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   1. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 11:33 AM (#4275228)
I should have included Ciriaco as a utility guy. He seems like a pretty perfect 25th man, and he doesn't cost anything.
   2. Nasty Nate Posted: October 18, 2012 at 11:53 AM (#4275261)
You forgot Ryan Sweeney. I would like for them to at least attempt to fill one of the corner spots with Kalish or Sweeney or other internal options (Nava, Sands, Hassan), and instead spend their money on 1B, SS, and SP. If this is a disaster, they can trade for someone in July - it is my impression that a corner OFer is one of the easier holes to fill midseason.

For SP, you could include Morales in that group. I agree that they need at least one quality starter from outside the organization. I think it is plausible for them to sign one of Peavy, Anibel Sanchez, and Edwin Jackson. I would guess that Sanchez would be the cheapest.

Do people think that Aviles and Aceves have positive trade value, or are they non-tender candidates?
   3. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 18, 2012 at 11:57 AM (#4275268)
Do people think that Aviles and Aceves have positive trade value, or are they non-tender candidates?

I would think Aceves is a non-tender, but Aviles has value. The state of SS is so poor that Aviles was right around 2 WAR, even with his 76 OPS+ (career 92).
   4. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:00 PM (#4275276)
I don't see any of Sweeney, Nava, Sands, or Hassan projecting as more than a bench bat / bench glove in 2013. Hassan, Sands and Nava all have options remaining, so they can be stashed in AAA as useful depth. Sweeney could be an acceptable caddy for a RHB corner outfielder, but I wouldn't want to see him scheduled for more than 250 PA.

I did say the Sox could use a caddy for Ross if Kalish isn't ready in spring, and Sweeney probably makes a good bit of sense in that role.
   5. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:01 PM (#4275278)
I've been waiting for this, great stuff as always Mikael. A few thoughts;

Just a general thought that may become clear; I'm not expecting to contend in 2013. To that end I want to see the Sox thinking long term. The FA market is not great and I'd be fearful that the money burning a hole in John Henry's pocket gets spent unwisely. While it might be a PR hit I think the Sox need to be prepared NOT to spend that ~$60 million.

I think the issue of Saltalamacchia's Catcher ERA is an interesting one. The reasons for not putting too much faith in CERA are well discussed and not to be ignored but I hope the Sox are at least doing their due diligence to make sure it IS a fluke and not something more meaningful. Offensively I think he is fine though, I'll trade a bit of OBP for power.

I'm of the mind that they give the shortstop job to Iglesias and go for it. My thinking is that he's not going to learn his craft more than he has, it's just a question of whether he has the talent or not. With respect to Aviles I think he was really a good soldier this year and I'd be inclined to cut him loose if that is his preference. If they can keep him that's great, I think even with Iglesias here there are 300-400 at bats for him (start 1-2 days a week, pinch hit for Iggy as needed, rest others) but right about now a little good karma can't hurt this organization.

If the Sox want to be a bit risky why not talk to the Rox about Tulowitzki? I think that contract is potentially going to be a bit more tolerable with the new TV deal. To borrow an overused phrase, that is this winter's "market inefficiency." Not necessarily Tulo specifically but contracts that look like albatrosses but in fact are going to be OK.

The Sox have to find an outfielder and a great one at that. They need, just absolutely HAVE to go out and get a Justin Upton or someone similar. I think that's the one area this team can meaningfully upgrade in short order. I'm big on BJ Upton. While acknowledging his flaws I think the overall package is very good. He is the one player I look at in the FA class and think he's going to get a contract within that "market inefficiency" I described above. I'll be stunned if the Sox don't acquire an outfielder of some renown this winter.

I don't know if Jerry Sands' defense warrants a job but I'd like to see the Sox give him a go. I think he can be a useful RHB bat to play caddy to Kalish and a first baseman. Frankly I'd rather have him around than Ross.

I think Bard is in the MLB bullpen on Opening Day. Bard/Tazawa ahead of Bailey looks awfully good. I said it in September though and I'll keep saying it, I think Junichi Tazawa is your closer by August 1st either through injury to Bailey or a trade of a healthy Bailey to a contender. Running this all through my roster is roughly;

1B - A lefty Millar of some kind. Not sure I know who that player is but he's out there.
2B - Pedroia
3B - Middlebrooks
SS - Iglesias
LF - Ross
CF - Ellsbury
RF - An Upton
C - Saltalamacchia
DH - Ortiz
Util - Ciriaco (unless Aviles comes back)
OF - Nava
RHB - Sands
C - Lavarnway

I think you hit the pitching staff pretty well. I'd like Morales to get a full on shot, I liked what he did.;

SP - Lester, Buchholz, Lackey, Doubront, Morales - With de la Rosa cooling his heels in Pawtucket and awaiting the call.

