MLB Trade Deadline

Chaim Bloom, Red Sox seeking ‘core contributors' on MLB trade market

The Red Sox don't appear to be in the rental business before Aug. 1.

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Chaim Bloom has a vision for the Boston Red Sox, and it may dictate how his team approaches the 2023 MLB trade deadline.

The Red Sox enter Wednesday just 1.5 games out of the final American League wild card spot with the sixth-best record in the AL, positioning themselves as buyers entering the home stretch. But Bloom still doesn't appear interested mortgaging Boston's long-term future for short-term success.

In a recent interview with Mass Live's Chris Cotillo, the Red Sox' chief baseball officer suggested he's not interested in paying up for "rental" players who are on expiring contracts and would hit free agency after the season.

"Generally speaking, with the way we’ve been trying to build this and also the position we’re in ... usually, when you’re in the position we’re in now and you start selling out for rentals, that often doesn’t go well," Bloom told Cotillo. "Obviously, those guys you can keep with you, those tend to be bigger acquisitions, and in some ways, for where we are, potentially more appealing.

"That’s easy to say and those guys are often in really high demand. But given where we are and the way that we’re building, I do think it’s something that we’re going be aggressive with."

Put another way, Bloom is more keen on acquiring players who would be part of the Red Sox' future past 2023.

"Having a core that wins, not just now but can keep winning, a lot of that is starting to be more visible by the day," Bloom said. " ... So really, our north star is just continuing to advance the ball there and continuing to build our core.

" ... If we can add more core contributors, that’s something we’d love to do. But as far as what shape that takes, I don’t know yet."

The catch, of course, is that players under team control tend to come with higher price tags. If the Red Sox want to trade for a player on a long-term contract -- the team reportedly has interest in adding a starting pitcher and a right-handed reliever -- they'll likely have to give up better-quality prospects than they would for a rental.

Bloom has found success with rentals in the past; Kyle Schwarber played a key role in Boston's run to the 2021 ALCS after joining the team at the trade deadline. The Red Sox let him walk in free agency that winter, however, and the team felt his absence the following year.

The 2023 Red Sox are benefiting from the strong play of several young players, from position players Jarren Duran and Triston Casas to pitchers Brayan Bello and Kutter Crawford. It makes sense why Bloom wants to add to that "core" with players who will stick around for a while. The challenge will be identifying trade targets at the right price who can fit into the team's long-term plans as Bloom tries to steadily build Boston into a serious contender.

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