Latest On Kevin Youkilis

The Dodgers, Phillies and Diamondbacks are among the teams showing early interest in Kevin Youkilis, people familiar with the situation tell Jon Heyman of  One Red Sox person termed talks as "very preliminary'' but others familiar with the club's thinking say that they feel the need to trade him, barring more injuries.

Red Sox people are telling others that they're looking for value in exchange for Youkilis, but it is said that they would ask for less if a team will pay the $9MM plus remaining on his contract ($12MM salary).  That deal also has a $13MM option with a $1MM buyout for 2013.

Aside from the aforementioned clubs, Heyman writes that the White Sox, Angels, Brewers, Giants, Rangers, Indians, and Reds are also possible destinations for the 33-year-old.  While Texas had a scout at a recent Red Sox game, Heyman notes that they are pretty set in the infield and the right-handed bat they seek is much more likely to be an outfielder.

55 Responses to Latest On Kevin Youkilis Leave a Reply

  1. If Aramis Ramirez hits the DL for any amount of time, the Brewers could be a very realistic destination, if they can meet the Sox demands.  We’re already missing a consistent first baseman; if Aramis goes down, Youk would be a fill-in for both sides of the diamond.

    • Devern Hansack 3 years ago

      I’m not trying to be rude, but why would the Brewers be buyers? You guys are 6.5 out in the division and 6 out in the wild card.

      • AaronAngst 3 years ago

        A quick check of the calendar tells me it’s June 3rd, and there are roughly four months of baseball left.

        • Spit Ball 3 years ago

          Four months of baseball is not going to make the Brewers or Reds better then the Cardinals or Reds.

          • rizdak 3 years ago

            The Reds won’t be better than the Reds, huh? Maybe Youk will make the Brewers better than the Brewers. I think that’s all the guy was saying.

          • AaronAngst 3 years ago

            The same Cardinals that are flirting with .500 baseball, and the same Reds that also spent a good chunk of the season playing sub .500 baseball?

          • TophersReds 3 years ago

            By “good chunk” you mean about 15 out of 52 (currently) games? I don’t know if you know this, but the Reds have the 4th best record in all of baseball. They have also played a large chunk of their season at well over .500 baseball. 

          • AaronAngst 3 years ago

            Fifteen more games of sub .500 baseball and their 30-22 mark doesn’t look all that impressive, does it? It’s a long season, that’s all I’m saying. To prognosticate giving preference to your team is only natural, but I really don’t believe the Reds are THAT much better than Milwaukee. The experts said they were at the start of last season, yet a quick check of the standings tells me even the un-biased and self-styled experts can’t predict the future.

          • TophersReds 3 years ago

            Injuries have derailed the Brewers. Mat Gamel, Jonathon Lucroy, the loss of Fielder, KRod being shaky for a decent amount of the season. Even Alex Gonzalez is hurt. They did have the ability to compete at day 1, but injuries since have severely hurt their odds. 

          • Wilsonl 3 years ago

             Yes, because the Reds can be better than the Reds.

      • We dug an early hole quick with Ramirez, Hart, Weeks, Morgan, Gallardo, Wolf, Marcum, etc all struggling early in the year.

        However, all of the guys (except Wolf) are heating up and playing real fine baseball.  We have finally had two weeks of consistent pitching and good defense and the team is finally gelling. (not to mention, we play the Pirates, Cubs, Padres, Royals, and Twins right now) 

        Despite our numerous injuries, the core of the team is still there.  Barring further injuries (especially with Braun’s achilles and Ramirez’s quad), I’d bet money that the Brewers are going to shoot up the standings and are going to be near the top at least by the All-Star break.  The Cardinals are struggling pretty badly with injuries; the reds will be the major struggle this year I think.

  2. z3rogs 3 years ago

    Has anyone done the research to see whether getting rid of Youk’s salary could lead to the Sox getting under the salary cap this year and resetting the penalties?

