On Saturday night, the Boston Red Sox blew another save, showing once and for all that they need to trade for a closer.
Thankfully, the trade deadline of August 2 is just around the corner. But who are the available closers for Boston?
Neither Matt Barnes nor Hansel Robles have shown that they are capable of handling the closer position. Neither should they be finishing games, even if they could modify their style and be a back-of-the-bullpen presence. Finishing a close game takes a different way of thinking, and both players have shown that they are not able to do it.
The move for a back-end reliever is Boston’s best hope at competing for a playoff spot long-term and making a meaningful run in October. The following three are the most logical:
Daniel Bard is a trade target for the Red Sox.
It’s worth noting that the Rockies are allegedly not interested in selling Bard, despite the fact that that was the case last summer. Colorado is currently falling out of the race to make the playoffs, and if this keeps up, all options will be on the table.
With a 2.22 ERA and 12 saves, Bard is having his best season yet. He’s a familiar face to Red Sox fans, as he was once a highly touted prospect in the organization. He was regarded as a starter at the time, but he has since remade himself as a reliever. In comparison to the other two closers on this list, Bard could be a bargain at 37 years old.
Michael Fulmer and Gregory Soto are two Red Sox trade targets.
I’m counting this as a two-for, owing to Fulmer’s lack of closing expertise. He’s one of baseball’s top set-up relievers, and he’ll be a free agent after this season. He is the less expensive of the two purchases listed here.
Soto, on the other hand, would cost Boston a significant amount of money in terms of potential. Do you want to keep Triston Casas? Instead, make a trade for Fulmer. Soto is regarded as one of baseball’s most electrifying back-end arms. He has the ability to throw near-triple digits and also has breaking ability.
David Bednar is one of the Red Sox’s trade targets.
Because Bednar is pre-arbitration, please accept my apologies for stating that this is highly, incredibly unlikely. However, Pittsburgh is unable to compete and appears to be squandering Bednar’s abilities. With a 2.23 ERA last season, Bednar confirmed himself as one of baseball’s greatest closers. This season, he’s followed it up with his first experience as a closer, which has gone off without a hitch.
Bednar has a 1.29 ERA and ten saves on the season. His fastball can reach the upper 90s, and he has great control in the bullpen. If the Sox were to toss the farm to Pittsburgh, he’d fit right in.
Since Chaim Bloom doesn’t like trading prospects, Fulmer and/or Bard seem like a better choice.