The Boston Red Sox need a closer, and New York Mets reliever Edwin Diaz is one of the best candidates for the defending World Series champs to pursue as the July 31 MLB trade deadline approaches.
Diaz is struggling this season with a 1-6 record and a 4.95 ERA, but he did tally an American League-leading 57 saves for the Seattle Mariners in 2018. There's no question he's very talented, and playing behind an excellent Red Sox defense could benefit him tremendously.
The Mets are among the teams to keep a particularly close eye on at the trade deadline. They have several pitchers rumored to be available, including starters Noah Syndergaard and Zack Wheeler, in addition to Diaz.
The Red Sox reportedly have interest in acquiring Diaz, and ESPN's Buster Olney tweeted an update on the situation Monday night:
Some rival evaluators now believe the Mets are going to trade closer Edwin Diaz before the July 31 deadline, and the Red Sox are viewed as the suitors most invested in the chase.— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) July 29, 2019
Diaz is under team control through 2022, and his $607,425 salary is ideal for a Red Sox franchise with the highest payroll in the league and very close to the luxury tax.
What would the Red Sox have to give up for Diaz? Olney tweeted earlier Monday that 'Any Red Sox offer for (Diaz) would presumably include minor-league slugger Bobby Dalbec."
Dalbec is one of the top prospects in the Red Sox organization, but with Rafael Devers establishing himself as the team's third baseman of the present and future, there probably won't be a ton of opportunity for Dalbec on Boston's major league roster in the coming years.
Dalbec is a talented prospect with a bright future, but the opportunity to strengthen a team that could contend for another World Series title is one worth the taking. Improving the bullpen should be the No. 1 objective for Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski before Wednesday's deadline. Diaz, or another bullpen target such as San Francisco Giants closer Will Smith, would be an excellent acquisition for the Sox as the postseason races heat up.
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