MLB Trade Speculation: Boston Red Sox Will Acquire King Felix
It seems ludicrous to say so, but being bold here, the Boston Red Sox will acquire Felix Hernandez before the non-waiver trade deadline.
Some readers may stop reading at this point and scroll down to the comments before hearing out the case. That's fine. They're entitled. For the rest of you, hear me out.
As it stands, the Boston Red Sox own a 48-47 record, fourth best in the American League East and 2.5 games out of the second Wild Card playoff slot.
There are still 67 games to be played this season. That's a lot of baseball to be played.
Boston Red Sox team president Larry Lucchino was on WEEI-FM's Dennis & Callahan morning show and went on record to state that the team could possibly make a bold move. In full disclosure, the term "possibly" does not often mean "will."
More recently, the Boston Herald's Michael Silverman rebuffs the idea of any type of bold move taking place, citing a lack of need to do so.
With all due respect to Mr. Silverman, I disagree. Especially if Hernandez is truly in play.
Sure, dozens of blogs and articles have been written about the Red Sox trying to acquire Hernandez. Often times these are dismissed, and rightfully so. However, now may be the time for the Mariners to finally pull the trigger on their biggest trade piece to date.
While in what can be described as a full-on rebuild mode, the Mariners dealt off their other prized pitcher in Michael Pineda to the New York Yankees and received Hector Noesi and Jesus Montero in exchange, two of the Yanks' top prospects.
Clearly the price tag for King Felix will be higher. The Red Sox can certainly afford to pay. The starting chip from Boston would likely have to be in the form of Jon Lester, who like Hernandez, would remain under team control through 2014.
Unlike Hernandez, he is owed $24.6 million over the next two seasons. Hernandez is owed $39.5 million.
The Mariners could be looking to move along from Ichiro after this season. He has been declining in production over the last two seasons and would not be worth the money he'll be seeking in free agency. His batting average and hit totals, two things he's historically known for, have decreased in each of the past two seasons.
In 2010 he hit .315 with 214 hits. In 2011 he hit .272 with 184 hits. This season he is batting .264 with 104 hits at the ripe age of 38.
The Red Sox could offer fresh legs in Ryan Kalish as part of the package.
The Mariners have a talented young infield with pieces like Dustin Ackley, Kyle Seager and Justin Smoak. Shortstop Brendan Ryan, though under team control for the next couple of seasons, is the eldest player in the infield at 30.
To continue on the youthful rebuild, the Sox could offer up one-time top prospect Jose Iglesias to play shortstop in Seattle.
To add some side pieces to the deal, the Sox could include a couple of other pitching prospects in the package to the likes of 22-year-old righty Stolmy Pimentel and 23-year-old lefty Chris Hernandez.
Hernandez owns a 3.13 ERA while Pimentel owns a 5.00 ERA, both in Double-A Portland.
What this trade offers the Mariners is a top-of-the-rotation starter in Lester, who very well could benefit from a change in scenery. Their right fielder of the future in Ryan Kalish. Their shortstop of the future in Jose Iglesias with two developing arms that may or may not be beneficial to them in the future.
In turn, the Red Sox get the ace they so desperately need in King Felix.
It would be bold. It would be a blockbuster. It would be beneficial, for both sides.
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