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Rumor: Red Sox may look into trading Jackie Bradley Jr.

Jackie Bradley Jr., Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox were one of the most explosive offenses in baseball in 2019, but center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. had yet another disappointing season at the dish.

Bradley slashed .225/.317/.421 with 21 homers, but he also posted OPS+ and wRC+ values of just 90 for the season, rating as a below-average hitter.

Though the 29-year-old is one of the best defensive outfielders in the game, the absence of offensive improvement is becoming a troubling trend. Bradley is due for a hefty salary raise in arbitration ($11 million), posing an interesting dilemma for a Red Sox team looking to slash payroll.

MassLive.com reporter Chris Smith explains that though Boston may tender Bradley a contract, they might also explore trade options for the defensive wizard:

Jackie Bradley Jr. (projected $11 million) might be another non-tender candidate. But he still has two years of team control remaining. The Red Sox instead likely will tender him a contract and look to trade him this offseason.

The Red Sox also might need to keep Bradley if they were to trade Mookie Betts.

Any player with multiple years of team control is likely to have at least some value on the trade market, especially someone with Bradley’s talent.

However, Smith is right to suggest the Red Sox would likely retain Bradley if they elect to trade Betts. After all, Mookie is one of the elite talents in the game, and the haul the Red Sox would receive in any trade for Betts far outweighs that of any other trade they could possibly make this winter.