It’s Always Sonny In Boston
Alright, so perhaps the 2015 season hasn’t been a ray of sunshine for the Boston Red Sox, but there’s a big splash they can make in the coming weeks that can not only turn around this season, but the state of the franchise as well. The Red Sox (42-47) still remain a legitimate starting pitcher away from getting back to the postseason, and that pitcher may come in the form of Oakland Athletics right-hander Sonny Gray.
Make no mistake, the A’s are in no rush to move on from their 25-year old Ace, but an overwhelming offer from Boston could be enough for Oakland (41-50) to continue with the re-building trend they started this off-season when Billy Beane cleaned house. The offer from the Red Sox would have to include a combination of four or five top prospects such as: Manuel Margot, Rafael Devers, Henry Owens, Brian Johnson, Deven Marrero, Garin Cecchini, Christian Vazquez or Blake Swihart. Boston could even unload veteran Wade Miley who has an affordable contract over the next two years and has shown an ability to pitch deep into games and give his team a chance to win every night out, while also opening a rotation spot for Boston.
Sonny Gray is having another incredible season at 10-3 with a 2.04 ERA in 18 starts for the last place A’s. Gray has four full seasons of team control following this season which puts his value through the roof. A big splash for a young arm in Gray could be just what the doctor ordered for Boston and the fan-base that is in dire search of an ace. Perhaps it would cost fewer prospects to obtain Cole Hamels from the Philadelphia Phillies, but Gray is much younger and much more cost-efficient compared to Hamels. No to mention, Gray has pitched in the American League with success so there would be no issues with the transition.
Sonny Gray was drafted 18th overall in 2011, one spot ahead of the Boston Red Sox. They were so close to drafting him then, but yet so far away. Now, they could be in a position to acquire arguably the American League’s best starting pitcher. Once Gray becomes arbitration eligible he would be on the move from Oakland, who is always working with a tight budget.
The Red Sox would have to blow the A’s away with an offer, but it is not inconceivable to think that the young Ace and future Cy Young could be dealt as soon as this season. Boston has the prospects to make the deal for Gray happen, it is just up to how far General Manager Ben Cherington will go to make the move and provide an ace to stabilize the rotation for years to come.
Then, it would always be Sonny in Boston.
Follow Frank Pimentel on Twitter: