3 best fits for Xander Bogaerts if Red Sox trade him in 2022 MLB season
The 2022 MLB season hasn’t started out quite the way that the Boston Red Sox hoped, as they currently sit at 11-20, good for last place in the American League East. While baseball is a long season, it’s a shocking turn of events that a team that won the World Series just four years ago and secured 92 victories in 2021 is struggling to play better than the cellar-dwelling Baltimore Orioles.
If the Red Sox don’t start to pick things up, they will end up being sellers at this year’s MLB trade deadline. If they do opt to begin a retooling process in 2022, it would make a lot of sense to trade from a strength: the lineup. Boston’s batting order has been toothless this year, as they have scored the fewest runs in the division after ranking as one of the better offensive teams in the league in 2021.
Still, the Red Sox have two young players, Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers, who have been centerpieces of the team’s lineup. Both Bogaerts and Devers failed to agree to long-term contract extensions with the franchise, putting their futures in question. If there’s a question about who the team should build around, Devers should be the answer every time.
Just 25 years old, the star third baseman has belted 117 homers in six seasons and owns a career .847 OPS. He seems like a future MVP candidate while Bogaerts, who is still in his prime at 29 years old, has a bit of a shorter career timeline at this point.
Plus, Bogaerts, who has an opt-out in his contract at the end of this year, could be a prime deadline target if the Red Sox do decide to deal him. The Red Sox could get a fair haul in return for Bogaerts, who ranks fifth in the majors in batting average with a .345 mark, in case he does decide to opt-out and leave the franchise in the offseason.
But where would Bogaerts fit the best if the Red Sox decided to trade him? There are several contenders around the league who would jump at the chance to acquire the talented shortstop. That said, here are the best fits for Bogaerts if the Red Sox decide to trade him in the 2022 MLB season.
3 Best Fits For Xander Bogaerts If Red Sox Trade Him In 2022
3. Philadelphia Phillies
The Phillies made some marquee moves this offseason, importing big bats, such as Nick Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber, into their lineup. The Phillies ranks seventh in baseball in runs scored, yet they are just 14-17 so far in the 2022 MLB season.
The Phillies’ pitching staff is capable of putting forth better efforts moving forward, meaning this is a team that should be competitive as the season rolls on. They must address the shortstop position though.
The combination of Didi Gregorius, Bryson Stott, Johan Camargo and Jean Segura simply hasn’t been getting it done at short, as the Phillies rank 28th out of 30 teams in Wins Above Replacement at the position.
Bogaerts, who ranks 12th in offensive WAR and has been one of the best hitters in the big leagues, would instantly add a jolt of production for the Phillies at the position.
Plus, there’s not many pitchers who would want to face a lineup that possesses last year’s MVP Bryce Harper, Castellanos, Schwarber, J.T. Realmuto and Bogaerts.
2. San Francisco Giants
The Giants already have Brandon Crawford, who enjoyed an All-Star season at the dish last year. However, Crawford is 35 years old and was on downward trend before his resurgence in 2020 and 2021.
The Giants, who play in perhaps the best division in baseball, will need every edge they can get if they want to emerge as a playoff team once again in the National League West.
Why not make a lineup that has scored the most runs in the division even better by acquiring Bogaerts, who would give the Giants a younger, better offensive player than the incumbent Crawford?
Plus, MLB.com ranked the Giants’ farm system as the 11th best in the league ahead of the season. San Francisco could deal for Xander Bogaerts and still have a lot of young talent left. The Red Sox could net a large haul of prospects for the star shortstop.
1. St. Louis Cardinals
This might be the best overall fit for Bogaerts. The Cardinals, who optioned former All-Star shortstop Paul DeJong to their Triple-A affiliate, haven’t gotten the production they envisioned out of the position.
However, the lineup has still been productive, ranking 13th in team OPS and 12th in runs scored. With the likes of Nolan Arenado, Paul Goldschmidt and Tyler O’Neill leading the way, the Cardinals should be among the leaders in offensive categories for the remainder of the 2022 MLB season.
At 17-13, they are good enough to contend for a playoff spot once again. However, they may need to be players at the trade deadline in order to do so.
Bogaerts, who was named by MLB Network’s Jon Morosi as a possible Cardinals’ trade candidate, would make too much sense for St. Louis if he becomes available.
The Cardinals’ middle of the order would go from formidable to downright dangerous with the addition of Xander Bogaerts.