While it remains unclear whether the Boston Red Sox will buy or sell ahead of the Aug. 2 trade deadline, don't expect shortstop Xander Bogaerts or third baseman Rafael Devers to be moved.
"We haven't had any discussions internally or with any other club about them," chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom said on NESN (h/t Alex Speier of the Boston Globe). "We don't plan to."
Boston is in an interesting spot.
On the one hand, it is just three games behind the Tampa Bay Rays for the final American League wild-card spot. That is hardly an insurmountable deficit with more than two months of baseball remaining, so buying or staying put could make sense.
On the other hand, it is an ugly 7-17 since it was 42-31 following a June 26 win over the Cleveland Guardians. A stunning 28-5 loss to the fellow wild-card contender Toronto Blue Jays was included in that stretch, and the team has looked like anything but a playoff possibility of late.
ESPN's Jeff Passan reported it is "increasingly realistic" the Red Sox will be sellers at the deadline and highlighted J.D. Martinez, Enrique "Kike" Hernandez and Nathan Eovaldi as potential trade candidates.
Yet Speier noted Bogaerts and Devers are seen as "cornerstone players, central to any remaining hopes for this season and with a desire to retain both as part of future contenders."
According to Speier, the organization also feels as if it is in a healthier position throughout the farm system than it was in 2019 when it traded Mookie Betts, who was surely seen as a cornerstone player at one point as well.
Perhaps not trading either player by the deadline means the Red Sox will be all the more willing to do what it takes to keep them in Boston and build a long-term contender in a daunting American League East division.