The Boston Red Sox have expressed interest in acquiring right-handed starter Justin Masterson and outfielder Shin-Soo Choo from the Cleveland Indians, major-league sources said.
It’s not clear how advanced the talks are, but the fit is obvious: The Red Sox have the ability to take on payroll after unloading roughly $250 million in contracts three months ago, and the Indians are willing to listen to offers for virtually every player on their roster.
On Wednesday, Jon Heyman speculated that the Red Sox would not make a good trade partner with the Indians because both teams are seeking the same things this winter -- starting pitching, a first baseman and corner outfield help -- but Morosi believes that the Red Sox have the minor league pieces to make a deal for either Masterson or Choo.
A move to the Red Sox would team the 27-year-old Masterson back up with his former pitching coach, John Farrell, but would also take him away from his former/current manager Terry Francona, both of whom are said to admire the right-hander. Masterson struggled a bit in 2012 following a breakout season last year, starting a league-high thirty-four games but amassing a 4.93 ERA and walking 3.8 per nine in the process.
Choo, 30, is a free agent at the end of 2013 so may command less in a trade this winter than he would have at July's trade deadline; though he is represented by Scott Boras so perhaps not. The corner outfielder hit .283/.373/.441 with sixteen home runs in one hundred fifty-five games this past season.