Red Sox Nearly Swapped Star Outfielder For Yankees' Premier Pitcher

Photo: Instagram/Alex Verdugo

The Boston Red Sox generated significant buzz during the Major League Baseball Trade Deadline as they faced criticism for their limited activity in the market.

However, it has come to light that Boston was on the verge of making a noteworthy move, one that involved trading their star outfielder to none other than their arch-rivals, the New York Yankees.

Reports suggest that the Red Sox engaged in discussions about sending outfielder Alex Verdugo to the Yankees in exchange for starting pitcher Clarke Schmidt.

Photo: Instagram/Alex Verdugo

This potential trade was seen as a bold move considering Verdugo's popularity among fans. The 27-year-old outfielder had been a subject of trade rumors due to his contract expiring after the 2024 season and the Red Sox's hesitancy to commit to a long-term deal. 

Verdugo's performance in the 2023 season had been solid, with a batting average of .276, 54 extra-base hits, including 13 home runs, 54 RBIs, and an OPS of .781 in 128 games. His defensive prowess in right field further added to his value. 

In return, the Red Sox would have acquired Clarke Schmidt, a 27-year-old right-handed pitcher under team control until 2027. Schmidt's 2023 season had seen him post a 4.54 ERA with an impressive 139-to-38 strikeout-to-walk ratio, a .264 batting average against, and 140 2/3 innings pitched.

While the Red Sox had a pressing need for pitching, some analysts questioned the wisdom of adding Schmidt to their roster, as he appeared to be in a similar category as Tanner Houck, Garrett Whitlock, and Kutter Crawford—solid pitchers but not necessarily the standout ace they were seeking.

Ultimately, the potential trade between the Red Sox and Yankees was a tantalizing glimpse into what might have been a major deal, showcasing the complex dynamics of baseball's trade deadline.

Read Next: Red Sox Part Ways With Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom After Four Seasons

Source: Sports Illustrated

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