Yesterday, we learned that the Yankees were knocking on the Marlins’ door about Justin Bour. Never willing to let their pinstriped rivals in the AL East have all the fun, the Boston Red Sox are now said to be interested in acquiring both Martin Prado AND David Phelps from the Marlins, first reported by USA TODAY’s Bob Nightengale.
The Red Sox being interested in Prado isn’t necessarily new news, as it was reported last weekend that Boston might want the veteran third baseman; it’s the inclusion of Phelps that makes this interesting.
Phelps was one of the
better best relievers in baseball last season, finishing up with a 2.28 ERA/2.80 FIP, a robust 11.84 K/9 and almost 2.0 fWAR (it should be noted that he spent a little time in the rotation as well). He’s come down to earth a little bit this year, though he has been a lot closer to the Phelps of last year after putting an ugly April behind him.
Prado has had a sub-par season by his standards, though it’s hard to judge him too harshly since he’s only appeared in 32 games to this point. Prado has slashed .273/.299/.388 with two home runs and 12 RBI, which may make you wonder why the Red Sox would be interested in the first place. That is, until you take a close look at what Boston has been trotting out at third base this season.
Prado has a long history as an above average contact hitter and a solid defender, so despite being older and perhaps a little more balky in the legs, he’s a good bet to return to career form at the dish. He is also renowned for being a leader in the clubhouse, the kind of guy teams gunning for a championship love to add at the deadline.
The only hold-up appears to be Prado’s salary. Prado is still owed $34 million through 2019 courtesy of the three year deal he signed with the Marlins this past off-season. The potential inclusion of Phelps in the deal could help make the swallowing of that salary more palatable for the Red Sox, though they would likely still ask for Miami to pay a portion.
Interestingly enough, this would not be the first time that David Phelps and Martin Prado were traded together, as they both arrived in Miami as a part of a 2014 deal that saw Nathan Eovaldi, Garrett Jones, and Domingo German head to the Yankees.
This time, the duo might be catching a plane out of town together. Stay tuned to Fish Stripes for all the latest Marlins trade rumors!