Trades: Yankees may not be in the bidding for relief help

The Red Sox could stand to add one more quality arm to this bullpen, especially with Mike Timlin ailing (scoreless inning streak notwithstanding). No one knows when Brendan Donnelly will return, or what he will be when he does, so if we are to make a serious playoff push, the bullpen is an area of need.

The top arms believed to be available are Eric Gagne, Octavio Dotel, and Akinori Otsuka. Gagne is a limited possibility, because he’s said firmly that he wants to close, and he can veto a trade to the Red Sox under a partial no-trade clause in his contract. However, Theo Epstein and Scott Boras have worked things out before at the last minute (remember the Dice-K drama?) so I would not rule this out completely. The front office tried to sign Dotel in the off-season, so he is definitely possible. Having another Japanese player in the bullpen might be good for the Sox, too.

The Yankees have been said to be in on all of these pitchers, but they have been unwilling to move any of their top minor leaguers in order to acquire someone. They just moved one of their top prospects, Joba Chamberlain, to the bullpen at Triple-A, perhaps signaling that they will look for bullpen help from within. This is good news for us, leaving us to compete with the Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Dodgers and Cleveland Indians for bullpen help.

There are a number of other names out there, but I don’t see them being quite as appealing as these three. Both Texas and Kansas City are rebuilding and could use young, cheap outfielders like David Murphy or Brandon Moss or young starters like Kason Gabbard or David Pauley. Don’t forget Craig Hansen, either, who could generate some interest.


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