RP - Bailey, Bard, Miller, Atchison, Tazawa, Mortensen, Melancon - I think that's potentially an excellent bullpen. I don't think we should sleep on Alex Wilson at Pawtucket either.
   6. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:03 PM (#4275283)
The state of SS is so poor that Aviles was right around 2 WAR, even with his 76 OPS+ (career 92).
Mike Aviles' offense was barely above replacement level for a shortstop (+7 runs). His glove provided the bulk of that WAR number, and I'm really skeptical that Mike Aviles is actually an above average defensive shortstop. He's going to be 32 next year. There might be a market for him where the Sox get a borderline 40-man type guy, but I doubt there's much more than that.
   7. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:07 PM (#4275288)
Mike Aviles' offense was barely above replacement level for a shortstop (+7 runs). His glove provided the bulk of that WAR number, and I'm really skeptical that Mike Aviles is actually an above average defensive shortstop. He's going to be 32 next year. There might be a market for him where the Sox get a borderline 40-man type guy, but I doubt there's much more than that.

I'm not saying he's good, I'm just saying that a bunch of teams are going to be starting worse players at SS next year. That bunch probably includes the Red Sox; and, I'm not disagreeing that they give Iglesias a look, if they're punting the season.
   8. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:07 PM (#4275291)
Just a general thought that may become clear; I'm not expecting to contend in 2013. To that end I want to see the Sox thinking long term. The FA market is not great and I'd be fearful that the money burning a hole in John Henry's pocket gets spent unwisely. While it might be a PR hit I think the Sox need to be prepared NOT to spend that ~$60 million.
1) I am not expecting the Sox to contend for the AL East crown, I'll be disappointed if they're not in contention for the second wild card at least into September. An 87-win team is at least a borderline contender nowadays, and if the Sox don't win 85-88 games in 2013, it's going to be extremely difficult to build a 95-win team for 2014.

2) I do expect the club to contend in 2014, and I am opposed to a plan that depends on improving the club by 10 games or more during the 2013-2014 offseason. That seems like procrastination rather than a plan. The Sox have to improve the existing club significantly both this offseason and next if they want to become contenders again.
   9. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:13 PM (#4275305)
To put a pointier point on it, the roster in #5 would be very disappointing to me. That looks like hope in lieu of a plan. How do you see that roster winning 95 games in 2014?
   10. Nasty Nate Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:18 PM (#4275318)
To put a pointier point on it, the roster in #5 would be very disappointing to me. That looks like hope in lieu of a plan. How do you see that roster winning 95 games in 2014?


That's his roster for 2013, not 2014.
   11. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:20 PM (#4275325)
I know. But if you want to win 95 games in 2014 after spending 2013 with that roster, you'll need at least two, quite probably three major upgrades. Putting those improvements off into the future doesn't give me a ton of hope.
   12. Nasty Nate Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:25 PM (#4275339)
I know. But if you want to contend in 2014 after spending 2013 with that roster, you'll need at least two, quite probably three major upgrades. Putting those improvements off into the future doesn't give me a ton of hope.


I'm not saying you should automatically have hope for the Sox, but what teams out there have fully fleshed out rosters for 2014 at this point that we can project to contend?
   13. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:26 PM (#4275340)
I really don't buy the Iglesias-SS thing. There is absolutely no way you're going to convince me that a guy with a 650 OPS in AAA has nothing more to learn hitting AAA pitching. He's got tons more to learn! He sucks! The Sox don't have to choose between developing Iglesias and playing a competent hitter at shortstop. They can do both.

If the Sox search out the shortstop trade market, and they find there aren't any competent shortstops at prices they like, then Iglesias as a fallback in defensible. But it'd be disappointing, and it definitely shouldn't be plan A.
   14. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:27 PM (#4275341)
I'm not saying you should automatically have hope for the Sox, but what teams out there have fully fleshed out rosters for 2014 at this point that we can project to contend?
Clubs that project to win 90-95 games in 2013 are almost all better contenders for 2014 than clubs that project to win 80-85.
   15. Answer Guy Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:27 PM (#4275342)
To put a pointier point on it, the roster in #5 would be very disappointing to me. That looks like hope in lieu of a plan. How do you see that roster winning 95 games in 2014?


That's my question also. That looks like a roster that's much more than two players (of those not on the team) away from ~95 wins. Especially if the Orioles are good now (though that may be a one-year wonder.)
   16. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:38 PM (#4275354)
That looks like hope in lieu of a plan. How do you see that roster winning 95 games in 2014?


This is a fundamental problem that I had with The Trade. I have a difficult time seeing a path back to 95 wins in any reasonable time frame. I think my plan as outlined above does get us into low to mid-80s with a few assumptions;

1. Generally better health. Centerfield, DH, 3rd base are all positions that without much difficulty should be expected to provide considerably more value in 2013.

2. The pitching staff has to be better. The simple fact is that there is no path to 95 wins in 2014 that doesn't include "Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz being a ######## better than they were in 2012." If those guys aren't the anchors of this staff, we're toast.

3. I think the benefits of getting guys like de la Rosa or Morales meaningful work in 2013 should become apparent in 2014 much the way I expect 2012 to pay dividends for Doubront in 2013. I think there will be pitchers to be had in the 2013/2014 off-season if those guys don't pan out. I'd rather spend the money then after we've confirmed that the answer isn't already here. I don't want to spend big money on a guy like Greinke.

4. If you assume adding an Upton or similarly talented outfielder that should represent a meaningful upgrade over RF/LF (whichever one you want to assign to the new guy).

