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   1. Mark Armour Posted: June 13, 2016 at 03:27 PM (#5242639)
I would not be too quick to paint Dombrowski based on a few moves. Yes, he gave a big pile of money to David Price, but David Price has to be available for that strategy to come in to play. Every problem he has faced (and will face in the future) will have a finite pile of solutions available to him and we don't know how he would have dealt with the same problem with different solutions lying around. If the best pitcher on the market was Edwin Santana, does he make the same play? I suspect not, though who knows.

He seems like a big game hunter, and when he came aboard I was worried that the team's system (loaded with young promising stars) could be ill-fit for his background, and he might try to make a splash. It was only a few months earlier when most of the Boston press wanted BC to deal Betts or Bogaerts for Cole Hamels. I wondered at the time if DD would have done just that had he been here in March 2015. The Kimbrel trade was a bit like this, though at the time I felt, "OK, if that's the only such move its OK."

When DD was hired, Dan Shaughnessy put out a series of tweets saying, essentially, "Finally! Someone who is not going to be afraid to deal the Red Sox overrated prospects!" This was obviously a grotesque misreading of recent history, when the Red Sox system has been developing stars and all of the veteran acquisitions had tanked.

DD is trusting the system so far.

   2. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 13, 2016 at 04:41 PM (#5242682)
I am curious to see how he approaches the deadline. His hand might be a bit forced by some injuries and underperformance. I gotta think Owens and Swihart have lost value based on performance (and position switch) and for various reasons guys like Johnson, Chavis, Kopech and Travis have had little playing time.

I don't think he'll move any of Benintendi, Espinoza or Moncada but I wonder if he might move Devers. It's been a down year for him and he might be a guy who can possibly generate a big return.


When DD was hired, Dan Shaughnessy put out a series of tweets saying, essentially, "Finally! Someone who is not going to be afraid to deal the Red Sox overrated prospects!" This was obviously a grotesque misreading of recent history, when the Red Sox system has been developing stars and all of the veteran acquisitions had tanked.


It's your own fault for reading Shaughnessy, you know better. That said I think sometimes it is easy to forget that one way for a prospect to help the club is as trade bait.
   3. villageidiom Posted: June 13, 2016 at 04:52 PM (#5242693)
When Theo moved on Ben Cherington took over (and in fairness maybe it was Cherington and Larry Lucchino, for these purposes I’m sticking with Cherington).
In fairness prior to that maybe it was Epstein and Lucchino.

What has struck me about Dombrowski, and it was crystallized in the draft last week, is his approach is very much a “see a problem, fix a problem” one.
I'm running in a slightly different angle on this. We've seen a problem with left field since around spring training, and we're in mid-June now. We've seen problems with the rotation since around the same time. We see the problems. Fixing the problems hasn't gone as quickly as hoped, though I will give him credit for giving opportunity to internal candidates as a first step.

Maybe this isn't far from what you're saying, but I think he's been more of a "you're part of the solution or you're part of the problem" kind of guy. This basic message appears to have been spelled out last fall to Hanley, Sandoval, Shaw, and I assume others. Hanley and Shaw took it to heart, and we got results of their off-season work. Sandoval... not so much. How much of the 2016 status of Sandoval and Buchholz, and arguably Joe Kelly, is a Dombrowski thing or a Farrell thing I don't know, but I didn't get the impression Farrell used such a short leash prior to DD getting here. The leash is definitely shorter than in past years.

The short-term me thinks this is great, because I want problems solved before they become big problems. The long-term me thinks a simple slump is indistinguishable from a not-yet-big problem, and a player can't break out of a slump on the bench. Benching a slumping player is either eliminating a problem or eliminating a solution. I'm not fond of the latter.

I'm with you on the draft, although we could come up with many different theories beyond "take the best player available" and not really improve on that basic philosophy. I guess we'll see what happens next year. (Two data points = trend!)
   4. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 13, 2016 at 05:03 PM (#5242701)
Maybe this isn't far from what you're saying, but I think he's been more of a "you're part of the solution or you're part of the problem" kind of guy. This basic message appears to have been spelled out last fall to Hanley, Sandoval, Shaw, and I assume others. Hanley and Shaw took it to heart, and we got results of their off-season work. Sandoval... not so much. How much of the 2016 status of Sandoval and Buchholz, and arguably Joe Kelly, is a Dombrowski thing or a Farrell thing I don't know, but I didn't get the impression Farrell used such a short leash prior to DD getting here. The leash is definitely shorter than in past years.


