Red Sox first baseman Hanley Ramirez, Padres right fielder Matt Kemp and Brewers left fielder Ryan Braun have all helped their respective trade values early this season, according to Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe. Ramirez is the only one of the three whose offensive production was subpar in April, but Cafardo points to his hustle, enthusiasm and dedication to the team this year as reasons for his improved stock. The 31-year-old Kemp – signed through 2019 at $21.5MM annually – is the most available of the trio, per Cafardo, who adds that he could be a target of the Red Sox if Chris Young doesn’t start playing better. On the notion of acquiring any of them, a National League general manager told Cafardo, “Are they all $20 million-plus players? I’d say not. You’d have to be able to get them for $10 million-$15 million. There are different ways to reach that number through negotiation and the caliber of players you’d have to give up.”
Here’s more from Cafardo:
- Athletics left-hander Rich Hill followed last season’s torrid September with a great April, during which he threw 26 innings of 2.42 ERA ball while striking out 12.81 batters per nine. Assuming he continues to serve as a quality rotation option, the 36-year-old will be a sought-after arm around the trade deadline, Cafardo reports. Hill is scheduled for free agency at year’s end, but the AL West doesn’t look like a division anyone will run away with and the A’s could be inclined to keep him if they remain in the hunt.
- Dr. James Andrews’ Monday examination of Red Sox third baseman Pablo Sandoval’s injured shoulder will be “huge” for both the player and the team, Cafardo writes. He doesn’t rule out a club, perhaps the Padres, having interest in Sandoval if the injury is minor. That certainly seems like a long shot, though, given that Sandoval will collect $75MM through 2020 – including a $5MM buyout – has been worth minus-2.2 fWAR in 129 games dating back to last season, and has a major weight problem.
- Outfielder Grady Sizemore remains a free agent and has not retired, agent Joe Urban told Cafardo. The 33-year-old posted an .800-plus OPS during the second half of 2015, but he has been a minus player according to fWAR in each of the previous two seasons.