5. I think there is a good chance that Iglesias does suck. I also think there is a very good chance that another year at Pawtucket isn't going to make him better. If there is a shortstop to be had, go for it. I think there is a much better chance that Jose Iglesias is part of a 95 win 2014 team than there is that Mike Aviles is. If the better plan is Aviles with Iggy at Pawtucket, I'm not opposed to it. I think he'll benefit from facing stiffer competition. I'm a big believer in #### or get off the pot teaching.

My plan leaves the Sox needing in the 2013/2014 off-season;

1. A slugging first baseman

2. Acquire another playoff caliber starter if de la Rosa/Morales/Doubront ain't it

3. Add another outfielder if Kalish isn't it

4. A quality shortstop if Iglesias isn't it

I think the time is now for the Sox to evaluate. See if what they got is what they need There are a lot of players that I think need to be seen regularly to get an answer one way or the other.
   17. Nasty Nate Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:45 PM (#4275361)
Clubs that project to win 90-95 games in 2013 are almost all better contenders for 2014 than clubs that project to win 80-85.


Using a team win projection for 2013 to formulate a team win projection for 2014 is stacking false precision upon false precision to the point where it really doesn't tell us much.

Anyway, here's my offseason plan, Cameron-style:

Sign Josh Hamilton to a 6-year, $140m contract to play corner OF.
Sign David Ortiz to a 2-year, $29m contract.
Sign Mike Napoli to a 3-year, $30m contract to play 1B.
Sign Anibel Sanchez to a 3-year, $29m contract.
Sign Stephen Drew to a 1-year, $4m contract.
Trade Aceves and Aviles for whatever the market will give, if anything.

C - Salty, Lavarnway
1B - Napoli
2B - Pedroia
SS - Drew/Iglesias & pray for Bogaerts
3B - Middlebrooks
OF - Hamilton
OF - Ellsbury
OF - Kalish/Sweeny/org depth
DH - Ortiz

SP - Lester, Buccholz, Sanchez, Doubront, Lackey, Morales, De La Rosa, Webster...
   18. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:50 PM (#4275367)
1. A slugging first baseman
Yup. So why waste a year on a league average Millar type? I'm open to that as plan B, but plan A should be to get that playoff quality 1B.
2. Acquire another playoff caliber starter if de la Rosa/Morales/Doubront ain't it
The only two starters I'd more or less count on for 2014 are Lester and Buchholz. Lackey's a huge risk too, along with DLR/Morales/Doubront. The Sox are probably more likely to need two more playoff caliber starters for 2014. De La Rosa is coming off surgery and has never thrown a single pitch in AAA. Morales is coming off an arm injury and should be stash-able in some form. Since there's no reason they can't wait out Morales and DLR a bit, they should get another good starter this offseason.
3. Add another outfielder if Kalish isn't it
Here we're basically on the same page, though I should note that it might be two more outfielders depending on Ellsbury's contract and performance. You have the Sox spending talent and money for one corner outfielder, and I agree with that plan.
4. A quality shortstop if Iglesias isn't it
As I said in #13, I don't see any reason why Iglesias can't be sent to AAA. This isn't a case like with Lavarnway where the guy has nothing more to learn. Iglesias will be 23, and even the most optimistic accounting of his hitting and fielding skills makes him nothing more than a complementary talent. He needs to focus on learning how to hit, and that's best achieved at AAA.

I think the time is now for the Sox to evaluate. See if what they got is what they need There are a lot of players that I think need to be seen regularly to get an answer one way or the other.
I don't disagree about this, but the Sox can both evaluate the talent they have and acquire better players at SP, 1B, and SS. There's always enough starts to go around, Iglesias doesn't need to be in the majors, and there aren't any first basemen to evaluate in the first place.

I'm open to the Sox doing nothing more ambitious than signing a good LF/RF and a good starting pitcher. It's possible there won't be any worthwhile trade targets for 1B or SS. But I think they've got to try, and I'll be mildly disappointed if they don't come up with anything on either front.
   19. Answer Guy Posted: October 18, 2012 at 12:58 PM (#4275377)
As I said in #13, I don't see any reason why Iglesias can't be sent to AAA. This isn't a case like with Lavarnway where the guy has nothing more to learn. Iglesias will be 23, and even the most optimistic accounting of his hitting and fielding skills makes him nothing more than a complementary talent. He needs to focus on learning how to hit, and that's best achieved at AAA.


That's where I am too. I also don't want to deal with the fanbase and the press demanding a new SS because Iglesias's numbers are putrid while people are paying attention. (They weren't really paying attention in September or even late August because everyone had moved on.)
   20. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 01:03 PM (#4275380)
I'm with Nate on Stephen Drew. I have absolutely no idea what his market will look like, but anything under 2/18 and I'm in. So my Plan A for shortstop is a pony, my Plan B is Drew, and Iglesias is Plan C.
   21. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 01:06 PM (#4275382)
Sign Josh Hamilton to a 6-year, $140m contract to play corner OF.
...
Sign Mike Napoli to a 3-year, $30m contract to play 1B.
I'm really intrigued by both of these guys. I like the idea of signing good hitters and giving them an opportunity to just hit with far reduced defensive responsibilities. Hamilton scares me for the obvious reasons, Napoli scares me with the strikeout rate and the 110 games per season thing. But they're both worth consideration.
   22. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 18, 2012 at 01:08 PM (#4275386)
Yup. So why waste a year on a league average Millar type? I'm open to that as plan B, but plan A should be to get that playoff quality 1B.


