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Why would the Red Sox trade Jacoby Ellsbury?

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Interesting  nugget from the great Nick Cafardo:

Prediction: Jacoby Ellsbury will be dealt in the offseason

I can understand where this prediction would come from. Ellsbury has missed most of the season with rib issues and there is no doubt that the Red Sox have missed his presence at the top of the order.

However, does it make sense for the Red Sox to move Ellsbury? Not in my opinion. Sure, Ellsbury will be arbitration eligible for the first time this winter, which guarantees that he will get a raise this winter no matter how much he plays this season. I doubt that the Red Sox would look to move one of their top young players simply because he is set to earn a few million dollars more next winter.

And ask yourself this: will the Red Sox get full value for Ellsbury? I doubt it. Because Ellsbury has missed a majority of the 2010 season, there will inevitably be questions raised about his durability and concerns about his long term health. I'm sure there are teams that would be willing to acquire Ellsbury regardless of his injury history, but the return is sure to be less than what the Red Sox could have gotten for Ellsbury in the past.

If Ellsbury comes back healthy and has a productive second half of the season, then I imagine that the idea of trading Ellsbury this winter will become even more ludicrous. Then again, if the Red Sox can acquire Adrian Gonzalez for Ellsbury and some other pieces, then the idea of trading Ellsbury might become more realistic. But the return HAS TO be big enough for the Red Sox to even consider dealing Ellsbury. Period.