Boston Red Sox: Anthony Rizzo makes Sox look foolish for passing on him

Anthony Rizzo #48 of the New York Yankees (Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images)
Anthony Rizzo #48 of the New York Yankees (Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images) /

With the MLB Trade Deadline now a week behind us, the dust is starting to settle on some of the moves that were made. There were some blockbuster trades that took the league by storm, and it was generally one of the more exciting trade deadlines in recent history. One team that ended up sitting on the sidelines for most of the action, however, was the Boston Red Sox.

The Red Sox, who have been surprise contenders for the AL East all season long, were expected to be quite active in reinforcing their roster to help them make a World Series run. Instead, they only brought in Kyle Schwarber, Hansel Robles, and Austin Davis. Schwarber has yet to play due to injury, and Robles and Davis have looked ineffective in limited action.

It was a confusing deadline for Sox fans, as they had to watch their AL East competitors reload while Boston stood pat for the most part. The move has seemingly backfired for the Red Sox, as they currently find themselves in a cold stretch that could be more serious than expected.

One move in particular that seemed to draw the ire of Sox fans was former Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo being sent to the New York Yankees. Rizzo would have been a perfect match for Boston considering first base has been their weakest position and their lack of lefty hitters. But instead, they watched the Yankees snatch him up, and boy has he made the Boston Red Sox look like fools for not trading for him.

Why the Boston Red Sox could regret not trading for Anthony Rizzo

For those who are unfamiliar with Rizzo’s story, he was originally drafted by the Red Sox in the sixth round of the 2007 draft. Rizzo was eventually diagnosed with cancer in 2008, before battling his way back on to the field. Ultimately, he never made his debut with the Sox, as he was traded to the San Diego Padres in 2010.

After establishing himself as one of the top first basemen in the game and leading the Chicago Cubs to their first World Series championship in over 100 years during the 2016 season, Rizzo seemed set to be traded from an underachieving Cubs team this season. It was simple; Boston needed a first baseman, and Rizzo was going to be available.

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It was quite a disappointment when Rizzo was dealt to the rival Yankees for such a minimal return. The Yankees sent two top 20 prospects in return for a potentially game changing bat in their lineup. The fact that Sox general manager Chaim Bloom couldn’t cough up another prospect of two for Rizzo is mightily disheartening.

All Rizzo has done since his move to the Bronx is mash. It had been a bit of a down year for Rizzo so far, but through his first six games in New York he looked like the Rizzo of old. He’s batting .400, has already hit three home runs, and has driven in a run in each game so far. He’s helped rejuvenate a struggling Yankees lineup, and it’s no surprise that they have won five of the six games he’s played in so far.

To combat losing out on Rizzo, Bloom swung a deal for Schwarber instead. Schwarber is a power bat who will help the lineup, but he’s still out with an injury and has yet to make his Red Sox debut. Making matters worse, he doesn’t play first base, although it sounds like that won’t deter the Sox from trying him out as a potential solution to their season long woes at the position.

Losing out on Rizzo felt indicative of the Red Sox trade deadline as a whole. They were rumored to be in on the big targets, but bowed out when the price got too high for their liking. Sound familiar Celtics fans?

Next. Time to shakeup the Sox starting rotation. dark

It’s a disappointing result for Boston, especially considering how things have gone for them recently. They have lost six of their last seven games, and now sit a game and a half behind the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL East while the Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays are gaining ground on them as well. Having a guy like Rizzo in the lineup would certainly help ease their struggles.

Maybe Schwarber can come back and be that guy, but it feels like the Boston Red Sox made a mistake by not making a bigger push for Rizzo. He was a perfect fit for the team, and it would have been a great story to see him finally make his long awaited debut for the Sox. Instead, now he’s working on ending Boston’s season, and with the run he’s put together of late, I wouldn’t bet against him to do it.