Fair enough. Scanning Cot's quickly I don't see any that excite me though.


Since there's no reason they can't wait out Morales and DLR a bit, they should get another good starter this offseason.


I like Nate's Sanchez suggestion but to me he's the type of guy that seems to be available every off-season. I think the benefits of letting Morales and DLR (I like that) get 30-35 starts between them are better. Instead of spending $10 mil on Sanchez we spend $1 mil on DLR for 2014 and that's $9 million to put towards the big slugging 1B.


Sign Josh Hamilton to a 6-year, $140m contract to play corner OF.


I just don't see signing Hamilton as a wise move. You just got yourself out from under some big money contracts and you're going to go sign a 32 year old with a checkered injury record and will be paid as a superstar despite only two such seasons in the last five. Hamilton is very good but I don't think he's as good as the market is going to require.

My fear of trying to make the dramatic leap this off-season is I think if we get it wrong it's a major setback. Don't get me wrong, if we can fill all the holes this off-season, by all means do it! I don't think it's feasible so I'm trying to put forth a plan that advances us without being unrealistically aggressive.
   23. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 01:13 PM (#4275389)
Instead of spending $10 mil on Sanchez we spend $1 mil on DLR for 2014 and that's $9 million to put towards the big slugging 1B.
This is assuming the Sox have four good starters for 2014 other than Sanchez/DLR. I don't assume that. The Sox have room to sign another good pitcher, and I think having too many good pitchers is a goal, not a problem.
   24. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 01:17 PM (#4275392)
You just got yourself out from under some big money contracts and you're going to go sign a 32 year old with a checkered injury record and will be paid as a superstar despite only two such seasons in the last five.
What is "paid as a superstar"? No one is proposing Fielder/Pujols/Votto money. The proposal is just 6/130ish. That's about where the dumber-than-marcel projections peg him, though it depends on your projected MLB $$/win rate.

I don't disagree about the injury history and all the rest. That stuff is scary. But without that stuff, Hamilton gets Fielder money. So that's the trade-off. The right call depends on a lot of factors of which we're mostly ignorant.
   25. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 01:31 PM (#4275417)
You just got yourself out from under some big money contracts and you're going to go sign a 32 year old with a checkered injury record and will be paid as a superstar despite only two such seasons in the last five.
In my reading, the goal of The Trade was extremely simple - to get rid of Carl Crawford's unimaginably awful contract. They were able to send along Josh Beckett's bad contract as well, and get some talent in return, at the cost of giving up Adrian Gonzalez' probably pretty ok contract. This has left the Sox with lots of money to spend. The problem for the Sox from 2010-2012 wasn't that they gave large contracts - give me Adrian Gonzalez again and I'll sign him to that contract again - and it wasn't even that their big money signings underperformed. It was that Lackey and Crawford combined to perform at or below replacement level at a cost of $40M combined. Merely underperforming free agents would be a big upgrade from the Crawford/Lackey contracts.

EDITED: This post was very poorly written and argued in its original form, and I kind of overhauled it. Not sure it's better, but it's definitely different.
   26. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 18, 2012 at 01:43 PM (#4275426)
Maybe I'm wrong but I think Hamilton gets 7/170 from someone. If I'm wrong so be it. I've mentioned it before but as much as I don't want the Sox to sign him I think he'll be my favorite player within two weeks of him signing. There are very few players in baseball as much fun to watch as Josh Hamilton when he's doing his thing. I think he's a lot like Youkilis in terms of attitude on the field trading Jesus for helmet throwing in his non-playing aspect.

I agree that the trade was to unload Crawford, I just think it was an act in haste move. I'll be surprised if the Sox can use that money to get the same WAR that those guys would have provided.
   27. Swedish Chef Posted: October 18, 2012 at 01:46 PM (#4275435)
They were able to send along Josh Beckett's bad contract as well

Maybe it's a bad contract, maybe it's a huge bargain. It's not like Beckett has broken down and a return of the 2011 version is out of the question.
   28. Mike Webber Posted: October 18, 2012 at 02:15 PM (#4275493)
Starting Pitching: $34M payroll, $31M luxury tax
Total: $98M payroll, $92M luxury tax


What does "luxury tax" mean here?
   29. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 18, 2012 at 02:58 PM (#4275551)
Payroll is the actual (or projected) cost of 2013 contracts. Luxury tax is the AAV-based calculation of payroll for the luxury tax. As an example, next year, Jon Lester makes $11.6M, but because his contract was 5 years / $30M total, Lester only counts for $6M against the luxury tax payroll calculation. (Basically the $6M difference is because of just three contracts - Buccholz, Lester, and Pedroia.)
   30. Toby Posted: October 18, 2012 at 04:23 PM (#4275638)
A few thoughts:

First, just an observation, the team's BABIP against was atrocious, one of the worst in baseball. So the pitching wasn't quite as bad as it looked, but the defense was pretty bad. Not sure what to do about that, just something I noticed. (Or is that all Fenway effect?)

