Sox Interested In DeJesus?

By Alastair Ingram
2010 APR 17: Kansas City

According to a report, the Red Sox have spoken with the Kansas City Royals about a potential deal for outfielder David DeJesus.

The Sox are still waiting for Jacoby Ellsbury’s return from a rib injury (and they’ll likely have to wait at least another month), while Mike Cameron’s sports hernia has limited his ability to play an everyday role in center field.

The 30 year old DeJesus put up an outstanding .326/.395/.460 line in the first half of the season, but all three of those categories represent a giant leap compared to his slightly better than average career numbers. Would he come back to earth in Boston, or is he more than just a serviceable option in the outfield?

I’ll admit that I’ve never been a huge fan of DeJesus. He’s a guy that does a lot of things fairly well, but doesn’t excel in any one specific area.

He’s a career .290 hitter with decent speed (on the decline though with just 3 steals) and reasonable pop (31 extra base hits), but the biggest selling point is his defensive versatility. DeJesus has extensive experience at all 3 outfield positions and hasn’t made an error since 2008.

He’s played predominantly in right this year with 66 starts, making 14 starts in center and just one in left. Last year, DeJesus started 138 games in left field, and it only makes sense that his most common position in 2008 was center field (68 starts).

DeJesus is making $4.7 million this year (Boston would only assume about $2.2 million for the remainder of the season), and has a very affordable $6 million club option for 2011.  This element of control will clearly make Kansas City less inclined to deal him, thus raising the price for his services.

If the Sox can get away with a mid-tier prospect, I say make the deal. If the Royals want anyone remotely close to the top of Boston’s farm system, Theo Epstein will have to answer the question: “Is David DeJesus really that good?”

In my mind, he’s a nice, versatile player, and nothing more. Would I rather have Jayson Werth? Of course, but one must be realistic. When Darnell McDonald and Daniel Nava hit the skids, it would be nice to have a solid option with a proven Major League track record to provide some depth.

I can’t say I’d be in love with the move (I mean come on, it’s David DeJesus), but for the right price, it would be a smart addition at a depleted position.

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