Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Youkilis traded to White Sox

The Red Sox have reached a deal to trade Youkilis to the White Sox, sources told CBSSports.com’s Jon Heyman on Sunday afternoon.

Talks between the Red Sox and White Sox heated up Saturday, sources say, with the two teams haggling over how much of Youkilis’ contract (about $8 million remains) that the White Sox would pay. It’s not clear yet how much of the money the White Sox will be responsible for, or who the Red Sox will get in return.

The Red Sox have been determined to trade Youkilis, who lost his full-time job with the emergence of rookie third baseman Will Middlebrooks.

Youkilis’ presence in the lineup Sunday was something of a surprise, but it provided him with an emotional Fenway Park send-off. Youkilis went 2 for 4, and when he was removed for a pinch runner after a seventh-inning triple, he received a huge ovation.

Thanks to Pete.

Repoz Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:10 PM | 162 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: red sox, white sox

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

Page 1 of 2 pages  1 2 > 
   1. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:14 PM (#4165069)
I like the move, if for no reason than it's another step closer to having every baseball personality that I can't stand affiliated with the same ball club.

Also, I can't wait for the mudslinging to start. Youkilis is going to be a walking soundbite now that he's finally out of Boston.
   2. Answer Guy Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:17 PM (#4165076)
I don't understand eating most of the contract AND giving him away from a replacement level pitcher.
   3. Dan Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:22 PM (#4165087)
Heyman says Lillibridge is also in the deal, I guess? I suppose he's a useful enough 25th man, since he can play all over the field, run a little, and hit lefties a little, but it still doesn't make this make any sense.
   4. The District Attorney Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:25 PM (#4165100)
Robothal:
Lillibridge to #RedSox. RHP Stewart thought to be other piece. Significant cash to #WhiteSox.
Lillibridge is a true utility player -- I can at least guarantee Valentine will love the options. He created 32 runs while making 152 outs last year, and has created a whopping 4 while making 56 outs so far this year, so, you tell me. Overall, the trade seems like mostly a dump, but rather than getting a middling prospect, they opted for players who potentially have some current value to a contending team, albeit in low-importance roles.

From the White Sox' point of view, it'd sure be nice from the point of view of Youk's health if their two best players didn't play 1B and DH. However, the upside is that their 3B situation is so horrible that Youk will probably still be their best option even if his head falls off.
   5. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:31 PM (#4165109)
So that leaves Ortiz as the last 2004 alum still with the team, yes?
   6. Curse of the Andino Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:33 PM (#4165114)
I'd've loved to see Youk on the Os. Oh well, guess that wasn't gonna happen.
   7. DKDC Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:36 PM (#4165117)
I'd've loved to see Youk on the Os. Oh well, guess that wasn't gonna happen.


Ew, take that back.

This trade puts a lot of pressure on Middlebrooks, especially if he wakes up one day and realizes he's Mark Reynolds.
   8. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:40 PM (#4165123)
Mark Reynolds can draw walks. On the other hand, Will Middlebrooks can field a position.
   9. Dan Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:42 PM (#4165128)
Middlebrooks also uses the whole field. He's not the dead pull hitter that Reynolds is. But if he doesn't start taking walks, I'm not especially high on him. I mean he's clearly got talent and power, but the strikeout and walk rates are concerning.
   10. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:42 PM (#4165129)
I'd say that he's more Sammy Sosa or Jeff Francoeur than Mark Reynolds. Middlebrooks is a very raw athlete with a still-unformed approach at the plate. Mark Reynolds is just a guy who doesn't know how to make contact, but has developed a game to make the most of the skills he does have.
   11. JJ1986 Posted: June 24, 2012 at 05:42 PM (#4165130)
It seems odd to me that Zach Stewart keeps getting traded even though he's not very good. Teams must see something in him.
   12. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: June 24, 2012 at 06:00 PM (#4165137)
If the Red Sox are truly paying over half the salary I hate this deal. Stewart and Lillebridge don't add much to the team and there is just too much certainty in Will Middlebrooks for my taste. I think MCoA's "Sosa/Francoeur" is an apt analogy. I think there is a real range of possibilities for him and now there is no fallback option.

I'd much rather have seen the Sox had gotten a long shot prospect rather than a couple of MLB mediocrities.
   13. Rafael Bellylard: Built like a Panda. Posted: June 24, 2012 at 06:11 PM (#4165144)
Just three things:

1. By the middle of the week, we'll hear how the clubhouse chemistry has suddenly improved.
2. Somehow, I thought he'd end up in Oakland for a couple of middling prospects.
3. I'm seeing this as an amazingly poor trade for the Red Sox. The problem with getting someone like Lillebridge is this will just tempt Valentine into actually using him. I'd have rather seen a mediocre LOOGY than Stewart.
   14. CWS Keith plans to boo your show at the Apollo Posted: June 24, 2012 at 06:26 PM (#4165154)
White Sox third basemen have combined for a .167/.243/.224 triple-slash this season. Youkilis hitting at his current, well-below-average numbers would be an upgrade. A move towards his career numbers and he's probably something like a two or three win upgrade over the remaining few months. The guys the White Sox gave up are at best likely bit parts, and they got a good chunk of cash. ######' A, Kenny Williams.
   15. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 06:37 PM (#4165158)
What a pointlessly bad deal. If Valentine can't work with a player like Youkilis, then Valentine is even more worthless than I thought he was.
   16. SteveM. Posted: June 24, 2012 at 06:41 PM (#4165159)
I presume that this puts an end to the Orlando Hudson experiment at 3rd.
   17. puck Posted: June 24, 2012 at 06:43 PM (#4165160)
The ESPN ticker just said Buchholz is being placed on the DL with intestinal bleeding. That's a lot of injuries and other weird stuff happening; maybe the Sox have figured it's time to give in and let Moses's people go.
   18. DKDC Posted: June 24, 2012 at 06:44 PM (#4165161)
True, Reynolds and Middlebrooks have some skills in common, but its not a great comp. Reynolds actually has pretty good pitch recognition but his contact skills are unbelievably bad.

