In the aftermath of the Miami Marlins mega-trade with the Toronto Blue Jays, speculation was rife that slugging outfielder Giancarlo Stanton would be the next player shipped out of town. The South Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Juan C. Rodriguez recently wrote that the Marlins won’t be trading Stanton anytime soon. However, everyone has their price, and one of the teams that might have what it takes to step up to the plate and make a bid for the emerging superstar is the Boston Red Sox.
Rodriguez cited an anonymous MLB executive as saying the Marlins were building around Stanton for the upcoming season and likely the foreseeable future. Larry Beinfest, the Marlins' president of baseball operations, recently spoke about Stanton. "Our plans for him in 2013 are to be our right fielder and to be in the middle of our lineup."
The reluctance of the Marlins to trade Stanton is because he is a young, cheap star. The 23-year-old has hit 93 home runs in his first three major league seasons. He made just $480,000 last season, isn't arbitration eligible until 2014 and won’t be eligible for free agency until 2017.
It would take a lot to get the Marlins to agree to part with the five years of relatively low-cost control a team would have of Stanton, but it can be done. Teams willing to offer up a package of premium young talent could get Miami to change its mind. The Red Sox have the resources to get such a deal done if they wanted to go after Stanton and make him the centerpiece of their lineup.
Boston team president and CEO Larry Lucchino recently indicated on the WEEI radio show Dennis & Callahan that the Red Sox want to get away from lengthy expensive contracts. Because he won’t hit free agency until 2017, Stanton would be a potential star who could prove his worth over the next few seasons before the Red Sox had to make a decision about offering him a long-term extension.
Any team trading for Stanton would have to pay dearly. ESPNBoston’s Gordon Edes tweeted about the high price he heard it would take to even get the conversation started on a potential Stanton trade.
Even more recently, CBSSports.com's Danny Knobler reported that the price for Stanton may have risen, writing "From what the Marlins are telling teams, any package would need to begin with three top-level prospects (very top level) and likely would need to include two other players as well."
The Red Sox don't have the same number of premium major league-ready prospects as some other teams. However, they do have the depth to get a deal done.
Click through to see what I think the Red Sox would have to give up to have a legitimate chance to trade for Stanton.