DALLAS -- The reconstruction of the Sox infield continues.
The Sox traded Edgar Renteria to Atlanta for third base prospect Andy Marte, and now will set their sights on a free agent shortstop, the most likely candidate being Florida's Alex Gonzalez, a free agent who was not offered arbitration by the Marlins.
Marte is described as a throwback third baseman by Bill Lajoie, a big thick-bodied power hitter who projects as a 25-30 home run guy when he establishes himself in the big leagues. How does he fit in, with Mike Lowell already here? Well, it could be he needs another year in the minors. The Sox could also move him to the outfield if they trade Manny Ramirez, but Atlanta tried him in winter ball there last year and it didn't work out. Lajoie mentioned a possible alignment of Marte in left, Youkilis at third and Lowell at first, but only within the context of one of a number of options.
By getting Marte, the Sox essentially replaced their No. 1 position prospect, Hanley Ramirez, who they moved to Florida in the Josh Beckett deal, with Atlanta's top prospect.
The potential three-way with Tampa Bay involving Julio Lugo? Eveidently, there was some friction between the D-Rays and the other clubs. Not entirely sure why, but the Sox now appear to prefer signing Gonzalez, if they can, than dealing for Julio Lugo.