Theo Epstein's Legacy Is One Trade Away
Theo Epstein will always be considered a God in Boston no matter what he does throughout the remainder of his GM'ing career. The Red Sox won the World Series in 2004 breaking an 86-year championship drought and continued their dominance by adding another title in 2007.
Two titles in five years is quite the accomplishment, but Epstein has the opportunity to cement his own personal legacy in baseball history by acquiring Roy Halladay.
Before I further indulge into this trade talk, I want everyone to be aware that I'm a life-long Jays fan. From Joe Carter touching them all in 1993, to last night's victory in Seattle, I have always held my allegiance to my hometown team.
Due to my loyalty to the Jays, I have always hated the Red Sox. I look forward to seeing them fail and was so pleased to see them eliminated in last years playoffs. These emotions are normal for any fan of a division rival and shouldn't be held against me in any way.
I've always said that no matter what the Red Sox do, I would never be a supporter of their franchise, but that was disregarding one potential move I never considered: trading for Roy Halladay.
Roy Halladay will instantly turn the Red Sox into the World Series favorites not only for this season and the next. The move makes perfect sense from an organizational standpoint as they would form a lethal starting rotation fronted by Halladay, Josh Beckett and John Lester, to go along with their stellar offence and deep bullpen.
It seems many Sox fans are urging management to acquire a bat like Adrian Gonzalez, but how could that be a preferred choice over getting the top pitcher in baseball? The Red Sox need to address their biggest weakness and that is currently their starting rotation.
Beckett and Lester have been fine, but the rest have struggled to stay healthy like Dice K and Wakefield. Brad Penny has been decent this season, but can be considered no more then a No. 4 or 5 starter, and it is safe to say the John Smoltz experiment has been a total disaster.
Without acquiring a front-line pitcher like Halladay, the Red Sox will struggle to succeed in October if they were to even get there. I'm not trying to knock Boston's franchise, but I'm just sharing my honest opinion on a ball club.
They are one of the most talented teams in baseball and scare the living day lights out of me when they come to town, but I believe it is fair to say that they will have problems in their future with the state of their pitching staff.
Halladay will do wonders for the team and if they could sign him to a contract extension and have him spend the better part of the next decade donning their uniform, he would most definitly be on his way to 300 wins and a sure spot in the Hall of Fame.
The Red Sox would be a formidable team and definitely have the upper hand on their Yankee rivals for years to come. Obviously all Red Sox fans would welcome the addition of the best pitcher in baseball, but of course the question is how much is he worth?
Blue Jays' GM JP Ricciardi has said that if he deals within the division the receiving team would have to pay a premium price. Rumors are swirling that Ricciardi has asked for players such Clay Buchholz, Daniel Bard, Casey Kelly and others.
I'm not quite sure a deal between the Jays and Red Sox would need to include the latter two, but it would most definitely need to include Buchholz.
Now is the right time for Red Sox fans to get over the thought of losing Clay, since if they are to make any major acquisition of Halladay, the young pitcher would have to be included. This is a given at this point of the discussions and I'm sure Epstein is fully aware of this.
So who else gets added to this package, you may ask? Michael Bowden most definitely would need to be added as well. He has the potential to be a strong No. 2 pitcher in the future for the Blue Jays and would go nicely with the pitching prospects the Jays already have.
The inclusion of Buchholz and Bowden would be all the pitching the Jays would need back from the deal and shouldn't handicap their future pitching depth since they will still be able to hold on to young pitchers like Bard, Tawaza and Hagadone.
In regards to some of the other prospects the Jays may ask for, it would probably need to be two of the following: Lars Anderson, Josh Reddick, Ryan Westmoreland, Yamaico Navarro, and Casey Kelly.
From a Blue Jays standpoint, the most perfect additions would be Anderson and Kelly, but that would be a large package the Red Sox would be giving up and I'm sure Theo would not agree to that deal.
A more realistic pair of prospects heading north of the border would be Westmoreland and Navarro. Those two position players to go along with the duo of Buchholz and Bowden would be a fantastic addition to the Jays system.
From the Red Sox point of view, they would be obtaining the top pitcher in baseball which would shore up what would be the top rotation in baseball, without having to sell out the entire farm. I may be slightly underestimating what Ricciardi's demands may be, but that overall package would be fantastic for both ends.
Here is hoping a deal could be made since it would greatly benefit both sides. As always, all feedback is welcome. I would love to hear what your opinions are on my perspective!
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