Red Sox Trade Rumors: Boston should trade for Max Scherzer

Jul 18, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer (31) throws to the San Diego Padres during the first inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 18, 2021; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer (31) throws to the San Diego Padres during the first inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports /

Should the Red Sox be eyeing Max Scherzer?

It’s Trade Deadline season and oh baby is the water warm right now. Teams are finally making some moves as the sand is falling through the hourglass while some big names are gaining big-time attention. For the Red Sox, they’ve been linked to several superstar players this season and per reports, they’re in on one of the best pitchers in the game today.

Max Scherzer has been one of the most dominant pitchers to throw a baseball but with his contract set to expire this winter, the Washington Nationals are willing to move the righty. Per Christopher Smith of via The Athletic’s Jayson Stark, the Red Sox are seriously interested in Mad Max.

Boston’s starting rotation has been a strength for the first time in a while but it isn’t necessarily full of big-name stars. Chaim Bloom has built a staff of gamers that have risen to the occasion, but that dream could quickly turn into a nightmare. Adding Scherzer would be an instant boost to not only the pitching staff but to this team’s projections as October approaches. The question Red Sox Nation needs to ask is whether or not this is the right move for this team right now.

On the surface, it’s an obvious yes. The man is one of the best pitchers out there and you should jump at the chance to have him. The thing is, he’s going to be a free agent this winter and also celebrated his 37th birthday today. Eventually, the wheels are going to fall off of the wagon but could the Red Sox get the last few miles in before that happens? Why not take a risk and see if you can have one last road trip before the car breaks down?

All are fair questions and it’s something I’ve been bouncing back and forth on for a while now. I’d love to have this menace on my pitching staff. Add in the eventual return of that lunatic Chris Sale and Boston has one scary starting rotation. I do have some concerns though and they don’t actually relate to the age of Scherzer.

His contract is massive and despite its near expiration date, Boston will have to fork out some cash. They may be able to get Washington to cover a portion but that could be a tricky get for Chaim. He’s set to make just over $34.5M this year before incentives and there’s no way the Nats will move him without paying a portion of that cash. If the Sox can get a deal similar to David Price where they eat half of the money and throw in some prospects, it could get done.

Bloom has spent all of his time in Boston getting under the CBT Threshold and salvaging the finances after Dave Dombrowski ran wild with the checkbook, granted with ownerships approval until they didn’t. But that mission has been accomplished and now it’s time to make some big moves toward winning a championship. That means spending some money and eating at least a majority of Scherzer’s final contract year could get the job done. The other cost Boston needs to stress about will be the asking price from the Nats.

Chaim has done a fantastic job in rebuilding this farm system but he can’t keep everyone and I think he knows that. Between the Rule 5 Draft coming up and plenty of big names in the system, he’s going to need to move some guys and move them soon.

On today’s edition of WEEI’s “OMF,” Lou Merloni pitched the idea of moving Jeter Downs, the crown jewel of the Mookie Betts trade. At one point I’d be against that fully but the kid just isn’t getting it done in Worcester and it may be best to move him before the league catches on.

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Many thought that Downs was the second baseman of the future but with the addition of Marcelo Mayer in this year’s draft and enough stopgaps at the position, now may be the best time to move him. If a package that includes Downs and another prospect that Chaim isn’t totally in love with could mean adding Scherzer for the remainder of 2021, I’m all for it. But that’s going to be easier said than done as it’s been said that Mad Max would prefer to go to the West Coast.

Merloni had a counterargument here as well and it was built around Sale and Alex Cora. Partnering with one of the other great arms in the game with one of the most beloved managers has to be appealing to the righty. Add in the powerhouse offense, Eovaldi, Eduardo Rodriguez, and coming to Boston seems a lot nicer than it has in the last two years. That sales pitch could also move Max to sign an extension, even for just a few years and a salary cut, if it means winning and contending.

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I’m a Max Scherzer guy and always will be. The dude goes out there whether he’s hurt or healthy, in a slump or firing on all cylinders, and throws his arm off. He will always do what he can to give his team the best chance to win and I want that on this Red Sox staff. The price may be a bit high but I think Chaim would work that in Boston’s favor not just for 2021 but for the future. Strengthening this starting rotation should be a priority and this trade would get the job done in a hurry. Many of you may disagree, and that’s your right, but I say Bloom should call the Nats and bring Mad Max to Fenway Park.