The waiver wire trade deadline is Aug. 31, which is this Friday if you do not have a calendar handy. While it isn’t the transaction wild west like the July 31 trade deadline, it still has some intrigue to offer. Sometimes a team even trades for Justin Verlander.
OK so it hasn’t been all that long since the Sox made one of these deals, but last year when they traded for Rajai Davis, they made a move aimed at strengthening the roster and filling the gaps for a deep postseason run. That last part didn’t happen, but that doesn’t mean we can’t look at how Davis performed with the Sox post trade, and maybe even consider if a similar deal, if it one could be struck, would benefit them this year.
Brought in to provide outfield depth, speed and a decent bat against left-handed pitching, Davis was sent to Boston from Oakland in exchange for minor league outfielder Rafael Rincones, who was only 18 years old when this deal went down. He is currently in rookie ball with the A’s.
As for Davis, he played in 17 games for the Red Sox after being dealt on Aug. 23 (maybe that’s not right up against the deadline, but its close enough. After the deal he slashed .250/.289/.306 with an OPS+ of 57. That’s, er, not all that great, but he wasn’t asked to be a starter by any means. He was used as a late game replacement nine times and in September, he actually hit .294, which isn’t all that bad, even if we’re only talking about 17 plate appearances.
Davis then played all of an inning one of inning in the playoffs, entering the game to replace Mookie Betts in right field during game two of the ALDS, which the Red Sox lost 8-2.
When the Sox’s season ended days later, Davis was not considered a likely candidate to return and he became a free agent, signing with Cleveland, a team he had some postseason heroics with in the recent past, this past February.
What this tells us is that waiver deadline deals don’t always have an impact like Verlander had for the Astros last year. In fact, I would venture to guess they very rarely do. Still, the Sox needed outfield help and they went out and got it. With some needs clearly evident after the last two weeks, a low-cost move could be in the cards this year as well.
So I’ll pose a question to you, dear reader. If the Sox were to make a waiver deal this week, what should they address? Let me know in the comments, on Twitter or venture over to the FanPosts page and let it rip.
Nathan Eovaldi couldn’t ask for a better teacher as he tries to push through his recent struggles. That teacher? Pedro Martinez. (Christopher Smith; MassLive)
Why are the Red Sox in a funk? Let’s look at the real reasons. (Chad Jennings; The Athletic) ($$)
Christian Vazquez is coming back from injury and that is going to shake things up for Blake Swihart and Sandy Leon. (Joshua Schrock; NESN)
Josh Donaldson in a Red Sox uniform? Yes please. (Matthew Kory; The Athletic) ($$)
Jackie Bradley Jr. is a defender philosopher. (Ricky Doyle; NESN)
Baseball, even Red Sox baseball, has its fair share of demons. (Michael Silverman; Boston Herald)