Josh Hader may be the hottest name on the MLB trade rumor mill. Despite the Milwaukee Brewers being in first place, Bob Nightengale has reported that they are listening to offers for their four-time All-Star closer. With just a season and a half left of club control, there is little-to-no hope that the Brewers will be able to afford him once he hits free agency. (Hence the trade rumors). When (not if) Milwaukee trades Hader, it will be to a team that can give the Brewers a plethora of high-quality prospects in return. One team that can do just that is the Boston Red Sox.
Why Would the Boston Red Sox Trade for Josh Hader
The Boston Red Sox are currently 15.5 games back of the New York Yankees in the American League East. However, at 47-43, they are tied with the Toronto Blue Jays for the American League’s third (and final) wild card spot. They are most certainly in the hunt for October.
One glaring weakness on the current Red Sox team is a lack of a reliable dominant closer. The team’s leader in saves this season is Tanner Houck. He has six saves to go along with a 3.33 ERA and 1.19 ERA. Other Red Sox relievers who have registered saves this season are Matt Strahm (three), John Schreiber (three), Hansel Robles (two), Matt Barnes (two), Jake Diekman (one), and Garrett Whitlock (one). In other words, it’s been a closer by committee. Any team that is hopeful of competing in October must have a regular and reliable closer. There are few as reliable as Josh Hader.
What the Brewers Could Get in Return for Josh Hader
The Boston Red Sox have four prospects in MLB’s top-100. Additionally, they have some pitchers that rank highly in their own system that are close to Major League ready. Of course, the Brewers may be looking for a bat in return, too. Therefore, what follows here is a list of four prospects and and a Big League bat that may be enough to swing the deal.
- Jarren Duran (centerfielder): .273/.327/.424, one home run, seven RBI, seven stolen bases (26 games)
- Prior to being called up, Duran was hitting .305/.379/.531 with six home runs and 28 RBI in Triple-A
- Nick Yorke (second baseman)- MLB’s #64 prospect and Boston’s #4 overall prospect: .237/.310/.652, five home runs, 24 RBI at High-A
- Brayan Bello (right-handed pitcher)- MLB’s #44 prospect and Boston’s #3 overall prospect: 10-4, 2.33 ERA, 1.04 WHIP between Double-A and Triple-A
- Ceddanne Rafaela (centerfielder, third baseman, shortstop)0 Boston’s #26 overall prospect: .312/.354/.583, 16 home runs, 55 RBI between High-A and Double-A
- Chris Murphy (left-handed pitcher)- Boston’s #10 overall prospect: 6-5, 2.66 ERA, 0.99 WHIP between Double-A and Triple-A
Why This Trade Makes Sense for the Brewers
The Milwaukee Brewers would upgrade the centerfielder position with Jarren Duran. Tyrone Taylor has played the position well, but is slow recovering from a concussion. In any case, Duran is a younger player who can bridge the gap until one of the Brewers’ own outfield prospects are ready.
While Nick Yorke is an enticing prospect and provides the Brewers with a future second baseman, Ceddanne Rafaela is the most intriguing of the two. He can play third base and shortstop, a position that the Brewers need address in their own farm system. Finally, the two pitchers listed above are nearly ready for the Major Leagues and are under club control for years to come.
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