Red Sox executives met with agent Scott Boras mid-week, touching base on free agent third baseman Adrian Beltre, among other things. Roughly one day later they are reportedly "making some headway" in talks on a trade for San Diego first baseman Adrian Gonzalez, according to ESPNBoston's Gordon Edes.
If one enjoys reading between the lines, they might infer that the increased attention on Gonzalez is a direct result of something that occurred in those Boras meetings. Could it be that the Sox have backed away from re-signing Beltre, who just this week said he hoped to stay with the club? If that's the case, the much-discussed scenario seeing Kevin Youkilis move to third base and Gonzalez become Boston's new first baseman would again move to the forefront, as it suddenly has.
That's purely speculative, but with activity increasing at a rapid rate leading up to the winter meetings next week in Florida, the Sox figure to be one of several high-powered teams to make their big splash. Perhaps once general managers Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer are in a room together in Orlando, the progress reported Friday night on Gonzalez will turn into something a bit more legitimate.
There is precedent for a blockbuster to take place during the annual get-together, which has seen an average of nearly 10 trades each year for the past decade. The Yankees, Tigers and Diamondbacks shook things up with the Curtis Granderson–Austin Jackson–Edwin Jackson trade last year. Miguel Cabrera went from Florida to Detroit during the 2007 meetings. J.D. Drew went from St. Louis to Atlanta in 2003 in a deal that involved Adam Wainwright. When the meetings were held in Boston in 2001, Roberto Alomar was traded from the Indians to the Mets.
Several of these deals involved high-end minor leaguers on one or both ends, exactly what Epstein would need to land Gonzalez. Perhaps the Padres first baseman gets added to this list as soon as next week.
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