As we head toward the second half and the trade deadline, the teams with the most incentive to make a splash are those living on the margins, with their playoff fates in doubt. Manny Machado is a no-doubt-about-it superstar, but in the context of losing him to an injury or being kidnapped by aliens, the loss of Machado is essentially meaningless to Baltimore's playoff hopes.
So who are baseball's most indispensable players to their team's chances as of right now in 2018? They might not be the players you expect -- the position of their team and the quality of their in-house replacements is almost as important here as the players themselves are. If one of these players winds up lost for the season after a trip to Dr. James Andrews or due to an injury resulting from a spider-related dream, you'd likely see some roster scrambling.
You might have expected to see Kershaw place a little higher, but given the nature of his back injuries that have cost him parts of three seasons in a row, some missing time was already "baked into the cake," so to speak, as far as projecting the rest of the season. The Dodgers aren't without depth, either, even though their usual spate of injuries has tested that depth.