's 2023 season

Cease owns a 4.15 ERA and 1.341 WHIP as of this story's publication. He walks too many hitters and control is his primary concern on the mound. Cease is still a pitcher who's proven to be durable and records plenty of strikeouts. He's tallied 143 K's this season to go along with a league-leading 22 game started.

Any team that acquires him, whether it be the Orioles or a different suitor, would hope Cease can replicate his 2022 performance. During the '22 campaign, the White Sox hurler pitched to the tune of a sparkling 2.20 ERA and finished second in AL Cy Young voting. Again, though, he was plagued by walks, leading the league with 78 of them.

Baltimore will likely be willing to look past his control concerns if he can give them quality innings. They'd obviously prefer for him to cut down on the walks, but his production would be welcomed in a rotation that features question marks.

Orioles' pitching staff

Ace John Means remains on the injured list. That's left Kyle Gibson, Dean Kremer, Kyle Bradish, Grayson Rodriguez, and Tyler Wells to handle duties in the starting rotation. Only Bradish and Wells have ERAs of below 4.00 in 2023.

Baltimore's lineup is tremendous and the bullpen is more than capable. The O's are going to have a strong chance of reaching the playoffs at the very least. In order to make a legitimate run in the postseason though, the Orioles will need a true ace.

Although Dylan Cease hasn't been at the top of his game in 2023, his ceiling makes him a convincing trade candidate. It will be interesting to see if the Orioles and White Sox discuss a Cease deal ahead of the 2023 MLB trade deadline