December 4, 2007


After Yanks' deadline passes, Red Sox jump into lead for Santana (Jayson Stark, 12/04/07,

ESPN the Magazine's Buster Olney reported early Tuesday that the Twins asked the Red Sox for permission to review the medical records of pitcher Jon Lester, amid indications a Red Sox-Twins trade could go down sometime during the early-morning hours.

If the Twins were satisfied with Lester's medicals, it's believed they would accept a swap of him, Coco Crisp, shortstop prospect Jed Lowrie and either highly regarded pitching prospect Justin Masterson or another player.

Or if the Twins reversed field and decided they wanted center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury instead, it's believed that would be a 3-for-1 trade -- with only Ellsbury, Masterson and Lowrie going to Minnesota.

Meanwhile, Red Sox officials claim the Yanks are close to acquiring him. If you're the Twins and you a chance to get Phil Hughes and don't do it, you've made a mistake.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 4, 2007 3:54 PM

Well, the Twins are certainly better off with 5 years of Hughes and Cabrera than 1 year of Santana, so they're bargaining for the icing on the cake now.

But the package of Lester, Lowrie, and Masterson is better than Hughes, and Coco can tide them over in center until Ben Revere is ready to take over. It's not clear Cabrera is going to develop into a better center fielder than Coco -- he's worse now, but young of course.

Posted by: pj at December 4, 2007 5:04 PM

Don't you think Ellsbury is a better prospect than Lester?

Posted by: Bob at December 4, 2007 5:10 PM

Neither Melky nor Ellsbury appears capable of slugging .400, which limits their value.

Melky is younger and already has a thousand major league at-bats, though I don't think he's a centerfielder.

You'd certainly rather have Hughes and Melky than Ellsbury and Masterson or whoever.

If you're the Twins you try to get the Yanks to add Austin Jackson and the Sox to add one of the major league ready starters--Lester or Buchholz.

Hughes, Cabrera, Jackson or Ellsbury, Lowrie, Lester are great for them.

Posted by: oj at December 4, 2007 5:20 PM

oj's spot on here. I'd add that it's a joke if the Sawx pick him up for Lester/Coco/Lowrie/Masterson when they asked for Hughes/Melky/Kennedy from the Yankees. The equivalent from the Sawx would be Laptop/Ellsbury/Lester. I'd say Phil edges Laptop, Ellsbury edges Melky who lacks Ellsbury's batting eye and speed, and Kennedy edges Lester based mostly on command, not necessarily pure stuff.

Supposedly the Halos are in also now with an opening gambit of Jered Weaver and Brandon Wood. Throw in another decent prospect and I think that might trump the Yanks/Sawx.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at December 4, 2007 7:18 PM

Slightly OT, but apparently the Tigers are set to acquire Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis for Cameron Maybin and Andrew Miller. Can you say best hitting lineup in baseball for the Tigers?

Posted by: JimBobElrod at December 4, 2007 7:19 PM

Bob - Yes. Contra oj, Ellsbury will have some power. He's only 23 and still skinny, and he hits occasional home runs and plenty of doubles. If he continues to hit .300, he'll slug .450 easy for an .800+ OPS.

Posted by: pj at December 4, 2007 7:49 PM

Wood had to stay at SS to have Hojoish value. He swings and misses too much to wishcast big things for him.

They'd have to pump that offer way up.

Posted by: oj at December 4, 2007 8:41 PM

The popular comparison for Ellsbury is to Johnny Damon, but at the same age Damon had a thousand major league at-bats and a higher SLG% than Jacoby just posted at AAA.

He'll be a good player, but his speed blinds people to his limitations.

Posted by: oj at December 4, 2007 8:43 PM