My only question is a loud and resounding "why?"
Beckett has not exactly set the world on fire this season. He has gone 4-7 with a 4.43 ERA in 89.1 innings pitched. He has 65 strikeouts and has allowed nine home runs.
Beckett has always been billed as a big-game pitcher—and at one point in his career, that was absolutely the case. But those days seem over. Last September, when the Red Sox desperately needed a win, Beckett went 0-2 with an 8.10 ERA in 13.1 innings pitched. The Red Sox were fighting for a playoff spot and Beckett imploded.
Jump to this season.
His performance against the Yankees on July 6 was brutal. Make no mistake, that was a big game for the Red Sox. But in five innings, he allowed six runs on eight hits, walked two and hit a batter.
Yet, according to the MLB Trade Rumors report, the Red Sox are not even considering trades involving Beckett.
Beckett seems exactly like a player that a GM should consider trading—especially to a National League teams. His value remains relatively high simply because he is a big name. He is exactly the type of pitcher that Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington may be able to deal to a National League team in need of pitching.
Is it really out of the realm of possibility that a “change of scenery” argument could be made by Cherington about Beckett to other GMs around the league? Perhaps he simply needs a new environment to reignite his spark.
The Red Sox are a team that has started only to stall all season. Every time the engine seems to be going on all cylinders, something misfires and the whole thing falls apart. On July 6 against the Yankees, Beckett was that misfire.
Even though the Red Sox were struggling going into the series, a Red Sox-Yankees series always creates its own excitement, its own buzz. That buzz was killed immediately by Beckett's first inning.
This is a team that needs to be shaken up a little. The Kevin Youkilis deal was not a huge shakeup only because Will Middlebrooks made the trade a necessity and the writing was on the wall a few weeks before the trade went down.
Trading Beckett would be a magnitude 10 shakeup on the Richter Scale.
Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe wrote:
If you’re general manager Ben Cherington or Valentine or Lucchino, you have to think the team needs a shake-up after dropping the first two games of the series to the Yankees. It’s time for a kick in the pants, major changes. Trade one of the big-name pitchers for someone who can spark this team.
The ultimate big-name pitcher on the Red Sox is Beckett. To not even consider a trade involving him seems irresponsible at this point.
It is time Cherington make a name for himself, much like Theo Epstein did when he traded Nomar Garciaparra. Beckett could be Cherington’s Garciaparra, if only he would just consider it.