Red Sox get Chris Carter from Arizona

The PTBNL from the Wily Mo Pena trade has been named, and he’s not from Washington. Apparently what we have is a three-team deal with Arizona. First base prospect Chris Carter is now a member of the Red Sox farm system. The 24-year old Carter is a mid-size first baseman with a good swing, who could develop into a pretty good power hitter. He is a left-handed bat who has shown good patience and hitting ability at every level of the minors. Importantly, he still has minor league options, though he could be ready to play by next year. He was hitting .327/.386/.527 with the Diamondbacks’ triple-A affiliate at the time of the trade, but don’t get too excited- that’s AAA Tucson in the Pacific Coast League, which has a pretty extreme park factor, meaning his numbers are likely to be inflated quite a bit. Still, we did better on the trade than I feared we would.

How does Carter fit into the Red Sox plans? It’s important to have a good backup at first base, and Eric Hinske will likely be gone after this season. It’s nice to have someone with options who can come up and go down as needed with injuries. Mike Lowell has not yet been offered an extension, so it’s entirely possible that Boston will pursue A-Rod in the off-season. If we can’t sign him or another situation arises (injury, retirement, etc.) where we have to spend our money elsewhere this off-season, Youkilis could always slide over to third base, and Carter would fit in nicely at first base. Basically, he gives us a lot of insurance and flexibility until prospects such as Lars Anderson and Aaron Bates are more mature. Can’t say this is good news for Jeff Bailey, though.

The Nationals are pretty happy with Pena, BTW, as he has hit .455/.571/1.091 with two HR in three games since joining the Washington outfield.


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