Photo Credit: Associated Press
The Red Sox thus far are obviously still at a standstill with J.D. Martinez and Scott Boras. It has been previously reported by multiple sources that the Red Sox current offer stands at 5 years / $125 million and free agency seems to be moving at an all time sluggish pace; this is nothing new.
It’s time to think outside of the box and get into Dealin’ Dave Dombrowski’s head.
Reported from Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe, Brian Johnson is receiving trade interest from multiple teams and this seems a more likely trade than you may realize. Johnson has run out of minor league options at 27 years of age and may not seem worth it to keep him on the 25 man roster as a reliever. There is just no room for him, barring an injury on the rotation. He is coming off a high note from last season, when flashes of brightness were displayed on the mound. He pitched the only complete game shut out of 2017 for the Sox and provided viable depth in the rotation. This is a great opportunity to see what the Sox can get for him, being that there is virtually no room for him as a starter.
Now along comes Blake Swihart, who faces the same obstacle as Johnson – he’s blocked. The former first rounder said at Foxwoods during Winter Weekend that he wants to continue catching and stick with the position.
There is huge value in Swihart, a switch hitting catcher who hits to all fields and can run above average for his position. The problem with Swihart becomes the timing of trading him.
Should the Red Sox risk putting him out there for teams to gauge his trade value, or should they risk trading a once top prospect for an underwhelming return?
Ultimately, Swihart’s positional stubbornness could be his downfall, he has two catchers in his way before he sees any major league action.
The Mets are potential buyers in both of these cases. They’ve had a hole at catcher since Piazza left and have been unable to find any sense of stability in their starting rotation. They are losing Matt Harvey next year to free agency and will be looking for another young arm to bolster the back end of the rotation.
Would the Mets possibly look towards activating a reunion of Yoenis Cespedes and the Red Sox?
The Mets aren’t exactly the most cash strapped team in baseball and they don’t seem to be in a position of instant success after the re-acquisition of Jay Bruce. Cespedes is also heading into the peak of his contract, with 3 years remaining at $29 million per year. This would be a great time for the Mets to get that contract off the books and prepare for the 2018 free agent class while adding two pieces that could pay off huge dividends.
The Red Sox may not be interested in acquiring another heavy contract, but could seek to recover some assets. Since the Sox only have two players in the top 100 prospects according to Baseball America, they may seek to bolster their stock.
The Mets are not the only suitor, as there will be plenty of teams interested in two promising players. Unfortunately, their tenure in Boston could be coming to a close.