Red Sox

Blue Jays' Marcus Stroman details bromance with Red Sox P David Price

Blue Jays' Marcus Stroman details bromance with Red Sox P David Price

CLEVELAND -- Marcus Stroman was David Price's teammate for only 86 days, but those two-plus months were enough to leave a lasting impression.

Stroman and Price joined forces at the 2015 trade deadline when Toronto acquired the latter from Detroit in one of Dave Dombrowski's final moves as Tigers GM. They then helped the Jays reach the ALCS, where they lost to the eventual champion Royals in six games.

Four years later, Stroman lights up at the mention of Price's name, crediting the Red Sox left-hander for boosting his career.

"I love that man," Stroman said before the All-Star Game. "Everything about him. He just taught me that the game is much deeper than the game. He taught me about life, how he handles his family, his relationships, his people. He's just an unbelievable human being, which you don't find all the time. I can't say a bad word about Price.

"I can call him right now, he'd answer on the first ring. He's told me that whatever I need, he's a true friend of mine and I'm looking forward to having him in my life for the rest of my future."

The two have a bit of yin and yang to them. Price is 6-foot-5 and a former No. 1 overall pick out of powerhouse Vanderbilt in his home state of Tennessee. The 5-foot-7 Stroman hails from Long Island and was drafted at the end of the first round out of Duke.

Both have made their names in the American League East, and Stroman figures to be one of the most coveted starters on the market, with his hometown Yankees contenders to land the first-time All-Star, who is 5-9 with a 3.18 ERA. Stroman shrugs off the potential pressure of New York — "I'm scared of nobody," he said — and detailed what he learned from watching Price.

"Just how much of a workhorse you have to be," he said. "You have to be that guy to go out there and throw 200 innings, 33, 34, 35 starts, and be able to grind through whatever you're going through, when you have little aches and pains. You have to be that horse and that guy people look to to be the stopper."

Stroman's got a history with more than Price. He has jawed with the Red Sox this year, especially manager Alex Cora, but he believes the respect goes both ways between player, opponent, and even Red Sox fans. He said that he and Cora shared "a huge dap" at the All-Star Game to prove there are no hard feelings.

"It's just the Red Sox man," he said. "It's almost like you can get that playoff atmosphere even in the regular season, especially in Boston. It's a Monday, Tuesday night, everyone's yelling at you. The profanity they're yelling at you, I love it. It's hostile. It's fun. It makes the game really fun. They bring you up when you see the Red Sox as my opponent, it's like all right, I need to lock it in today.

"I know (the fans) respect me, and I know the Red Sox respect me as well. I'm cool with a lot of those guys. That's what people don't understand. In between those lines it's different, I'm a different person out there, I go to a dark place. It's like that killer mentality. Once I step back across that line, I'm not that guy. But I love playing against Boston."

He particularly loves the opportunity to see Price.

"If he pitched against me, I might root for him," Stroman said. "That's how much I love him. He deserves everything, every good thing coming for him. When he was a Blue Jay, that guy was on the top step every single inning when I was coming out, hyping me up, chatting me up, telling me I'm the man, fist-pumping me, and he told me to always remain myself — no matter what anyone says, he says, 'Stro, you always stay true to yourself.' Love that dude."

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MLB Rumors: Could Red Sox be part of three-team Wil Myers trade?

MLB Rumors: Could Red Sox be part of three-team Wil Myers trade?

Could the Boston Red Sox participate in another blockbuster trade before the 2020 season?

We learned Tuesday that the Red Sox and Padres are still discussing a trade involving San Diego outfielder Wil Myers, per Kevin Acee of the San Diego Union-Tribune.

But it's possible a third team gets involved in a Red Sox-Padres trade, The Athletic's Dennis Lin reported Wednesday.

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From Lin:

As part of these considerations, the Padres have discussed a potential three-team trade that would ship Myers to the Red Sox and land Cincinnati Reds center fielder-second baseman Nick Senzel in San Diego, two sources told The Athletic

Lin added that no trade is imminent, but Acee also reported the Padres have interest in the 24-year-old Senzel, the Cincinnati Reds' No. 2 overall pick in 2016 who would become San Diego's center fielder.

Per Acee, a Padres-Red Sox trade would have Boston assume about half of the $61 million Myers is owed over the next three years while receiving some combination of pitcher Cal Quantrill and prospects Luis Campusano and Gabriel Arias.

It's unclear how the Reds' involvement would affect Boston's return for Myers, or if the Red Sox would have to send a player to Cincinnati in this deal.

But San Diego general manager A.J. Preller apparently is serious about making a move: The Padres also remain interested in Cleveland Indians shortstop Francisco Lindor, Lin reports.

Is Chris Sale a serious Cy Young candidate? Sportsbooks bullish on Red Sox ace

Is Chris Sale a serious Cy Young candidate? Sportsbooks bullish on Red Sox ace

Perhaps Chris Sale's stock isn't as low as it appears.

The Boston Red Sox left-hander posted a 6-11 record with a 4.40 ERA in 2019 before elbow inflammation ended his season in August.

He hasn't thrown off a major-league mound since then and may not be ready for 2020 Opening Day after contracting pneumonia prior to spring training. He turns 31 at the end of March.

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And yet: DraftKings Sportsbook currently lists Sale at +600 odds to win the 2020 American League Cy Young Award, the second-shortest odds behind New York Yankees ace Gerrit Cole.

Here's the top five:

Gerrit Cole +275
Chris Sale +600
Justin Verlander +700
Blake Snell +1000
Mike Clevinger +1000

Why are sportsbooks so bullish on Sale, who has better odds than reigning Cy Young winner Justin Verlander?

For one, the hard-throwing left-hander insists his arm is fully healthy. He also threw just 147.1 innings in 2019 -- his lowest output in a season since becoming a starter -- and should be well-rested for 2020.

Advanced metrics also suggest Sale's 2019 campaign wasn't as bad as it appeared: His 35.6 percent strikeout rate ranked second in baseball behind Cole, while his 3.39 FIP was the second-lowest in the majors among pitchers with an ERA above 4.00.

And lest we forget, Sale is just two seasons removed from posting a 2.11 ERA over 158 innings in 2018 and three seasons removed from leading MLB in strikeouts with 308.

The Red Sox need Sale to be at his peak if they want to have any success in 2020. As of right now, the odds are in his favor.