Red Sox boss Dave Dombrowski is routinely among the most active baseball executives around the MLB trade deadline each year. That will not change in the next two weeks, as the Sox are positioned as prototypical buyers. The only questions now are, how many trades will Dombrowski make between now and July 31, and which positions will he target.
The obvious needs for the Red Sox are a big bat, a third baseman, a starting pitcher and a relief pitcher. While Dombrowski is the “go-big or go-home” type, filling all of those positions with quality players is highly unlikely. Sexy names like the Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera and Justin Verlander are being floated, but expect the Red Sox to tinker rather than go all summer blockbuster.
Here are some names and the odds that they land in Boston.
Todd Frazier, 3B, White Sox
Frazier would be a relatively cheap rental and a move to join his former teammate Chris Sale at Fenway makes a world of sense. Frazier won’t light up the night sky, as the 31-year-old has a Pablo Sandoval-like .2017 batting average. The difference between Frazier and the big Panda, though, is that Frazier has some legit pop in his bat when he does connect. He has 16 home runs this season, six of them coming in the past 30 days.
Asdrubal Cabrera, 2B/SS, Mets
Michael Silverman, of the Boston Herald, reported this week that the Sox might be interested in the services of Cabrera. The issue here is that Cabrera has only played one game at third base in his career.
Like Frazier, he’d be a rental. Cabrera has been a tad better than Frazier at the plate this season, batting .250.
Miguel Cabrera, 1B/DH, Tigers
Alex Rodriguez – a regular Peter Gammons – said Saturday on FOX that he thinks Dombrowski would get Miggy to the Red Sox via trade (for the record, Metro first floated this idea a week ago). The glaring issues here are Cabrera’s ridiculous salary and age as he’ll be making $32 million in 2023 when he’s in his 40s. The Red Sox are the lucky sperm of the baseball world, but this will prove to be a little too rich even for the star-gazing Dombrowski.
Sonny Gray, SP, Athletics
Dombrowski is a big believer in stacking a pitching rotation. Earlier this decade he had a five man rotation of Max Scherzer (21-3 that year), Verlander (13-12), Anibal Sanchez (14-8), Doug Fister (14-9) and some guy named Rick Porcello (13-8).
The Red Sox have a comparable crew in Chris Sale, David Price, Drew Pomeranz, Eduardo Rodriguez and Porcello – but none of them are exactly postseason tested.
Gray (5-4, 3.27 ERA) doesn’t have a postseason track record either, but if one of the above falters in a playoff game – it would be nice to have options.