This team, even with the departures from the megatrade and Bobby V, is completely unwatchable and almost completely unlikeable. I would plan to contend in 2013, but with a younger, cheaper, scrappier team, if at all possible. Please, please no Josh Hamilton, Nick Swisher, Mike Napoli, or other thirtysomething, bloated-contract bat.

I would like the Sox to continue to turn over the roster. I would definitely explore trading Lester and Ellsbury in particular. I have nothing against those guys but I don't see them as untradeable and I think we could get a useful return for them. It might benefit everyone (these players, the team, the fan base) to give them each a change of scenery.

I don't mind bringing back Ross and Ortiz, but I wouldn't go more than 1 year on either one. Please no more Mike Aviles, and please no Iglesias either.

Isn't Jerry Sands a decent option for 1B or LF, in a platoon role at the very least?

I think Alfredo Aceves should be given a spot in someone's starting rotation. It doesn't have to be ours, of course, but I think he'd do fine and be happier if given that role. I guess my suggestion there is the team should make an honest internal assessment of whether keeping him would be a chemistry problem. But I kinda would like to see how he'd do if given a starting job.

So where does that leave me?

I guess I'd like to see the Sox hunt for bargains and consider spending the $60M mostly on high-dollar but short-term deals. For example, I wonder if we could plug the holes by trading Lester and Iglesias for the Jimmy Rollins and Cliff Lee contracts (with other pieces no doubt needed to balance it out, haven't really thought it through) and seeing if Melky Cabrera would sign a deal like the one we gave Beltre -- high dollars, one year.
   31. Mike Webber Posted: October 18, 2012 at 05:49 PM (#4275813)
Thanks for the explanation MCoA, good stuff.

I could see Stephen Drew as a one-year contract guy, a situation that could work for both sides.
   32. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: October 18, 2012 at 06:54 PM (#4275929)
RF - An Upton

Is Kate available?
   33. Darren Posted: October 18, 2012 at 09:35 PM (#4276143)
Isn't more like $70 mil+? That jibes a little better what I was thinking by adding up the removals: Gonzo+Beckett+Crawford alone is $60 mil/year. Then add in Dice (8), Jenks (6), Aviles (4), Youk (8?) and you're at about 86.

On Beckett, I'd disagree that he's a bad contract. He's probably fine, but one way that I look at it makes me happy: think of if you'd had the opportunity to sign Beckett, Crawford, and Gonzalez for only 1.7 years at the same money committed for their long-term deals. You'd be much happier with those contracts, especially if you had the benefit of knowing in advance that Crawford would be TERRIBLE, Beckett would be mediocre, and Gonzalez would have a frightening loss of power. The Sox got the best portions of each of these contracts, then got back some prospects to boot.

So the worry is that making this deal means there might be no options as good as Crawford/Gonzo/Beckett out there, even with all that money free--which is nutty. Those guys, optimistically stand to get you 10 WAR for $60 mil. There are several combinations of players out there who can do that, and probably for less.
   34. dave h Posted: October 18, 2012 at 11:14 PM (#4276296)
I'm guessing that wasn't the best portion of Crawford's contract, although who knows.

There are several combinations of players out there who can do that, and probably for less.


Such as?
   35. Darren Posted: October 19, 2012 at 07:17 AM (#4276398)
Well, I can only guess who's going to cost what, but how about:

Pagan 3/30 - Sanchez 5/75 - Victorino 3/40

That looks to me like about 8 WAR for $38 mil. The leftover $22 mil can be used on another pitcher--Peavy? Haren?--and/or a 1b, a SS, or whatever.

Now rip away!

   36. Darren Posted: October 19, 2012 at 08:50 AM (#4276415)

I don't disagree about the injury history and all the rest. That stuff is scary. But without that stuff, Hamilton gets Fielder money. So that's the trade-off. The right call depends on a lot of factors of which we're mostly ignorant.


The guys who've gotten Fielder money so far are:

Votto, age 27, 6-bWAR player
Fielder, age 28, 4-bWAR player
Pujols, age 32, 6-8 bWAR player, all time great and likely big draw (this is what you would have to think the Angels were thinking when signing him).

Even without the other issues, I don't see 32-year-old, 4-bWAR Hamilton fitting into this group. Without those issues, I'd say he looks a lot more like Jayson Werth circa 2011. That would make his baseline a lot more like 7/126 (a contract that was widely ridiculed) before considering his issues. I can see someone going to 5/110 or so.




   37. Darren Posted: October 19, 2012 at 09:18 AM (#4276441)
Plus, Hamilton doesn't even play 1b. Everyone knows that you have to play 1b if you want $200 million these days.
   38. jmurph Posted: October 19, 2012 at 09:41 AM (#4276457)
I promise to be positive next year as long as I don't have to watch Aviles hit like a 3rd grader or wait to see if Ryan Sweeney will ever hit another homerun ever again. Ever. Even in batting practice.
   39. haffenreffer Posted: October 19, 2012 at 04:15 PM (#4276798)
Why sign Ortiz? He doesn't do anything for jersey sales and I doubt resigning him will boost NESN ratings. You shouldn't hinder your lineups flexibility by having a full-time DH. Hamilton would relapse playing in Fenway and there aren't enough anxiety medications to help Greinke be successful here.
   40. jmurph Posted: October 19, 2012 at 04:23 PM (#4276805)
Why sign Ortiz?


