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Thursday, November 01, 2012

Boston’s Stop-Gap Options at First Base - Over the Monster

Just because the Red Sox would like one of the available first baseman, they may not get one. The hot stove season doesn’t guarantee anything to anyone. Because of this, Boston may be looking at a combination of young players to hold down the position until at least the trade deadline next year. Firstly, there is International League MVP Mauro Gomez. He’s been impressive at the plate in his minor league career, and he performed decently in his first exposure to big-league pitching in 2012. Giving him the bulk of the playing time next season has the potential of working out very nicely for the team next year, despite the lack prospect hype he received over the past few years.

Also available on the roster, thanks to the Punto trade, is prospect Jerry Sands. He’s also had some success in the minors, and profiles as a solid major-league player. He probably won’t be a superstar, but at some point he should be a solid major-league bench player, if not a regular. In the minors, he has shown a very good ability to draw walks, to combine with some impressive power. That, in addition to good defense, could lead to him being a solid option in 2013, even if it isn’t to start the year.

Here’s the list of free agent first baseman from Cot’s Baseball Contracts.

First Basemen
Lance Berkman, STL
Jason Giambi, COL
Travis Hafner, CLE *
Eric Hinske, ATL
Aubrey Huff, SF *
Casey Kotchman, CLE
Adam LaRoche, WAS *
Carlos Lee, MIA
James Loney, BOS
Xavier Nady, SF
Mike Napoli, TEX
David Ortiz, BOS
Lyle Overbay, ATL
Carlos Pena, TB
Jim Thome, BAL
Ty Wigginton, PHI *

Slim pickings.

Unless an unexpected non-tender or salary dump pops up, I’d say the Sox should just go with Mauro Gómez and/or Jerry Sands. They won’t be great but neither will any of the free agents currently available. Face it, there aren’t a lot of good options.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:17 PM | 65 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: red sox

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   1. Nasty Nate Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:31 PM (#4290071)
Youkilis and Mark Reynolds can be added to that list.
   2. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:37 PM (#4290075)
Unless an unexpected non-tender or salary dump pops up, I’d say the Sox should just go with Mauro Gómez and/or Jerry Sands.
Why? The Sox have piles upon frickin' piles of money to spend. Since they're never going to go over the luxury tax threshold again, there is no way for them to save money today and spend it later. Any money saved by starting a replacement level 1B like Gomez just goes straight into John Henry's pocket and either shores up the hedge fund or helps buy a striker for Liverpool.

The Twins currently have two first basemen. If they want to dump Morneau's salary, I like him a lot as a stopgap. If they're too dumb to see what they have in Parmelee, I like him a lot as a trade target.

Napoli, barring a qualifying offer from the Rangers, looks good to me. I'm intrigued by Berkman. There is zero reason to give Mauro Gomez and Jerry Sands anything other than a minor league contract. If they actually hit and field well enough in AAA to project as good major leaguers, we can work them in after they prove they deserve the job.
   3. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:39 PM (#4290080)
If Napoli doesn't receive a qualifying offer I don't hate going after him. Not real excited by it but it's probably a decent gamble. Failing that I'm with Jim, Gomez or Sands looks like a reasonable play. Best case is they pull a Daubach or Millar and prove useful and capable, worst case you've invested nothing.
   4. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:44 PM (#4290087)
Why is it a plus to have "invested nothing" in 2013 payroll?
   5. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:46 PM (#4290091)
I think the odds of Justin Morneau being good enough to be a useful contributor the 2014-2015 pennant-winning Red Sox are much higher than the odds of Gomez or Sands pulling that off.

Gomez is a butcher in the field, a bad baserunner, and maybe a league average hitter. He sucks. Sands, I haven't watched, but his hitting numbers in the PCL are really uninspiring. I'm guessing he'll project around 320/420 next year.

