Here we go:
mlbtraderumors.com links to a trade rumor involving the Red Sox and Mets. According to a Boston source, the Sox are interested in getting Aaron Heilman to fill the closer role next year. They are also still interested in Lastings Milledge. If the Mets are willing to take on Manny’s remaining salary, this could happen. Or so the rumor goes.
Would this be a good deal for the Sox? On the surface, they’re not getting equal value back. But what if they turn the money they’re no longer paying Manny into a front-line starter (Zito or Schmidt) and also make a run at a Carlos Lee? The point of the deal would be to provide Theo and Company flexibility to make a lot of other moves, while developing a stronger core for the future. Milledge’s stock might have fallen this past year, but he’s only a year removed from being a top 5 prospect in all of baseball. An Ellsbury-Pena-Milledge outfield beginning in 2008 might not be too shabby. And are you convinced that Heilman is a closer in the making? He was a brilliant set-up man in the 2nd half, so maybe he has the stuff to shut down people in the ninth.
Meanwhile, on the Yankees front: Sheffield is searching out George Steinbrenner presumably to convince him not to pick up Sheff’s option for next year unless the Yankees plan on keeping him on past next year and play him at DH and RF. If they meet, television crews should be there. My prediction will be that George will work his magic and convince Sheffield to accept a trade to the Astros for one year. The Yanks will get Brad Lidge in return. In 2008, Sheff will return to the Yanks as a locker room reporter (so long, Kim Jones) who will ask players very uncomfortable questions daily.
Sheffield: "Why are you like that?"
A-Rod: "Not sure what you mean, Gary."
Sheffield: "Don’t call me Gary. It’s Mr. Sheffield to you."
Sheffield: "Why do they call you the Big Unit?"
Big Unit: "Guess"
Sheffield: "I’ll beat the living sh*t out of you. Answer my question. Why are you called the Big Unit? It doesn’t make sense."