With his new Double-A team, Stephen Fife is 2-0 with a 1.64 ERA.

Tim Federowicz has three home runs in Triple-A and a .984 OPS through seven games.

And Chih-Hsien Chiang, who was batting .340 for Portland, is off to a solid start in the Double-A Southern League, batting .294.

Three good players. All traded away.

What were the Red Sox thinking?

That’s easy to answer: Improve the major league team while not hurting the future of the organization.

Boston received from Seattle lefty starter Erik Bedard, who might make enough of a difference in the Red Sox playoff run; and right-handed relief prospect Josh Fields, who has the stuff to make it to the majors.

In dealing Fife, Federowicz and Chiang, the Red Sox traded three players who were at the height of their trade value. But there were questions whether they would have ever reach Fenway for any length of time.

Fife, 24, located and mixed his pitches well. But he did not have the out pitch of other prospects (Kyle Weiland’s sinker or Alex Wilson’s slider). It’s doubtful he would have cracked Boston’s rotation any time soon.

Federowicz, 24, was considered the best defensive catcher in the Red Sox system. But Jarrod Saltalamacchia is looking more and more like a long-term solution for Boston’s catching needs. And Ryan Lavarnway’s performance in Pawtucket (1.061 OPS) made Federowicz expendable.

Offense had been a question with Federowicz, although he was batting .277 with eight home runs for Portland. That only made his trade value higher.

Chiang, 23, had a career .273 average until he broke out this season. With his limited speed and defense, he projects to be a left fielder, and the Red Sox have one of those signed through 2017.

* * *

Recalling other deals at the trade deadline, the Red Sox have done OK, although they might like to have Justin Masterson back.

In 2009, Boston sent Masterson and pitching prospects Nick Hagadone and Bryan Price to Cleveland for catcher Victor Martinez.

Masterson is 9-7 with a 2.71 ERA for the Indians. Hagadone is 4-1 with a 3.29 ERA in Triple-A, and Price has a 3.49 ERA in Double-A.

Martinez gave Boston a productive 1 1/3 seasons and, when he signed with Detroit as a free agent, the Red Sox got two high draft picks (19th and 36th overall).

In 2008, Boston traded malcontent Manny Ramirez to the Dodgers and prospects Brandon Moss and Craig Hanson to the Pirates in a three-team deal for outfielder Jason Bay.

Ramirez had given up with Boston, so he had to go, and Bay filled in nicely through 2009. Moss reached the majors but is back in Triple-A with the Phillies. Hanson is retired. When Bay signed with the Mets, the Red Sox got two more draft picks.

In 2007, Boston sent outfielder David Murphy, pitcher Kason Gabbard and outfield prospect Engel Beltre to Texas for reliever Eric Gagne.

While Gagne was a failure, the Sox bullpen improved anyway and helped Boston win the World Series. Murphy is a serviceable outfielder for the Rangers (.249 in 82 games). Gabbard did not stick in the majors. Beltre is hitting .237 in Double-A.

And when Gagne left for free agency after the season, the Red Sox picked up another draft pick.

The two reasons that the Red Sox develop players is to make them future Red Sox, or trade them for better players (re: Josh Beckett, Adrian Gonzalez).

* * *

With the three Sea Dogs trades, that makes 10 no longer with the club from the opening day roster. Three were promoted to Pawtucket (Tommy Hottovy, Che-Hsuan Lin and Lavarnway), two were sent down to Salem (Stolmy Pimentel and Jorge Padron), one retired (Will Vazquez) and one was released (Santo Luis).

* * *

Futures at Fenway is this Saturday with the Portland Sea Dogs and Pawtucket Red Sox both playing at the old ballpark. Portland will play the Binghamton Mets at 1 p.m. (tickets can be found on www.redsox.com).

The game will not only be a thrill for players and fans, but it will bring back memories for Mets manager Wally Backman.

Backman, 51, played second base for the New York Mets in the 1986 World Series — a memorable one for Mets fans, not so much for followers of the Red Sox.

“It’s been a long time,” said Backman, who batted second for the Mets, following Lenny Dykstra. “It was a fun place to play.”

Backman said there are plans for 25th anniversary celebrations after the season. He will get to do some reminiscing this Saturday.

* * *

Several promotions have been planned for upcoming home games, including today’s “Boots for Biscuits” L.L. Bean Day. A pre-game parade at 12:15 p.m. welcomes anyone wearing L.L. Bean boots. Participants receive a free Sea Dog Biscuit (ice cream sandwich).

On Friday, an Irish band will be performing on the front plaza before the game. There will also be a pre-game performance of Irish dancers.

The following Monday, Aug. 21, features an appearance by Maine Olympian Julia Clukey, a Ryan Kalish bobblehead give-away, and outfielder Bryce Harper.

Harper, 18, is considered one of the best baseball prospects to come along in years. The No. 1 draft pick last year, by the Washington Nationals, Harper is playing for the National’s Double-A affiliate Harrisburg, which will be at Hadlock for three games, Aug. 21-23.

 


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