More Coco

No, it’s not official yet, but the PD says if reliever Guillermo Mota passes his physical Tuesday, the long-rumored Coco Crisp deal could be completed by Wednesday:

The Indians would send Crisp, right-hander David Riske and catcher Josh Bard to Boston for third base prospect Andy Marte, Mota and, perhaps, catcher Kelly Shoppach. The Boston Globe reported Monday that the two teams had agreed in principle to a trade involving those six players.

The article also says the deal could fall apart if Mota, who spent some time on the DL last year with elbow problems, fails his physical.

Honestly, I like this deal a little less than I did a few days ago, if this is in fact how the trade would be structured. What I liked about shipping Crisp to Boston was not only getting a stud prospect at third in Marte but also landing Mota, a guy with a power arm who’s allowed 395 hits in his 464 career innings of work while striking out 244 batters in 269.2 innings the last three years. He didn’t work out as a full-time closer for Florida last year, but he’s got the kind of arm that would allow him to fill Bob Howry’s role as set-up man and potential back-up closer.

Giving Riske to the Sox certainly doesn’t negate the Mota acquisition, but it takes away some of the depth that made the Indians’ next rumored move — shipping a reliever to Philly for outfielder Jason Michaels — appealing. Now, instead of dealing from a surplus of talent in the bullpen, getting Michaels is going to hurt that bullpen depth.

Incidentally, the PD is also reporting that lefty Arthur Rhodes will almost assuredly be the reliever sent to Philly:

The Phillies originally wanted Rafael Betancourt, but the Indians refused. The Indians offered Riske, but the Phillies weren’t interested. The Indians then offered Riske to Boston. The Indians also considered sending Mota, 32, to the Phillies. There’s a chance that still could happen, but the Indians are inclined to keep Mota, if healthy, because he’s younger than Rhodes, 37.

I don’t get this part. Why is Betancourt so special? I know Rhodes is 37, but I love how the Indians are set up with Scott Sauerbeck early and Rhodes late. There aren’t many teams that have two proven, capable lefty relievers at their disposal. But as I have for the past few years, I’ll trust Shapiro’s judgment on this one.

You can follow us on Twitter and Facebook for content updates.