By Alex Barth, 985TheSportsHub.com
While we wait for the Red Sox to begin making tangible moves this offseason, the rumors keep coming. The latest ties them to a former all-star, and one of the biggest names in Major League Baseball.
According to Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, the Red Sox are one of multiple teams in play to sign free agent outfielder Yasiel Puig. Feinsand also lists the Yankees, Orioles, Astros, and Marlins, and says the five teams have “varying levels of interest.”
Puig defected from Cuba in 2012, and made his highly-anticipated MLB debut with the Dodgers in 2013 at the age of 23. He was named to the All Star Game the following season. His style of play and outward emotion on the field made him a fan favorite.
After spending six years with the Dodgers, he was traded to the Reds before the 2019 season. His stint in Cincinnati lasted just a few months, as the Reds flipped him at the deadline to Cleveland. Between the two, he hit .267 with 24 home runs, 84 RBIs, and stole 19 bases. Puig was ready to sign with the Atlanta Braves in 2020, but a positive COVID test voided the contract. He ended up sitting out the season.
With the Red Sox still re-shuffling their outfield and Jackie Bradley still a free agent, Puig makes a ton of sense. The Red Sox need a versatile bat in their lineup, and his mix of speed and power would be a strong compliment to the pieces they already have in place. Although he can be sloppy in the field at times, he has the athleticism and arm to handle right field at Fenway Park.
Puig is an affordable option for the Red Sox as well. Once thought of as a $100 million player, this offseason he’s likely looking at a short-term deal worth no more than $10 million a year. That should be well within Chaim Bloom’s price range.
As with most of the Red Sox rumors, this is likely more of a ‘wait and see’ case than anything imminent. The good news for those waiting on a move is Tomoyuki Sugano’s posting deadline is Thursday, which could jump start not just the Red Sox, but the MLB offseason as a whole.
Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at Alexander.Barth@bbgi.com.