After tonights 6-3 loss to the Orioles the Red Sox have fallen into a first
place tie with the Rays for the Wild Card. It’s hard to envision the Sox making it to the playoffs now following yet another devastating loss. The Sox are going to have to rely on Erik Bedard and Jon Lester, because they have the offense, but the pitching has struggled mightily all month. Also the Yankees won’t be wasting any of their top pitchers in the final two games of the season so the Rays will probably feast on their young pitchers. Whereas the Orioles are just trying to make their record look a little better and have nothing to lose. If things continue the way they’re going the Sox will stumble through the final two games while the Rays cruise.
When I reported the Erik Bedard trade I mistook Josh Fields, the Mariners 2008 first round pick, for the utility player. I’m sorry if I confused anyone.
I’m a bit puzzled by the Red Sox moves at the deadline. They acquired Mike Aviles, Erik Bedard, and Josh Fields. Bedard is the only one I see having any impact this year. He’ll start until Buchholz is healthy, and then I don’t know what the Sox will do with him then. He might keep his spot in the rotation if he pitches better than Tim Wakefield, but if that’s not the case there isn’t really much room for him on the roster except as a possible second lefty out of the bullpen.
Fields is said to be just a throw in so is impact, if any, will be minimal. He can play both corner outfield positions and both corner infield positions, so he may be of some value to the Sox.
Aviles is the most perplexing move. To give away too players with tremendous upside for a utility infielder seems a bit strange. The only possible move I see for Aviles with the Sox is potentially competing for the starting shortstops job next year with Jed Lowrie and possible Marco Scutaro. Aviles has proven he can be an effective starter at the big league level, so that may of been Theo’s thinking as he made that deal.
Today minutes before the deadline the Red Sox acquired Erik Bedard and Josh Fields. Bedard solves the pitching problem and Fields may help solve the outfield issue if the Sox decide to put him in the majors even though he wasn’t even on the Mariners 40-man roster. Hopefully they’ll both pan out and help keep the Sox in first.
With a little less than three hours left until the trade deadline here are some names to watch for as the Sox try to fill their needs.
Carlos Quentin: Quentin is a good fit for the Sox in right field. He brings a lot of power to the lineup and hit almost anywhere. The only issue is he isn’t the most consistent hitter, but an improvement never the less.
Josh Willingham: Willingham would also solve the issue in right, but doesn’t bring the same pop that Quentin does. Also he has trouble covering the spacious right in Fenway.
Ryan Spilborghs: He’s another outfielder that would help tremendously. His availability is unknown but he’d be a big lift.
Erik Bedard: He’s the only starter left in play for the Sox so I’m sure Theo will make a big push.
The Red Sox main focus for the upcoming trade deadline appears to be starting pitching. Their four biggest targets are Hiroki Kuroda, Ubaldo Jimenez, Rich Harden, and Erik Bedard, who is making his first off the DL tonight. The Red Sox are said to be “all over” Bedard. Personally I’d like to see Kuroda in Red Sox uniform. He’s not held together by band-aids, like Harden and Bedard, and he’s more consistent than Jimenez, whose only been able to win 10 games since 2010 All-Star break. Any of the four, if they can stay healthy, would be a huge lift to the rotation while Clay Buchholz’s back woes continue.
UPDATE 10:51: In Bedard’s start tonight he allowed 5 runs on 3 hits and 4 walks in an inning and a third. He never found any rhythm or groove and being his first start off the DL the Mariners didn’t want to risk his health at 57 pitches in the second inning. This should lower the price on Bedard, but it also shows the risk of adding Bedard.