    • MaineSox 3 years ago

      As far as I can tell, no, no one has.  But from what I can tell it would be very, very close; Cot’s has them at a little over $175M, but that doesn’t include several minor league players on the 40 man roster (they aren’t paid a lot, but added together it would be a couple $M or so), and it doesn’t include all of the benefits packages, insurances, taxes and so on, which are generally around $10M.  So assuming they have $175M in salary, plus $2M in other minor league 40 man players, and $10M for the other stuff, you end up with $187M; when you take away Youkilis’ $9M you end up with $178M (exactly the luxury tax threshold this year), so it depends on the exact figures (which, at least in the case of the benefits and things, aren’t known until the end of the season).

      • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

        You are very, very close.  Using the “Speier Method,” I have a projected AAV of $189MM before any Youk trade.  The Sox had a couple of sizable boosts when Cook qualified for his MLB salary, when Byrd came on board, when AAA players jumped from $65K MILB salary to the MLB minimum and when several guys qualified for the 6-yr. service time bonus in the minors.  Obviously, all of this is projected because no one has a crystal ball to know how long guys will remain at MLB salaries.  Lucchino has said that the Sox will be subject to the tax and my numbers agree with that premise, even if they trade Youk.  The ownership has also talked about spending a few million at the trade deadline, so I strongly doubt this will be a tax-free year.

  3. ugotrpk3113 3 years ago

    It would be nice to see what exactly the haul could be for Youk. It’s not often that you have a player that appears to be sought after by many, yet his return value is really a shot in the dark. Prospects? Bullpen piece? How much contract will they have to eat?

    • Karkat 3 years ago

       My problem with this, as a Red Sox fan, is that I can’t see how the Red Sox would get the kind of value for Youkilis that I’d want for him. He has so much value as a face and figure that I’d just be wicked sad to see him go.  It’s not like when Nomar and Manny wore out their welcomes.  I’m just not sure what a fair value for Youk would really be.

  4. Dylan 3 years ago

    Why would the Phillies be interested? What happens when Howard comes back? He can barely play third and Polly is a gold glove defender hitting close to .290 right now. Wouldn’t make sense. The Dodgers make sense.

  5. frank_costanza 3 years ago

    Count the Phillies out. Wouldnt be a terrible idea since you can’t count on Polanco’s health and you dont know when or if Howard will come back. But they can’t afford to give up quality talent or pay his salary.

  6. Spit Ball 3 years ago

    I don’t think the Sox should trade him for nothing. He has value even if he’s a bench bat. If they can get some kind of value, fine; if not hold onto him and play him as much you can. He has been hitting. Even if they have to send Middlebrooks down.

    • StanleyHudson 3 years ago

      Agreed 100%. People think the Sox are just gonna give him away. He can still hit and it wouldn’t be a bad thing if he sticks around if the Sox can’t get something if value for him.

  7. chowdah219 3 years ago

    There are all sorts of possibilities with a deal like this..Sox eat some $$ or maybe throw in a prospect or 2 to get what they want..Involve 2 teams in a deal…Lots of options…Im sure Youk will be gone before the ASB…Hate to see him go, but this is a business and Will Middlebrooks’ time has come… 

  8. jarg8 3 years ago

    I can’t see the phillies getting him, especially after Wigginton has started to hit.

  9. notsureifsrs 3 years ago

    boston fans should be furious if he is traded primarily for salary relief. there was no excuse when they did it with scutaro and there would be no excuse for doing it here

  10. Cyyoung 3 years ago

    I wouldn’t do nothing at this point. Too many things can happen this early in the season. He could really get hot and help the Sox, Midddlebrooks still young never know, injuries? You make the trade and Middlebrooks gets hurt this early? Other teams 1st baseman, or 3rd baseman get hurt, see this is what people are missing, he’s valuable at 2 positions. Desperate teams take desperate measures.
    Even if he stays he only has a 1 million buyout, could be valuable for the Sox even later, if they make the Play-offs.
    Making a trade just to trade, is not smart for a GM.

