Here’s the latest from around baseball as we move another day closer to the August 1 trade deadline…
- Red Sox GM Mike Hazen discussed his team’s recent flurry of moves with CSNNE.com’s Sean McAdam in a video interview. Because the Sox had “a fairly clear need on our end…it allowed us to be focused on what we wanted to be aggressive on,” and thus Hazen said the team could act quickly to address those needs before the trade market began to thin out. Getting a controllable pitcher like Drew Pomeranz was in part a priority since there aren’t many quality starting arms available in free agency this winter. The full interview is well worth watching, as Hazen covers multiple topics about the Red Sox as they head into the second half.
- Before the Padres finally landed pitching prospect Anderson Espinoza from the Red Sox in the Pomeranz trade, San Diego team president Mike Dee tells Jeff Sanders of the San Diego Union-Tribune that his club made two earlier attempts at landing Espinoza’s services. The Padres also asked about the 18-year-old righty at last year’s trade deadline, and again last offseason when the Friars and Sox were negotiating the Craig Kimbrel deal. In the same interview, Dee also discusses how the organization will be more entirely focused on improving the on-field product in the coming years.
- Pirates GM Neal Huntington discusses several Bucs-related topics with Bill Brink of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and other reporters, including how the Pirates are exploring the trade market for pitching but finding very high prices. “You continue to look externally, but your bar’s set fairly high in terms of what your acquisition needs to be,” Huntington said. “That acquisition comes with an extreme acquisition cost. We will weigh, are we better going with our own guys, is there something that makes sense from the outside, and that will play out over the next couple of weeks.”
- In another Huntington interview, he discussed the Pirates’ pitching search and other items with Jim Duquette and Jim Bowden on MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM (audio link).
- Yoenis Cespedes told reporters (including ESPN.com’s Adam Rubin) that he would like to play left field for the rest of the season, based on both personal preference and a desire to avoid aggravating his quad injury. Cespedes has made 61 starts in center this season (with 13 in left) to accommodate the Mets’ roster construction, though if Cespedes is better off in left, it creates a bit of a jam for New York. Michael Conforto would be forced into right field, leaving Curtis Granderson, Juan Lagares and Alejandro De Aza all in the center field mix (assuming Conforto hits well enough to retain a regular job). This is just my speculation, but I wonder if the Mets could explore moving Granderson, Lagares and/or De Aza at the deadline as part of a trade for more reliable center field help.