On Thursday, Fred Mitchell and David Kaplan of the Chicago Tribune cited “excellent baseball sources” who told them that the Cubs may be involved in trade talks that would send Derrek Lee to the Angels. On Friday, Lee told Paul Sullivan of the Chicago Tribune that he hasn’t heard anything about it.
“Who are the ‘excellent sources?'” Lee asked. “I’ve heard nothing on it.
I’ve got nothing for you.”
Lee, 34, is in the final year of a five-year, $65 million contract, so it would make some sense for the Cubs to shop him if they are still out of the race in July. They’d probably have to kick in some of his remaining $13 million salary in order to do so, especially if he continues to hit poorly. Keep in mind that his contract includes a no-trade clause, so the Cubs would have to get Lee’s approval on any potential deal.
Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald reports that the Red Sox are considering using Mookie Betts at second base when the Dodgers host Game 3, 4, and 5 of the World Series in Los Angeles. That would allow J.D. Martinez to remain in the lineup as an outfielder, since the DH rule would not be in effect.
Betts, 26, has played a bit of second base in the big leagues. He played 122 innings there in his rookie season in 2014 and played another six innings there on August 3 this year against the Yankees. Betts also entered Boston’s minor league system as a middle infielder, so it’s not like the Red Sox are asking someone completely unqualified to handle the position. Given what else we know about Mookie Betts, such as the fact he can solve a Rubik’s cube in less than two minutes and he has bowled a 300 in the Professional Bowlers Association, he is basically good at anything he decides to do.
That being said, Betts was noticeably not very productive at the plate during the ALCS against the Astros. He hit just .217 with no home runs in 25 plate appearances. The Red Sox are certainly hoping he heats up against the Dodgers.