Name: Kevin Youkilis
Tale of the tape: 1B/3B; 33-years-old; bats right; throws right; 6’1”; 220 lbs.
Contract status: $12 million in 2012; $13 million club option for 2013 with a $1 million buyout.
Would the Red Sox trade him?
What would they want for him?
Whatever they can get.
Even if they pay the rest of his 2012 salary, they’re not going to get much of a prospect for him.
Which teams would pursue him?
The Orioles have been mentioned in certain circles, but I doubt the Red Sox are going to trade him in the division.
Casey Kotchman has been a disaster with the Indians and they could slot Youkilis in at first base. The AL Central is winnable for them and Youkilis might be a change-of-scenery player who goes on a tear (if he’s healthy) once he’s out of Boston.
It would be an admission that they were wr-wr-wr-wrong (think Fonzie from Happy Days), but the Tigers could get Youkilis and put Miguel Cabrera where he belongs—in the DH spot.
Gaby Sanchez has been atrocious for the Marlins but putting Youkilis in that hair-trigger clubhouse is a bad idea.
The Pirates are an intriguing option because they’re hovering around contention and could use a veteran with name recognition and send a signal that they’re serious about winning without giving up the farm.
The Cardinals could use insurance for their questionable status at first base as they wait (hope) for Lance Berkman to come back; David Freese has had frequent injuries in his career and Youkilis is insurance for that.
It would be an odd acquisition for the Cubs, but Theo Epstein knows Youkilis and they’re not giving up on 2013 in spite of the rebuild they’re planning. They can try and steal a Wild Card next season while simultaneously stocking the farm system by trading other veterans on their roster.
Both the Dodgers and Diamondbacks could use a corner infield bat.
The Athletics would be a weird landing spot but given the bizarre moves made by Billy Beane—clearing out the house of his starting rotation and closer and signing Yoenis Cespedes and Manny Ramirez—maybe he’d like to get his hands on the player he coveted back when Moneyball was believed to be reality. The Greek God of Walks was almost an A when Beane was taking the Red Sox job and Paul DePodesta was going to be the new A’s GM. Youkilis was the compensation for Beane being let out of his A’s contract. But Beane backed out on the Red Sox and Youkilis became a star in Boston.
The A’s need a first baseman and with their young pitching and needs at first and third base, they could trade for Youkilis and renegotiate his 2013 option to sign him for a couple of years. He might be rejuvenated as a fiery leader and dirt-caked, win at all costs type to show the young team how it’s done.