We've been told by new Sox GM Rick Hahn that the groundwork for possible trades was laid last week at the GM meetings in California.
So, what's going to happen and when? In my experience it's usually when you least expect it, expect it. And more often than not, it involves players you haven't thought of.
Here's my prediction. While a third baseman is top priority (Sox are still talking to Kevin Youkilis, but he's probably headed for a West Coast team), one of the first moves is going to be a deal involving Gavin Floyd.
Floyd's numbers aren't horrible--he was 12-11 with a 4.29 ERA in 2012 and in six years with the Sox is 63-61, 4.20--but it seems like one bad inning always seals his fate and prevents him from reaching the next level. The other issue is public perception. He's frustrating to watch because it always seems he should be better. At this point, the truth is that he is what he is.
While the almost 30-year-old Floyd is a decent option for the Sox rotation next season, there seems to be enough depth for the Sox to deal him. There's Chris Sale, Jake Peavy, Jose Quintana, a recovering John Danks and perhaps Hector Santiago. Floyd's departure would leave the Sox with a lefty-leaning group, but that problem could be solved with another deal.
I don't think it's a matter of Floyd having to be dealt and the Sox could probably count on him to repeat his '12 performance. But I think the brass may be growing impatient with him and a change of scenery could be best for both sides. And with everyone looking for pitching, he likely could bring good value in return.
Remember, when Floyd is dealt in the next few weeks you heard it here first.