The Boston Red Sox have officially lost out on all four top free-agent shortstops.
Trea Turner went to the Philadelphia Phillies, and Carlos Correa is with the San Francisco Giants. Most importantly, the Sox lost Xander Bogaerts, their unofficial captain, and one of the most consistent offensive players in the game over the last several years.
On Saturday evening, Jeff Passan reported that the Chicago Cubs are in agreement with Dansby Swanson on a 7-year, $177M contract with a full no-trade clause. Swanson just married longtime love Mallory Pugh, forward for the Chicago Red Stars of the NWSL and star on the US women’s national soccer team. He’d previously made it clear that location was important to him vis a vis his wife’s career, so the Cubs are a perfect fit for the newlyweds.
Swanson got one year and $17M more than the Sox reportedly offered Bogaerts. Their 6-year, $160M offer got blown out of the water not only by the San Diego Padres, who gave him 11 years, $280M, but three other teams were reportedly willing to exceed $200M as well.
After all that talk, it looks like Trevor Story will, in fact, be the starting shortstop for the 2023 Red Sox, despite Chaim Bloom awkwardly saying that the club ‘hoped it wouldn’t come to that’ just last week.
Without Bogaerts and with no guarantee the Sox will do right by Rafael Devers, the Sox are looking at a power outage season. Rumors swirled about interest in a reunion with JD Martinez, but they’ve been ‘interested’ in pretty much everyone, so the word has lost all meaning. On Saturday evening, the Los Angeles Dodgers gave him a one-year, $10M deal.
Meanwhile, Christian Vázquez reportedly gave the one last chance to bring him home before agreeing to his new contract with the Minnesota Twins. Unsurprisingly, his final attempt at a reunion fell on deaf ears, even though Bloom has repeatedly stated that the Sox are trying to upgrade their catching situation. The catcher was the longest-tenured member of the organization before the Sox traded him to the Houston Astros at the deadline. Now, he’ll make $30M over three years in Minnesota. Ironically, one of the state’s nicknames is the New England of the West.
"“They’re going to be in my heart forever. It was tough to leave Boston. I spent all my career, 15 years, with them.”Vázquez at his Minnesota Twins introduction"
Bloom says the Red Sox are going to be very active on the trade market – so another shortstop or catcher could possibly materialize – but at this point in a dreadful offseason, no one is listening; they’re waiting for action.
More Red Sox news
- After designating him for assignment earlier in the week, the Red Sox traded Hoy Park to the Braves in exchange for a player to be named later or cash considerations.
- The Red Sox DFA’ed Jeter Downs to open a roster spot for Masataka Yoshida, and DFA’ed Eric Hosmer to make room for Wyatt Mills, a reliever they acquired from the Kansas City Royals on Friday.
- Marcelo Mayer is “off limits” as the Red Sox attempt to make trades, and it’s hard to see Triston Casas being available either, now that they’ve DFA’ed Hosmer. They’re also reportedly clinging to Ceddanne Rafaela, their superstar outfield prospect. One NL evaluator noted, “They’re hugging him very tight. Understandably so.”
- The Pirates are signing catcher Austin Hedges to a one-year, $5M deal.
- The Orioles are reportedly eyeing Michael Wacha and Rich Hill. Hill pitched for Baltimore in 2009 but only threw 57 2/3 innings across 14 games (13 starts) before undergoing surgery to repair a torn labrum. According to Chris Cotillo, the Angels and Rangers have also expressed interest in Hill this offseason.