I have some minor optimism for Sands, unlike Gomez, but Sands needs to improve his AAA production before he deserves an MLB job. He's got an option remaining, so that pretty much settles it for me.
   6. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:48 PM (#4290094)
Mark Reynolds might be a nice fit. Ike Davis is also available, and if you want to take a flyer, Adam Lind. You might be able to pry Brandon Belt away from San Fran as they have never seemed that enamored with him. And there are rumors the Royals might part with Eric Hosmer for the right pitcher.
   7. JJ1986 Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:50 PM (#4290097)
Ike Davis is also available


I hope not. Lucas Duda is, though.
   8. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:50 PM (#4290099)
The Twins currently have two first basemen. If they want to dump Morneau's salary, I like him a lot as a stopgap. If they're too dumb to see what they have in Parmelee, I like him a lot as a trade target.


Agree on both of those.


Why is it a plus to have "invested nothing" in 2013 payroll?


Just because the Red Sox have money to spend doesn't mean they should spend it. For example I think the benefit of Sands over Berkman in 2013 is you have a much better chance of finding your 2014 first baseman with Sands than you do with Berkman. If you sign Berkman to a one year deal and he has a good year, you still need a first baseman next winter. Maybe you can resign Berkman but that's not a certainty. If you go with Sands and he busts you're in the same boat, but if he pans out you're in better shape.

I'm not advocating an approach where the Sox should try and win 57 games and then go hell bent for leather next winter. I don't see Berkman (or Youk or Pena) as giving the Sox a chance to have a first baseman down the road. If they can land a non-QO Napoli or Parmelee I like that. I like Morneau largely because I like him but also because the slight edge they would have at re-signing him after the year as an incumbent gives him a bit more value than a Berkman type.
   9. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:52 PM (#4290104)
Obviously if there's any chance of Belt or Hosmer, you move some of the quality high-minors pitching to get them. I still feel like that's a pony, but the fun thing about the Sox offseason is that they're pony-flexible. They can go out onto the market looking at first basemen, outfielders, shortstops, and starting pitchers, and it's not unreasonable to think they can shake one pony out of a tree, or whatever it is you'd do with this metaphor to describe it, maybe "rustling up" a pony?
   10. Jim Furtado Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:54 PM (#4290106)
I'd rather see the Sox risk whatever money they spend on taking short-term chances with high-priced but risky starters like Dan Haren rather than plunging money into the mediocrities on this list or giving up talent for someone like the washed up Morneau.

This turn around is going to take some time. If the team wants to try and contend for a wildcard next year during the transition, I'd rather they put most of their eggs into the pitching staff basket because, if they get lucky, at least there is some potential for success with that part of the roster.
   11. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:55 PM (#4290107)
Just because the Red Sox have money to spend doesn't mean they should spend it. For example I think the benefit of Sands over Berkman in 2013 is you have a much better chance of finding your 2014 first baseman with Sands than you do with Berkman. If you sign Berkman to a one year deal and he has a good year, you still need a first baseman next winter. Maybe you can resign Berkman but that's not a certainty. If you go with Sands and he busts you're in the same boat, but if he pans out you're in better shape.
Disagree. I believe in the minor leagues and minor league equivalencies. Jerry Sands projects as something like a 750 OPS hitter based on his minor league numbers. He still needs to improve as a minor league hitter before he deserves a major league job. I have no reason to assume that it's better for his development to play in the majors.

And even with a true stopgap like Berkman - after the Ortiz experience, we should acknowledge that a 36-year-old can play his way into your long-term plans, too. And Berkman, unlike Sands, is actually a good major league hitter. (I understand there are injury issues with Berkman, and he may be straight-up retiring, but consider Berkman as a type rather than an individual.)
   12. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:55 PM (#4290109)
I'd rather see the Sox risk whatever money they spend on taking short-term chances with high-priced but risky starters like Dan Haren rather than plunging money into the mediocrities on this list or giving up talent for someone like the washed up Morneau.
I would too. (Though Morneau's washed-upedness is a matter for discussion - he hit RHP pretty much like you'd expect Justin Morneau to hit.)

The thing is, they have $70M to spend. Haren and Morneau are in no way mutually exclusive.
   13. DL from MN Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:57 PM (#4290112)
The Twins will want pitching in return for Morneau. What does Boston have to offer?
   14. Nasty Nate Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:57 PM (#4290113)
I think the odds of Justin Morneau being good enough to be a useful contributor the 2014-2015 pennant-winning Red Sox are much higher than the odds of Gomez or Sands pulling that off.

