With the trading deadline quickly approaching at 3:00 p.m. ET tomorrow afternoon, there’s been a flurry of activity. Edwin Jackson was traded to the Blue Jays for Jason Frasor, then flipped to the Cardinals for Colby Rasmus. The Giants, in desperate need for offense, spun top pitching prospect Zach Wheeler to the Mets in exchange for All-Star outfielder Carlos Beltran. Last night, the Phillies landed Hunter Pence, formerly of the Astros, in exchange for three prospects and a player to be named later. With just under 30 hours remaining, the rumor mill is chock full of interesting tidbits. Some are real, and others not so much. Here are a few of the ones affecting the Red Sox:
Hiroki Kuroda – According to ESPN Radio’s Jim Bowden, the Red Sox are “working hard” to put together a deal for Kuroda. The cost is reportedly a “prospect,” but that’s pretty non-descript. So far, there’s been no word as to which prospects the Dodgers are most interest in obtaining. Considering Kuroda’s salary and impending free agency, I’d have to imagine we can cross most of our top guys off of the list. Additionally, word is Kuroda is a very deliberate person. If there’s a deal to be made, it will likely need to be completed tonight. That would give him a chance to sleep on it before deciding whether or not to waive his no trade clause.
Erik Bedard – The rumor was that the Red Sox were very interested in obtaining Bedard from the Mariners, and would be watching last night’s start very closely. After giving up five runs on three hits and four walks in only 1-1/3 innings, I think it’s pretty safe to say that the Red Sox won’t be pulling a trigger to bring him to Boston. It’s probably for the best anyway. He has a long, tumultuous history with both the disabled list and reporters. This is probably for the best.
Ubaldo Jimenez – According to Troy Renck of the Denver Post, the Rockies are reportedly very interested in obtaining Will Middlebrooks and Anthony Ranaudo from the Red Sox in exchange for Jimenez. Within the piece, Renck also indicates the Yankees are willing to include Jesus Montero and Dellin Betances, but consider Manny Banuelos completely off limits. The Tigers and Indians have been very aggressive in their negotiations, expressing a willingness to include Justin Turner and Drew Pomeranz in their respective packages. I’m still not sure we’ll see Jimenez move before tomorrow’s deadline, but I’m increasing the odds to 50/50. Ultimately, a lot depends on the Rockies asking price. If they lower the price, as ESPN’s Buster Olney tweeted yesterday, it will be a clear sign they’re looking to make a deal.
Those are the most pertinent rumors for now. Oddly enough, in the wake of Pence and Beltran being traded, the rumor mill’s been pretty quiet with respect to the Red Sox’s right field and relief pitching targets. I’m sure Theo and his crew are negotiating furiously on both fronts, but the primary focus (at least publicly) seems to be on shoring up the rotation. We’ll keep you apprised as to new developments as they arise.