    • NickinIthaca 3 years ago

      “I wouldn’t do nothing at this point.”. You realize that means you would do something, right?

  11. Matt 3 years ago

    Youk for Saunders and Bobby Brochering?

    • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

      No way.  Its going to be painful, but not excruciating.  One (1) of Archie Bradley or Matt Davidson.  We’d want one high quality prospect, definitely in the BA top 50, not two marginals.

      • Matt 3 years ago

        With Youk’s contract and injury history I don’t see the red sox getting much more than Saunders and Eaton/Brochering. Bradley is untouchable.

        • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

          We will undoubtedly get a BA Top 50 prospect in return for him from one of the contenders for his services.  If AZ takes the position that theirs are off the table, then they won’t be contenders for him.  You’ve got to decide whether you are gonna pay the price, because he ain’t moving for anything less. I feel reasonably certain that the White Sox and Dodgers will agree to pay that price.  Its your call.  Is AZ in the hunt?

  12. Youkilis is about done.  Any team that sells their soul for the guy – or gives up ANY prospect or pays more than half of his remaining salary – instantly loses any deal.  Yet, somebody will. All RS fans think everybody else in baseball would be lucky to take their scraps. It’s simply not true. Some AL team thinking ‘they can make a run’ – perhaps the White Sox – will overpay though because that’s what Kenny Williams does… The guy is 33 and has had a total of 3 ‘darned good’ seasons. And at 12M a pop, you overpay from day 1.

    • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

      an average MLB starter produces 2 WAR per season (~160 games). here’s youk’s production, beginning with his first full season


      that’s three elite seasons and 3 above average to very good ones. his wRC+ since 2005 is 132. here are the others who can make that claim: joe mauer, paul konerko, and adrian gonzalez

      if you want to talk youkilis down, you need to talk about 2012 – the first season in 5 years in which he has been anything less than great. it’s also a season in which he’s been injured and totaled only 100 PA, but don’t let that stop you

    • gradylittle 3 years ago

       “All RS fans think everybody in baseball would be lucky to take their scraps.”

      That’s a mighty generalization you’ve got there. Not to mention that it’s incorrect.

  13. Like I said …”that’s three elite seasons” Somebody invoked GHR? Not going back too far now, are we? Geesh. Boston is AVERAGE. Most of their players are AVERAGE, with a few notable exceptions. Youkilis is on the downhill slope production-wise while on the uphill slope pay-wise. A bad time to pick up any player.

    • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

      Considering his average WAR over the last 4 seasons, including the injury years of 2010 and 2011, is still +4.9, your argument holds no water.  You’ve got to expect to pay with a high quality prospect to get a guy who is a perennial +4 WAR, the result of the downslope from a perennial +6 WAR. That’s a marginal All-Star performer, with annual performance value of $19MM at a discounted salary for 1.5 seasons.  Not every Sox player lacks significant value.  Youk is one of the few who carries premium value.

    • notsureifsrs 3 years ago

      that is a fascinating list of conclusions you rattled off there. little short on evidence, though

  14. Flharfh 3 years ago

    He is getting paid a lot and his durability is a red flag. He may or may not be worth his option next year and he doesn’t make sense for most teams as a rental if he has a good chance to hit the DL during the stretch run. Imo, the Bosox would be best served letting Ortiz walk, picking up Youk’s option, and using him as a DH / backup 1b/3b.

    • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

      That is precisely why its going to take a very significant value piece for someone else to acquire him.  We have the option you’ve suggested in our back pocket and don’t need to move him.  That means we have to be thrilled with the offer or just won’t make a deal for him.

  15. The Reds already have a banged up third basemen at the end of his career in Rolen. They’re simply stick with Frazier. If and when Rolen comes back this season, he’ll be a bench/spot start player.

  16. whitenred 3 years ago

    Youk to White Sox for Floyd

    • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

      Nowhere near close.  Nestor Molina.

