The Boston Red Sox have stepped up their efforts to acquire Pittsburgh Pirates shortstop Jack Wilson.
The two teams have been in talks over the past week and within the past 24 hours, the two sides have exchanged names as they look to reach an agreement on a potential deal.
The Red Sox have targeted Wilson over Oakland A’s shortstop Orlando Cabrera who appears to be headed to Minnesota.
Minnesota could play a pivotal role in the Pirates trade deadline plans as the Twins haven’t closed the door on making a run at Freddy Sanchez and have been “kicking the tires” on Jack Wilson.
If the Twins acquire Cabrera which appears likely, that takes them out of the running for Sanchez but enhances the chances of Wilson going to Boston, if the Pirates asking price comes down a bit.
One prospect the Pirates absolutely love is hard throwing lefty
Nick Hagadone – Current Stats: 9GS – 22.0 IP – 0 wins -2 losses – 2.86 era – 30 SO
Hagadone’s fastball sits at 94MPH and can top out around 97-98 MPH.
Hagadone is aggressive and also throw strikes. Some scouts believe he has the potential to be a closer in the majors but Pittsburgh likes his ability as a starter.
The negative for Hagadone (2007, 1st round pick) is that he is 23 and recently had tommy john surgery. He appears to have rebounded fine from the surgery but because of the setback, he is currently pitching in Class A.
Other pitching prospects Pittsburgh has been scouting are pitchers Felix Doubront, and Kyle Weiland.
What to watch for is whether Neal Huntington’s asking price comes down. He usually shoots for the stars early in trade talks and then settles for lower value which is what happened with Jason Bay and other past trades.
This may not be the case with Wilson as Pittsburgh is in no rush to move Wilson if they don’t find the right deal before July 31st.
They are still somewhat open to an extension and could still trade him in August.
With the trade deadline 5 days away, the Red Sox are the only team in serious talks with the Pirates about Wilson.