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Photo Credit: (AP Photo/Ashley Landis)

Meet the Sellers: Boston Red Sox

Am I writing a Meet the Sellers specifically because the Jays made the Boston Red Sox sellers? Absolutely.

To be completely honest, I don’t think there’s any chance that the Red Sox would ever trade the following three players to the Jays. However, it’s still worth noting who the Red Sox could trade to a different contender, perhaps in the National League.

The most recent trade between the two teams came back in 2018 when the Jays sent expiring free agent Steve Pearce to the eventual World Series Champs.

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In exchange, the Jays received a 23-year-old who hadn’t played above High A as a 23-year-old. Fast forward four seasons and Santiago Espinal is an all-star.

Here are three players that the Jays could have an interest in come August 2nd.

Xander Bogaerts:

We’ll start with the most unlikely, as there’s a chance the Red Sox keep him.

Statistics:

This season, the 29-year-old shortstop is slashing .313/.386/.445 with seven home runs in 382 plate appearances. He walked 9.3% of the time while striking out 20.2% of the time.

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For his career, he’s slashed .291/.356/.458 in 5140 plate appearances and has hit 148 homers. Bogaerts has struck out 18.4% of the time while walking 8.6% of the time.

Defensively throughout his career, Bogaerts has been a mess. In 9901.1 innings played at shortstop, he has posted a -55 Defensive Runs Saved and a -38 Outs Above Average (OAA didn’t exist in his first three seasons.) This included a DRS of -5 and a -9 OAA in 2021.

Coming into the season, I thought it’d be more of the same, but Bogaerts has surprised me quite a lot. He has posted a 0 DRS (average) and a 1 OAA, which essentially makes him gold glove worthy once you look at his prior years.

He’s a good offensive shortstop. Defensively, he’s shown to be at least average this season.

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Contract:

This is where things get dicey. Bogaerts is making $20 million for the next four seasons, becoming a free agent at the end of the 2026 season.

Well, that’s if he doesn’t opt out of his player option at the end of the 2022 season. What’s more, is that it has been widely reported that Bogaerts will decline that option and become a free agent, as he deserves a higher annual salary.

Bogaerts also has a full no-trade clause, meaning that the Red Sox are kind of handcuffed in terms of freely trading him. They’d need his acceptance to trade him anywhere.

Positional Need:

Another reason why I don’t think the Jays would trade for Bogaerts is due to his position. The Jays don’t need another shortstop, as Bo Bichette has the position locked down (and has made strides defensively.)

Not just that, but the only need the Jays have offensively, is that of a left-handed outfielder. Bogaerts doesn’t fit that need.

Nathan Eovaldi:

Moving from the least likely player to be traded, to the most likely, we have starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi.

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Statistics:

This season, Eovaldi has posted a 4.30 ERA and a 4.72 FIP in 75.1 innings pitched. He has an impressive per nine stat, as his K/9 sits at 9.44 while his BB/9 comes in at 1.67.

The issue this season for the 32-year-old righty is the long ball, as he’s given up 18. If Eovaldi gives up a flyball, it has gone out for a home run 22.8% of the time, which is reflected in his xFIP of 3.18.

Eovaldi also produces a fair share of ground balls, as he has a ground ball percentage of 46.4% in 2022.

Eovaldi has five pitches in his arsenal. He throws a four-seam fastball that he throws 39.9% of the time at an average of 96.3 mph. The other variation of the fastball that he throws is a 91.9 mph cutter that he only throws 7.4% of the time.

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He has a splitter that he throws 19.4% of the time at 88.2 mph, as well as a curveball (19% of the time, 79 mph average) and a slider (14.4% of the time, 86.4 mph).

Contract:

Nathan Eovaldi is in the final year of a 4-year, $68 million contract. His annual average sits at $17,000,000, and he’ll be a free agent at the end of the season.

The Jays certainly have the payroll to take on the contract. It’s just a matter of how much it’d cost to acquire him, as the Red Sox may want a tax of sorts, due to being in the same division.

Positional need:

I’ve been saying since Hyun-Jin Ryu went down with an injury that the Jays should be looking to acquire another starter. Yusei Kikuchi has produced not-so-great numbers and would be better off in the bullpen.

Eovaldi would give them that back-end of the rotation starter, but I feel as if the Jays could look elsewhere instead of paying the same division tax.

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John Schreiber:

There’s very little chance of the Jays acquiring a reliever that has control, but let’s look into the 28-year-old reliever.

Statistics:

This season, Schreiber has arguably been the best reliever in the Red Sox Bullpen. He has posted a 1.56 ERA and a 2.37 FIP in 34.2 innings pitched. He strikes out batters quite often, with a K/9 of 10.64, while limiting the free passes with a BB/9 of 1.82.

The 28-year-old has a four-pitch mix. He throws his slider 35.7% of the time which averages 81.9 mph. The percentages are near identical with his four-seamer, as he throws that 33.3% of the time at 94.4 mph.

The other variation of a fastball that he throws is a sinker, which he throws 24.6% of the time at 93.4 mph.

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The last pitch Schreiber throws is a changeup, in which he only throws 6.4% of the time at an average of 88.4 mph.

Contract:

This season, Schreiber is making the league minimum of $700,000 and will continue to do so until the end of the 2023 season. After which, he’ll be eligible for three seasons of arbitration.

While it’s not impossible to see him moved, I highly doubt that the Red Sox would be willing to move Schreiber to a division rival. Not just that, but the Red Sox aren’t that far away from competing either, so it’d be pretty dumb of them to move Schreiber.

Positional Need:

As is the case with every other reliever that I’ve featured in Meet the Sellers, Schreiber obviously fits a need. He strikes out plenty, while also limiting free passes and has team control for another four plus years.

The Jays would love to have him, but it’s incredibly unlikely that the Red Sox would be willing to trade him to a divisional rival.

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Are the Red Sox an ideal partner:

To be completely honest. Not at all. The Jays would have to pay extra for every player I had mentioned here. Not just that, but none of these players really make any sense.

Bogaerts doesn’t fill a need, as good as he is. He would come to Toronto and play shortstop, plus he’d have to accept a trade to Toronto.

Eovaldi is the most realistic get, but if the Jays want to upgrade that fifth spot in the rotation, they could do better.

Lastly, I’d love to have Schreiber, but due to the team control, being a divisional rival, and the Red Sox not going into a rebuild, there’s no way Schreiber will be traded.

However, it was pretty funny when the Jays outscored the Red Sox 40-10 in a three-game series.

Previously in the series…

Cincinnati Reds

Washington Nationals

Kansas City Royals

Detroit Tigers

Miami Marlins

Los Angeles Angels

Chicago Cubs

As always, you can follow me on Twitter @Brennan_L_D. It’d be cool to hit 1,500 by the end of the season, so give me a follow!


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