Red Sox have an offer on the table for Santana

Charley Walters of the Pioneer Press writes today that the Boston Red Sox have the leading offer for Johan Santana thus far. According to him, the Sox are offering four players for one guaranteed year of perhaps the best left-handed pitcher in the last decade. The purported deal would send Coco Crisp, Jon Lester, Jed Lowrie and Justin Masterson to the Twins in exchange for Santana. Part of the stipulations would be that the Sox get a window to try and negotiate a contract extension with Santana, who could be looking for 6 or even 7 years at $20-25M per season.

If this report is true, the Sox could acquire Santana without breaking up the big league club at all, no small feat. Lowrie is very talented, but with Julio Lugo locked up for three more years and Dustin Pedroia having five years until free agency, the middle infield looks to be set. Masterson had an awesome run in the middle of last season, but his ceiling is probably as a #3 starter. If this deal gets done, Boston could feature perhaps one of the best rotations from top to bottom in baseball history. Seriously. But don’t break out the champagne just yet. The Yankees are still in the bidding, mind you, so don’t be surprised if the Twins take this offer and go demand more from them. New York is in desperate need of a front-line starter (unlike us), and could give in to Minnesota’s demands. Theo Epstein is probably counting on this to happen.

Theo has set a deadline for the negotiations with Minnesota, and wants to try to get a deal done before the Winter Meetings on Dec 3. Minnesota made a six player blockbuster deal yesterday, and acquired a badly needed power prospect in Delmon Young. While Young is capable of playing center, the Twins are used to having Torii Hunter there, and could want a better defensive option, thus making Crisp desirable.


5 Responses to Red Sox have an offer on the table for Santana

  1. redsoxtalk says:

    Buster Olney has an article up suggesting the same deal, except Michael Bowden is in there instead of Masterson. Some things to consider in which players to trade:

    1) The Red Sox rotation has really just three spots available after 2008 behind Beckett and Dice-K, but three soon-to-be ready candidates, including Buchholz, Lester, Bowden, Masterson. Lurking behind them are Bard, Kris Johnson, Nick Hagadone, and Dustin Richardson. Some of these guys need to be dealt, as they pile up the minor league years.

    2) Clay Buchholz had a great cup of coffee, and everyone remembers his no-hitter, in his second big league start, no less. He is at the highest value he will have as a prospect.

    3) Jon Lester proved last year that he is back from his lymphoma, and got a lot of press for that. His 11-2 record despite high ERAs and pitch counts could help boost his value too.

    4) Mike Bowden is probably the more gifted pitcher and athlete, but Masterson is big, likable and is a leader. His sinker could make him very effective early on. He is the safer bet, while Bowden has the higher ceiling (possible ace).

  2. redsoxtalk says:

    UPDATE: Hank Steinbrenner has caved, and is said to be open to including Phil Hughes in the deal with the Twins, which the Yankees weren’t willing to do before. Bill Smith seems like Hughes better than Lester, so it appears that the Yankees have taken over pole position in this race for now.

  3. JJ Allen says:

    This is fine news indeed… let’s drive up the market, make the Yanks give and pay the farm, then quietly exit stage left to a man named Dan Haren.

    (Go see comments under “What about Dan Haren?”)


  4. redsoxtalk says:

    UPDATE: Theo Epstein has made one last offer to the Twins for Johan Santana, centered around centerfielder Jacoby Ellsbury. In doing this, Jon Lester has been taken out of the deal, and the package probably includes Jed Lowrie and one other pitcher (Masterson or Bowden).

    Still, the Twins are likely to favor getting a package of Phil Hughes, Melky Cabrera and one more player from the Yankees. The Twins are sitting on the offer, to see what the Sox come back with, and to make the Yankees nervous. This last bid from the Sox may force the Yankees to upgrade that third player. Hank Steinbrenner, is demanding that the final decision will be made today. I have not heard anything by Cashman these last couple of days regarding this trade; you’d think Steinbrenner was the GM here. Like father, like son.

  5. JJ Allen says:

    Well… things are looking good for Santana!

    And I would much rather give up Masterson than Lowrie, who could be starting at SS by the A.S. break. All fingers are crossed that this is the deal: Lester, Coco, Masterson, and Kalish. This would be an amazing deal. We keep Ellsbury. We keep Buchhotz. We keep Lowrie. We add ANOTHER ace. Then we have

    Dice-K (hungry this year)
    Schilling swan-song
    Buchhotz (projects as #1-#2)
    Wakes (Yankee killer)

    We have Bowden and Bard growing into Schillings role for 2009. I am hoping that the next announcement will be,
    “Red Sox and Twins reach an agreement on Santana, pending Santana’s contract extension.”

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