Red Sox should not trade for Manny Machado

BALTIMORE, MD - AUGUST 18: Manny Machado
BALTIMORE, MD - AUGUST 18: Manny Machado /
5 of 5
BALTIMORE, MD – JUNE 20: Manny Machado (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MD – JUNE 20: Manny Machado (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /

If Baltimore’s asking price turns out to be more palatable than expected then the Red Sox will still consider a deal. If we assume Mookie Betts, Andrew Benintendi, Devers and Bogaerts are off the table, what does that leave left to offer?

It’s unclear if Baltimore want prospects or major league caliber players in return for their star. If they want prospects then the Red Sox have little left in the cupboard. The best trade chip in the farm system is Jason Groome but the Red Sox won’t give up their top pitching prospect for a one-year rental. Michael Chavis and Sam Travis could entice Baltimore but neither is enough to convince them to deal Machado.

If their preference is for major league players then Jackie Bradley may interest the O’s, but only if they are prepared to continue the tear-down of their team by trading Adam Jones or convincing him to transition to right field.

The O’s need pitching and the Red Sox potentially have an abundance of starters. Eduardo Rodriguez could entice a Baltimore team that should be eager to rectify the mistake of sending him to Boston in 2014 for a half-season rental of Andrew Miller. E-Rod is currently recovering from knee surgery, limiting his trade value.

If Boston can convince Baltimore to a deal that doesn’t involve any of their untouchable assets then a deal could be feasible, but don’t count on it. The O’s don’t seem eager to trade their star and won’t sell low if they aren’t getting the offer they want. They can always try again to trade him near the deadline in July or simply hold on to him through the year, extend a qualifying offer next winter and recoup a draft pick when he signs elsewhere.

Hearing the Red Sox tied to trade rumors for a star player is enough to gather an angry mob of fans calling for Dombrowski’s head when a deal inevitably doesn’t happen. Most trade rumors don’t pan out, yet if the Red Sox can’t pull it off then that makes them failures? Sorry, that’s not how this works.

Next: Top 10 moments of 2017

As much as we would all like to see Machado in a Red Sox uniform next season, if it doesn’t happen it’s because the front office wasn’t comfortable with the asking price. When you’re dealing for a one-year rental, there has to be a limit to how much you are willing to give up. Boston is in on these trade talks but they aren’t going all-in.