BOSTON -- As the world waits for the Jon Lester shoe to drop, the Red Sox made a move on another front Wednesday afternoon.
Two days after a "disinterested" effort in a 14-1 loss to the Blue Jays, the Red Sox have rid themselves of the disgrunted Felix Doubront. The 26-year-old left-hander has been traded to the Cubs -- and the management team that drafted and developed him -- for a player to be named later. Alex Speier of WEEI.com was first to report the news.
Doubront had requested a trade last week after his demotion to the bullpen and made no effort to hide his displeasure at being taken out of the starting rotation. Monday's horrific outing -- which drew a "yes, I talked to him about that" comment from John Farrell -- was apparently the last straw . . . though Farrell was careful to avoid making a connection between the two events when talking about the deal.
"I don't know that two nights ago triggered a trade," he said in his pregame press briefing Wednesdat. "I don't know that any trade just happens overnight. I wouldn't say it was a direct result of that.''
He was also careful to acknowledge Doubront's contributions to the Sox over the last 3 1/2 years.
"He's performed well for us over a period of time and it can't be understated the importance of his relief appearances in [last year's] World Series -- those were two pivotal outings by him and he did a great job,'' said Farrell.
According to a major league source with knowledge of the transaction, the Red Sox will choose from a few Rule V draft-eligible guys who are unlikely to be protected by the Cubs, but probably won't be selected in the Rule V draft, either.
The player won't be chosen by the Sox until after the Rule V draft, which is held annually on the final day of the Winter Meetings.
Doubront has a 2-4 record with a 6.07 ERA in 17 games, 10 of them starts, this year. In his career, he is 26-22 with a 4.82 ERA. He was an 11-game winner for the Sox in both 2012 and '13.
Doubront joined the Red Sox organization when he was signed as an international free agent in 2005, under general manager Theo Epstein's reign. Epstein, of course, is now president of the Cubs.
"I don't necessarily buy into the change of scenery (recharging someone's career)," Farrell said of the possibility of Doubront flourishing with the Cubs. "Can it invigorate someone in a new surrounding? Possibly. As I talked with him a little while ago, if this (deal) does come to fruition, the work is always going to be needed, regardless of where you pitch or the role in which you're pitching."