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Red Sox a 'long shot' to complete Chris Sale trade

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With seven hours to go, the Red Sox aren't close to landing Chris Sale.

Caylor Arnold-USA TODAY Sports

The Red Sox have been involved in the Chris Sale trade saga pretty much since the first days it became clear the White Sox would be sellers, but all the time put into talking doesn't seem to have gotten them very far. While Jon Heyman still has them along with the Rangers and Dodgers as being in the mix for Sale, he notes that the Red Sox are, and have always been, "somewhat of a long shot" to land the ace.

In part, this is because the White Sox may well not be dealing him at all. It's not surprising that his name has hit the market in a year where Chicago no longer expects to be playing come October. After all, the pitching market is a wasteland, and Sale is such a huge name that they owe it to themselves to listen to see if he could be a silver bullet for their rebuild.

But that's what they're likely looking for here: not just a significant piece, but an all-in-one package that reboots them in an instant. Yes, they'll be giving up Sale's contributions for a couple years, but also likely putting themselves in position to contend for many years to come, if perhaps not right out of the gates in 2017, though maybe even that is in play.

The Red Sox? They're a team that can give them that. Andrew Benintendi in the outfield, Yoan Moncada in the infield, Swihart behind the plate, Rodriguez on the mound? Pick two--hell, probably pick three--and you've got yourself the sort of team-defining centerpieces the White Sox are looking for. And, presumably, the kind the Red Sox aren't hugely interested in trading for him given Heyman's report and the list of "untouchables" we've heard.

Frankly, there also just hasn't been enough smoke to believe this is going to get done. It's possible the Red Sox are just being extremely hush-hush about it, but it seems like we heard a week ago that the Sox just weren't interested in meeting what was deemed a high price from Chicago, and that's been that. I'm not saying nobody's picked up the phones, but it seems like the needle hasn't really budged on either side.

Chris Sale may one day change the colors of his socks. It may even be today. But it's far more likely to be in another season yet to come, either in free agency, or when the White Sox are more clearly up against the wall and in need of a deal. Right now they're just too close to making it work with him in the immediate future to countenance surrendering his considerable talents for anything less than a package that only a desperate team should be willing to give up. That's not the Red Sox, at least not today. Boston just isn't all-in enough on 2016, nor Chicago all-out enough on 2017 for these sides to have an easy time finding a deal.