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Which teams should shift gears and become buyers or sellers?

Could an MVP-caliber hittter like Paul Goldschmidt get added to the pool of talent available for contenders to trade for? Mark J. Rebilas/USA Today Sports

Between now and Opening Day, every team in baseball will hire some people, sign some people, trade some people and drop some people. But nearly all of the names have to be figured out. While we're all going to have to wait on the details, we can talk about some general outlines. We can talk about where teams are, and about potential plans. Some teams are positioned to improve; for example, there are plenty of different ways to get better, but getting better is the goal. The same goes for teams poised to get worse; some teams already know they're about to take a step back. What's left is to work out how that's going to look.

So who's going in which direction isn't always surprising or suspenseful. We have a pretty good idea the Philadelphia Phillies are going to try to move forward, and will spend some of their resources. Teams like the Texas Rangers, not so much. We know where the Los Angeles Dodgers are, and we know where the Baltimore Orioles are. We can assume how teams are thinking about their offseasons.

When it comes to the big question to buy or sell, though, there are always a few teams that might catch you off-guard. They're the ones I intend to talk about. I've listed six teams, split into two groups. One group includes three clubs that ought to sell, even though they were at least moderately successful in 2018. And the other group includes three teams that ought to buy, even though you might not think they're positioned to do so.

This isn't about going for it versus tearing it all down to the studs. We don't have to be quite so extreme or dramatic. But this is about thinking shorter term vs. longer term.