Gomez is a butcher in the field, a bad baserunner, and maybe a league average hitter. He sucks. Sands, I haven't watched, but his hitting numbers in the PCL are really uninspiring. I'm guessing he'll project around 320/420 next year.


I think they can do better, but playing Gomez/Sands next year has no effect on Morneau being on the 2014-2015 teams. Morneau's current contract runs out after '13.

Part of the reason you would try Sands/Gomez at 1B (or Kalish/Sands/Sweeney in a corner OF spot) is that you get the chance to find out if one of them is actually good and is better than his projections. The Sox have tons of holes to fill, and they probably won't be able to fill them all with projectable above-average players. For at least one position, it makes sense to try a bunch of guys and see if they can come up with a special player or at least a bargain.

Disagree. I believe in the minor leagues and minor league equivalencies. Jerry Sands projects as something like a 750 OPS hitter based on his minor league numbers. He still needs to improve as a minor league hitter before he deserves a major league job.


Giving him a chance would tell us much more accurately whether he is actually good than MLE-based projections. You can't always wait around until players project statistically to be good before trying them out. No one is saying he should be guaranteed 600 PA's, but they guys is 25 and has played 2 full years at AAA - the Sox should see what they have with this guy.
   15. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 12:59 PM (#4290114)
Part of the reason you would try Sands/Gomez at 1B (or Kalish/Sands/Sweeney in a corner OF spot) is that you get the chance to find out if one of them is actually good and is better than his projections.
But why can't they do that in Pawtucket? If they're better than their projections, we'll know based on their MLEs.

And in the meantime, the Sox can try out another plausible future contributor in the majors, and that major leaguer will project as a better player in 2013 to boot.
   16. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 01:01 PM (#4290117)
The Twins will want pitching in return for Morneau. What does Boston have to offer?
What are the Twins plans with Morneau and Parmelee anyway? Job-sharing to prepare Parmelee, along with some cycled DH at-bats? Is there any suggestion they'd want to move one or the other? It seemed to me like a situation where there's little reason to keep both in the squad, but that's just based on my outside observation.

(Also, the Sox have gobs of pitching, but I doubt they'd be terribly interested in parting with anyone good for Morneau.)
   17. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 01, 2012 at 01:06 PM (#4290127)
What are the Twins plans with Morneau and Parmelee anyway? Job-sharing to prepare Parmelee, along with some cycled DH at-bats? Is there any suggestion they'd want to move one or the other? It seemed to me like a situation where there's little reason to keep both in the squad, but that's just based on my outside observation.

(Also, the Sox have gobs of pitching, but I doubt they'd be terribly interested in parting with anyone good for Morneau.)


I think the parenthetical is problematic for the Sox. With just one year on the deal the Twins probably don't have a ton of reason to unload Morneau unless they get something in return. At the same time since they only have one year left on Morneau I don't see any reason they'd be eager to move Parmelee. The Sox certainly have the pieces to get him but I don't think the Twins have any particular need to rush either guy out the door.
   18. Nasty Nate Posted: November 01, 2012 at 01:10 PM (#4290131)
But why can't they do that in Pawtucket? If they're better than their projections, we'll know based on their MLEs.


I disagree with that. Or at least I disagree that we would know with the same degree of certainty.

And in the meantime, the Sox can try out another plausible future contributor in the majors, and that major leaguer will project as a better player in 2013 to boot.


Well that's the ideal, but easier said than done.
   19. Nasty Nate Posted: November 01, 2012 at 01:11 PM (#4290133)
The Twins will want pitching in return for Morneau. What does Boston have to offer?


Willingness to pay Morneau's salary and Alfredo Aceves?
   20. Dan Posted: November 01, 2012 at 01:23 PM (#4290144)
I'd rather see the Sox risk whatever money they spend on taking short-term chances with high-priced but risky starters like Dan Haren rather than plunging money into the mediocrities on this list or giving up talent for someone like the washed up Morneau.


