The Kevin Youkilis trade watch is in full effect.
According to Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe, “Kevin Youkilis could be traded before the day is out.”
Youkilis has been linked to the Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers, Pittsburgh Pirates and Atlanta Braves. But MLB Trade Rumors reported the White Sox “may be best positioned to swing a trade for Kevin Youkilis.”
Ken Rosenthal and Jon Paul Morosi of Fox Sports reported that, “The White Sox’s need for Youkilis is obvious — third baseman Brent Morel is out indefinitely with a back injury, and his replacement, Orlando Hudson, is batting just .160 in 81 at-bats.”
Youkilis has had a disappointing season and is only batting .225 with four home runs and 13 RBI. Red Sox rookie Will Middlebrooks has made Youkilis an expendable commodity since exploding onto the scene in May.
In 39 games this season Middlebrooks has hit .319 with eight home runs and 31 RBI. His play has relegated Youkilis to the bench on many nights. He has been a shot of adrenaline for a sometimes lackluster Red Sox lineup.
The impending move makes a lot of sense for the Red Sox. Bobby Valentine has been charged with the task of fitting Adrian Gonzalez, Middlebrooks and Youkilis into the lineup at the same time. The solution was to play Gonzalez in right field while sliding Youkilis back to first base. The experiment has been fine in the short term, but it really is just a temporary fix.
It is time for Middlebrooks to take over the job at third base full-time.
The Red Sox will most likely be looking for starting pitching in any deal for Youkilis.
If the Red Sox do deal Youkilis, they have shown a willingness to eat part of his contract. According to Ken Rosenthal, "The Red Sox are willing to assume a portion of his remaining salary — almost $7 million, along with a $1 million buyout on next year’s $13 million option — to receive better players in return."
The time has finally come. Red Sox fans could see this day on the horizon. Wherever Youkilis goes, it will better for him and the Red Sox.