Farrell recently touched on this a bit. It wasn't so much a blunt statement but he danced around the idea that as a manager you need upper management to support you. Regardless of if Farrell wanted to bench Sandoval for Shaw if Dombrowski didn't support that decision the 20 million dollar man was going to be in the lineup whether it was written out by Farrell, Lovullo or Mike Cubbage.
   5. Dan Posted: June 14, 2016 at 10:54 PM (#5243872)
I think it's worth noting that Dombrowski has historically done a very good job of deciding which prospects to trade and which ones to hold. When you look at a deal like the Cabrera trade, it was an absolute heist, even with Dontrelle doing absolutely nothing and completely wasting the extension money on him. He did give up some solid guys to get Price, but that was pretty clearly an all-in, win while we can type of move.

And while I think Theo is one of the, if not THE, best GMs (or PoBO now I guess, but whatever) in the sport, he did trade some guys that went on to produce significantly after the trades like Rizzo, Arroyo, etc.

I wonder about the trade market for pitching. It seems like demand this year is massively outrunning the supply of guys near the end of their deals who we can expect to see on the market. I wonder if he'll go after someone on a longer deal for a serious price, like one of the top 4 guys and 2 more top 10 guys?
   6. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 15, 2016 at 05:14 PM (#5244421)
I wonder about the trade market for pitching. It seems like demand this year is massively outrunning the supply of guys near the end of their deals who we can expect to see on the market. I wonder if he'll go after someone on a longer deal for a serious price, like one of the top 4 guys and 2 more top 10 guys?


I'm curious to see where he goes in the market. It seems insane to say but I am starting to come to the idea that the Sox need a bat more than an arm. Alex Speier had an interesting piece in his email notes today pointing out that the Sox' run prevention is heavily influenced by the nightmarish fifth starter performance. Price, Wright and Porcello have been somewhere between great and good and if Rodriguez settles himself that is a pretty good four and somewhere they can come up with a fifth.

The bats though are suddenly looking top heavy. After Ortiz you're really getting nothing other than Young. I think they need someone on the corner spots to bolster the offense.
   7. Dan Posted: June 15, 2016 at 06:33 PM (#5244483)
The bats though are suddenly looking top heavy. After Ortiz you're really getting nothing other than Young. I think they need someone on the corner spots to bolster the offense.


JBJ still has a .975 OPS! Not mentioning him is CRAZYPANTS!
   8. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 15, 2016 at 06:55 PM (#5244507)
Yes it is. Oops.
   9. Chip Posted: June 16, 2016 at 01:29 AM (#5244695)
So who's the lefty bat out there who can be the strong side of a Young platoon?
   10. Nasty Nate Posted: June 16, 2016 at 09:20 AM (#5244732)
Derek Dietrich?

However, he's basically a starter for a team only 1.5 out in the wild card race.
   11. villageidiom Posted: June 16, 2016 at 09:51 AM (#5244758)
So who's the lefty bat out there who can be the strong side of a Young platoon?
Well it's certainly not Casey Janssen, who Boston just signed to a minor-league deal.

So when they add Elias for Friday, what's the corresponding move? Elias is already on the 40-man, so they just need a 25-man move. Here are the parameters I see:

1. Holt being out causes a lot of "emergency backup" problems. They now need multiple players to provide what he did. It's unclear they can afford to go with 13 pitchers, which is what they'd have if they moved, say, Josh Rutledge. So a pitcher probably needs to be moved.

2. Clay Buchholz is the most redundant player out there, but is there a trade partner for him? And what if Elias doesn't work out, or Rodriguez doesn't become more consistently good? At that point you might as well have Buchholz out there.

