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Why Youkilis has to go

With Middlebrooks likely here to stay, a trade makes sense for all sides

Updated: May 9, 2012, 11:08 AM ET
By Gordon Edes | ESPNBoston.com

The idea of trading Kevin Youkilis to make way for top prospect Will Middlebrooks gained early traction back in April, when Youkilis got off to a slow start and Middlebrooks was tearing it up for Pawtucket, hitting nine home runs and driving in 27 runs in his first 24 games.

That was premature. Youkilis has been a valuable middle-of-the-order presence in the Boston Red Sox's lineup year after year and figured to regain his batting stroke, while the 23-year-old Middlebrooks had fewer than ...

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