Red Sox

Rosenthal: Red Sox and Orioles 'do not match up' on Machado trade

Rosenthal: Red Sox and Orioles 'do not match up' on Machado trade

As quickly as Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic and FOX Sports' MLB telecasts heated up the Manny Machado-to-the Red Sox rumors last week, his latest reporting does a lot to dispel them.

In a notes column published Monday (subscription required), Rosenthal reports that the Red Sox have contacted the Orioles about the would-be-free-agent infielder, who is thought to be the prize of the July 31 trade deadline, but Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski thinks the teams "likely do not match up on a trade at this time," according to a source.

In other words, the Red Sox really don't have the top minor league prospects the O's would be looking for in a Machado deal. The Sox farm system is ranked 24th in MLB by Baseball America and top hitter Michael Chavis was just suspended for 80-games for PED usage and top pitcher Jay Groome just had Tommy John surgery.

As for including 21-year-old Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers in a Machado deal, as NBC Sports Boston Red Sox Insider Evan Drellich wrote last week, "sources with knowledge of the Red Sox thinking were dismissive of the idea the Sox would move Devers."


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2018 was deja vu for Chris Sale's Cy Young hopes

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File photo

2018 was deja vu for Chris Sale's Cy Young hopes

If the MLB season ended on July 31, Chris Sale likely would have multiple Cy Young awards on his resumé.

Unfortunately for the Red Sox ace, the additional two months in the schedule have prevented him from accomplishing the feat.

Sale was well on his way to winning his first career Cy Young award in 2017, when the left-hander went 13-4 with a 2.37 ERA, 0.88 WHIP, and a whopping 211 strikeouts in 148.1 innings pitched before August. His performance dipped after that, as he posted a 4-4 record with a 4.09 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, and 97 strikeouts in 66 innings for the rest of the year.

With Sale's second-half decline, Corey Kluber of the Cleveland Indians ended up winning the 2017 AL Cy Young award instead as he cruised to a 10-1 record, 1.42 ERA, and 0.71 WHIP after July 31.

Sale suffered a similar fate in 2018. He was brilliant before the dreaded July 31 mark, with an 11-4 record, 2.04 ERA, 0.87 WHIP and 207 strikeouts in 141 innings pitched. This time, it was a shoulder injury that derailed Sale's chances as he was only able to take the mound for 17 innings the rest of the season.

Rays southpaw Blake Snell won the 2018 award after finishing his stellar campaign with a 9-0 record, 1.17 ERA and 0.79 WHIP in August and September. Justin Verlander and Kluber finished second and third respectively, with Sale placing fourth.

This marks the sixth straight season Sale has placed within the top five in Cy Young voting.

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Red Sox give Alex Cora contract extension with club option

Red Sox give Alex Cora contract extension with club option

Alex Cora's first season as Red Sox manager couldn't have gone any better. A franchise-record 108 wins. A dominating postseason run, culminating in the ninth World Series in club history.

On Wednesday, the Sox rewarded Cora for his efforts, agreeing to terms on a new contract that includes an extension through the 2021 season with a club option for 2022. 

“Since day one, John and Linda Henry, Tom Werner, Mike Gordon, Sam Kennedy, and Dave Dombrowski have been incredibly supportive of me and my family, and for that I am extremely grateful,” said Cora in the team's official press release. “For me, 2018 was not only historic, but it was special as well, both on and off the field. We have a great appreciation for our accomplishments this past year, but now our focus moves forward to the season ahead and defending our World Series title.”

The new deal presumably includes some sort of raise, considering Cora made a paltry $800,000 in 2018, placing him near the bottom of all major league managers.

“Alex did a tremendous job for our club all year long and we wanted to reward him for his efforts after an amazing season,” said Sox President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski. “We are extremely happy that he will be with us and leading our club on the field.”

Cora finished second in the A.L. Manager of the Year voting, but still led the Sox to 108 wins in his rookie season, the second-most by a first-year manager in MLB history.

“We have consistently been impressed by Alex at every turn,” Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner said. “His knowledge of the game, ability to connect with our players, and his incredible instincts and decisiveness led us to an historic championship season. We know we are in good hands, and could not be more pleased to know he will be with us for the foreseeable future.”

 

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