Boston has been linked to several third basemen. The latest report connects the AL East leaders to Wilmer Flores
We know the Boston Red Sox have scouted Asdrubal Cabrera and T.J. Rivera. Add another Met infielder to that list. Jon Heyman is reporting that Boston has also scouted Wilmer Flores as they look for solutions at third base.
Things could accelerate if the Mets and Red Sox get involved heavily in talks with either of the three. Boston just saw their biggest rivals pull off a deal on Tuesday for Todd Frazier, David Robertson, and Tommy Kahnle.
Boston has received basement level production from their third base collection this year. The combination mostly comprised of recently released Pablo Sandoval, Josh Rutledge, and Deven Marrero combined to rank bottom five in the league in homers, batting average, slugging percentage, walks, and on-base percentage.
Flores could be the spark Boston needs at the plate. At 25, Wilmer is having a solid season offensively. He’s handled right-handed pitchers a lot better this season. His .274 average against righties is 42 points higher than last season. Flores’ power hasn’t been on display as much compared to last season, but he is still slugging a respectable .445.
The question becomes where does Flores fit into the long-term plans for the Mets? Flores has played several different positions, but third base is not his strongest suit (career .944 fielding percentage in 117 games at third). In turn, Flores may not be the best solution defensively for Boston but as highlighted above: they’re starving for any offense from that position.
It’s hard to imagine Flores as an everyday third baseman, but he will play wherever asked and his hitting has only improved in multiple aspects. And it looks as if his ceiling hasn’t been reached yet. While he isn’t the most attractive option linked to the Red Sox, anybody would be better than what Boston has received from that position this year.
Since the Red Sox lost out on Frazier, the search narrows a bit. However, they’ve been connected to several names around the league. It would be interesting to see exactly what kind of return Flores could net with his improving bat and two full years before free agency eligibility.