Three Potential Trade Homes for Kevin Youkilis
Kevin Youkilis is doing his part – batting 11 for 35 (.314) with a couple of homers in the last ten games. Contributing to an injury-depleted team that is winning – and building his trade value.
Moving Youkilis is inevitable. Will Middlebrooks is not only the future at 3B – Middlebrooks is playing like he is the present.
The Red Sox can’t keep asking Adrian Gonzalez to move out to RF. Hats off to Gonzalez for playing right without a negative word.
But Gonzalez is the star and Gold Glove-caliber first baseman. He belongs at first.
Plus, things get more complicated as Cody Ross and Jacoby Ellsbury come off the DL. I’m not counting on Carl Crawford – anything he does is a bonus.
And that makes Youk the odd man out (as we know, DH is not an option with the Red Sox either).
Forget what Boston GM Ben Cherington says about not moving Youkilis. What’s he supposed to say – yeah, we are actively looking to move him?
Danny Knobler reports Boston is telling other teams it will deal Youkilis.
So what are some potential trade homes for Youk?
First, let’s look at two factors that will influence which team becomes Boston’s trading partner.
- Contract. Youkilis makes $12 million this year. His contract has a club option for $13 million in 2013 (with a $1 million buyout). That means Boston either needs to find a team with payroll room or the team may need to eat some salary in a trade.
- Position. Youkilis is better at 1B than 3B. So a team looking for a first baseman is probably a better option – although Youk is passable at 3B.
The Best Options
- Los Angeles Dodgers. With new owners with deep pockets, they have money. The team is a bonafide playoff contender. And with James Loney, first base is a weak spot. Consider them option number one.
- Arizona Diamondbacks. Looks like Ryan Roberts was a one-year wonder. Youkilis is a great fit – and the type of player that would fit with a Kirk Gibson run team. Arizona has lots of young pitching – and may make a good fit with the Red Sox. The drawback – Arizona is not a big spender and may be reluctant to take on Youk’s salary.
- Chicago White Sox. Chicago is a surprise playoff contender and another team with a glaring hole at 3B. They are a club which experts regularly rank as a bottom-tier farm system, yet they continually bring up young pitchers who contribute. While I am not a big believer in this – I suspect Boston would prefer trade him out of the AL. (My view: Get the best deal for your team – no matter who you have to deal with.) But Chicago will spend – so they should be on the trade list.
Do you think the Red Sox should trade Youkilis? Which team do you see as their best trading partner?