The Boston Red Sox entered 2022 hoping to compete for a World Series and to sign a Xander Bogaerts contract extension. Nearly two months into the season, neither seem like realistic possibilities as Boston plummets down the MLB standings.

Bogaerts, the 29-year-old-shortstop, is eligible to become one of the top MLB free agents in 2023. With an outstanding track record of production on the big stage, the All-Star shortstop is a strong bet to decline his $20 million player option.

As Bogaerts ponders his future, Boston likely reads the writing on the wall. After low-balling their star infielder this offseason, there is very little chance the situation between the two sides improves by July. If the Red Sox aren’t competitive in the American League, the front office might feel the best long-term decision is dealing the four-time Silver Slugger Award winner.

Let’s examine the best potential landing spots for a Xander Bogaerts trade.

 

St. Louis Cardinals nab their new star

Many St. Louis Cardinals fans would love it if the club promoted top prospect Nolan Gorman and moved Tommy Edman to shortstop. While that’s still a possible outcome, it’s also evident the coaching staff and front office really value Edman’s Gold Glove defense at second base. One way to keep him there is by acquiring Bogaerts.

Xander Bogaerts stats (2022): .345/.397/.466, .862 OPS, 151 OPS+, 1.2 FanGraphs WAR

Entering the weekend, the Cardinals’ shortstops ranked last in wRC+ (29) and OPS (.412) while sitting 28th in fWAR (-0.4). In short, the position is a disaster for them right now. Gorman could be the solution, by moving Edman over, but St. Louis might be worried about what happens when MLB pitchers start overwhelming him with offspeed pitches.