Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE

The Roy Oswalt Drama Continues…..Red Sox Still an Option


Not even a mid-afternoon soap opera has the amount of drama that the Roy Oswalt sweepstakes have taken on this winter, especially over the past month.  Oswalt has been targeted by many teams like a hunk being hounded by women, only to shoot them all down to save his love for the two beauties that he will flip flop between for years to come.

Oswalt wants to play in Texas or St. Louis, that’s it.  We’ve known that for a while now.  He turned down the Red Sox offer, albeit an offer for half of much as he’s asking for.  Oswalt also turned down the new AL powerhouse, Detroit Tigers as well as telling Toronto and Cleveland he was not interested in pitching for them.

Now we learn that the Rangers are highly unlikely to sign Oswalt, according to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Oswalt does not and will not pitch in relief out of the bullpen for any club.  He wants to be a starter and nothing else.  Texas doesn’t have room for Oswalt with a rotation that appears to be set and that plan doesn’t include moving Matt Harrison to the ‘pen. Thus now leaves two teams essentially in the running for Oswalt, the favorites St. Louis Cardinals and the long shot Red Sox.

The Cards are trying to move salary to accommodate Oswalt’s asking price of $10 million by shopping Kyle McClellan.  So far, they haven’t had a lot of success.

Boston on the other hand is looking like a slow paced game of ping pong.  Back and forth, back and forth until someone misses the ball.  Oh, another serve meaning the Red Sox are back in play with Oswalt.  What we need is either Ben Cherington or the Cardinals to rip a smashing forehand and end the game once and for all.

If Oswalt doesn’t want to play here, fine, move on.  Earlier this week it was looking like the club was doing just that.  Cherington said at the Red Sox town hall that adding another pitcher, namely Oswalt or Edwin Jackson was unlikely.

But now, if the Cards can’t offer him the $10 million, they lose all leverage and suddenly you have to think that the Red Sox are back in the picture, although an offer of $7-8 million may be required to land the crafty veteran.

With Oswalt, we know the following criteria are important to him, in no particular order:

1. Playing for a team that can contend for a World Series

2. Play for a team that is close to his Mississippi home

3. Get $10 million for a one-year deal

The Red Sox can realistically offer one of the three important criteria and that’s the first one, play for a contending team.  Boston isn’t closer to his Mississippi home than St. Louis or Texas and it’s a stretch to fathom that the Sox will meet his demands of $10 million for one-year.

But as my colleague Stephanie mentioned, what the Sox can offer is a culture of history and a great chance of winning; an opportunity to swoop in to Beantown, provide some great pitching, become loved by a Nation, leave town and always be remembered for what he did for one year.  Curt Schilling anyone?

St. Louis is the favorite and in all reality will likely sign Oswalt when the dust settles.  Let’s just hope it happens soon so we can finally put this topic to bed and move on.  We try to move on, but when some new details emerge, it’s hard to ignore that the Red Sox remain in the picture.  Many comments have been left over the various articles written on Oswalt and the general consensus is to let the 34-year old with a questionable back pitch elsewhere.  If he doesn’t want Boston, Boston doesn’t want him.

For all the latest news and analysis from BoSox Injection, follow us on TwitterFacebook, or with our RSS feed.

Next Red Sox Game View full schedule »
Saturday, Aug 2323 Aug1:35Seattle MarinersBuy Tickets

Tags: Ben Cherington Boston Red Sox Curt Schilling Edwin Jackson Kyle McLellan Matt Harrison Roy Oswalt St. Louis Cardinals Texas Rangers

  • JLFCASH

    Still wouldn’t be surprised if he ultimately signs with us. Unlike the Cardinals, we have more of an immediate need for him.

    The biggest obstacle for the Cards would be moving one of their higher salary middle to back end guys: Westbrook and Lohse. Both have full no-trade clauses. The latter has stated that he’s not going anywhere. The former really wouldn’t have any suitors unless the Cards eat a good chunk of his salary, which would be pointless for a midmarket club (albeit an upper-midmarket club). Probably would be counterproductive to move one of the two to the bullpen given their salaries. It’s true you can never have enough pitching. But in St. Louis’ case, they might prefer to go after some low risk-high reward guys to stash away in AAA (Brandon Webb and AL-Central veteran Ben Sheets would be great bargains for them).

    Like I previously stated, maybe we can curb Oswalt’s homesickness with a couple Clemens-esque perks. Let him fly home on his off days in April and September. Maybe pay for a loft for him and his family from May to August.

