Red Sox

MLB Rumors: Teams liked other prospects more than those of the Red Sox

MLB Rumors: Teams liked other prospects more than those of the Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox surprised many when the team elected not to make a move ahead of Wednesday's MLB trade deadline. Though the team had been connected to many bullpen arms in rumors leading up to the deadline, they elected to stand pat.

And there may have been a reason for that.

According to MLB.com's Mark Feinsand, the Red Sox faced an obstacle in any trade talks. Teams across the MLB simply liked other prospects more than the ones the Red Sox had.

The Red Sox farm system is rated as one of the worst in the majors, so this isn't necessarily a surprise. The Sox do have some solid prospects -- 2018 first-round draft pick Triston Casas stands out among the bunch -- but evidently, whatever the Sox were offering came up short of what other teams were offering for bullpen help. So, the team elected not to "do something stupid" and retained their prospects in hopes that they'll either turn into major league contributors or up their trade value.

Still, failing to address one of their weakest areas -- the Red Sox have the 12th-worst bullpen ERA in the majors (4.53) and the sixth-most blown saves (19) -- while standing two games back in a competitive wild-card race doesn't seem like a great alternative either.

If the Red Sox can win a wild-card spot with the current group, that will vindicate Dave Dombrowski to some extent, as it is unlikely that the team would be able to make a push to the top of the AL East. But if this team can't come together, it sure does look as if Dombrowski waved the white flag on the season.

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Why Pedro Martinez believes Mike Fiers was wrong to expose Astros' sign-stealing

Why Pedro Martinez believes Mike Fiers was wrong to expose Astros' sign-stealing

Many would argue Mike Fiers showed courage by going public about the Houston Astros' electronic sign-stealing system in 2017.

But Pedro Martinez is decidedly in the other camp.

The former Boston Red Sox pitcher called Fiers a "bad teammate" for exposing the Astros for cheating after he left the team, rather than taking a stand while he was still in Houston.

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"If he was to do it when he was playing for the Houston Astros I would say Mike Fiers has guts," Martinez told WEEI's Rob Bradford, Lou Merloni and Mike Mutnansky at the Red Sox' "Winter Weekend" event in Springfield, Mass. 

"But to go and do it after you leave the Houston Astros because they don’t have you anymore, that doesn’t show me anything."

Fiers, who left the Astros following the 2017 season, admitted he wasn't on great terms with Houston after sharing its sign-stealing operation with his next two clubs, the Detroit Tigers and Oakland Athletics.

That's where Martinez takes issue with the veteran pitcher for "selling out" his former teammates over a grudge with the organization.

"Whatever happens in the clubhouse stays in the clubhouse and Fiers broke the rules," Martinez said. "I agree with cleaning up the game. I agree that the fact that the Commissioner is taking a hard hand on this, but at the same time, players should not be the one dropping the whistle-blower."

Martinez might be a little biased: He's on the Red Sox' payroll as a special assistant, and Fiers' whistle-blowing played a role in manager Alex Cora parting ways with Boston ahead of what should be harsh sanctions from Major League Baseball.

The Baseball Hall of Famer is adamant Fiers could have handled things differently, though.

"If you have integrity you find ways to tell everybody in the clubhouse, ‘Hey, we might get in trouble for this. I don’t want to be part of this.’ " Martinez said. 

"You call your GM. You tell him. Or you call anybody you can or MLB or someone and say, ‘I don’t want to be part of this.’ Or you tell the team, ‘Get me out of here, I don’t want to be part of this.’ Then you show me something.

"But if you leave Houston and most likely you didn’t agree with Houston when you left and then you go and drop the entire team under the bus I don’t trust you. I won’t trust you because did have that rule."

Reprimanding a whistle-blower is a controversial stance, but Martinez isn't alone: ESPN analyst Jessica Mendoza and former MLB pitcher LaTroy Hawkins have voiced similar opinions on Fiers since MLB punished the Astros.

MLB Rumors: Reds interested in signing Brock Holt

MLB Rumors: Reds interested in signing Brock Holt

Brock Holt still doesn't have a team, but he's garnering attention in free agency with spring training less than one month away.

The Cincinnati Reds are one of the teams interested in signing the former Boston Red Sox utilityman, according to Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

While Holt wouldn't be an everyday player, he'd be a valuable presence off the bench. The 31-year-old is a career .271 hitter and capable of playing virtually any position. In 2019, Holt played everywhere except pitcher, catcher, and center field.

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In addition to his versatility, Holt proved throughout his Red Sox tenure to be a fan favorite and beloved teammate. The 2015 All-Star undoubtedly would be a welcome addition to the Reds clubhouse.

Boston recently signed ex-Reds utilityman Jose Peraza, presumably Holt's replacement, to a one-year deal worth about $3 million.

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