He should be relatively affordable, he's not blocking anyone, he's still good, he's a fan favorite, and finally, he can likely still be a solid contributor in 2014 in a theoretical pennant race.
   41. haffenreffer Posted: October 19, 2012 at 04:32 PM (#4276819)
Okay, now I know you're just messing with me about resigning Ortiz. You had me going there for a second. I found it hard to believe anyone thought Ortiz should return to Boston.
   42. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 19, 2012 at 04:36 PM (#4276821)
Ortiz has hit for a 950 OPS over the last three seasons. He's willing to sign short-term deals. He produces runs and wins at a very enjoyable rate, and his contract doesn't hurt the club's chances to compete in the future. The value of having on open rotating DH is a real thing, but I'd say rotating a 900 OPS hitter into the DH slot is even better.
   43. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 19, 2012 at 04:37 PM (#4276823)
I was having this conversation with a friend recently. I think the key here is that Ortiz really doesn't hinder anything they want or should do. Let's say he signs a 2 year/$35 million deal. He's not blocking anyone from coming to the majors, as MCoA so well laid out the Sox will still have ample money to spend to improve other areas and the fact is he is quite popular. He absolutely ripped the ball when he was in there this year so there is a very good chance he will help the team on the field next year.
   44. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: October 19, 2012 at 04:53 PM (#4276835)
I found it hard to believe anyone thought Ortiz should return to Boston.


Are you messing with us? Everyone wants Ortiz back!
   45. haffenreffer Posted: October 19, 2012 at 04:56 PM (#4276839)
Lets give $17.5M per year to (what will be) a 37 year old DH who doesn't even contribute defensively. What could go wrong here?

You offer Ortiz 1/$12M or 2/$20M. Even 2/20 might be too generous for a cancerous player.
   46. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 19, 2012 at 05:04 PM (#4276843)
I don't think we'll give him 2/35, my point was even at what is an unreasonably high number he still doesn't preclude the Sox from doing anything. I think MCoA's $15 million placeholder is a pretty good one.
   47. Darren Posted: October 19, 2012 at 05:06 PM (#4276844)
1/12 for Ortiz its a long way from how your earlier posts describe him. In fact, you might even say its splitting hairs.
   48. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 19, 2012 at 05:06 PM (#4276845)
Even 2/20 might be too generous for a cancerous player.
To the best of my knowledge, that is false. David Ortiz is, like most of us, pre-cancerous.
   49. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 19, 2012 at 05:14 PM (#4276850)
Isn't more like $70 mil+? That jibes a little better what I was thinking by adding up the removals: Gonzo+Beckett+Crawford alone is $60 mil/year. Then add in Dice (8), Jenks (6), Aviles (4), Youk (8?) and you're at about 86.
Let's see, I think you're more right than I am. The Sox were over the luxury tax threshold last year, and I expect they'll stay under this year. So that's a few million dropped, plus a bunch of arb raises. If we guess 40-man salaries and other fees at $12M, then the Sox have $166M - $92M = $74M to spend. I figured they want to leave open some salary room for upgrades and I wanted to leave a few million of wiggle room in case my salary estimates were wrong. So it's probably closer to $70M to spend, but I don't thin it's $70M+.
   50. Darren Posted: October 19, 2012 at 05:45 PM (#4276872)
You know, another difference is that I had Ellsbury staying at about $8 mil and left Ross out of the equation. Not that I don't want him back, but I thought he'd be in the pool of possible signings rather than in the done pile.

(And with that, I had the pool up at $80 mil or so, but I didn't leave in the wiggle room.)
   51. Textbook Editor Posted: October 19, 2012 at 05:59 PM (#4276885)
Anyone else puzzled why the Red Sox let Magadan walk to Texas when they had an option on him for 2013? Are we to take from that he was part of the problem too?
   52. Darren Posted: October 19, 2012 at 06:06 PM (#4276887)
Maybe they wanted to let the new manager pick his staff.
   53. haffenreffer Posted: October 19, 2012 at 06:40 PM (#4276899)
In all seriousness, this is one of the most terrible tardicles I have ever read. Even ESPN news stories are more accurate.
   54. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: October 19, 2012 at 07:18 PM (#4276918)
And yet the only 4 comments you've made on the site are here. I guess that might explain why you don't get the difference between a community of fans discussing what we'd like to see happen, then slag the most popular player on the team, then insulting the author.

So, you're pretty clearly a jackass wasting your time here. Please #### right off.
   55. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: October 19, 2012 at 07:35 PM (#4276928)
Hm. Despite all the time I've spent on the interwebs, I've somehow never seen "tardicle" before, yet it seems so obvious now.
   56. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 19, 2012 at 10:02 PM (#4277123)
Anyone else puzzled why the Red Sox let Magadan walk to Texas when they had an option on him for 2013? Are we to take from that he was part of the problem too?


Given the number of hitters who underachieved, particularly with the drop off in walks, I'm not too bothered.
   57. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: October 19, 2012 at 10:18 PM (#4277153)
I'm enjoying basking in the glow of the Yankees implosion far too much to let haffenreffer's nonsense get in the way of hotstove speculation. Here's a short, utterly unrealistic and poorly tardiculated list of players I'd like to see the Sox target:

Any elite FAs -- if they're willing to take short years, big money. Use the $$$ pile/organizational reset to try out a new approach to FAs: offer to pay out the nose for a short commitment.

