"There are lots of conversations that take place involving lots of players," Alderson said. "I don't think it's really productive to talk about things that don't materialize."
Alderson would not comment on why the deal, first reported by the Boston Herald, never took place, though he did point to three discouraging factors: a lack of adequate compensation, a desire to finish the season as strongly as possible and a wish, potentially, to re-sign Capuano for next season.
In danger of missing the playoffs after holding a nine-game American League Wild Card lead earlier this month, the Red Sox certainly had reason to inquire. Though Capuano would not have been eligible for their playoff roster, he could have filled Boston's rotation vacancy Sunday against the Yankees. A Massachusetts native, Capuano is 11-12 with a 4.47 ERA in 31 games this season.
The left-hander was scheduled to start Thursday's series finale against the Cardinals.
Consummating a waiver deal this late in the season may be unusual, but it is not unprecedented. Six years ago, facing a similar playoff crunch, the Red Sox acquired reliever Mike Stanton in time for their final series of the regular season -- also against the Yankees.
"I would never rule out a trade or a contract extension or anything else that would come up from time to time," Aldersons said. "Why would we, if we could improve the club?"