Well it is that time of year again in the MLB, the last few days of the trade period where most of the deals happen. This year has already seen some interesting trades, and that should continue with the deadline looming. However, out of all the rumors and gossip spreading around the sports universe, there are two players that are garnering more attention and news than the rest. David Price of the Tampa Bay Rays and Jon Lester of the Boston Red Sox. With both players being in some kind of trade rumor every day, we will break down what we think will happen with each.
David Price: Stays in Tampa
So the first of the two aces we will look at is David Price. With his current situation, I believe that Price will not be going anywhere and will finish the season with Tampa. First off, the Rays have been streaking as of recent. They are 9-1 in their last 10 games and are currently sitting 4.5 games out of a wild card spot, and 6.5 out of first in a very wide open AL East. Now if you recall, I think that the Orioles will be winning the AL East, and therefore Tampa will have to settle for a wild card spot. If you also recall, I stated that I did not think the Mariners would make the playoffs, enter the Rays. The Rays are a younger team, in terms of pitching, and they need a guy like Price who has been there before if they are going to make a run at the playoffs, or in the playoffs. The other issue with Price is that the team doesn’t need to sell him, and therefore to get a lefty arm that has been torching hitters recently, the price (pun not intended) will be extremely high. No team will be willing to tear their farm system apart for a guy they do not even know will sign with them after the year (he only has a contract through 2014.) With such a high asking price, I do not think anyone will meet it and the Rays will hang onto Price and make a push for the post-season. Regardless of what happens then, I believe the Rays will try some kind of sign and trade to get a little something from him during the winter. But regardless, do not expect Price to be leaving Florida over the next few days.
Jon Lester: Leaves for St. Louis
Alright, and now for the other big name, Jon Lester. It is weird to think that a year ago, the Red Sox were sitting very pretty in the AL East and were on the fast track to the post-season. Less than a year ago and they won it all and were on top of the world. Fast forward to today and the Red Sox have decided to do away with this season. They have already sold Peavy and are looking at getting rid of some of their other high value assets, namely Jon Lester. The Red Sox organization has decided with the AL being a true struggle to get through to make the playoffs, and the AL East being open but not for them, they are going to sell high and get young. It also doesn’t help that Lester has not signed an extension with Boston and that his contract is up after this year. All this, plus the fact that he got pulled from his start on Wednesday, is making it pretty obvious that the Red Sox are listening or have already begun deep talks with some teams. Lester seems destined to leave the Sox, and therefore, to me, it only makes sense that he will end up in St. Louis. For one, St. Louis is kind of this hub for young talent, if you haven’t heard. They are always in the top 5 in the MLB for prospect farms, and they have more than enough talent to get the lefty out of Boston. The other reason why this makes sense is that St. Louis needs another starter. Wainwright has been amazing this year, but with their next best pitcher in Wacha is getting rested for later in the season. Then with Lynn just coming back and Garcia, Miller, and Martinez not really doing the job, adding a lefty who has a 2.52 ERA on the season will instantly improve an already very good Cardinals pitching staff. Not only that, but the Cards will feel good with getting Lester because of who they are and what they can offer, they will hold the bargaining power to resign Lester if they want to or not. It is a win-win for both teams in this situation, which is why over the next few days, Lester will be leaving the Red Sox for the Cardinal red of St. Louis.
Thanks for reading!
All stats and information courtesy of espn.com and spotrac.com