Anibal Sanchez -- he's gonna be 29, he's started 30 games three years in a row, his BB rate is trending downward, his K rate is trending upward, and he's gotten decent results. I can see him getting a stupid contract but if the bidding's reasonable, get in there.

Justin Upton -- the obvious guy, given his off/on/potential awesomeness, Arizona's apparent willingness to ship him out of town and Towers' history of not being Billy Beane when it comes to trades. He mentioned immediate help; see if he'll take Ellsbury as the centerpiece without adding in any untouchables or ml CFs.

Chase Headley -- but the Red Sox already have a third baseman who put up a 120 OPS+ in his MLB debut and is five years younger with four extra years of team control. Which is true... but I just don't like Will Middlebrooks, and would rather he try and figure out the plate discipline/OBP side of things for another team. Given the extra years of control, I'd expect additional pieces to be coming to the Sox, which could help with the Upton acquisition above or whatever, but I'm open to being totally wrong on that. This would be a move heavily dependent on timeframe: if the Sox are looking to contend immediately, look into it; but if the plan is to wait for Bradley & Bogaerts then you might as well just hold WMB. It would also probably require Headley signing an extension, which might be tough after that breakout year. If I'm totally undervaluing WMB, feel free to call bullshit.

Joe Mauer -- highly unlikely the Twins would move him or he'd agree but worth a phone call. They've got plenty of money and no long term solution at 1B, and the injury concerns are partially offset by the contract ending at age 35 rather than trailing into the late 30s, and the Sox positional flexibility (or rather, hole at 1B).

Jason Giambi -- 1b/manager. Nuff said.

Yes I have been pregaming.
   58. Darnell McDonald had a farm Posted: October 19, 2012 at 10:23 PM (#4277165)
Did everyone forget that this fat guy named Ortiz who can only DH hurt himself running the bases and missed half the year? I wouldn't commit to giving him a dollar to shovel my steps. Ortiz is DONE
   59. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: October 19, 2012 at 10:29 PM (#4277177)
Did everyone forget that this fat guy named Ortiz who can only DH hurt himself running the bases and missed half the year? I wouldn't commit to giving him a dollar to shovel my steps. Ortiz is DONE
All the more reason to target Mauer and Giambi. Get 'em done Luccheringtino!

Edit: besides the fact that it's not our money, indeed the Yankees utter ineptitude has largely distracted me from all the bad crap that happened to the Sox this year. Was Ortiz hurt? Who cares? That was the most pathetic playoff performance I've ever seen, *including* the series they won!
   60. The District Attorney Posted: October 19, 2012 at 10:30 PM (#4277182)
Thanks, guy who is totally not that first guy!
   61. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: October 19, 2012 at 11:36 PM (#4277254)
Ortiz hit .318/.415/.611, good for a 171 OPS+. You have impossibly high standards when it comes to your steps.
   62. Dale Sams Posted: October 19, 2012 at 11:48 PM (#4277257)
Did everyone forget that this fat guy named Ortiz who can only DH hurt himself running the bases and missed half the year? I wouldn't commit to giving him a dollar to shovel my steps. Ortiz is DONE


David Ortiz or a new yacht for Henry...Ortiz..yacht...Bombs or babes dad, it's not a tough decision.
   63. Darren Posted: October 20, 2012 at 10:02 AM (#4277322)
My hope was to get Ortiz for 3/33 or so. He seems like a good bet to be good for 2 of those years and he's worth it because Big Papi!
   64. haffenreffer Posted: October 20, 2012 at 01:12 PM (#4277441)
My hope was to get Ortiz for 3/33 or so. He seems like a good bet to be good for 2 of those years and he's worth it because Big Papi!


Giving him three years is a huge mistake. You ideally let him walk and try to find a better offer (which he won't) or you give him one year. Anything more is mortgaging the future. For the person that said David Ortiz or a new yacht for Henry, that's not how it works. I know that basic marketing is a lot to comprehend for neck beards, but the majority of money is made via NESN and not the Red Sox organization.
   65. Answer Guy Posted: October 20, 2012 at 01:18 PM (#4277443)
Giving him three years is a huge mistake. You ideally let him walk and try to find a better offer (which he won't) or you give him one year.


I say two. He was their best hitter this past year. He's not blocking any prospects. He's a fan favorite and the team's taken enough PR hits as it is.
   66. Swedish Chef Posted: October 20, 2012 at 01:37 PM (#4277462)
I know that basic marketing is a lot to comprehend for neck beards, but the majority of money is made via NESN and not the Red Sox organization.

So basically you're saying that you're nothing but a silly troll?
   67. Darren Posted: October 20, 2012 at 02:53 PM (#4277504)
Yes, he is.
   68. Chip Posted: October 20, 2012 at 03:00 PM (#4277509)
So basically you're saying that you're nothing but a silly troll?