And to be fair, Youkilis is a guy who developed a skill (power) out of nowhere, so maybe Middlebrooks can do the same.
   19. Dan Posted: June 24, 2012 at 06:58 PM (#4165168)
The interesting thing about Middlebrooks' strikeout and walk rates to me has been how much he strikes out looking. It's a lot for a guy who doesn't walk much. So it's not impossible to see him walking more in the future, as it's not like his high K totals are entirely from chasing breaking balls low and away.
   20. Fernigal McGunnigle has become a merry hat Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:03 PM (#4165170)
This is a really good trade for the White Sox. If Youkilis truly is cooked, he's still no worse than the other 3B options, and if he has some life in him yet then he's a vast improvement. It's an odd trade for the Red Sox, especially if they're picking up a lot of the salary. We were saying yesterday that we couldn't imagine who on the White Sox the Red Sox would want. "Brent Lillibridge" certainly wasn't an answer I expected.

Stewart's a guy who's never pitched as well in the majors as he did in the minors. It wouldn't surprise me if he turned into a solid relief pitcher.
   21. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:07 PM (#4165172)
I never thought Youkilis would age well, but he's surprised before (particularly by developing power) and so it's silly to give up on him after one slightly down year and 150 bad PAs. Especially when you get nothing in return.
   22. Lassus Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:09 PM (#4165173)
If Valentine can't work with a player like Youkilis, then Valentine is even more worthless than I thought he was.

Cherington traded Youkilis because Valentine told him to? Interesting.
   23. asinwreck Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:09 PM (#4165174)
Stewart shares exactly two things in common with Bert Blyleven: he gives up a lot of home runs and is carbon-based. His last start against the Cubs was representative of his performance with the Sox, regardless of whether he started or came out of the pen. I am almost as happy to see him leave Chicago as see a third baseman who can manage a .500 OPS come to town.
   24. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:12 PM (#4165175)
If Valentine can't work with a player like Youkilis, then Valentine is even more worthless than I thought he was.

Cherington traded Youkilis because Valentine told him to? Interesting.
I don't think there's any real evidence for this, but it's not entirely implausible.

-Youkilis clashed openly with Valentine early in the year
-Youkilis has some history of clubhouse problems (see Manny)
-there have been stories about conflict between players and coaches in the clubhouse
-Valentine's comments about benching Youkilis were sort of weird
-Valentine has benched Youkilis
-Youkilis was traded for a minimal return

The trade is weird enough to demand some explanation beyond its baseball logic, and clubhouse issues are a non-crazy explanation if you need something along those lines.

That's not to say any evidence exists that it's the case.
   25. Depressoteric feels Royally blue these days Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:13 PM (#4165176)
Sort of surprised at how few people have pointed out that the reason Youkilis was traded for someone, anyone -- driven out of town on a rail the minute he came off the DL, really -- is because he had pretty transparently become a cancerous lesion upon the team. Olney's been hinting at it for over a month, and all signs point to the fact that Valentine told Cherington that he had to get this piece of sh*t out of here NOW regardless of the return.
   26. Depressoteric feels Royally blue these days Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:14 PM (#4165177)
Coke to MCoA at #24. I mean, c'mon: it's rather obvious what happened here. To pointlessly quote Radiohead, "jigsaw falling into place/there is nothing to explain."
   27.     Hey Gurl Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:14 PM (#4165178)
Sort of surprised that few people have pointed out that the reason Youkilis traded for someone, anyone, is because he had pretty transparently become a cancerous lesion upon the team


You're surprised? You don't remember Nomar? Or Manny? The Red Sox fan turn is as epic as it is predictable.
   28. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:15 PM (#4165179)
It's not implausible, but there is no evidence that deserves the name which supports the hypothesis.
   29. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:16 PM (#4165181)
You're surprised? You don't remember Nomar? Or Manny? The Red Sox fan turn is as epic as it is predictable.
Huh? Eso was pointing out that people haven't been turning on Youkilis. And the reception of these supposedly turned upon former Red Sox at their Fenway returns has been boisterously positive.**

The Boston press is entirely predictable in its treatment of ex- and soon-to-be ex-players, but the fans have been weirdly equated with Dan Shaughnessy even though the actual behavior of the fans doesn't support your claim in the first place.

**With a "plays for the Yankees" exception, it should be added.
   30. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:18 PM (#4165182)
If Valentine can't work with a player like Youkilis, then Valentine is even more worthless than I thought he was.

Cherington traded Youkilis because Valentine told him to? Interesting.


The thing speaks for itself. Cherington got jack sh^t back in this trade. Which means that he did it for non-baseball reasons. Which means that Valentine was likely the non-baseball reason.

No, there's no "evidence," because none of us work for the Red Sox. But there's no evidence that anyone with half a brain cell makes this trade for baseball reasons, either.
   31. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:20 PM (#4165184)
No, there's no "evidence," because none of us work for the Red Sox
If someone accused Bobby Valentine or Kevin Youkilis of using steroids, I think you'd be a little less free with the scare quotes around "evidence".
   32. Depressoteric feels Royally blue these days Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:20 PM (#4165185)
You're surprised? You don't remember Nomar? Or Manny? The Red Sox fan turn is as epic as it is predictable.
I actually DON'T remember Nomar (wasn't paying attention to the Sox then) and Manny is/was a sui generis case who transparently 'did it to himself' and stands apart from any comparison to Youkilis.

