FoxSports' Jon Paul Morosi is at it again with this note about Ryan Ludwick drawing interest at the Winter Meetings.
The Red Sox, Detroit Tigers, Baltimore Orioles and Los Angeles Dodgers are among the teams to check in, according to sources.
So far, the Padres appear reluctant to move Ludwick. But the current climate portends an active trade market for right-handed-hitting outfielders. Jayson Werth signed an enormous contract, which could raise the market price for other free agents, such as Magglio Ordonez. Trade targets, therefore, could be the more cost-effective route for needy teams.
The 32-year-old outfielder plays about average defense in the corners. He had a .325 on-base percentage and .418 slugging average while splitting time between St. Louis and San Diego last year. He had 17 home runs and a .251 batting average.
Ludwick was pretty awful at San Diego's spacious PETCO Field (.639 OPS) and much better at St. Louis's Busch Stadium (.938). But as far as park factors go, Comerica is a better hitter's park than either of those places.
In 2008 spending the entire year in St Louis, he had a much-better .375 OBP and .591 slugging, but both figures are far above his career norms.
At Fangraphs, Bill James Online projects a slight improvement in his on-base percentage and a bit of a bump in his slugging average.
Ludwick was paid $5.4 million in 2010 and will be a free agent in 2012.
Obviously at this time of the year you can expect tire kicking on a bunch of players and should continue not to read too much into any one rumor.