Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski’s on-the-fly reconfiguration of Boston’s bullpen could lead him to San Diego or Toronto prior to the July 31 trade deadline, as the Red Sox have an ‘active interest’ in two of the game’s top closers this season, according to MLB insider Jon Morosi.
The 32-year-old Yates has been absolutely dynamite in his first full season as San Diego’s closer, with an National League-best 31 saves in 33 save opportunities, along with 70 strikeouts and a career-low 1.05 ERA in 43 innings this season. Overall, Yates has converted on 44 of his 50 save opportunities since jumping to the Padres in 2017. Oddly enough, Yates, who was the Padres’ representative at the 2019 All-Star Game, was originally a 26th-round pick of the Red Sox back in 2005, but did not sign.
Giles, on the other hand, is on the market in the midst of what is undoubtedly his best season to date, with a 1.64 ERA and saves on all but one of his 15 opportunities with the Jays this season. Giles has been an American League for almost his entire career, too, and had a career-high 34 saves (and won a World Series ring) for the Astros in 2017.
Adding Giles or Yates to the Boston ‘pen would give the Red Sox an actual, legitimate closer, as their current plan seems to be turning starter Nathan Eovaldi, who was activated last weekend but has not pitched since Apr. 17, into the team’s closer.
The Red Sox begin the week 11 games behind the Yankees for first place in the American League East, and three games behind the A’s for the second wild card in the American League.