And of course, I'm not a Red Sox fan, so there's no 'turn' against him here on my part. I don't really know or care about Youkilis as a personality (though generally speaking, when it comes to these sorts of things, I subscribe to the one single semi-intelligent thing Bill Maher has ever said: "all rumors are true"). I'm simply drawing the obvious conclusions based on the external evidence: clashes btw. Valentine and Youkilis earlier in the season, countless thinly-veiled media stories about his bad attitude, and the fact that Sox literally dumped him within 48 hours of his return from the DL (i.e. the moment he was dumpable) for pennies on the dollar. Doesn't take a genius to figure out that Cherington et al. took a look at an aging, injury-prone Youk with a pissy attitude vs. their new star manager Valentine and decided to go with Bobby V.
   33. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:22 PM (#4165188)
I mean, there was a baseball game today in which Kevin Youkilis received a massive, heartfelt, unplanned standing ovation from the Fenway crowd. And yet still people like Shock say that Red Sox fans are predictably turning against him. WTF?
   34. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:24 PM (#4165189)
Fine. I remove the scare quotes. But it was Lassus's shtick where he acted like this was implausible that I was responding to.
   35. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:26 PM (#4165190)
Not implausible, no real evidence is likewise my position. So there we are.
   36. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:33 PM (#4165191)
In 2004, the Nomar trade was stupendously weird, and lots of people attributed the trade to clubhouse issues. They cited as evidence Nomar's generally aloof nature, some vague and vaguely reported stories about clubhouse tensions, and the thirty inning Yankee game where Nomar didn't come off the bench.

It later became clear that the deal was actually done for baseball reasons. Nomar was no longer capable of fielding his position, and he was moved to 3B, then to 1B within two seasons.

It's also entirely plausible that Cherington and Valentine think Youkilis is cooked, that his hip problems have ruined his swing and slowed him in the field. And maybe lots of other folks around baseball also think that - and maybe his medical records make it pretty clear - and so Youkilis' trade value is a lot lower than his current projections.

This is why I'm taking a wait-and-see approach.
   37. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:41 PM (#4165196)
It's also entirely plausible that Cherington and Valentine think Youkilis is cooked, that his hip problems have ruined his swing and slowed him in the field. And maybe lots of other folks around baseball also think that - and maybe his medical records make it pretty clear - and so Youkilis' trade value is a lot lower than his current projections.


Well, we pretty much know for a fact that his trade value was low, because they actually traded him, and got nothing for him. So that question has been answered. I highly doubt Cherington was turning down better offers, or not shopping around for them.

The real question is, why trade him when his trade value is zero. They were far better off playing him. I thought they were trying to contend. And that's where Valentine comes in.

   38. SteveF Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:52 PM (#4165201)
Presumably it's because they are trying to contend that they stopped playing him. If opposition scouts are down on Youkilis, I can't imagine the Red Sox scouts think much differently. The White Sox only make this deal because of the relatively low price tag (marginally useful fringe major league talent + $2 million) and because their production at 3B has been so poor.
   39. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:54 PM (#4165202)
Well, we pretty much know for a fact that his trade value was low, because they actually traded him, and got nothing for him. So that question has been answered. I highly doubt Cherington was turning down better offers, or not shopping around for them.
I generally agree, but this supports the "he's cooked" hypothesis much more than the "clubhouse cancer / Bobby V tantrum" hypothesis. If Youkilis were only a problem in the Red Sox clubhouse, but opposing scouts and GMs thought he was a good bounce-back candidate, you'd think the Sox could have gotten a better return.
   40.     Hey Gurl Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:55 PM (#4165203)
I mean, there was a baseball game today in which Kevin Youkilis received a massive, heartfelt, unplanned standing ovation from the Fenway crowd. And yet still people like Shock say that Red Sox fans are predictably turning against him. WTF?


As you pointed out in 29, I obviously mis-read Eso's post.
   41. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:57 PM (#4165204)
I should be clear here that I'm not defending the trade. It's a trade that could reasonably work out, but it's not a trade I'd make based on what I know right now. To justify the trade, you have to posit made-up facts and then posit that Ben Cherington knows them.

I'm just saying it is possible that these facts are true and the Cherington knows them, and it's not certain that these facts are "Kevin Youkilis was a problem in the clubhouse and Bobby Valentine hates him". It could be other facts instead.

Or it could be a crap trade.
   42. Lassus Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:57 PM (#4165206)
Fine. I remove the scare quotes. But it was Lassus's shtick where he acted like this was implausible that I was responding to.

I do think it's more implausible than you do, or even MCoA does.

I simply don't think Valentine has anywhere near the suction required after the way the season has gone so far to say "Hey, trade this guy" and the GM would be all "Hey, ok, gotcha chief." I think it's likely that Cherington thought he was done, asked Valentine what he thought, and was probably agreed with. That's about it.

I disagree that the trade happened because "Valentine can't work with a player like Youkilis".

(I also think it seems like a pretty bad trade at the moment.)

("Shtick"?)
   43. McCoy Posted: June 24, 2012 at 07:58 PM (#4165207)
Hey, if you are looking for a bat to replace Youkilis I know just the guy. Hit a home run today and everything.
   44. Dale Sams Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:13 PM (#4165226)
This is the first I've heard that Youk was a 'cancerous lesion that must go no matter what'. Outside of tin-hat circles of course.

As for not possibly being done for baseball reasons...Lowriecoughcouh...Reddickcoughcough...but the reasonable responce is "What did you expect to get for him"

On its face, it's idiotic. They paid 5mill or so for players more likely to return negative value, and lost any back-up for AGon and WMB. If you're going to give him away, you may as well keep him. i fully expect him to hit .790 or more OPS for the rest of the year. Give away Youk, pay for him and keep Punto? Insane.
   45. Walt Davis Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:16 PM (#4165230)
Hey, if you are looking for a bat to replace Youkilis I know just the guy. Hit a home run today and everything.