      • lolpods 3 years ago

         you’ll get terry doyle and like it.

        • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

          Nope, no Youk for you.  We’ll go deal with the D-backs then.

  17. I say to the Phillies..because they like old guys.

    • Nathan Futey 3 years ago

      it wouldn’t surprise me on that either for a year and a half with him and it fits with there other guys window…

  18. The Sox aren’t going to trade Youk for peanuts. His value is much higher than a lot of you think it is… regardless of his age. Case in point: The Mets got Zack Wheeler (ranked top 50 prospect in baseball at the time) for Beltran last year. Keep in mind that Beltran is 2 years older than Youk and has been much more injury prone. 

    Also, you can take a look at the Hunter Pence trade… where the Astros got Jonathan Singleton (top 50), Jarred Cosart (top 100), and two players to be named later.If the Sox end up trading Youkilis, they will get a package similar to the Beltran and Pence deals. Unless they find a team who wants to trade a proven pitcher straight up for Youk.

    • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

      Probably alot closer to the Beltran deal than the Pence deal but you’ve got the logic correct.  Its definitely going to take a top-of-system prospect that’s BA Top 50 to get him from us.

  19. Dodgerbluez 3 years ago

    As a Dodger fan I would not give up much for him.. Hes making way to much money for a guy who hit .258 last year and is hitting .253 this year with a obp of .324.. 
    Guess what loney hit last year??… .288 and this year he his hitting .253 with also a .324 obp… Same exact number as Youk.. With better Defense.. As of today or tomorrow it is not an upgrade.. And is not worth giving up any prospects or extra cash for him.. He should stay and retire a Red Sock.. His value to a Soxs fan is not the same as it is to the rest of the MLB.

    • Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

      I follow your logic vis a vis Loney, but the money argument has zero basis in fact.  Youk has a .313 BA in May with decent defense at 1B and 3B.  He’s once again destined for a typical injury-tempered output of +4 WAR, similar to 2010 & 2011.  That makes his production value $19MM by Fangraphs standards.  At $12-$13MM per annum, he’s at a significant discount on salary.

  20. gradylittle 3 years ago

    He just turned 33 and looks to be at the end of his prime. I don’t think looking for top prospects in return is realistic. It all really depends where he gets traded to, his salary, etc. But I don’t think they’ll get a top prospect in return.

  21. ugotrpk3113 3 years ago

    You will be greatly disappointed then. Just prepare yourself.

  22. notsureifsrs 3 years ago

    you are talking about 70 PA in april. in 35 PA since then, he has produced at his normal .400 wOBA level

    the durability concerns about youkilis are legitimate; he’s been very fragile. the “over the hill” and/or performance concerns are entirely baseless

  23. MaineSox 3 years ago

    It turned out okay because Scutaro has inexplicably fallen off a cliff both offensively and defensively this year, but you can’t look at it in hindsight and say it was a good deal at the time.  And just because they signed Ross after doesn’t make it any better, it was still a salary dump, and a team like Boston should have been willing (and able) to sign Ross without having to dump Scutaro’s salary.

  24. GoAwayNow 3 years ago

    The Scutaro trade didn’t get them under the cap and it netted them much less than people were predicting. I’m not sure what extra pitching they signed after that either. If they believed Aviles could be the everyday SS and traded Scutaro for valuable prospects that would have been different.

    notsureifsrs is correct. We should be irate if ownership ships Youk out for garbage and $9 million.

  25. Steve_in_MA 3 years ago

    I don’t think we’ll be disappointed because we are completely prepared to keep Youk for the whole season.  The demand for his skills greatly exceeds the supply.  We will get a strong mid-rotation starter or a B+/A prospect piece from one of the 10 contenders, or we’ll happily hold on to him.  In particular, Arizona seems like a perfect fit here.  They have lots of top prospects and can afford to part with one for a right-handed power bat that plays adequate defense.

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