Red Sox unlikely to trade for Mets' Beltran

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Red Sox unlikely to trade for Mets' Beltran

By Sean McAdam
CSNNE.com

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- When Sandy Alderson was hired as general manager of the New York Mets last month, the team let the rest of baseball world know that pretty much everyone on the roster was available at the right price -- as befits a franchise that hasn't reached the postseason since 2006, despite annually carrying one of the biggest payrolls.

That list, of course, includes Carlos Beltran, who is entering the final year of his seven-year contract with the Mets, which will pay him 18.5 million.

The Mets and Red Sox have talked -- at least a little -- about Beltran, given that the Sox have made it known that they're in the market for a right-handed hitting outfielder.

But Beltran's salary and the condition of his knees are significant sticking points to a deal. Beltran underwent surgery late last offseason and later got into a squabble with the club over whether he had their approval to do so.

Beltran missed the first half of 2010 recovering from the surgery and didn't get onto the field until the start of the second half of the season. He played in 64 games and hit .255 with 7 homers and 27 RBI.

It's worth noting, however, that in limited duty against lefties (55 plate appearances), Beltra posted a 1.009 OPS. Also, he closed strongly, slugging .603 and posting a .967 OPS overall in the final month.

Scouts offered varying opinions on the condition of Beltran's knees. A longtime National League scout said: "He took a little while to get up to full speed when I saw him. He didn't have that explosive first step. But I saw him run pretty well when he had to go after some balls in the outfield."

Other evaluators were less charitable in their assessment, and inside the Red Sox organization, there are concerns about how well Beltran would hold up - even for one season. He'll turn 34 in the spring.

The Mets, who are desperate to add starting pitching, have indicated an interest in moving Beltran for Daisuke Matsuzaka, but the Red Sox aren't the least bit interested in such a swap. They feel that moving Matsuzaka, with only Tim Wakefield as an option as the replacement fifth starter, isn't something they can afford to go given their starting pitching depth.

The Sox would also reportedly insist that the Mets take back some of the remaining 18.5 million in any deal, while the Mets, who are handcuffed financially, want teams to absorb the entire salary.

A matchup between the two, then, seems highly unlikely, though sources indicate it could get revived if neither team can make other moves.

Sean McAdam can be reached at smcadam@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam

Youkilis weighs in on Valentine possibly being Japan ambassador

Youkilis weighs in on Valentine possibly being Japan ambassador

Among the reactions to the news that Bobby Valentine was possibly being considered to be the US amassador to Japan in President Donald Trump’s administration was this beauty from Kevin Youkilis. 

Valentine famously called out Youkilis early in his stormy tenure as Red Sox manager in 2012. Remember? "I don't think he's as physically or emotionally into the game as he has been in the past for some reason," Bobby V said of Youk at the time. 

The Red Sox traded Youkilis to the White Sox for two not-future Hall of Famers, outfielder Brent Lillibridge and right-hander Zach Stewart, later that season.

Youkilis, now Tom Brady’s brother-in-law by the way, had a 21-game stint playing in Japan in 2014 before retiring from baseball. 

 

Report: Bobby Valentine could be Trump’s US ambassador to Japan

Report: Bobby Valentine could be Trump’s US ambassador to Japan

Major league manager. Inventor of the wrap sandwich. Champion ballroom dancer.  And…

US ambassador to Japan?

Bobby Valentine is on the short list for that position in President Donald Trump’s administration, according to a WEEI.com report.

The former Red Sox manager (fired after a 69-93 season and last-place finish in 2012), and ex-New York Mets and Texas Rangers, skipper, also managed the Chiba Lotte Marines in Japan’s Pacific League for six seasons. 

When asked by the New York Daily News if he's being considered for the post, Valentine responded: "I haven't been contacted by anyone on Trump's team." 

Would he be interested?

"I don't like to deal in hypotheticals," Valentine told the Daily News.

Valentine, 66, has known the President-elect and Trump's brother Bob since the 1980s, is close to others on Trump’s transition team and has had preliminary discussions about the ambassador position, sources told WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford. 

Valentine, currently the athletic director of Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn., is also friendly with current Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who, like Valentine, attended the University of Southern California.