Seems obvious. Early on, many here (including me) opined that the only way a Youkilis trade could work would be as part of a 3-way deal. :-)

This is what happens when a team boxes itself into a corner where they "need" or "have to" trade a guy. It's just the way these things snowball.
   46. Walt Davis Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:21 PM (#4165232)
Outside of tin-hat circles of course.

AKA Red Sox fans.

They paid 5mill or so for players more likely to return negative value

And this is pretty weird. They saved $2 M. OK, I guess that's better than releasing him outright but it makes so little difference in the grand scheme of things. I suppose it makes it a bit easier to grab somebody mid-season if need be.

Or maybe they do think Stewart can be decent.
   47. JJ1986 Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:34 PM (#4165242)
If the Red Sox were going to get absolutely nothing in return and were going to pay most of his salary, they should have at least sent him to the NL. There could easily be a situation where the team has to compete with the Pale Hose for a wild card spot.
   48. The Ghost of Sox Fans Past Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:36 PM (#4165248)
Once the rest of the league thinks you "have to" trade somebody, you get squat for him. I have never fully understood why that is. I mean, if multiple teams would like to have him, why wouldn't the price get bid up?

   49. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:40 PM (#4165253)
I generally agree, but this supports the "he's cooked" hypothesis much more than the "clubhouse cancer / Bobby V tantrum" hypothesis. If Youkilis were only a problem in the Red Sox clubhouse, but opposing scouts and GMs thought he was a good bounce-back candidate, you'd think the Sox could have gotten a better return.


I don't know why you're focused on what opposing teams thought of him (again, answer: very little). The fact is they got nothing for him. So they must have traded him for Bobby V and/or Cancer reasons.

I mean, it's pretty clear that his real value is higher than his perceived value. So you don't trade him.
   50. Rafael Bellylard: Built like a Panda. Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:40 PM (#4165256)
...but the reasonable response is "What did you expect to get for him"


I dunno. It just seems that if the deal was "We'll give you Youk and $5.6 million, what can we get back?", the Red Sox should have been able to get more than the 25th guy on the roster and a marginal reliever who aren't even particularly young.

I have to believe out of 28 other teams, there had to be a better deal out there, but I could be wrong.
   51. Zipperholes Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:45 PM (#4165261)
Brent Lillibridge can be a tremendously valuable player. Great trade for the Red Sox.
   52. McCoy Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:46 PM (#4165263)
Well, I thought the same thing with the Cubs offering to take 90% of Alfonso's contract and yet nobody wants him.
   53. The Kentucky Gentleman, Mark Edward Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:48 PM (#4165266)
I am very happy with this trade as a White Sox fan. The Sox needed a third baseman as they were getting absolutely no production from either Brent Morel or Orlando Hudson. Zach Stewart is garbage and while I will miss Brent Lillibridge's passion for the game, he was expendable.
   54. TerpNats Posted: June 24, 2012 at 08:52 PM (#4165269)
If the Red Sox were going to get absolutely nothing in return and were going to pay most of his salary, they should have at least sent him to the NL. There could easily be a situation where the team has to compete with the Pale Hose for a wild card spot.
Unless the AL Central gets a heckuva lot better, or the Twins just play dead in intradivisional play the rest of the year, a wild-card won't come out of the Central. The Chisox could well win the division, in which case the Bosox may have helped get them there (playing with Epstein's psyche in the process?), but the South Side won't have a wild-card rep.
   55. tshipman Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:05 PM (#4165285)
I have to believe out of 28 other teams, there had to be a better deal out there, but I could be wrong.


Well, Alfonso Soriano was available ...
   56. Dan Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:07 PM (#4165286)
Lillibridge is a very good fit as a last man on the Red Sox. He can take McDonald's spot as occasional starter in the OF against lefties, pinch-runner, and has the benefits of also being able to play the infield and being a competent pinch runner. I just think that even if the Red Sox absolutely had to have Lillibridge he probably could've been acquired in a different move rather than also paying full freight for Youkilis.
   57. Walt Davis Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:15 PM (#4165295)
This is Brent Lillibridge of the career 70 OPS+ right? (Granted, still fewer than 600 career PAs) He's perfectly meh as 25th man but you don't trade assets to pick up a guy like this.

a wild-card won't come out of the Central.

True dat. Toronto, 5th in ALE, 37-35; White Sox, 1st in ALC, 38-34.

OK, it's possible, Cleveland is just 2 out of the 2nd wild card. But sheesh.
   58. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:21 PM (#4165301)
I don't think this is such a tough thing to understand:

1) Youkilis is done - or, at least, there's a pretty good chance he's done. He is not the player he was a few years ago, because of injuries, age, and his weight.
2) There are four positions you could have even fathomed of him playing in 2012: 3B (but Middlebrooks is playing too well not to keep him in the lineup, and Youkilis' range at 3B is severely limited); 1B (but Gonzalez is there); DH (Ortiz is having a great season, including hitting very well against lefties); and LF (which was always a stretch, but with his health and age, was not feasible in 2012; also, Nava is hitting way too well to keep off the field). There is nowhere to play him.
3) He pretty obviously is not very good at sitting on the bench. As a longtime Sox fan, I love his intensity, but even fans of Youkilis could see how he would be a little much with some of his teammates. The thought of him sitting half the time, with some young gun playing at third every day, is not an image that would likely work for long...).
4) He's a free agent at the end of the year. They aren't going to pick up his 2013 option, and he makes a lot of money with the option, anyway. They've got half a season left - is trading a guy hitting, like, .225, that big a deal?
5) This is a team that traded Scutaro explicitly because they wanted to save some money. I know the team is saving "only" $2 million in this deal, but that may be what allows them to make a deadline deal for a useful bullpen arm without going into luxury tax time, which they clearly want to avoid at all costs. And they pick up an arm and a useful utility guy.

