MLB Trade Deadline: New contenders emerge in Jon Lester sweepstakes

The St. Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Dodgers may be taking over headline space in the current negotiations surrounding Boston Red Sox ace Jon Lester, but there are a couple of new contenders who could end up stealing the spotlight over the next 24 hours.

According to Jon Morosi of FOX Sports 1, the Miami Marlins have inquired on Lester and on fellow Boston starter John Lackey:

Morosi is sure to point out that this doesn’t mean the Marlins are trying to acquire both pitchers in one fell swoop:

Per Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports, in addition to the Marlins, the MLB-best Oakland Athletics are also turning their attentions to Lester with just mere hours before Thursday’s non-waiver trade deadline:

Adding Lester would give the Athletics a fantasy league-like one-two punch of Jeff Samardzija and Jon Lester at the front of their starting rotation. If that were to happen, the A’s would likely become prohibitive favorites to capture their first World Series title in 25 years.

In addition to the aforementioned two teams, keep your eye on the Baltimore Orioles as well. MLB.com is reporting that the O’s are engaged with the Red Sox in serious talks, despite a move not being imminent at this time.

 

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Report: Jon Lester scratched from tomorrow’s start, trade imminent?

In this breaking Red Sox rumors and news update, the Boston Red Sox have removed starting pitcher Jon Lester from his scheduled start tomorrow, sparking speculation that a trade is imminent.

According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, Brandon Workman will take his spot in the rotation:

Per CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman, the Milwaukee Brewers, Baltimore Orioles, Pittsburgh Pirates, and Los Angeles Dodgers might be the best bets for potential trade suitors at this juncture.

Each of those four teams have the top-tier prospects necessary to swing a deal, and all four seem willing to risk losing said prospects in what could amount to a short-term rental of Lester.

Lester will hit the market as a free agent this winter. There are conflicting reports about whether or not he’d be willing to return to New England long-term after this season, with multiple sources indicating today that the two sides might be too far apart to make it work in the future.

Stay tuned.

 

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Red Sox Rumors: Heavy trade interest in Jon Lester, John Lackey

In today’s Red Sox rumors and news update, the Boston Red Sox are fielding a litany of calls on starting pitchers Jon Lester and John Lackey with the July 31st non-waiver trade deadline fast approaching.

According to Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports, the Red Sox are receiving calls from all around Major League Baseball – including rivals withing their own division:

After weeks of speculation on his availability, reports surfaced on Monday indicating that the Boston Red Sox are actively shopping Jon Lester in his walk year. Such a move has been made easier by Lester’s statement that he would be willing to return to New England this winter if traded and that he understands if the Red Sox need to make such a move for business purposes. While Lester is indeed heavily coveted, the veteran John Lackey could be equally as sought after thanks to a very team-friendly option for 2015:

Stay tuned to Chat Sports for all the latest on Hamels and Lackey as the Red Sox continue to mull their options over the next few days.

 

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Red Sox Rumors: Jon Lester speaks out on contract situation, potential trade

In today’s Red Sox rumors and news update, Boston Red Sox ace Jon Lester doesn’t want people to confuse his decision to table contract talks with a desire to leave New England.

In fact, Lester assures that the current lapse in negotiations means absolutely nothing to his long-term future with the Red Sox.

“Doesn’t mean anything,” Lester said, via Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. “There’s been plenty of guys who have taken less to come back. Mikey Lowell had more years and money with the Phillies and he came back. It’s not the end all for everybody. I’ve expressed to [ownership] I want to be here.”

While Lester would love to remain a part of the Red Sox organization, there are still lingering doubts when it comes to the upcoming July 31st non-waiver trade deadline.

“I don’t know,” Lester said of a potential trade. “It’s there. I think about it. Every year there’s that possibility. If that’s what happens, that’s what happens. I understand it. There wouldn’t be any bad feelings. It’s part of baseball. You have to think about it every year.”

In an email to the Boston Herald, Red Sox and Boston Globe owner John Henry had this to say: “I’m not going to discuss Jon’s situation out of respect for both Jon and [general manager] Ben [Cherington] other than to say that both sides have put further discussion off until after the season.”

“It’s clear that both Jon and our organization would like to see Jon back next year if possible.”

 

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Red Sox Rumors: Jake Peavy sounds off on trade talk, healthy?

In this Red Sox rumors and news update, Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Jake Peavy isn’t immune to all of the trade rumblings currently surrounding his name.

Despite staying up-to-date on the latest speculation about a potential deal, Peavy is attempting to focus on the task at hand.

“I certainly understand the situation,’’ Peavy said, via Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. “When I’m here I’m all here. Tomorrow I’ll get my work done and get ready for my next start. I’m aware of it and am kept abreast through my representation. We’ll see how that plays out. I didn’t think of it today. I think about the results.’’

After giving up five runs on eight hits in 6 1/3 innings during his last start against the Blue Jays, Peavy saw his record fall to 1-9 and his ERA increase to 4.72. Despite how uncomfortable he has looked on the mound at times this year, Peavy is adamant that his health is not an issue.

“I feel fine. I’m healthy. I have a lot of baseball left in me,’’ he said. “If I’m here I’m gonna figure out a win, I’ll promise you that. If I’m somewhere else I’ll give it everything I have. I hope that’s here.’’

It is very possible that Peavy and his relatively cost-effective contract could be shipped off to a contender in the NL before the July 31st non-waiver trade deadline. However, question persist about whether or not his current struggles are a portent of things to come or stand as just a bump in the road.