3. I am not partial to Tommy Layne. And if they can get 6-7 IP out of each starter he is at best a luxury they can't afford.
   12. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 16, 2016 at 10:00 AM (#5244766)

So when they add Elias for Friday, what's the corresponding move?


I would assume it's Hembree who is the lucky I-95 winner this year. Sucks for him because he deserves to be here based on the way he's pitched but someone has to go and he seems the logical choice. Presumably it's him or Barnes and there is a pretty good argument for it to be Barnes but they seem more comfortable with Barnes than Hembree.
   13. Nasty Nate Posted: June 16, 2016 at 10:14 AM (#5244778)
Speaking of Barnes, is it too late for me to complain about Farrell using him against the meat of the Twins order in the 10th on Sunday instead of a fully-rested Kimbrel because of save-situation obsession?
   14. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 16, 2016 at 10:22 AM (#5244783)
Yes.

I mean go ahead and complain but that is par for the course. Every manager in baseball does it. It's stupid but what are you going to do?

Speaking of the Twins how about Trevor Plouffe? Not great but I can see him as the righty side of a platoon at third base.
   15. SoSHially Unacceptable Posted: June 16, 2016 at 10:24 AM (#5244785)
So who's the lefty bat out there who can be the strong side of a Young platoon?


Stephen Drew?
   16. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 16, 2016 at 10:28 AM (#5244792)
So who's the lefty bat out there who can be the strong side of a Young platoon?


Stephen Drew?

Nah, he's 33 :-)
   17. Nasty Nate Posted: June 16, 2016 at 10:38 AM (#5244803)
Every manager in baseball does it. It's stupid but what are you going to do?
They all do it, but they don't all do it 100% of the time. I hope Farrell trends in that direction.
   18. ReggieThomasLives Posted: June 16, 2016 at 11:22 AM (#5244830)
Dombrowski knows that no matter how much they love the GM now, they'll want to fire him in a few years, and prospects won't help you then. So trade em and get mid career starters who can.
   19. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 17, 2016 at 08:35 AM (#5245650)
Oswaldo Arcia? Worth a shot as the left side of a left field platoon?
   20. Dan Posted: June 18, 2016 at 06:39 AM (#5246560)
Dombrowski should look to move Rusney Castillo to the Tigers perhaps for a reliever or something? They lost JD Martinez and that OF is looking REALLY thin. Plus their park needs OFers with good range to cover all of that ground.
   21. Dan Posted: June 19, 2016 at 04:32 AM (#5247027)
I'd love to give Arcia a shot at a platoon in LF with Young, but would the Twins really part with him at reasonable cost?
   22. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 19, 2016 at 09:57 AM (#5247052)
He got DFAd the other day.
   23. The Anthony Kennedy of BBTF (Scott) Posted: June 19, 2016 at 10:14 AM (#5247061)
2030 Headline? 'Twins to honor Arcia on retirement tour with Red Sox'

The news Thursday night that the Twins designated Oswaldo Arcia for assignment was met with some puzzlement among Twins fans. The basic premise is fair: is there not a place on the roster, or at least in the organization, for a just-turned-25-year-old with a .732 OPS in nearly 1,000 plate appearances?

After all: 1) That 1,000 plate appearance threshold is often cited as the point at which hitters start to figure things out. 2) Though OPS isn’t the only statistical measurement worth considering, there is this: the Twins going into 2016 considered Brian Dozier and Trevor Plouffe to be valuable players — maybe not cornerstones, but guys they could pencil into the lineup for years to come. Dozier’s career OPS is .723. Plouffe’s career OPS is .721.

That’s less of an indictment of the other two and more of a statement that says: hey, this kid Arcia, even while he was struggling to find his way (and even while he was playing subpar defense) could hit a little bit.


I'm slightly surprised they DFA'd him, is he out of option years? But he has been a sub-replacement player for his career.
   24. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 19, 2016 at 10:38 AM (#5247069)
I think he is out of options but I'm still a bit surprised. I wonder if there are attitude issues here and besides the Twins have a few good young outfielders.
   25. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: June 19, 2016 at 02:20 PM (#5247180)
And while I think Theo is one of the, if not THE, best GMs (or PoBO now I guess, but whatever) in the sport, he did trade some guys that went on to produce significantly after the trades like Rizzo, Arroyo, etc.