Morneau hit .290/.371/.531 against RHP last year. If that's washed up, let's get a whole lineup of washed up guys like that.

Platoon him against tough lefties with Sands or Gomez or Lavarnway or whomever and you've got yourself some great first base production.
   21. Dan Posted: November 01, 2012 at 01:24 PM (#4290145)
Swisher is another option for first base (or left field or some split between those 2 positions).
   22. DL from MN Posted: November 01, 2012 at 02:03 PM (#4290184)
The Twins' plan is to deal either Span or Revere and stick Parmelee in RF until Oswaldo Arcia is ready. That said they are willing to trade Morneau for starting pitching. They asked for a bunch from the Dodgers at the last trade deadline.
   23. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 02:07 PM (#4290185)
The Twins' plan is to deal either Span or Revere and stick Parmelee in RF until Oswaldo Arcia is ready.
Interesting. I did not realize Permelee could play right. Denard Span would be a nice get for the Sox.

EDIT: I may be overrating Span, but I've been a fan of his for a long time. He looks to me like a guy who needs a better hitting coach, who has a whole bunch of skills but has stagnated for no good reason. And even if his bat doesn't improve much, his glove and arm can play in RF and his baserunning is a big plus.
   24. DL from MN Posted: November 01, 2012 at 02:22 PM (#4290198)
Parmelee isn't very good in RF but he's played the position in the minors.
   25. Bitter Mouse Posted: November 01, 2012 at 02:50 PM (#4290210)
Darn. I came here to talk up various Twins to Sox and everything has been discussed. As far as I know the Twins plan to do some trading and Morneau is on the list of players that can go. They have a glut of 1b/DH/outfield types especially when you look at the minors. I like Justin and don't think he is washed up, but it makes sense to dump him if pitching and salary relief is to be had.
   26. snowles Posted: November 01, 2012 at 03:31 PM (#4290257)
I could see the Jays and Morneau being a match, even without his Canadianness involved. Moises Sierra seems without a home after Davis was re-signed and Gose and Marsinick not too far away.
   27. Mudpout Posted: November 01, 2012 at 03:45 PM (#4290267)
Gomez has nearly a thousand plate appearances in the IL with a .307/.363/.551 line an MVP award. Sands has 940 plate appearances and 55 home runs over the last two years. Granted, Sands did his hitting in Albuquerque, but his numbers have been good throughout his minor league career. I'm not saying one or both will be the solution, but do they really need to prove they can still hit AAA pitching?
   28. donlock Posted: November 01, 2012 at 04:56 PM (#4290325)
Platoon him against tough lefties with Sands or Gomez or Lavarnway or whomever and you've got yourself some great first base production.


Why would benching the major league hitter against tough lefties and playing minor league stiffs make for some great first base production? Are these three guys minor league hitters who hit tough lefties well? There aren't many major league guys who can do this.
   29. Nasty Nate Posted: November 01, 2012 at 05:16 PM (#4290352)
Are these three guys minor league hitters who hit tough lefties well?


The relevant question is whether these guys hit lefties better than Morneau.
   30. geonose Posted: November 01, 2012 at 05:31 PM (#4290368)
And there are rumors the Royals might part with Eric Hosmer for the right pitcher.

I imagine that would have to be Clay Buchholz. Maybe Jon Lester, if the Royals would find only one year plus an option left on his contract acceptable. They might, because of the flexibility it would give them. The Royals aren't going to accept prospects for Hosmer; there would be no reason to do that.
   31. Jim Furtado Posted: November 01, 2012 at 05:51 PM (#4290391)
Morneau hit .290/.371/.531 against RHP last year. If that's washed up, let's get a whole lineup of washed up guys like that.

Platoon him against tough lefties with Sands or Gomez or Lavarnway or whomever and you've got yourself some great first base production.