 

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Red Sox to trade Jake Peavy to the Giants?

In today’s Red Sox trade rumors and news update, the Boston Red Sox could have a willing trade partner in the San Francisco Giants if Boston decides to follow through with offloading 33-year old right-hander Jake Peavy.

Per Bob Nightengale of USA Today, a recent injury to Giants starter Matt Cain could be all it takes to get talks going about Peavy:

Peavy spent the first five years of his career (2002-2006) under Bochy in San Diego. Peavy would win the NL Cy Young Award the first season after Bochy left to take over the manager’s job in San Francisco (2007), partially due to the work Peavy put in under the Giants skipper in regards to honing his craft.

This year has been tough for Peavy, however. He is currently 1-8 with a 4.59 ERA while facing control issues for the bulk of the campaign. If the season ended today, his 1.411 WHIP would be the worst of his career since his rookie season in 2002.

Regardless, Bochy’s familiarity with Peavy and trust in the 33-year-old’s stuff could be enough to bring him to San Francisco before the deadline.

 

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Red Sox Rumors: Andrew Miller trade update, Braves the favorite?

In today’s Red Sox rumors and news update, the Boston Red Sox are receiving calls from several teams in regards to reliever Andrew Miller. However, the Atlanta Braves may be the favorite to acquire him if the Red Sox remain willing to deal him.

Per Justin Millar of the MLB Daily Dish, “the Atlanta Braves, in desperate need of a left-handed reliever due to Luis Avilan’s struggles, have made acquiring a southpaw their top priority according to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Miller appears to be their top target, while the club is also looking at James Russell and Wesley Wright of the Cubs among others.”

Miller is a low-risk trade target due to his $800,000 salary for 2014 and the fact that he will be a free agent as soon as the winter comes.

Miller is currently pitching to a 2.31 ERA with a stunning 14.4 K/9 ratio against just 2.8 BB/9. His stellar strikeout ranks him third among qualifying pitchers with at least 30 innings pitched. With the Red Sox currently streaking and on the fringes of the AL East division race, it’s possible they could hang onto Miller for the duration of the 2014 season.

However, if the Red Sox decided it’s in their best interest to sell, look to the Braves as a likely trade partner before the July 31st non-waiver deadline.

 

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Red Sox Trade Rumors: Andrew Miller on the block, Koji Uehara not?

In today’s Red Sox trade rumors and news update, there are conflicting reports surfacing as to whether or not Boston Red Sox closer Koji Uehara will be made available via trade prior to the July 31st non-waiver trade deadline.

Speaking on the Dennis and Callahan Show Monday morning (via WEEI.com), Hall-of-Fame baseball writer Peter Gammons indicated that the Red Sox are accepting calls on fellow reliever Andrew Miller, but not about Uehara as of this time:

“I talked to a general manager in the market for a closer yesterday who said when he talked to Ben [Cherington] that he seemed disinclined to even discuss it. That they think they’re going to bring [Uehara] back next year and build around him and let him go pitch the ninth inning again. … I was told that, by far, the player the they’ve had the most calls on is Andrew Miller. I find it really hard to not give him the [$6 million-$7 million] that it’s going to take [to re-sign him] because that’s what the premier seventh-, eighth-, ninth-inning guys get, and I think he’s really close to the point where he can close.”

This runs counter to a previous report by CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman stating that Jon Lester was the only Red Sox pitcher deemed as untouchable going into the deadline.

The 39-year-old Uehara has been sensational once again in 2014, pitching to a 1.58 ERA while giving up just 28 hits and six walks in 45.2 innings pitched (0.745 WHIP).

 

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Red Sox to trade Koji Uehara before the deadline?

In today’s Red Sox rumors and news update, the Boston Red Sox could listen to trade pitches involving closer Koji Uehara before the deadline if they fall off the pace in the AL East and AL Wild Card races.

Here’s CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman with the report:

The Red Sox, fresh off their sweep of the Royals and now only 7½ games out in the AL East, are focused on trying to win. But at the same time, they are talking to teams to gauge potential trades should they fall farther behind. If that happens it appears they would listen on all their potential free agents with the notable exception Jon Lester.

There are a lot of variables in play, but rival teams say that Boston would listen on even superstar closer Koji Uehara, who like Lester is eligible for free agency after the season, if they should fall out of the race.

In a seemingly up-for-grabs AL East, the Boston Red Sox could very well talk themselves into being buyers in the next week or so. Continued success after their weekend sweep of the Royals could thrust them back into serious consideration for a division title within a few days.

However, if the engine starts to sputter by next weekend, don’t be surprised if the Red Sox change their tact and the team starts assessing the future value they can obtain from the trade market.

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Red Sox Rumors: Cole Hamels trade update, chances of a deal?

In this Red Sox rumors and news update, the Boston Red Sox might have to look to someone other than Philadelphia Phillies ace Cole Hamels if they decide to pursue and acquire an impact arm before the July 31st non-waiver trade deadline.

According to Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald, the Red Sox have made no progress in opening talks with Philadelphia in regards to a potential Hamels trade:

In fact, Hamels-to-the-Red Sox looks to have no concrete momentum behind it as the final two weeks of the open trade market come to a close:

According to CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman, the Phillies are much more likely to deal starting pitcher Cliff Lee than Cole Hamels. However, recent injury troubles and a contract that could guarantee the 35-year-old up to $63 million by the end of 2016 could scare the Red Sox off – forcing them to find other trade partners when it comes to finding a top-tier starting pitcher.

 

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