San Diego Padres all-star pitcher Drew Pomeranz has been traded to the Boston Red Sox for a top pitching prospect, according to a sandiegouniontribune.com report.
Pomeranz, left-handed starter, is 8-7 this season with a 2.47 ERA and has the seventh-highest strikeout rate in the National League with 10.1 per nine innings. Opponents are hitting just .184 against him, the best in the NL.
The report says the Red Sox are sending right-hander Anderson Espinoza to the Padres.
The 18-year-old Venezuelan has a 4.38 ERA in 17 starts with low Single-A Greenville this season but is ranked 15th on Baseball America’s midseason top-100 prospects list.
Espinoza signed a $1.8 million deal with the Red Sox in 2014.
Pomeranz, 27, has a $1.35 million contract for this season and is eligible for free agency after 2018. He spent his first three major league seasons with Colorado and the next two with Oakland.
He has a career record of 22-31 with a 3.66 ERA and pitched a scoreless inning in his first All-Star game Tuesday night.
It’s the second big trade between the Red Sox and Padres since November when San Diego dealt closer Craig Kimbrel to Boston for prospects Manuel Margot, Javier Guerra, Carlos Asuaje and Logan Allen.
Ortiz’s comments might cause problems
Boston Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz could face discipline from Major League Baseball after the 40-year-old told reporters that Toronto Blue Jays slugger Edwin Encarnacion would make a good replacement after he retires.
Ortiz didn’t stop there as he also mentioned the Red Sox would be wise to acquire Miami ace Jose Fernandez.
The problem? Both Encarnacion and Fernandez are under contract and players — even soon-to-be retired ones like Ortiz— are not allowed to speak of others in that regard.
“The Red Sox know that they need to reinforce the middle of the lineup,” Ortiz told reporters after Tuesday’s All-Star Game. “And, sorry Blue Jays, but who better than Encarnacion to do that?”
Encarnacion will be a free agent after the end of the season.
Ortiz also admired Fernandez for his incredible array of pitches.
“I thought he was gonna end up playing with me this year. I mean, you never know,” Ortiz said. “I want him in my starting rotation. I mean, we need a little bit of help and hopefully that happens at some point, who knows?”
According to the rulebook in Major League Baseball, Ortiz’s comments could be construed as tampering. Here is the rule:
“There shall be no negotiations or dealings respecting employment, either present or prospective, between any player, coach or manager … unless the Club or baseball employer with which the person is connected shall have, in writing, expressly authorized such negotiations or dealings prior to their commencement.”
Sportsnet 590’s Jeff Blair noted that Major League Baseball is expected to look into his comments.
Sox, Yanks open series Friday night
The Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees are still trying to figure out where they sit in the playoff race in the American League East, and whether they are good enough to remain in it for the duration. The Red Sox will try to creep closer to first place in the AL East and make the decision to sell a little easier for the Yankees when they visit their rivals in the opener of a three-game series on Friday night in New York.
Boston closed the first half strong with wins in six of its last seven games and used All-Star week to show off young stars like Mookie Betts, Jackie Bradley Jr. and Xander Bogaerts while 40-year-old departing slugger David Ortiz took his final turn on the Midsummer Classic stage. The Red Sox, who sit two games behind the Baltimore Orioles in the East, own the best offense in the majors but have several questions on the pitching staff that should keep the team active in trade rumors up until the July 31 deadline. New York has already been the focus of trade rumors, with other teams drooling over the possibility that relievers Andrew Miller and Aroldis Chapman may be available if the Yankees drift any further down the standings. New York took three of four from the AL Central-leading Cleveland Indians before the break to pull to .500 at 44-44.
NOTEBOOK: Red Sox closer and All-Star RHP Craig Kimbrel will miss the next 3-6 weeks due to knee surgery. … New York 1B Mark Teixeira finished the first half with a .193 batting average and a .317 slugging percentage. … Ortiz, Xander Bogaerts, Mookie Betts and Bradley Jr. combined to go 4-for-7 in Tuesday’s 4-2 AL win at the All-Star Game.