A troll with three accounts, it appears.
   69. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 20, 2012 at 03:12 PM (#4277515)
"tardicle" I understood, "neck beard" confuses me.
   70. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: October 20, 2012 at 05:42 PM (#4277596)
So does the Chris Young trade mean Justin Upton is less likely to be available? That was my first reaction when I heard about the Young trade.
   71. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: October 20, 2012 at 07:44 PM (#4277658)
Me too, and I would think so. Not only did they unload a decent OF, they filled their biggest area of need (SS) with a well above-average defender with a noodle bat. So my idea/pipe dream of making Iglesias a major part of an Upton package is pretty much blown. Down to Ellsbury for Upton straight up, which I'd still do in a heartbeat.
   72. The Clarence Thomas of BBTF (scott) Posted: October 21, 2012 at 02:36 PM (#4278067)
A troll with three accounts, it appears.


He really likes us!
   73. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: October 21, 2012 at 03:54 PM (#4278131)
Does Lind form part of platoon at 1B? An ~.800 OPS against RHP isn't particularly inspiring, but the age and 2009 season make him a little bit interesting, if you squint a little. Jonny Gomes could be a nice platoon partner/LF depth if he can learn how to play 1B.
   74. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: October 21, 2012 at 04:07 PM (#4278141)
I believe the story is that the Sox are getting AAAA reliever David Carpenter in return, not Lind.
   75. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: October 22, 2012 at 07:58 AM (#4278732)
I promise to be positive next year as long as I don't have to watch Aviles hit like a 3rd grader


Looks like someone is going to have to have the positivity flowing next year.
   76. jmurph Posted: October 22, 2012 at 09:05 AM (#4278760)
Looks like someone is going to have to have the positivity flowing next year.


It starts today!

John Farrell is a man's man and a leader's leader. He will redeem us from Valentine's wickedness.

   77. Darren Posted: November 12, 2012 at 07:20 PM (#4300894)
It looks like, so far, they've got Ross for a mil less than you projected Salty for and gotten Ortiz for $2 mil less. That's an extra $3 mil to kick around, which is nice.
   78. OCD SS Posted: November 12, 2012 at 11:54 PM (#4301069)
Why sign Ortiz? He doesn't do anything for jersey sales and I doubt resigning him will boost NESN ratings. You shouldn't hinder your lineups flexibility by having a full-time DH.


Coming back to this point, which I hear a lot and hate. Because of the DH/ PH penalty, finding a player who can come off the bench 4 - 5 times and just hit makes the DH a legitimate position in my book.

I also hate the idea of rotating players through the DH slot "to keep them fresh" or because they're dinged up. You're automatically asking for reduced production from that spot in the line up; maybe the injured guy could use the whole day off. Between the PH penalty and reduced production due to owies, couldn't the team just play one of their back ups?

I much prefer the Sox having a certifiable masher in the DH slot...
   79. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 14, 2012 at 05:32 PM (#4302812)
Just heard Verducci on the Dan Patrick show saying To get Hamiltom a team "might" have to go to six years at $22 per. I have to say if he's out there at 5/110 right now I would snap him up in a minute.
   80. Nasty Nate Posted: November 15, 2012 at 03:13 PM (#4303461)
While talk is cheap, Cherington has some encouraging things to say about the payroll:

"I know that we’ll have a very strong payroll, a large payroll. I know that we’re going to add to it this winter. I’m confident in saying that we’ll be amongst the larger payrolls in the game. Exactly where it ends up, exactly what rank we are, I don’t know that yet."

(from a story at Boston.com)
   81. Darren Posted: November 15, 2012 at 04:17 PM (#4303522)
Just heard Verducci on the Dan Patrick show saying To get Hamiltom a team "might" have to go to six years at $22 per. I have to say if he's out there at 5/110 right now I would snap him up in a minute.


What about 6/132? I have to say though, "might have to go to 22" sounds encouraging to me. Then again, let's remember what everyone was writing about Fielder last year.
   82. Dan Posted: November 16, 2012 at 11:34 PM (#4304765)
Cabrera's now off the market, and Speier says that the Red Sox weren't even in the bidding. Hopefully that's a sign that they're actually pursuing Hamilton, because they really need to do something for the outfield beyond overpaying to bring back Cody Ross.

Bradford says his sources say the Red Sox aren't really after Hamilton, either. I still would rather bet on Hamilton than BJ Upton or Shane Victorino or Angel Pagan. I think Swisher is an interesting option, but I think he's more likely to be overpaid than Hamilton is. Swisher would work well for the Red Sox simply because he can play either OF corner and also first base if they end up finding other OF solutions but aren't able to fill the hole at first base. But if they're looking strictly for an OFer, I'd rather overpay Hamilton for a shot at greatness than overpay Swisher for being a solid contributor.
   83. Dale Sams Posted: November 17, 2012 at 12:41 AM (#4304789)
Right now...right this very second, the Sox are a 61 win team.
   84. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: November 19, 2012 at 06:06 PM (#4306258)
Spring training schedule is out. Early start, college doubleheader on February 21st. I assume that is a function of the WBC. I've already booked my trip for the 2nd to the 17th so I will see 5-6 games.
   85. karlmagnus Posted: November 21, 2012 at 08:46 AM (#4307319)
Manny just homered in his first at-bat in the Dominican Winter League. Sox just HAVE to invite him to Spring Training. There's their extra outfielder! (or preferably DH, and make Fatso play first base.)

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