Jacoby Ellsbury’s recent shoulder injury coupled with Carl Crawford’s lengthened rehab process leaves the Boston Red Sox without their top two outfield options. At this point, Boston is prepared to send out Cody Ross, Darnell McDonald and Ryan Sweeney as regulars. Ken Rosenthal reported yesterday that the Red Sox are looking outside the organization and mulling their options, while Gordon Wittenmyer of the Chicago Sun-Times speculated that Boston could be a taker for Cubs center fielder Marlon Byrd.
While Rosenthal believes the Red Sox are willing to look outside of the organization for outfield assistance, he also knows that making an “impact trade in April” is no easy task. For this reason Rosenthal believes a “lesser move” is more likely. Rosenthal adds that Boston would prefer a left-handed hitter.
Rosenthal noted that players such as Scott Podsednik and Brett Carroll fit the profile of a lesser move. Though these names are unlikely to excite Fenway faithful, Rosenthal believes they will be the Red Sox more realistic potential acquisitions.
Wittenmyer purely speculates that the Red Sox could turn their attention to Cubs outfielder Marlon Byrd if in fact they decide to pursue a more established player. Chicago has been shopping Byrd for much of the spring, and the veteran is considered more expendable with the emergence of top prospect Brett Jackson.
While Byrd to the Red Sox would seem to make sense on the surface, the teams may not be as clear of a match when you dig a little deeper.
The Red Sox are said to prefer a left-handed hitter while Byrd bats from the right side. Beyond this, it has been reported for weeks that the Cubs are seeking pitching in exchange for Byrd; specifically relievers. If the Red Sox have any relievers of value they will be using them to aid their current bullpen situation rather than look to trade them away.