The Gio Gonzalez trade talks are said to be progressing, and word is that the Nationals or Red Sox could land the star lefthander within the next couple days.
The derby for Oakland's prized pitcher is "most likely'' down to those two teams, said someone familiar with the negotiations. The Marlins and Blue Jays are among many other teams that have pursued Gonzalez, a hot young lefthander who's only 26 and seen as being on the rise.
Executives of other teams see Washington as having the best chance to land Gonzalez simply because they have such a fine array of prospects. While Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper are obviously off limits, the Nationals have pitchers Brad Peacock and A.J. Cole, catcher Derek Norris ad outfielders Eury Perez and Destin Hood, among many other prized prospects.
Some believe it's possible shortstop Ian Desmond or even second baseman Danny Espinosa could be "in play.'' though it's hard to imagine the Nats giving up Espinosa at this point. Washington made a four-for-one offer for Zack Greinke last year that is believed to have included Espinosa, Norris and Jordan Zimmerman but that deal fell through when Greinke declined to go to Washington.
The Red Sox have some decent prospects but many of their best ones are at the lower levels. Third baseman Will Midddlebrooks would likely be of interest for Oakland, as would pitcher Anthoy Ranaudo. The Red Sox also have young outfielders Ryan Kalish and Josh Reddick.