Texas Rangers Rumors: Adrian Beltre and a reliever headed to Boston?
By Travis Koch
Less than a day before the trade deadline, Texas Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre remains on the Boston Red Sox radar. A Beltre-Boston partnership makes sense.
With the MLB trade deadline a day away, the Texas Rangers remain a team of great intrigue. They’ve completed a few deals already; yet, it feels that is not enough. Adrian Beltre, Keone Kela, and Jake Diekman remain on the rumor mill. Other Rangers players (or organizational players) could certainly get involved; however, those three are the primary candidates at this time. Today’s news focused heavily on a possible Rangers, Red Sox deal.
Even Drellich of NBC Sports reported ongoing negotiations between the Rangers and Red Sox regarding Adrian Beltre. A deal sending Beltre to Boston definitely makes sense.
The Red Sox are a very impressive 41 games over .500 and therefore have the power to nitpick the trade market. They have good starting pitching, an outstanding lineup and a solid bullpen. Their rather particular needs include an established third baseman, a second baseman to heal the wound of a missing Dustin Pedroia and a left-handed reliever to balance out the bullpen.
Look no further than the Texas Rangers. Beltre is a great fit for Boston. He played there for a season back in 2010, he’s the ultimate clubhouse guy, he can still hit and he can still play an above average third base. Beltre compares favorably to current Sox third baseman, 20-year-old Rafael Devers.
Devers’ talent is without question, though, he is far from refined at the current stage of his young career. He is not a good glove at 3B and everything that was working for him early in the season has ceased in the month of July. In July, Devers has slashed .214/.302/.304 and has hit just one home run in 56 at-bats. A .304 slugging percentage and a .605 OPS in the month are way off par from American League third baseman expectations.
Adrian Beltre is not the power threat that he once was; however, he brings enough to the table to make up for it. Surely, the Boston Red Sox would feel more comfortable with him manning third and batting seventh in a playoff game than Rafeal Devers. Beltre is an all-time third baseman that would give any contender everything he has to win his first ever World Series.
Beltre does have a full no-trade clause, meaning he will have the final say in any proposition. Again, he’s played for Boston before. Plus, the Red Sox are as confident of a contender as there is in MLB. If there is a team Beltre would agree on a trade it would very likely be the Boston Red Sox.
Beltre to Boston makes sense, right?
He’ll be a free agent at the end of the season so Boston can re-apply Devers at third base and Texas will likely welcome him back with open arms if he wants to retire there. The Rangers can get something in return for Beltre while giving a few of their younger players more playing time for the remainder of the season.
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Now, what if the Texas Rangers could sweeten the offer by adding left-handed reliever Jake Diekman to the deal?
Diekman will also be a free agent at the end of the year. The Rangers are entering a rebuild so there wouldn’t be any reason to pay to re-sign Diekman this offseason. Thus, they need to trade him before 3 PM CST tomorrow.
Brian Johnson, the sole left-handed pitcher listed in the Red Sox bullpen, has been starting games this month. When used in relief, he generally works the middle innings. Diekman has been a late-inning reliever throughout his time in Texas and he can certainly take on a late-inning role in Boston. It would be very odd for the Red Sox to enter the postseason with one lefty reliever. The Rangers can assure that does not happen.
We’ll find out soon enough whether or not a deal gets done. Neither team is in a make-or-break situation regarding the rumored Adrian Beltre. Boston will carry on their winning ways even without him and Texas would be satisfied with keeping their leader around. With that said, I believe Beltre will be a member of the Boston Red Sox by tomorrow afternoon. Diekman…not so sure.