    No matter what club he decides to pitch for, it won’t be for a guaranteed $8-10 million. He really has no leverage at this point. Especially with the St. Louis scenario.

  • JLFCASH

    Still wouldn’t be surprised if he ultimately signs with us. Unlike the Cardinals, we have more of an immediate need for him.

    The biggest obstacle for the Cards would be moving one of their higher salary middle to back end guys: Westbrook and Lohse. Both have full no-trade clauses. The latter has stated that he’s not going anywhere. The former really wouldn’t have any suitors unless the Cards eat a good chunk of his salary, which would be pointless for a midmarket club (albeit an upper-midmarket club). Probably would be counterproductive to move one of the two to the bullpen given their salaries. It’s true you can never have enough pitching. But in St. Louis’ case, they might prefer to go after some low risk-high reward guys to stash away in AAA (Brandon Webb and AL-Central veteran Ben Sheets would be great bargains for them).

    Like I previously stated, maybe we can curb Oswalt’s homesickness with a couple Clemens-esque perks. Let him fly home on his off days in April and September. Maybe pay for a loft for him and his family from May to August.

    No matter what club he decides to pitch for, it won’t be for a guaranteed $8-10 million. He really has no leverage at this point. Especially with the St. Louis scenario.

  • Derek Stykalo

    @JLFCASH the only concern I have with giving him the “Clemens-esque” perks is this new culture that Bobby V is trying to bring to the team. He wants everyone watching the games in the dugout in uniform for all 9 innings. No one is superior than the team and if you allow Oswalt to leave in between starts, what type of message would he be sending?

    Sounds like St. Louis is loosing their leverage and at least Boston is still having dialogue with him. Hard to believe that two weeks before pitchers report Roy Oswalt doesn’t have a home yet.

  • Derek Stykalo

    @JLFCASH the only concern I have with giving him the “Clemens-esque” perks is this new culture that Bobby V is trying to bring to the team. He wants everyone watching the games in the dugout in uniform for all 9 innings. No one is superior than the team and if you allow Oswalt to leave in between starts, what type of message would he be sending?

    Sounds like St. Louis is loosing their leverage and at least Boston is still having dialogue with him. Hard to believe that two weeks before pitchers report Roy Oswalt doesn’t have a home yet.

  • JLFCASH

    @Derek Stykalo I agree with that. His desired salary and possible perks seem less and less likely as the days go by.

    I’m sure in the end Oswalt won’t want to be a resented guy in the clubhouse. I have a hard time believing a guy will be unhappy playing for a contender. They might be playing the whole reluctance thing since there’s reports that there’s been ongoing dialogue between both sides. The decision will probably come sometime this week.

  • Derek Stykalo

    @JLFCASH Let’s hope the decision comes soon, I’m getting tired of talking about him. Although on the flip side, he has given us plenty to write about and considering how slow this off season has been this is maybe a blessing in disguise.

  • JLFCASH

    @Derek Stykalo I agree with that. His desired salary and possible perks seem less and less likely as the days go by.

    I’m sure in the end Oswalt won’t want to be a resented guy in the clubhouse. I have a hard time believing a guy will be unhappy playing for a contender. They might be playing the whole reluctance thing since there’s reports that there’s been ongoing dialogue between both sides. The decision will probably come sometime this week.

  • Derek Stykalo

    @JLFCASH Let’s hope the decision comes soon, I’m getting tired of talking about him. Although on the flip side, he has given us plenty to write about and considering how slow this off season has been this is maybe a blessing in disguise.

  • JLFCASH

    @Derek Stykalo The irony is that if he does sign with Boston, we won’t be done talking about him.

    Given what we did last offseason and who we had coming back, the slow offseason didn’t come as much of a surprise. If it weren’t for having $25 million invested in two starting pitchers who will either be: A. Missing all season (Lackey) or B. Able to pitch for three months (Dice-K), we would’ve easily met Oswalt’s asking price.

    Ortiz’s arbitration case isn’t helping either. Hopefully they settle in the $14 million neighborhood for one year.

  • JLFCASH

    @Derek Stykalo The irony is that if he does sign with Boston, we won’t be done talking about him.

    Given what we did last offseason and who we had coming back, the slow offseason didn’t come as much of a surprise. If it weren’t for having $25 million invested in two starting pitchers who will either be: A. Missing all season (Lackey) or B. Able to pitch for three months (Dice-K), we would’ve easily met Oswalt’s asking price.

    Ortiz’s arbitration case isn’t helping either. Hopefully they settle in the $14 million neighborhood for one year.