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Heyman | Sonny Gray has strong link to Brewers

Oakland Athletics pitcher Sonny Gray works against the Atlanta Braves during the first inning of a baseball game Friday, June 30, 2017, in Oakland, Calif. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
(AP Photo/Ben Margot)

Sonny Gray has a strong link to Brewers pitching coach Derek Johnson, and some close to Gray believe it’s strong enough that the Brewers may be the most likely landing spot for Gray.

Gray, perhaps the best starting pitcher likely to be traded, pitched at Vanderbilt, where Johnson was his pitching coach for three years, as noted in this tweet here.

Gray has said in the past that Johnson is “like a father figure to him,” and folks say those aren’t just words. Gray lost his father in a car accident when he was a high school freshman, and Gray and Johnson have a strong bond.

The Brewers are in the market for starting pitchers, and along with the Yankees and a couple others, were a finalist for the Jose Quintana before he was traded cross-town from the White Sox to the Cubs.

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports and MLB Network also mentioned J.A. Happ as a pitcher that interests the Brewers.

Gray is thought to be drawing interest from the Astros, Yankees and others.

For now he may be the best pitcher out there. Teams looking for starters have interest in Michael Fulmer, Carlos Martinez, Gerrit Cole, Yu Darvish, Cole Hamels and Chris Archer. But none of those pitchers seems especially likely to be traded at the moment. There are still two weeks to go before the trade deadline, though.

This season for the A’s, Gray is 4-4 with a 4.00 ERA and 1.157 WHIP through 14 starts; for his career he is 43-35 with a 3.46 ERA in 112 games (110 starts).

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