As most fans know, the Red Sox recently re-signed first baseman, Mitch Moreland to a two year deal.
This move seemingly eliminates the Sox from the Eric Hosmer sweepstakes.
In other news, the Red Sox are still rumored to be in pursuit of free agent, J.D. Martinez. As previously mentioned, the acquisition of Martinez would be an immediate upgrade to the power outage that the Sox have struggled with.
However, the Sox lack a spot for Martinez.
Hanley has been reportedly shopped by Dave Dombrowski in order to clear space for Martinez.
Hanley has had a very underwhelming campaign in Boston since signing a massive 4 year / $88 million contract in 2014. Despite driving in 111 runs in 2016, Ramirez combined to drive in 115 between 2015 AND 2017.
After David Ortiz retired, the Red Sox have been unable to find consistency in the middle of their order and Ramirez has done nothing to add remedy. It is simply unacceptable for a clean up hitter to drive in 62 runs in a largely healthy season – especially on a playoff contending team.
Trading the struggling designated hitter could be the correct path, but finding a suitor would be incredibly difficult for the Sox. This is primarily due to Hanley’s inflated contract and decreasing output.
The most likely scenario would be for Dombrowski to swap a bad contract for a bad contract, similar to the recent swap between the Atlanta Braves and Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Red Sox could also mirror a move that the Yankees pulled off with Chase Headley, sending a large contract to a poor team in exchange for a very low-heralded prospect.
These options shouldn’t be classified as “likely,” but may become an option if the Red Sox are unable to move Hanley Ramirez.
The other roadblock, Jackie Bradley Jr, could be much easier to move if the Red Sox were to pursue Martinez.
There is no doubt that Bradley Jr. provides an incredible amount of value defensively, but he leaves much to be desired at the plate. Throughout his career, the Red Sox have been waiting for the offensive consistency, but it has yet to arrive.
Moving JBJ would be the easiest route as his contract is very team-friendly and will not reach free agency until 2021. Due to the financial leniency, the Red Sox are very inclined to keeping the young outfielder, but if the front office is smitten with JD Martinez, this could be an option.
In addition to freeing up space for Martinez, trading JBJ would also allow the Red Sox to recover valuable prospects after the trades for Chris Sale, Craig Kimbrel, and Drew Pomeranz.
Are either of these moves likely? Nobody knows.
One thing is for certain – acquiring JD Martinez is pointless (at the moment) because there is no room in the inn.