I'll grant that we'll never understand the Arroyo deal.

But as I recall it, Rizzo was not the top attraction in that deal; Theo extracted max value for rightly recognized the dramatic discrepancy between the perceived and actual value of Casey Kelly, who was never going to amount to anything. People forget that Rizzo's prospect status was already wilting when he went to SD and he was traded a year later for Andrew Cashner before blooming with Chicago.
   26. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 19, 2016 at 03:08 PM (#5247212)
I don't think Rizzo's status was on the decline, I think he was deemed far enough away and questionable enough that getting a perennial all star was viewed as worth it.

I'll admit to liking the Arroyo deal. I had a hard on for Wily Mo and I thought we sold high in Arroyo. I may have been wrong.
   27. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: June 19, 2016 at 03:44 PM (#5247237)
Maybe it was just me then, but it seemed like Rizzo had not done enough to warrant his prospect status and it was only that last season in Portland before the Gonzalez deal that he had done anything to impress anyone. I was pleased to get value for him. But mostly what I'm saying is that he was definitely not the top-billed guy in that package; Kelly was. I think that he was moved 1 year later for a guy whose upside was seen as maybe 3rd or 4th starter is pretty telling. And that he wasn't good until 3.5 years after the deal anyway - was the guy putting up 150 OPS+ for the last 2+ seasons always in there? If so, was he going to do that for the Red Sox? Basically I don't put anything about that transaction onto the negative side of the ledger for Theo.

I think he did sell high on Arroyo. He just didn't get something back that turned out to be any good. Arroyo had one year better than his best year for the Sox. It just happened to be his first year in Cinci. Although 200 IP of 100 ERA+ year after year is valuable in its own right.
   28. covelli chris p Posted: June 19, 2016 at 05:10 PM (#5247290)
But as I recall it, Rizzo was not the top attraction in that deal; Theo extracted max value for rightly recognized the dramatic discrepancy between the perceived and actual value of Casey Kelly, who was never going to amount to anything. People forget that Rizzo's prospect status was already wilting when he went to SD and he was traded a year later for Andrew Cashner before blooming with Chicago.
imho, the issue with that deal was that we already had youk at 1st. the idea that youk, a guy that would wear down playing a full season at 1b, would be able to stay healthy and productive at 3b was absurd. the obvious move was to re-sign beltre and keep youk at first.

as for the prospects, they gave up 3 very good ones. they all had major question marks, but i'd say that it was a pretty good bet that one of kelly, rizzo, and fuentes would amount to smoething ...
   29. covelli chris p Posted: June 19, 2016 at 05:26 PM (#5247299)
rizzo's status was not on the decline, either. he was stalled a bit b/c of the cancer, but was back health, and playing when they dealt him.
   30. Darren Posted: June 19, 2016 at 07:25 PM (#5247349)
Seems unfair to give Theo credit for selling high on Kelly but not ding him for missing on Rizzo. Maybe you agreed with him on Rizzo, but then you were both wrong. And it's not like he was a throw-in. He was a #75 prospect per BA.

As for Arroyo, selling high? I don't see it. He had his best year and second best year (by both versions of WAR) after leaving the Red Sox. He averaged 2.8 fWAR (2.6 bWAR) for the Sox for 2 years, then 3.2 (3.6) for the next 4. Even if he had somehow had his best year for Boston, the Red Sox traded him, he prospered, just as they immediately needed a good pitcher. They completely missed on evaluating him, completely separate from what they thought of Pena (who they also missed spectacularly on).

   31. Dan Posted: June 19, 2016 at 11:11 PM (#5247668)
Arcia has a 115 wRC+ against RHP for his career (.243/.316/.469). Add the ability to use the wall in LF at Fenway and he really looks like he'd be a useful platoon guy at minimum for the Red Sox.
   32. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 21, 2016 at 11:31 PM (#5249393)
Yeah I'd like to see them gamble. The bench is such a shitshow right now he's worth a roll of the dice.

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