I think people that are surprised by the lack of return to the Sox in this deal are vastly overestimating Youkilis' value to the Red Sox, or Youkilis' abilities, at this point. He is done. The White Sox are one of the few teams with such bad 3B play right now that even Youkilis is an upgrade, so good for them. But it doesn't mean very many other teams felt the same way - because they didn't.
   59. bobm Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:24 PM (#4165303)
[44]This is the first I've heard that Youk was a 'cancerous lesion that must go no matter what'. Outside of tin-hat circles of course.


Unlikable Red Sox flunked chemistry
Somehow the team became what it once abhorred -- arrogant, complacent and entitled
Updated: September 30, 2011, 2:20 PM ET
By Jackie MacMullan | ESPNBoston.com ...

Ellsbury is a 2007 alum and an MVP candidate, a magnificent player with the brightest future of them all. His teammates like and admire him, but he keeps to himself, confides only in Jed Lowrie.

Can you blame him? His teammate two or three lockers to his left continued, as recently as two months ago, to publicly question Ellsbury's decision to retreat to Arizona last summer for treatment for broken ribs. Kevin Youkilis has always been a hot button. On occasion, his intensity and his honesty were his biggest assets, but not this season. The injured Youkilis showed up every day the way he wanted Ellsbury to, but he turned so sour and cynical that his carping and insistence on inserting himself into other people's affairs turned him into a detriment. [Emphasis added]


http://espn.go.com/boston/mlb/story/_/id/7036983/underachieving-boston-red-sox-flunked-chemistry
   60. Zipperholes Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:30 PM (#4165307)
This is Brent Lillibridge of the career 70 OPS+ right? (Granted, still fewer than 600 career PAs) He's perfectly meh as 25th man but you don't trade assets to pick up a guy like this.
I do. There are few guys like him. I don't care much what his OPS+ is.

EDIT: To elaborate, he can play all over the field, plays great defense, is a great baserunner and is fast. Yeah, if he's getting regular at-bats you're probably in trouble. But having a guy who is so versatile that he can spot start, pinch run, pinch-hit vs. lefties or be a defensive replacement anywhere (except C) is extremely valuable, IMO. Numbers will never capture that value.
   61.     Hey Gurl Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:33 PM (#4165308)
I do. There are few guys like him. I


That's because they're mostly in AAA.

(Kidding.)
   62. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:38 PM (#4165311)
I do. There are few guys like him.


Yes, but that's because few non-pitchers are able to stay in the majors with a 70 OPS+, let alone be featured in a trade for a player who has provided 4-5-6 WAR the last three years. EDITED.

The trade is beyond ridiculous for the Red Sox.
   63. Mattbert Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:41 PM (#4165313)
Manny is/was a sui generis case who transparently 'did it to himself'

And that's why it really hurt.
   64. SteveF Posted: June 24, 2012 at 09:59 PM (#4165328)
The AL East records are as they are because of getting to play NL teams. Once they get back to the business of playing each other, those teams are going to trend back towards .500. As good as the division is, I'd be surprised if the AL East winner has more than 94 wins. The problem with the wild card coming out of the central is the Angels. AL West has the soft underbelly the AL East lacks.

Early on I thought an AL central team had a shot at that second wild card given the relative weakness of the division and the unbalanced schedule. But given how the Angels have performed, I don't think it's going to happen. I figure the likeliest wildcard outcome is Angels + AL East #2.

The playoff odds in ESPN seems to agree: AL East: ~222%, AL Central ~ 115%, AL West - 163% So that means they figure 20% chance of 2 wildcards coming out of the East, about a 65% chance one out of the west, and about a 15% chance of one out of the central. I realize you can't strictly interpret the percentages this way, but it isn't far off.
   65. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 10:35 PM (#4165354)
What was up with Lillibridge's power surge last year? I mean, its gone already, but that was weird.
   66. willcarrolldoesnotsuk Posted: June 24, 2012 at 10:59 PM (#4165368)
I forget, what was the original Valentine-Youk brouhaha this year? Or at least I think it was the original one. The one that caused Pedroia to huff and puff, blustering (about Valentine) "That's not the way we do things around here" or whatever.
   67. bobm Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:16 PM (#4165377)
[66] , what was the original Valentine-Youk brouhaha this year? Or at least I think it was the original one. The one that caused Pedroia to huff and puff, blustering (about Valentine) "That's not the way we do things around here" or whatever.

BBTF's Newsblog Discussion :: Valentine: Youkilis not as much into the game
Sunday, April 15, 2012

Valentine: Youkilis not as much into the game

This is sure to cause some issues.

Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine was on WHDH’s Sports Xtra show Sunday night and said this about Kevin Youkilis:

“I don’t think he’s as physically or emotionally into the game as he has been in the past for some reason. But [on Saturday] it seemed, you know, he’s seeing the ball well, got those two walks, got his on-base percentage up higher than his batting average, which is always a good thing, and he’ll move on from there.” ...

  6. Textbook Editor Posted: April 16, 2012 at 09:17 AM (#4107529)
And the plot naturally thickens; from today's Extra Bases:

Dustin Pedroia came to the defense of his teammate this morning.

"I don't know what Bobby's trying to do, but that's not the way we do things here," said Pedroia. "Maybe that stuff works in Japan."



