We knew this was coming, it was only a matter of when: Gordon Edes of ESPN Boston is reporting that the Red Sox and Padres are discussing a trade for Adrian Gonzalez. Edes says that Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer are “making headway.” The contours of a deal would break down thusly:
According to the source familiar with the negotiations, the proposed deal centers only on minor leaguers, meaning the Red Sox would not lose star young reliever Daniel Bard … [San Diego] almost certainly would seek pitcher Casey Kelly and first baseman Anthony Rizzo in any deal, with outfielder Ryan Kalish, shortstop Jose Iglesias, outfielder Josh Riddick, 19-year-old outfielder Reymond Fuentes, pitcher Stolmy Pimentel, and catcher Ryan Lavarnway also potential targets.
Edes thinks it will ultimately take three prospects to make the deal happen, with some lesser filler coming over to complete the deal.
If it goes down, the Sox will still have ample ability to sign either Jayson Werth or Carl Crawford. Kevin Youkilis would likely move to third. The Red Sox offense — which has been far healthier than people have given it credit for these past couple of years — would, once again, be fearsome.
Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that the Royals and first baseman Eric Hosmer have discussed a long-term contract extension. However, Hosmer also indicated that he will head into free agency if a deal is not consummated by Opening Day.
Hosmer, 27, avoided arbitration with the Royals last month, agreeing to a $12.25 million salary for the 2017 season. He is one of four key Royals players who can become a free agent after the season along with Mike Moustakas, Alcides Escobar, and Lorenzo Cain. If Hosmer does reach free agency, he would arguably be the top free agent first baseman.
Hosmer finished the past season hitting .266/.328/.433 with 25 home runs and 104 RBI while making his first All-Star team.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports that the Yankees have signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, pending a physical. Assuming the deal is finalized, Sherman notes that the Yankees will have Niese work as both a starter and a reliever in big league camp this spring.
According to Sherman, the Yankees were interested in lefty relievers Jerry Blevins and Boone Logan, but didn’t want to commit at their asking prices. They are looking for a lefty set-up man along with Tommy Lane.
Niese, 30, pitched for the Pirates and Mets last season, finishing with a 5.50 ERA and an 88/47 K/BB ratio over 121 innings.