Red Sox

Report: Red Sox trading Jackie Bradley Jr. 'all but certain'

Report: Red Sox trading Jackie Bradley Jr. 'all but certain'

Chaim Bloom will be put to the test right away this offseason as the Boston Red Sox' new Chief Baseball Officer.

The Mookie Betts contract situation is enough to give any front office executive a headache, but one under-the-radar storyline in Boston this offseason will be what Bloom decides to do with center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr.

Bradley is set to hit free agency after next season and will make $11 million in the final year of his contract. As the Red Sox look to shed payroll, they could look to deal their homegrown Gold Glover and find a more cost-effective replacement. In fact, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic believes it's "all but certain" Boston will look to trade Bradley.

Rosenthal writes:

"One way or another, the Sox’s new chief baseball officer, Chaim Bloom, will need to be creative. A trade of center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr., projected to earn $11 million in his final year before free agency, seems all but certain. The Sox can replace him by dealing for the much more affordable Jake Marisnick — manager Alex Cora previously was Marisnick’s bench coach with the Astros — and pursuing a relatively inexpensive free-agent first baseman such as switch-hitter Justin Smoak to replace free agents Mitch Moreland and Steve Pearce."

Marisnick would be a reasonable replacement for Bradley given his stellar defensive ability, but if he indeed comes to Boston, don't expect an offensive upgrade. The 28-year-old hit just .233 with 10 home runs and a .700 OPS last season.

Bradley enjoyed another sensational season in the field in 2019, though he again struggled at the plate hitting .225 with 21 homers and a .738 OPS.

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MLB Rumors: Yankees offer Gerrit Cole a record contract

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USA Today Sports Images

MLB Rumors: Yankees offer Gerrit Cole a record contract

The Boston Red Sox may be looking to cut their payroll this offseason. But that doesn't mean that their rivals will be too.

In fact, some may spend big. And that includes the New York Yankees.

The Yankees have been reportedly interested in free-agent pitcher Gerrit Cole. The former Houston Astro is expected to get a lot of money on the open market, and according to Bob Klapisch of the New York Times, the Yankees have made a record-setting offer for his services.

This would be a big signing for the Yankees, as they could use another top-tier pitcher for their starting rotation. And Cole would certainly fill that need.

Cole, 29, had one of the best seasons of his career for the Astros, logging a 20-5 record and posting a 2.50 ERA. He also struck out a league-best 326 batters and helped the Astros win the American League pennant.

While the Yankees offer is on the table, they are still competing with the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Los Angeles Angels to earn his services, as Klapisch noted. We'll see if this offer is enough or if any of the teams involved in the sweepstakes up the ante.

And while the Yankees chase after Cole, the Red Sox are weighing some moves of their own. According to the latest rumors, they are expressing interest in a reunion with Rick Porcello.

Where Cole ranks among the MLB's top 10 free agent starting pitchers>>>

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MLB Rumors: Red Sox interested in a reunion with Rick Porcello

MLB Rumors: Red Sox interested in a reunion with Rick Porcello

The Boston Red Sox may be trying to cut some payroll this offseason, but that isn't going to stop them from targeting some free agents. And that may include one of their own.

According to Jason Mastrodonato of The Boston Herald, the Red Sox are having talks with Rick Porcello about a potential reunion. While the Red Sox may be interested in Porcello, Mastrodonato wrote that "it's unclear how aggressive the Red Sox will be in their pursuit."

He also noted that a short-term, incentive-based contract may make sense for both sides.

Porcello, soon to be 31, has spent the past five seasons with the Red Sox after being acquired in exchange for Yoenis Cespedes, Alex Wilson, and Gabe Speier. He won the Cy Young Award in his second year with the team, 2016, but he has had issues in the seasons since that campaign.

In 2019, Porcello endured his worst campaign as a pro, logging a career-worst 5.52 ERA and 7.4 K/9, his worst mark since joining the Red Sox. Still, he posted a 14-12 record and still profiles as a solid back-end starter because of his ability to eat innings.

We'll soon see if the Red Sox end up being involved in the Porcello sweepstakes. If they are involved, they will have competition and may find themselves facing off with the likes of the New York Mets, who reportedly have an interest in Porcello.

Where Porcello ranks among the MLB's top 10 free agent starting pitchers>>>

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