So the Red Sox should pay $14 million, at the least, and give up either a high-level major league prospect, one of their best relievers or one of their few starters (Twins fans will kill them if they accept anything else) for a 32 year-old first baseman who hasn't had a quality full season in four years and who would be a platoon first baseman for one year? Keeping in mind the team will be carrying either 12 or 13 pitchers, which means they don't have the luxury to really platoon, and it's just not prudent.
   32. Nasty Nate Posted: November 01, 2012 at 06:08 PM (#4290403)
Jeez, you are really vehement. Morneau was introduced into the conversation in post #2 as a salary dump - and now you are elevating his cost to include a good prospect and "$14 million, at the least" - is "at the least" supposed to suggest that the Sox would voluntarily increase his 2013 salary?

I think they should try for Napoli at 1B.
   33. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 06:30 PM (#4290422)
So the Red Sox should pay $14 million, at the least, and give up either a high-level major league prospect, one of their best relievers or one of their few starters (Twins fans will kill them if they accept anything else) for a 32 year-old first baseman who hasn't had a quality full season in four years and who would be a platoon first baseman for one year?
Obviously not. If the Twins won't trade Morneau at a fair price, the Red Sox shouldn't trade with them.
   34. RMc's desperate, often sordid world Posted: November 01, 2012 at 07:10 PM (#4290445)
Don't most teams have at least a couple of 1B/DH-types running around loose? I mean, you rarely hear a manager say, "I'd love to get his bat in the lineup, but he's just not good enough defensively to play first base!"
   35. Davo Dozier Posted: November 01, 2012 at 07:22 PM (#4290451)
If the Red Sox offered Alfredo Aceves for Justin Morneau--straight up--I would accept that trade in mid-ejaculation.
   36. DL from MN Posted: November 01, 2012 at 07:44 PM (#4290467)
Just about anyone, including Justin Morneau, will hit lefties better than Morneau did in 2012. He was trending up near the end of the season.
   37. Jim Furtado Posted: November 01, 2012 at 07:53 PM (#4290470)
Nasty Nate, vehement? No, the positioning of "at the least" was put in the wrong place because I posted too quickly. What I meant to say was, "So the Red Sox should pay $14 million and give up either a high-level major league prospect (at the least), one of their best relievers or one of their few starters (Twins fans will kill them if they accept anything else) for a 32 year-old first baseman who hasn't had a quality full season in four years and who would be a platoon first baseman for one year?"

And, I am not elevating. I'm being realistic. The Twins aren't going to just dump Morneau without getting something in return. As other people have mentioned, he still has value to them. Teams don't usually give away popular players for nothing unless the fans are clamoring for them to do so.
   38. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 01, 2012 at 08:54 PM (#4290496)
Yes, but the entire discussion of Morneau was based around a recognition that he wouldn't get $14M on the free agent market - the Twins would not offer him a QO if he were a free agent. So we were working from the assumption that he wouldn't cost much.

It's fair to disagree with that assumption, but it's not fair to claim that people want to trade De La Rosa or Barnes for Morneau when all they've said is that they'd like to get Morneau in a salary dump.
one of their best relievers
The Red Sox already have too many relievers. So long as it's not Tazawa (or Bailey, I guess), I'd be happy trading pretty much any of our relievers for Morneau.
   39. Nasty Nate Posted: November 01, 2012 at 09:06 PM (#4290503)
"So the Red Sox should pay $14 million and give up either a high-level major league prospect (at the least), one of their best relievers or one of their few starters (Twins fans will kill them if they accept anything else) for a 32 year-old first baseman who hasn't had a quality full season in four years and who would be a platoon first baseman for one year?"

And, I am not elevating. I'm being realistic. The Twins aren't going to just dump Morneau without getting something in return. As other people have mentioned, he still has value to them. Teams don't usually give away popular players for nothing unless the fans are clamoring for them to do so.


If he's only mediocre than the Twins would be getting relief from his over-sized contract in return. But, if the Twins put a big premium on his popularity and the avoidance of fan outrage, the Sox shouldn't be interested at all (or what #38 said).
   40. Jim Furtado Posted: November 01, 2012 at 09:13 PM (#4290507)
What he would get on the free agent market is irrelevant.

