BOSTON (CBS) — There have been conflicting reports on Giancarlo Stanton in recent days, leaving it unclear where the Red Sox stand in the race to acquire the slugger from the Marlins. But the latest suggests that Stanton’s reps know where they want him to end up.
Joe Kayata of NBC-10 in Providence tweeted on Tuesday that the Red Sox are “still very much in play” for Stanton, despite rumblings that he would block a trade to Boston. Kayata followed up his initial report on Wednesday, adding that Stanton’s advisers are “pushing” him to accept a trade to the Red Sox over his first preference, the Dodgers. His reps reportedly view the Red Sox as a much better destination in terms of “marketing/off-field opportunities” and a better choice for the greater good of baseball as a whole.
As Kayata pointed out, imagine Stanton vs. Aaron Judge 19 times a year.
The possibility of the Red Sox getting Stanton runs counter to what Red Sox president of baseball ops Dave Dombrowski has said and done at this week’s GM Meetings in Orlando. He hinted that the Red Sox won’t be in on this year’s big offensive prizes, telling reporters that “there are quite a few players” who aren’t as high-profile as others but could help fill the team’s needs. His meetings with the reps for second-tier free agents like Carlos Santana, Logan Morrison, and Lucas Duda are consistent with the approach that he alluded to in his comments.
Derek Jeter, now Marlins co-owner and CEO, confirmed at the GM Meetings that he’s listening to offers on Stanton and that the move is mainly being made for financial reasons. Stanton is owed $295 million over the next 10 seasons and has publicly said he does not want to be part of the team’s rebuilding process.
Still, Dombrowski is at the very least trying to downplay any notions that the Red Sox have a real chance at trading for Stanton. Until a trade happens, the Red Sox cannot be ruled out. But the more probable outcome remains that they look to more affordable avenues to address their power needs and instead focus on a contract extension for Mookie Betts and/or others already on the roster.