Red Sox place Josh Beckett on waivers but the outlook is grim

In a move that took three weeks longer than most Red Sox fans were expecting, the club announced they have placed starting pitcher Josh Beckett on waivers according to Jon Heyman of, via Twitter.  That is the good news for Sox fans.  The bad news is that Heyman writes that competing executives told him they don’t expect Beckett to be claimed.

Beckett’s salary is a major sticking point that many clubs would shy away from.  The right-hander earns $15.75MM per year for the next two seasons and with an ERA of 5.23 and off field drama that Hollywood couldn’t come up with, it’s a hefty and risky investment for any club. He has one win since May and has been booed relentlessly at home from the Fenway faithful. Beckett has worn out his welcome in Boston and the majority of Red Sox Nation want him gone.

The one feather in Beckett’s cap is his playoff experience and the success he’s had when pitching in October.  A club like the Atlanta Braves might kick the tires on Beckett as could the recently slammed Oakland A’s thanks to Bartolo Colon‘s blunder. Any slight possibility of a club looking to claim Beckett would surely demand the Red Sox cover a large portion of his remaining salary over the next two seasons.

The Texas Rangers had modest interest in Beckett leading up to the July deadline and perhaps they could be in line to inquire on the Texas native.  Beckett does have ten and five rights, giving him the ability to block any trade he chooses to.  Surely a deal to his home state of Texas would be on the top of his wish list, making the Rangers the perfect suitor.

Heyman also explained that one rival GM told him that “Boston’s first priority has to be to trade Josh Beckett this August.”  Time is running out with only one week remaining until the calendar flips to September.  No pressure Ben.

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Tags: Boston Red Sox Josh Beckett

  • John Fahrer

    Nobody will take Beckett unless the Red Sox eat a significant chunk of his remaining salary. They’ll have to ride it out for the remainder of 2012. Season’s already lost so trading Beckett now won’t make a difference.

    Like I said before: Beckett, mid-tier prospect, $5.25 million for 2013 to St. Louis for Chris Carpenter. Possible cash considerations for 2014 depending on performance. If Beckett’s good in 2013, St. Louis takes all the salary in 2014. If Beckett sucks, we’ll pay 8 million.

    • DStykalo

      I have always been a fan of Carpenter. He’s a big game pitcher and gives an honest effort every time he’s on the mound. I’d take that deal in a heartbeat, providing he recovers from TJS.

      • John Fahrer

        Doesn’t hurt that he’s a New Hampshire native who would definitely step his game up if given the chance to pitch for the team he grew up rooting for. Even if it’s the worst case scenario for Carpenter, the club will free themselves of a big financial commitment one year ahead of schedule.

        Beckett should do much better in a return to the NL. St. Louis has a habit of turning the most mediocre of pitchers into viable contributors. Carpenter, Lohse, Westbrook benefited greatly from Dave Duncan’s tutelage. Of course Duncan’s not there anymore but the new guy was his understudy.

      • John Fahrer

        It was actually a surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. Shoulder-related rather than elbow. Should be good to go by February.