I do disagree with the assumption that the Twins would just give him away. That ignores the world the Twins operate in. Trading Morneau would have PR consequences, if it's perceived that the Twins did it solely to dump salary. When you finish 66-96, you won't get a positive fan reaction by dumping a ten-year fan favorite and former MVP.
   41. Nasty Nate Posted: November 01, 2012 at 09:20 PM (#4290510)
This is the franchise that traded Johan Santana. Teams do that thing all the time. Just this past week the Indians declined their option on Hafner, and I would assume that the Rangers would let any team take Michael Young from them for nothing. Earlier in the year, Ichiro was dumped and he was a ten-year fan favorite and former MVP.
   42. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: November 01, 2012 at 10:17 PM (#4290560)
Is Morneau even still a fan-favorite in Minnesota? He's had health issues, hasn't been particularly impressive the last two years, and is getting older. In Boston they trade guys like without blinking. Youkilis was probably better than Morneau and won a World Series with the team and the Red Sox got basically nothing for him.

Of course, Minnesota is a different, friendlier place and maybe they want to hold on to Morneau. It doesn't seem crazy to think he might be available for an affordable price. Certainly no crazier than the crazy-town trade in August. After that, almost anything seems possible.
   43. DL from MN Posted: November 01, 2012 at 11:24 PM (#4290615)
Fans like Morneau here in Minnesota. We also hate giving away good players to Boston (Kevin Garnett, Randy Moss, David Ortiz).

If they can't get fair value they'll hold him until the trade deadline.
   44. AT-AT at bat@AT&T Posted: November 02, 2012 at 12:01 AM (#4290639)
huff to boston for ortiz and then pedroia to the yankees for cano !
go red sox !!
if it wasn´t for fenway, i could hate/love the red sox all my life !

there surely must be a boston red sox kitten on the web somewhere....
   45. Lassus Posted: November 02, 2012 at 12:26 AM (#4290650)
I keep reading this headline as "stop-motion options", in which case, I think Gumby is a good choice.
   46. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: November 02, 2012 at 02:08 AM (#4290680)
Fans like Morneau here in Minnesota. We also hate giving away good players to Boston (Kevin Garnett, Randy Moss, David Ortiz).

If they can't get fair value they'll hold him until the trade deadline.


Really? It sounds like Minnesota loves giving players to Boston! (I kid!)

Seriously though, do you think Minnesota will try to contend next year? The offense is decent but they have some real pitching problems.
   47. Paxton Crawford Ranch Posted: November 02, 2012 at 07:34 AM (#4290701)
Morneau in a salary dump would be a decent gamble, but color me skeptical about Parmelee. He had 65 great games at AAA this year, but stunk in the majors and had never before hit enough in the minors to make you think he could be a regular 1B.

I'd love to see the Sox trade for one of the number of young 1B who have fallen out of favor with their orgs to one degree or another:

Belt: SF played him more regularly down the stretch and he finally hit a little, so the time to buy low may have passed.

Hosmer: Inexplicable bad year, but still has a huge ceiling. The Sox do not have the similarly high ceiling pitcher in the minors KC would want and Buchholz would be too much, so it's hard to see a match. In a vacuum though, he's the guy I'd most want.

Davis: After two injury plagued and disappointing seasons, he ought to come at a discount, but I suspect Alderson is charging retail. Still, a good bet at the right price.

Morrison: Perhaps the perfect intersection of talent and availability. His lefty doubles/line drive stroke would be perfect for Fenway and his outspoken personality would fit the "idiot" tradition in Boston better than it ever did under Loria.
   48. Darren Posted: November 02, 2012 at 08:53 AM (#4290715)
The two obvious targets I don't see mentioned in this thread are the Cardindals and the Angels. In LAoA, it's a guess on my part, but are they ready to put Pujols/Trumbo at 1b/DH and punt Kendrys Morales as he gets expensive?

The Cards have Craig and Freese at the infield corners and Holliday and Beltran in the OF corners. Then they also have Matt Carpenter and Matt Adams just about ready for MLB. Behind them, you've got promising Cox (3B) and Taveras (OF). There's a logjam there, and if there is any chance for the Red Sox to pick up a guy named Carpenter, they will certainly do it.
   49. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 02, 2012 at 09:45 AM (#4290740)

I'd love to see the Sox trade for one of the number of young 1B who have fallen out of favor with their orgs to one degree or another:


Hey, Justin Smoak is also available!
   50. DL from MN Posted: November 02, 2012 at 09:55 AM (#4290751)
do you think Minnesota will try to contend next year?