Fenway Zoo, here we come...


http://www.baseballthinkfactory.org/newsstand/discussion/valentine_youkilis_not_as_much_into_the_game
   68. PJ Martinez Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:18 PM (#4165378)
Once the rest of the league thinks you "have to" trade somebody, you get squat for him.

That doesn't sound right to me. If at least two teams both want a player who's going to be traded, one has to outbid the other. And then the other one has to counter-offer until basically both teams reach the point where they're offering what they think is fair value and won't go any higher.

This is no less true of a player that "has to" be traded than any other.

Which is not to say that Cherington managed to get the best possible deal he could have (I've no idea) or that it wasn't foolish to deal Youkilis now when his value was so low (I again have no idea). Just that even a player that everyone knows is going to be traded can still be traded for solid value so long as at least two teams want that player.
   69. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:24 PM (#4165382)
So, did the Youk-for-Hamels talks fall apart?


Once the rest of the league thinks you "have to" trade somebody, you get squat for him.


Yea, who did the Sox even get for Manny? Does anyone remember?
   70. bobm Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:31 PM (#4165393)
[69] Mets fans should remember:

July 31, 2008: Traded as part of a 3-team trade by the Boston Red Sox to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Los Angeles Dodgers sent Bryan Morris (minors) and Andy LaRoche to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Boston Red Sox sent Craig Hansen and Brandon Moss to the Pittsburgh Pirates. The Pittsburgh Pirates sent Jason Bay to the Boston Red Sox.
   71. Ray (RDP) Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:32 PM (#4165395)
It wasn't exactly a secret that Youkilis was on the trading block. Even if Cherington denied it publicly (and I seem to recall that he did), if you're a GM who is interested in Youkilis you call to find out how available he is.
   72. Dale Sams Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:33 PM (#4165396)
I think people that are surprised by the lack of return to the Sox in this deal are vastly overestimating Youkilis' value to the Red Sox, or Youkilis' abilities, at this point. He is done. The White Sox are one of the few teams with such bad 3B play right now that even Youkilis is an upgrade, so good for them. But it doesn't mean very many other teams felt the same way - because they didn't.


If you were GM and the White Sox came up to you and said "We'll sell you Lillibridge and Stewart for 5mill...but here's the deal. You can't use that Youkilis guy for the rest of the season." Would you take it?

Also, look at it this way. White Sox upgraded at 3B for nothing. Sox paid 5 mill for players who may provide negative value AND lost depth for that right.
   73. Misirlou was a Buddhist prodigy Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:36 PM (#4165400)
Edit: Nevermind.
   74. plink Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:44 PM (#4165402)
If you were GM and the White Sox came up to you and said "We'll sell you Lillibridge and Stewart for 5mill...but here's the deal. You can't use that Youkilis guy for the rest of the season." Would you take it?

Also, look at it this way. White Sox upgraded at 3B for nothing. Sox paid 5 mill for players who may provide negative value AND lost depth for that right.


Huh? I don't think the White Sox can accept the 5 million dollars and *not* pay the 7 million owed to Youkilis.
   75. Steve Balboni's Personal Trainer Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:49 PM (#4165403)
If you were GM and the White Sox came up to you and said "We'll sell you Lillibridge and Stewart for 5mill...but here's the deal. You can't use that Youkilis guy for the rest of the season." Would you take it?


The problem is, that isn't what the Red Sox were trying to do. They were effectively willing to pay you to get him the #### off their team! He wasn't going to play (Middlebrooks, Ortiz, and Gonzalez play in his possible spots), and he's a complete ####### if he has to sit on the bench for any length of time. He is a free agent at the end of the year. They weren't going to resign him. He probably can't play anymore, anyway.

It's more like, "We'll see you Lillibridge and Stewart, and take your pain in the ### of your hands, for $5 million." The Red Sox weren't going to use Youkilis the rest of the season, anyway...which was the problem!

   76. Mayor Blomberg Posted: June 24, 2012 at 11:58 PM (#4165406)
the pain in the ass who's been having trouble staying healthy the last few years, which along with his season so far decreases his value to anyonebuying him for the second-half of 2012.
   77. Zipperholes Posted: June 25, 2012 at 12:22 AM (#4165407)
Yeah, that analogy makes no sense to me. In that the Red Sox were on the hook for 7M, they're gaining 1.5M here, not paying 5.5M.
   78. Walt Davis Posted: June 25, 2012 at 01:24 AM (#4165422)
There are few guys like him.

There are tons of guys like him. We make regular fun of Willie Bloomquist for being the 78 OPS+ version of Lillibridge. Miguel Cairo is this guy. Tony Campana is probably better than this guy. Reed Johnson is better than this guy. Nick Punto is better. I will grant he might be better than Darnell McDonald but that is damning with faint praise.

And I'm not sure what it is about his "career" 237/286/433 line against LHP that deserves a reputation as a guy to play against LHP (the ISO is nice). He even throws in a K ever 3 AB overall to make things extra nice.

He's a nice guy to have around for the day-to-day injuries and rest, a perfectly cromulent 25th guy, but pretty much every team has one of these and AAA is full of them. He's basically just another guy with good speed who can't hit. It is hard to tell with guys like this which positions they can still handle and which not (due to limited playing time anywhere) but the Sox have used him predominantly at OF and 1B in 2011-12. He's still presumably a better 2B/3B than Reed Johnson, say, but it's not clear you want him there as anything but a last resort (nor is it clear that you don't).
   79. Swedish Chef Posted: June 25, 2012 at 01:37 AM (#4165426)
That doesn't sound right to me. If at least two teams both want a player who's going to be traded, one has to outbid the other. And then the other one has to counter-offer until basically both teams reach the point where they're offering what they think is fair value and won't go any higher.

