Kevin Youkilis has been a staple in the Red Sox lineup since they won the World Series in 2004. However, that soon may change.
Boston may be looking to deal the veteran, according to Gordon Edes of ESPNBoston.com. The notion of moving Youkilis got some attention at the beginning of the season, but now seems like an even stronger possibility.
Young Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks has been outstanding in the five games he's played with Youkilis on the disabled list. Middlebrooks is batting .409 with three home runs and nine runs batted in with Boston. He was a fifth round draft pick of the Red Sox in 2008, and is Boston's future at the hot corner.
The emergence of the young star makes it much easier for Boston to trade Youkilis. Middlebrooks has looked better than the 33-year-old in limited action in 2012.
Youkilis has struggled since the beginning of last year.
He hit .258 with 17 home runs and 80 RBI in an injury riddled 2011 Season, and is off to the worst start of his career this season. The man who was once called the Greek God of Walks only has five free passes in 2012, with a putrid .292 on-base percentage. His career OBP is .389.
The third baseman has gotten off to such a slow start that Boston's manager, Bobby Valentine, questioned his commitment to the game.
Once Youkilis comes off the DL, Boston could potentially see what kind of deal they can get for him. He is in the last year of his deal, and has a $13 million dollar option for 2013. He hasn't played well of late, but that fact that he's not owed a lot of money certainly works in the Red Sox favor.
If the Red Sox want to explore a trade for Youkilis, there's no rush to make a deal just yet. The MLB Trade Deadline is not until July 31.