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Sitting at 38 wins and 46 losses, the Boston Red Sox are in fourth place in the AL East at roughly the halfway point of the 2014 MLB season. Many veteran players are putting up dismal numbers, frustrating Red Sox nation. Due to these underwhelming performances, many want to go by the philosophy many teams put in place when they give up hope which is “letting the kids play” as it is called. Right now, the Red Sox have plenty of Major League caliber players in the MLB and MiLB, so it would be smart to do some number crunching and get rid of some excess baggage, especially when it comes to pitching.
For pitching, the Red Sox have starting pitchers to burn. With Jake Peavy set to be a free agent after this season, Felix Doubront and Clay Buchholz struggling, John Lackey threatening retirement and Jon Lester demanding a huge contract, the club has many pitchers they no longer need. Of course, with the strong performances of Rubby De La Rosa and Brandon Workman in the big leagues, this gives the Red Sox even more incentive to send a couple of guys away. Also, there are a number of guys in minors pitching very well at the moment including: Allen Webster, Anthony Ranaudo, Henry Owens, and Steven Wright. Right now, Jake Peavy looks like the most likely starting pitcher to leave Boston.
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In return, the Red Sox could receive high quality prospects for their starting pitching. Given his success in San Diego and in the National League, Jake Peavy could be a highly coveted piece at this year’s trade deadline. John Lackey is a consistent pitcher and has immense success pitching in big games so he too could command top prospects in return. Of course lastly there is Jon Lester. If traded, Lester could get the Red Sox the most out of any pitcher in return. Arguably more valuable than Tampa Bay Rays pitcher David Price who has another year remaining on his contract, the Red Sox should consider trading Jon Lester if things do not turn around by the trade deadline.
To recap, the Boston Red Sox have plenty of starting pitchers, many of whom have high contracts. If the season does not get any better, it would be in the Red Sox best interest to have a fire sale and sell up to three of their starting pitchers in order to receive top prospects from other teams and to give some younger guys a shot in the rotation.