Sep 16, 2013; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Cliff Lee (33) delivers to the plate during the sixth inning against the Miami Marlins at Citizens Bank Park. The Phillies defeated the Marlins 12-2. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Sometimes The Best Trades Are The Ones You Don't Make

Sometimes the best trades are the ones you don’t make

In April of 2013 the Red Sox went 18-8 and gave a glimmer of what eventually would be a surprising season. The path to September had a blip in May and June with a 25-25 streak. The doldrums. Was the team was finally showing its true personality?

The pitching needed a jolt. Jon Lester had a shaky May and a disastrous June. Clay Buchholz was questionable. John Lackey had missed a few starts. Felix Doubront scuffled along in May. The bullpen woes were starting to accumulate.

With failure comes opportunity and failure was in full force in Philadelphia. The prize of the trading mart was Cliff Lee. In the pedigree of pitching Lee is about as good as it gets. A certified ace in the mold of Curt Schilling and Pedro Martinez and, just possibly, the one move to insure that September baseball would lead to October baseball in Boston. The Phillies were shopping Lee.

The price was astronomical as in Xander Bogaerts, a few other top 20 prospects and just maybe a Jose Iglesias or Will Middlebrooks or Doubront. Toss in the 80M+ in payroll obligation and this is not the Wal-Mart version of baseball shopping. No doubt negotiations would have lowered the “take” from Boston, but Philadelphia appeared locked-in on X-Man. That was the key piece.

RSN was split. Ken Rosenthal, proclaimed baseball expert, was all in for the Sox getting Lee. Talk shows and blogs were lined up with the baseball version of he said, she said. No doubt Ben Cherington examined this potential trade endlessly and, thankfully, he passed. Eventually Ben made the cheaper. The Jake Peavy deal was thus consummated and the X-Man stayed in Boston, along with a passel of others, and the payroll didn’t take a huge bump. Ben has read the market well and had patience that has paid off.

Sometimes the best trades are the ones you don’t make

Tags: Boston Red Sox Cliff Lee Xander Bogaerts

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