Fair value means a gain of nothing plus epsilon. If three teams offer diddly-squat that means a 33% chance of getting something for nothing, because he HAS to be traded. You don't even have to coordinate or communicate with the others, just hold back and and hope that the other teams are as cool as you are, if the Brewers go and wreck it by offering something, let them, you have only lost an epsilon.
   80. Zipperholes Posted: June 25, 2012 at 01:56 AM (#4165432)
There are tons of guys like him. We make regular fun of Willie Bloomquist for being the 78 OPS+ version of Lillibridge. Miguel Cairo is this guy. Tony Campana is probably better than this guy. Reed Johnson is better than this guy. Nick Punto is better. I will grant he might be better than Darnell McDonald but that is damning with faint praise.
You're just naming other bench players who are mediocre hitters. Campana and Johnson don't play in the infield. Punto doesn't play in the outfield. Lillibridge saves you a roster spot over them, which is invaluable. Cairo is a decent comparison, but he pretty much plays only 3B now. Bloomquist is a good comparison. I don't know how his defense is. Lillibridge appears to be an excellent defensive player all over the field.
He's a nice guy to have around for the day-to-day injuries and rest, a perfectly cromulent 25th guy, but pretty much every team has one of these and AAA is full of them.
I don't think this is true. Yes, fast guys who can hit at replacement level are a dime a dozen. But I don't know how many can play every IF and OF spot, with excellent defense at that. For example, the Tigers have Don Kelly, a guy who can also play everywhere, and who has similar offensive numbers and decent speed. He has managed to stick around, even getting into the starting lineup in the playoffs, because of his versatility. I'd guess half the teams in baseball would love to have him. But he's not nearly as valuable as Lillibridge, because he's not particularly good defensively. (Fortunately for him, Kelly only has to be better than Delmon Young in the OF to get in the game as a "defensive replacement.")
   81. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: June 25, 2012 at 08:02 AM (#4165453)
i wish youkilis well in his new digs

the concern i would have as a white sox fan is boy does this make the lineup stocked with slow guys. dunn. konerko. aj. viciedo. ramirez isn't slow but his into a fair number of double plays.

but if youkilis really hits and can play third at all ok i guess you live with it.
   82. Famous Original Joe C Posted: June 25, 2012 at 09:28 AM (#4165492)
So, did the Youk-for-Hamels talks fall apart?

Yea, who did the Sox even get for Manny? Does anyone remember?


Are either of these meant to be serious? Who was ever talking about Hamels?

Also, Jason Bay, if you were serious. I hope you weren't, though.

   83. zonk Posted: June 25, 2012 at 09:32 AM (#4165494)

the concern i would have as a white sox fan is boy does this make the lineup stocked with slow guys. dunn. konerko. aj. viciedo. ramirez isn't slow but his into a fair number of double plays.


I'm sure Boston would have tossed in Scott Podsednik, too -- but that might have upped the cost to include Eric Stults in the deal...
   84. booond Posted: June 25, 2012 at 09:33 AM (#4165495)
This was not a trade to acquire players. This was cutting a player and having another team share in the cost. They felt Youk was a pain in the @$$ and he'd be a detriment to the team. They also determined that they weren't picking up his option so they dumped him. Would it have been nice to get something more for him than detritus? Yes. But once the confluence of Middlebrooks, Youk's injuries, and his early season pissing match with Valentine met he had little to no value. It was either play him and hope he gained value or dump him.
   85. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:06 AM (#4165515)
Who was ever talking about Hamels?


Also, Jason Bay, if you were serious. I hope you weren't, though.


I was not serious about Bay. The Red Sox "had" to trade Manny, and still got a decent (great?) deal for him, so the urgency of this trade shouldn't excuse the piss-poor return.
   86. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:13 AM (#4165520)
The trick was getting another guy whose team "had" to trade him, as part of the Pirates' 18-month selloff of every player except Paul Maholm and Ryan Doumit.
   87. JustDan Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:13 AM (#4165521)
The AL East records are as they are because of getting to play NL teams.

AL East winning percentage against the AL Central and AL West - .586
AL East winning percentage against the NL - .589

Not really any difference. Obviously the record against other AL East teams in .500.

   88. asinwreck Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:22 AM (#4165525)
What was up with Lillibridge's power surge last year? I mean, its gone already, but that was weird.


He's no longer taking Leprechaun Growth Hormone.
   89. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:22 AM (#4165526)
Fair value means a gain of nothing plus epsilon. If three teams offer diddly-squat that means a 33% chance of getting something for nothing, because he HAS to be traded. You don't even have to coordinate or communicate with the others, just hold back and and hope that the other teams are as cool as you are, if the Brewers go and wreck it by offering something, let them, you have only lost an epsilon.

That isn't how auctions work, unless there is some form of collusion. If the 'something' you are buying is worth x, 3 people submitting a null bid gets you 1/3 x. If you let somebody else get the 'something' for 1/10 x, when you could have gotten him for 2/10 x, you missed out on 7/15 x for free. That's just dumb, and rational bidders don't act that way, unless they know there is no collusion.

And of course, with more than 3 bidders, the value of the null bid goes down, and the risk that somebody busts your strategy goes up.
   90. JJ1986 Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:25 AM (#4165528)
Lillibridge is the future of AL baseball where every team will have two-man benches and 14-man pitching staffs.
   91. Nasty Nate Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:41 AM (#4165548)
Could the Sox have tried putting Youk through waivers? If a team claimed him, taking the whole salary, would that have been a better return for the Sox?
   92. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:44 AM (#4165553)
Could the Sox have tried putting Youk through waivers? If a team claimed him, taking the whole salary, would that have been a better return for the Sox?


I would have preferred that. I wonder if he would have been claimed.

