RHP James Shields – San Diego Padres
James Shields has been predicted to be a 2016 trade candidate as the July deadline approaches and it would be silly if the Boston Red Sox did not take a look at this veteran starting pitcher. Even though he gave up a home run to Bartolo Colon the other night, Shields has been an extremely consistent pitcher throughout his career – especially over the last five years. He has also been the picture of health throughout his 10 years in the majors, pitching over 200 innings and making more than 30 starts each season except for his rookie year back in 2006.
Additionally, Shields is signed beyond the 2016 season. He does have an opt-out clause in his contract that he can utilize at the end of the year, but that would just relieve the Red Sox of his hefty contract should he choose to leave. If he chooses not to opt-out, Boston could potentially have him in the starting rotation until 2019. Perhaps reuniting Shields with former Tampa Bay Ray teammate David Price, who pitched in the Rays’ rotation with Shields for five seasons, will encourage Shields to stay in Boston should he come to the East Coast via a trade. Maybe a familiar face in the rotation would even help Price succeed in Boston.
So far this season, Shields has 3.60 ERA with a 1.33 WHIP. Despite his 1-5 record, he has still been extremely consistent on the mound. Shields’ velocity and strikeouts may be down, but the Red Sox would likely still need to present the Padres with a pretty good deal in order to claim Shields. Thankfully, the Padres should be enticed by Blake Swihart.
Besides San Diego’s starting catcher Austin Hedges, who is currently on the DL, the Padres’ backup catchers have struggled offensively so far this season. Swihart is most valued for his bat and hit .319 over 84 games in the big leagues in 2015. So, a deal could be could be reached between these two teams before the July 30 trade deadline.
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