Red Sox Are Once Again Tied to Roy Oswalt Rumors


It’s the rumor that never seems to die.  Just as Roy Oswalt‘s name fades off into obliteration and spring training games produce debates over position battles, we are brought back to the headlines of Mr. Oswalt and where he is going to sign.  Enter the Boston Red Sox…..again.

Late this past week we heard that the Angels had emerged as the front-runners to sign Oswalt, likely in June once his kids are finished school.  A destination of Los Angeles was made possible when Oswalt declared he was willing to sign anywhere once the St. Louis Cardinals and Texas Rangers became less interested, something that remains to date.  Angels GM Jerry Dipoto did not confirm the club’s level of interest in the veteran but did offer a comment that his team could never have enough pitching.

According to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe the Red Sox have as good a chance of signing Oswalt as anybody, including the Angels.  All it will take is for the Red Sox ownership group to “loosen the purse strings” as money will help overcome the geographic barrier that Boston may present to Oswalt. Cafardo writes that the ‘money will cure all ailments theory’ came from a major league source, so it could have some merit to it.

But isn’t this the exact situation that the Red Sox are trying to stay away from; spending too much money?  After all, throwing a decent proposal at Edwin Jackson never happened, neither did Hiroki Kuroda.  Consider that Kuroda signed with New York for $10M, a deal that many are saying is a steal for the Yankees, and it reminds us all that the Red Sox are financially strapped to not exceed the luxury tax threshold.  This makes the Oswalt signing less likely, especially when one says that money will solve all the problems.  You have to think that if the Red Sox wanted to go out and buy Oswalt and overpay for his services they would have thrown that offer at him a long time ago.  Rather they went with a one-year deal worth $5M and Oswalt balked at it.

Should the former Astros ace decide to lace em up in June, his salary won’t be what he was looking for back in November, the original $10M range.  With Andy Pettite taking a $2.5M deal, Oswalt could get as much as the $5M he was once offered and only have to play in two thirds of the season.  A gamble to say the least given his wonky back and with that much time off you know he would be coaxed into the workload, putting more pressure on the Sox bullpen and other starters.

The Red Sox could find themselves in a desperate situation if Daniel Bard is sentenced to the bullpen and Aaron Cook, Felix Doubront and Alfredo Aceves can’t pick up the back end of the rotation.  At that point overpaying for Oswalt and taking a chance on him could look a lot more attractive given it could mean the Red Sox season.  Overpaying for Oswalt could be a better option considering the asking price to trade for any good starting pitcher ie: Gavin Floyd.  White Sox GM recently said that both Floyd and John Danks are both available for the right price which is two A-level prospects and a third slightly below in talent.  Pricy to say the least.

So as the Oswalt sweepstakes once again pick up we are again forced to wait and wonder what Oswalt decides to do. If this drags on much longer he could start to be known as a diva and could find himself in the same category as A-Rod.

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