The Boston Red Sox’ new Chief Baseball Officer Craig Breslow already made his first trade earlier this month, shipping Luis Urias to Seattle for a promising young reliever.
However, he’s still searching for his first true blockbuster. It appears one could be in the works this offseason.
Jim Bowden of The Athletic identified star outfielder Alex Verdugo as a trade target for three National League teams (subscription required). He came up just shy of an All-Star selection in 2023, finishing the year with a .264/.324/.421 slash line, 7.5 percent walk rate, and 15.4 percent strikeout rate. He also excelled in right field, posting 3.5 dWAR and a 10.6 UZR at the position.
Let’s explore the clubs that could pursue a deal for Verdugo this winter.
Could the rich get richer?
Atlanta has been quite active this offseason and continues to search for additional pieces that will get them back into the World Series. Of the six targets Bowden identified for Atlanta, only two were non-pitchers. Verdugo was one, and the other was Twins outfielder Max Kepler.
The Braves’ need for a left-field bat is clear. Eddie Rosario manned the position in 2023 but struggled down the stretch, especially in the postseason. Plus, he’s a free agent and unlikely to be re-signed for his age-32 campaign.
With Ronald Acuna Jr. in right field and Michael Harris in center, Verdugo would shift to left. That’s certainly a manageable adjustment for the 27-year-old, especially since he wouldn’t have to deal with Fenway Park’s Green Monster.