Red Sox trade target: Jeremy Affeldt


With spring training comes the triage reports that filter in with the Red Sox first casualty being Rusney Castillo. The Red Sox were fortunate that his injury is just a minor setback of a few games, but for others it can be extensive.

Hunter Pence has long been a personal favorite and I would love to see him in a Boston uniform and that is not happening. Pence, however, just got the bad news and that is six to eight weeks with a broken arm. Pence is a key cog for the Giants on both offense and defense.

The Giants have another flag, but their offense will certainly miss a contributor like Pence, who in all likelihood may not see an MLB pitch until mid-May. The Giants OF in 2014 ranked 8th in RBI with 224, 4th in runs at 292, 7th in OBP at .324 and 6th in WAR at 9.1. The Giants outfield contributed 48 home runs and Pence accounted for 20 of them along with 74 RBI and a .277 average.

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The Red Sox have a long jam in outfield and three in particular could be of service to the Giants – Allen Craig, Jackie Bradley or Shane Victorino. Two with an extensive NL history. And all with a pile of question marks.

The Red Sox need pitching. The Giants have some arms and when you look at two in particular they would be a positive addition, but acquiring them would mean the Red Sox adding a bit more to any package.

Jean Machi is the Pablo Sandoval version of a moundsman. At a portly 255 pounds on a six foot frame you can see a physical comparison. What Machi, now 33-years-old does have is a nice GB% of 52, a WHIP of 0.95 and an ERA of 2.58. Machi, 7-1 in 2014, has home/road splits that demonstrate he is not a pitcher friendly AT&T Park recipient.

The Red Sox brought in two left handed pitchers who did not exactly shine in 2014. Both Robbie Ross and Craig Breslow are certainly not replacements for Andrew Miller. Maybe veteran Jeremy Affeldt is?

Affeldt, now 35, has been a consistent positive out of the Giants’ bullpen and in 2014 – at least in the first half of the season. Affeldt finished off the season with a 4-2 record and an ERA of 2.28. His GB% was a startling 66.7%. Where the alarm bells go off is the second half of the season when Affeldt’s ERA was 3.54 and his WHIP was 1.38. Affeldt, like Victorino, is also a free agent after 2015.

Just who would it take? Who would the Giants want?

The best fit is Victorino, who combines nice career offensive numbers with a closet full of Gold Gloves. The AT&T slash for Victorino is an impressive .330/.389/.495 in 30 games. What is not impressive is the 13M salary and coming off a season in which he was a virtual no-show.

Craig can have the offensive part of the game – providing he finds it, but the defense? And that can just be flipped for Bradley.

The Red Sox would have to toss in some minor league talent, but you would certainly not see a top ten prospect heading west. The Sox do have talent in that 10-20 slot that just may entice the Giants to make a move and absorb some salary. Maybe even tossing in Bradley?

Both teams have a need and that is where deals can be made. Would be nice to see the Giants defend against Boston in the 2015 World Series.