In today's notes column, Nick Cafardo of The Boston Globe wonders if the Red Sox would move closer Jonathan Papelbon after the season to open up the closer's role for Daniel Bard. He speculates that the Brewers, Twins, Rays, Braves, and Phillies could be in the market for a closer this winter. Papelbon is scheduled to become a free agent after the 2011 season.
Let's round up the rest of Cafardo's rumors…
- Scott Boras said he undervalued Stephen Strasburg last year, even though he eventually signed the largest contract in draft history. Boras added that being around San Diego State coach Tony Gwynn helped Strasburg become prepared for what lied ahead.
- Cafardo says that New England isn't a high priority area for scouts before the draft because by time they can get out to see the players in the region, it's too late in the game for a cross-checker to confirm anything.
- Cafardo predicts that Jacoby Ellsbury will be traded this offseason. He'll arbitration eligible for the first time after 2010, though he's been battling rib issues basically all season.
- He also remarks that the Red Sox would have to play Mike Lowell if they want to showcase him for a trade. Lowell has received just 50 plate appearances since the end of April.
- Kevin Millwood should become major trade bait as the deadline approaches because he's pitched well and is in the final year of his contract.
- The Brewers would love to make Randy Wolf available, but no one would take him on with more than two years and $24MM left on his deal. Meanwhile, Milwaukee still isn't sure if they'll try to improve their catching situation or become sellers and look towards next season.
- The feeling is that once Seattle trades Cliff Lee, pretty much everyone on their roster not named Ichiro and Felix Hernandez will be available as well.
- Diamondbacks' CEO Derrick Hall isn't happy with his team's performance and has talked about re-evaluating his management staff. They could be major players at the deadline, with Justin Upton representing the only untouchable.
- Cafardo says that the feeling among big league executives is that the Dodgers will not give up the prospects necessary to acquire Roy Oswalt, but they would be okay taking on the money.
- Adam Dunn would be a perfect fit for the Red Sox if they let David Ortiz go after the season, assuming the Nationals don't re-sign him.