Yesterday the Cubs made the biggest trade of the season, acquiring Jose Quintana from the crosstown White Sox for a package of prospects. Jon Morosi of MLB.com reports, however, that they may not be done yet:
That’s the thing about both the Quintana deal and any potential deal for Sonny Gray: team control. The Cubs could lose Jake Arrieta and John Lackey in free agency this winter and neither Jon Lester isn’t getting any younger. Quintana is controlled for the next two seasons thanks to some cheap team options and Gray is under control for multiple years as well. If Chicago can bolster the staff for the 2017 run, great, but remaining competitive over he next few seasons is obviously necessary given where they are.
As for Gray: he’s 4-4 with a 4.00 ERA in 13 starts. That’s not where he was a few years back, but it’s an improvement on last season. His strikeout rate has ticked back up some and his walk rate down some as well. He’d be a good pickup.
The Red Sox and Mariners left nothing on the table Friday night, going head-to-head in a series opener that eventually ended 14-10 in the Sox’ favor. Led by Steven Wright and Wade LeBlanc — neither of whom made it past the fifth inning — the teams combined for 34 hits and four home runs, including two moonshots from Seattle’s Nelson Cruz and a five-run rally that gave Boston the edge in the seventh.
In the sixth inning, however, the Red Sox were still scrambling to make up a four-run deficit. Left fielder J.D. Martinez cut it in half with one swing, pouncing on an 89.5-mph fastball from Seattle right-hander Nick Vincent and posting it to dead center field for a two-run shot.
The 427-foot blast was Martinez’s 23rd of the season, tying Mike Trout for the most home runs in the league this year. While he still has a ways to go before eclipsing the career-best 45-HR mark he set in 2017, he’s off to a strong start this season: Entering Friday’s game, the 30-year-old slugger was batting .315/.386/.623 with a 1.009 OPS and AL-leading 55 RBI in 308 PA. He finished Friday’s game 4-for-5 with five RBI, just one triple shy of hitting for the cycle.
Heading into the All-Star Break, both Martinez and Trout still have some competition for the home run title. Jose Ramirez is sitting at 22 homers, while Nelson Cruz and Khris Davis are tied at 20 apiece.