As former Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton put on Yankees pinstripes on Monday, officials with the American League East defending champion Boston Red Sox were continuing to search for how to fill a hole that would have been filled by Stanton if he had chosen to play for them.
The Red Sox president of operations Dave Dombrowski said the team was in touch with Miami about Stanton as recently as last week after the slugger vetoed trades for the Giants and Cardinals.
Boston is need of a power hitter after finishing dead last in the AL in home runs last season for the first time since 1993. Stanton hit 59 home runs last season and is considered the game’s best slugger.
Boston knows Stanton will make the Yankees even better next season. New York hit more home runs than any team in baseball last season, was one win shy of making it to the World Series, and will be the biggest obstacle Boston will have in attempting to win the AL East title for the third straight season.
Dombrowski insists the Red Sox did their homework on Stanton but the player’s representatives were not of the same opinion on Monday. Asked if Boston has been a consideration, Stanton said he did not have a thought on that. His agent Joel Wolfe said Miami never asked if the slugger would play for the Red Sox because Boston never came close to offering players in a trade.
Neither the Cardinals nor Giants were amongst the preferred destinations for Stanton, but that did not stop the two teams from working a deal out for the player.
Wolfe said that Boston told teams during last month’s meeting of general managers it was looking for pitching. Dombrowski says he does not recall that happening. He said he made inquiries about Stanton during those same GM meetings and said the initial asking price by the Marlins was too high.
J.D. Martinez is available as a free agent, but it appears the Red Sox would prefer a trade to just writing a check for a free agent; otherwise the slugger would be depositing the check already.
Boston apparently has interest in Chicago’s Kyle Schwarber, who likely will not be traded. The Oakland A’s do not want to give up Khris Davis after making room at DH for him, but Domingo Santana in Milwaukee could be a fit.
Martinez would be a good fit at DH for Boston, and Eric Hosmer may not be a typical power hitter, but combined with his defense and team leadership qualities, he might be the best all-round player left in the free agent market.