By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
The Red Sox are finally riding high.
A season-best 11 games over .500, one game out of the second wild card, and on the heels of taking three of four against the first-place Yankees, the Red Sox enter trade deadline week in dire of need of a closer. With an elite offense and solid starting pitching to their name, legitimizing the bullpen is the last thing the Red Sox need to do to truly set themselves up for a real chance at running the table as the league’s first repeat champions since the Yankees did it in 1999 and 2000.
And the Red Sox have been linked to just about every elite relief option on the market, from Toronto’s Ken Giles to the Padres’ Kirby Yates, and now the Red Sox are considered the team ‘most invested’ in trading for Mets closer Edwin Diaz.
But Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski isn’t willing to sell the team’s top prospects to acquire such a talent, according to MLB insider Mark Feinsand.
The Red Sox have no plans to deal Triston Casas, their top prospect according to MLB Pipeline, while No. 2 prospect Bobby Dalbec might be difficult to pry away. Anybody else can likely be had for the right player, though Boston’s desire to stay below the $246 million luxury tax threshold, which would cost it both money and a 10-spot drop in next June’s Draft, remains a factor in any deal.
Drafted in the first round in 2018, Casas has slugged 17 homers and 68 RBIs with a .252 average in 93 games for the Greenville Drive (Single-A) this season, while Dalbec has 20 home runs and 79 total hits in 101 games with Portland (Double-A) this year. The belief by some (ESPN’s Buster Olney floated this out there on Monday) is that the Red Sox theoretically could part with either, as both are natural third basemen, which makes them by all means blocked by budding superstar Rafael Devers.
Imagining the win-now Sox escaping a deadline with a closer and both of their top prospects seems incredibly unlikely. Especially given the exorbitant asking price on many of the team’s trade targets, and relievers as a whole.
Buuuuut, should the buyers not find themselves willing to meet the sellers on their crazy-high asking prices (many executives believe the Mets got Stroman from the Blue Jays for a rather light price, all things considered), it’s possible that Dombrowski and Co.’s deadline could come with the palatable price they’d prefer.
The MLB trade deadline is this Wednesday.