Sox will not acquire Blanton from Phillies

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Sox will not acquire Blanton from Phillies

By Sean McAdam
CSNNE.com

Overnight talk of a deal that would send pitcher Joe Blanton to the Red Sox appears to be grossly overstated.

A source familiar with the discussions betweenthe Phillies and Red Sox said Tuesday that the Monday talks neverprogressed to the pointwhere the clubs exchanged potential names from the Red Sox organization.

While numerous reports had Blanton heading to the Sox, a source familiar with the talks dismissed that out of hand.

"(I) don't know where this is coming from,'' said the source.

Sources confirm that the Phillies called the Red Sox Monday in an attempt to move Blanton and his remaining 17 million in salary, helping to clear the way for the signing of free agent Cliff Lee.

Readying to land Lee for five years, 120 million the Phils were desperate to shed salary. Blanton is scheduled to make 17 million over the next two seasons.

Naturally, the Phils called some big-market teams to determine interest in Blanton and, sources said, the Phils and Red Sox talked twice Monday regarding Blanton.

But failing to have a deal in place to move Daisuke Matsuzaka elsewhere, acquiring Blanton never made much sense for the Red Sox.

The Sox could use some starting pitching depth, with their reserve options down to 46-year-old Tim Wakefield. Junichi Tazawa is recovering from Tommy John surgery and may not be ready to start the year and Felix Doubront is, for now, ticketed for the bullpen.

Still, Blanton's 8.5 million was high for a "depth'' starter. The Red Sox weren't about to take on that kind of money and then have Blanton as a swingman, waiting around in case someone in the rotation went down with an injury or failed to perform.

Blanton, who just turned 30, was 9-6 with a 4.81 ERA in Philadelphia last year. Lifetime, he's a 72-60 with a 4.13. His best season was 2007 when he won 14 games and posted a 3.30 for Oakland. He pitched 4 12 season for the A's, working with current Red Sox pitching coach Curt Young, then the A's pitching coach.

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.