They've stated that they're looking for three starting pitchers and will try to contend in the weak Central. It got Detroit to the World Series.
   51. Nasty Nate Posted: November 02, 2012 at 10:02 AM (#4290756)
The two obvious targets I don't see mentioned in this thread are the Cardindals and the Angels. In LAoA, it's a guess on my part, but are they ready to put Pujols/Trumbo at 1b/DH and punt Kendrys Morales as he gets expensive?


Trumbo and Morales are still cheap enough that I don't think the Angels would be in any rush to clear up the logjam of 2 players for 1.5 positions (counting Trumbo as 1/2 an OF or 3B). The Cardinals idea is a really good one, and different from the Angels' situation in that they don't have the DH to play with. I would guess that Craig won't be traded, and they would keep one extra guy around, but that still leaves either Carpenter or Adams as a potential trade target.
   52. Darren Posted: November 02, 2012 at 10:09 AM (#4290762)
It could go either way on Craig. He's established and good, but he's also going into his arb years. Maybe they'll decide they can match his production on the cheap.

You're probably right on Trumbo. If they ditch Morales, it probably won't be due to a logjam.
   53. Darren Posted: November 02, 2012 at 10:10 AM (#4290765)
With that being the case, can we have Kole Calhoun then? Please?
   54. JJ1986 Posted: November 02, 2012 at 10:14 AM (#4290768)
I think Adams is probably the guy the Cardinals have no room for. Carpenter's learning 2B, plus he's a very useful bench player. Taveras will either split time in center or move Beltran over so that he plays some CF. Cox is in Miami.
   55. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 02, 2012 at 10:35 AM (#4290792)
Hey, Justin Smoak is also available!


I wouldn't hate Smoak if they got him cheap. He was awful at Safeco and had a not horrible second half overall. Obviously those aren't exactly ringing endorsements but I wouldn't be shocked if Smoak rebounded and became 90% of the player we expected him to be by getting away from Safeco.
   56. Darren Posted: November 02, 2012 at 10:51 AM (#4290799)
Move Beltran to center--is that viable?
   57. JJ1986 Posted: November 02, 2012 at 11:01 AM (#4290804)
Move Beltran to center--is that viable?


Probably not even half time, but if they need to fit Taveras in (and he can't play CF), I'd risk running Beltran out there behind Westbrook and Garcia.
   58. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 02, 2012 at 11:08 AM (#4290808)
He can't? Taveras played CF most of the year in Springfield. I'd have to think a wonderfully athletic 21/22 year old is a better center fielder than Beltran at this point.
   59. Darren Posted: November 02, 2012 at 11:10 AM (#4290809)
I think it was part of the "if" clause.
   60. Darren Posted: November 02, 2012 at 11:10 AM (#4290811)
Another option is for the Cards to deal one of their pricey corner OF.... to the Red Sox!
   61. JJ1986 Posted: November 02, 2012 at 11:11 AM (#4290812)
I think it was part of the "if" clause.


Yeah, he probably will be able to this year even if he eventually outgrows the position.
   62. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: November 02, 2012 at 11:17 AM (#4290816)
Gotcha.
   63. JJ1986 Posted: November 02, 2012 at 04:26 PM (#4291104)
Napoli is not getting a Qualifying Offer.
   64. Nasty Nate Posted: November 02, 2012 at 04:34 PM (#4291110)
Napoli is not getting a Qualifying Offer.


Nice. That says a lot about his eventual contract, right? Because presumably the Rangers had trade discussions with other teams to contingency plan for him accepting, and were scared that he would accept.
   65. puck Posted: November 02, 2012 at 05:45 PM (#4291181)
I keep reading this headline as "stop-motion options", in which case, I think Gumby is a good choice.

Especially since Aardman locked up Gromit on a team-friendly long-term deal.

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