The Boston Red Sox are rumored to have a new ace in their sights after a deal for Cole Hamels appears to be slipping out of their grasp.
Trade talks between the Boston Red Sox and Philadelphia Phillies are rumored to have cooled regarding Hamels, with Boston not willing to part with outfielder Mookie Betts or top catching prospect Blake Siwhart.
But some insiders believe the Boston Red Sox could have another ace in their sights. ESPN writer Jim Bowden said be believes the Red Sox won’t be able to complete the deal for Hamels, and will instead look to land Cincinnati Reds starter Johnny Cueto.
Bowden, a former general manager, wrote that he expects the New York Yankees to land Hamels and the Red Sox to follow suit by acquiring Cueto.
“I predict the Red Sox will then respond like we’re used to in the Yankees-Red Sox front-office rivalry and put a strong prospect package together to land Cueto from the Reds (as long as he doesn’t sign an extension in the meantime). The package will not include Betts or Swihart but instead be centered on pitchers Henry Owens and Matt Barnes. The deal won’t happen until after the Reds have hosted the 2015 All Star Game at Great American Ball Park.”
For several months this offseason, the Boston Red Sox were rumored to be working on a deal to land Hamels, but the two sides couldn’t reach an agreement.
There is still a chance a deal gets done. Some insiders believe both the Red Sox and Phillies were hoping to wait the other out.
The SB Nation blog Over the Monster explained:
“The hope for the Phillies is that, a few months from now, the Red Sox will find themselves in a situation where they’re that much more desperate for starting pitching. It’s strange how taking a few months off a contract can actually increase its market value when those months are April, May, and June.
“For the Red Sox, they’ll hope that the market will still not be willing to meet the Phillies’ asking price, and Ruben Amaro Jr. will be willing to capitulate as his threat of holding out on a Hamels deal loses more and more punch with each offseason that passes.”
And there may be new fuel to the Boston Red Sox rumors regarding Cole Hamels. Though the team is off to a solid 6-3 start, starting pitching has been a weak point and the Boston Globe speculated that the team could still try to make a move for Hamels.
[Image via USA Today]