Red Sox

Red Sox trade deadline targets: Starting pitchers

Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox rotation could soon be getting some reinforcements.

MLB Network's Jon Morosi reported Monday that Boston is among the contending teams actively scouring the starting pitching market ahead of Friday's trade deadline. The New York Yankees, San Francisco Giants, Los Angeles Dodgers, San Diego Padres, Houston Astros and Philadelphia Phillies also are looking for rotation help, per the report.

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Red Sox starters have done enough to help maintain a first-place spot in the American League East, but it's clear a move or two should be made to contend for a championship, even with ace Chris Sale set to return from Tommy John rehab.

So, which names could Chaim Bloom and Co. be inquiring about this week? Let's go over some of the potential trade candidates:

Kyle Gibson, RHP, Texas Rangers

Gibson is one of the more intriguing names on the starting pitching market this summer. He's in the midst of an All-Star campaign in which he has posted a 2.87 ERA and 1.18 WHIP through 19 starts for the lowly Rangers. His 50.8 percent groundball rate ranks seventh in MLB.

The 33-year-old veteran also is under team control through 2022 and owed only $7 million next season. That might make the price to acquire Gibson a bit steep, but the right-hander could be a major addition to the staff down the stretch and next year if he's able to keep up this impressive pace.

Jon Gray, RHP, Colorado Rockies

Like Gibson, Gray is having one of the best seasons of his major league career. The 29-year-old righty is 6-6 with a 3.67 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 18 starts, 10 of which came at the hitter-friendly Coors Field.

 

Fellow Rockies starter German Marquez is another option -- and a more attractive one -- but Gray is the more realistic fit. Marquez is under team control through 2023 while Gray is a free agent after this season.

Tyler Anderson, LHP, Pittsburgh Pirates

A Tyler Anderson trade appears to be imminent as the Pirates' fire sale continues. Pittsburgh already parted ways with All-Star second baseman Adam Frazier over the weekend in a deal with the Padres.

Anderson, 31, isn't what anyone would consider a front-end starter. In 18 starts this season, the southpaw is 5-8 with a 4.35 ERA and 1.20 WHIP. Still, he could provide some necessary depth to the rotation and it likely wouldn't take much to acquire him. He's set to hit free agency after this season.

Michael Pineda, RHP, Minnesota Twins

Not exactly a fan favorite in Boston given his infamous pine tar incident while with the Yankees, but Pineda is another low-risk, potentially high-reward trade candidate for the Red Sox. The 32-year-old is 4-5 with a 3.93 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 13 starts this season with the last-place Twins.

Jose Berrios is another Twins starter garnering plenty of trade interest, but the Red Sox likely would have to pay a pretty penny to acquire the two-time All-Star. Both Pineda and Berrios are set to be free agents next winter.

Max Scherzer, RHP, Washington Nationals

It may be a pipe dream, but it we can't rule out a Scherzer trade before Friday's deadline. The three-time Cy Young award winner is set to become a free agent after this season and the Nats are eight games back in the National League East.

Bloom and the Red Sox probably won't be willing to pay the hefty price it'll take to trade for the 36-year-old, but a possible 1-2 punch of Sale and Scherzer is worth salivating over. Perhaps the second-place Rays reportedly being in the Scherzer sweepstakes will get the attention of Boston's front office.

Scherzer continues to defy age with another stellar year for Washington. He's 7-4 with a 2.83 ERA and 0.89 WHIP during his eighth All-Star season.