I really can't understand this deal. If you pay salary, get something useful, if you don't get something useful, don't pay salary. Maybe Lillebrige is a better pitcher than Darnell McDonald?
   93. booond Posted: June 25, 2012 at 10:56 AM (#4165568)
If you pay salary, get something useful, if you don't get something useful, don't pay salary.


They are paying the salary either way. They determined that he was worth more to them on the White Sox roster than theirs and the White Sox were willing to give them the players.
   94. Jose Is The Most Absurd Thing on the Site Posted: June 25, 2012 at 11:03 AM (#4165572)
They are paying the salary either way. They determined that he was worth more to them on the White Sox roster than theirs and the White Sox were willing to give them the players.


And I think they were wrong in that determination. They obviously know the inner workings of the clubhouse better than I do but it is hard for me to imagine what Youk could be doing/would eventually do that would be so detrimental to the team as to just give him away.
   95. Swedish Chef Posted: June 25, 2012 at 11:12 AM (#4165584)
That isn't how auctions work, unless there is some form of collusion. If the 'something' you are buying is worth x, 3 people submitting a null bid gets you 1/3 x. If you let somebody else get the 'something' for 1/10 x, when you could have gotten him for 2/10 x, you missed out on 7/15 x for free. That's just dumb, and rational bidders don't act that way, unless they know there is no collusion.

An economic theory that says that a club that has their balls to the wall will get fair value for something they're peddling has little connection to reality.

Not that it is really an auction if both the bids and the identity of the bidder is secret. Any buying club would suspect that the Red Sox were pulling a Boras by spreading word of other interest. I don't think you can get bidding going if the interested clubs believes any other interest is fiction.
   96. Fancy Pants Handles lap changes with class Posted: June 25, 2012 at 11:13 AM (#4165585)
Agree with Jose. Especially when there are supposedly multiple interested teams... you just have to some away with something... anything.
   97. Joel W Posted: June 25, 2012 at 11:17 AM (#4165589)
Patrick Sullivan has some interesting thoughts: http://redsoxbeacon.com/2012/06/some-thoughts-on-kevin-youkilis/

   98. zonk Posted: June 25, 2012 at 11:20 AM (#4165593)
Zach Stewart has quietly become the designated toss-in pseudo-prospect, hasn't he?

For someone of such middling future, he's been involved in deals that have included Edwin Jackson, Scott Rolen, Edwin Encarnacion, Mark Teahan, Jason Frasor, and now Kevin Youkilis.

   99. booond Posted: June 25, 2012 at 11:37 AM (#4165613)
They obviously know the inner workings of the clubhouse better than I do but it is hard for me to imagine what Youk could be doing/would eventually do that would be so detrimental to the team as to just give him away.


Except, as we saw with Ellsbury earlier, he was a huge pain in ### in the clubhouse and this time with his livelihood threatened he might be even worse.
   100. booond Posted: June 25, 2012 at 11:39 AM (#4165616)
Especially when there are supposedly multiple interested teams... you just have to some away with something... anything.


Which multiple teams? We have no idea if that was the Red Sox blowing smoke or reporters making up stories. If there were other teams do we have reason to believe that any offered a better deal, if they offered a deal at all?
Page 1 of 2 pages  1 2 > 

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
aleskel
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogRuben Amaro Jr. says it would be best if Phillies move on from Ryan Howard
(2 - 1:02pm, Dec 20)
Last: Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman

NewsblogAmazin' Avenue - Cohen: Mets and Rockies discussing Troy Tulowitzki deal with Noah Syndergaard as the centerpiece
(46 - 1:01pm, Dec 20)
Last: formerly dp

NewsblogOT: NBC.news: Valve isn’t making one gaming console, but multiple ‘Steam machines’
(1362 - 12:46pm, Dec 20)
Last: Greg K

NewsblogOT: Soccer December 2014
(317 - 12:45pm, Dec 20)
Last: Swedish Chef

NewsblogThe 4 surprisingly quiet teams of the MLB offseason
(34 - 12:40pm, Dec 20)
Last: Jim Kaat on a hot Gene Roof

NewsblogAngels, Red Sox discontinue pension plans for non-uniformed personnel - LA Times
(12 - 12:40pm, Dec 20)
Last: Los Angeles El Hombre de Anaheim

NewsblogFull Count » Source: Red Sox close to deal sending Will Middlebrooks to Padres for Ryan Hanigan
(13 - 12:39pm, Dec 20)
Last: Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman

NewsblogOT: Politics - December 2014: Baseball & Politics Collide in New Thriller
(5075 - 12:33pm, Dec 20)
Last: Greg K

NewsblogTrading Justin Upton means the Braves are in full rebuilding mode | Mark Bradley blog
(83 - 12:32pm, Dec 20)
Last: alilisd

NewsblogThe right — and wrong — way for Mets to get Tulowitzki | New York Post
(8 - 12:24pm, Dec 20)
Last: ReggieThomasLives

Hall of Merit2015 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion
(98 - 12:23pm, Dec 20)
Last: Bleed the Freak

NewsblogZuckerman - Trea Turner Named Now, Plays Later
(3 - 12:18pm, Dec 20)
Last: Justin T steals bases with his bat

NewsblogPadres' faith in GM A.J. Preller leads to big week | UTSanDiego.com
(1 - 12:15pm, Dec 20)
Last: ReggieThomasLives

NewsblogOT: Monthly NBA Thread - December 2014
(753 - 11:57am, Dec 20)
Last: starving to death with a full STEAGLES

NewsblogOC Register | Former Angels prospect Ryan Bolden shot to death
(6 - 11:45am, Dec 20)
Last: RMc is a fine piece of cheese

Page rendered in 0.6176 seconds
48 querie(s) executed