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   1. Good cripple hitter Posted: July 18, 2010 at 03:27 PM (#3592439)
Zaun tore his labrum and had surgery on it, ending his season and probably his career.
   2. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 18, 2010 at 03:35 PM (#3592442)
D'oh.

The world of catchers is pretty small. I can see how the Sox ended up settling for Cash. It still seems like they ought to be doing better than Cash, but I can't say I've got specific suggestions.
   3. 1k5v3L Posted: July 18, 2010 at 03:42 PM (#3592443)
Chris Snyder is available, but his salary is fairly substantial for a backup catcher.
   4. Good cripple hitter Posted: July 18, 2010 at 03:47 PM (#3592444)
John Buck's probably available, but I'm not sure how much the Jays would want for him.
   5. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 18, 2010 at 03:48 PM (#3592445)
Chris Snyder is available, but his salary is fairly substantial for a backup catcher.

You beat me to the punch. But, he wouldn't be a backup for Boston long term. You trade for Snyder with the idea that he's your starter in 2011 (and maybe 2012, if you pick up the option).
   6. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 18, 2010 at 03:55 PM (#3592448)
Snyder would be perfect - I assumed, though, that a catcher who can put up a league averagish batting line would cost more than the Sox want to give. If Snyder's salary makes him available on the cheap, the Sox should certainly be in on that.
   7. Raskolnikov Posted: July 18, 2010 at 03:56 PM (#3592449)
Rod Barajas is available.
   8. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 18, 2010 at 03:57 PM (#3592450)
You joke, but Barajas is clearly superior to Kevin Cash.

Obviously one hopes the Sox can do better.
   9. Dave Cyprian Posted: July 18, 2010 at 04:05 PM (#3592452)
WAR, what is it good for, absolutely nothing (with Kevin Cash at catcher).
   10. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 18, 2010 at 04:06 PM (#3592456)
Snyder would be perfect - I assumed, though, that a catcher who can put up a league averagish batting line would cost more than the Sox want to give. If Snyder's salary makes him available on the cheap, the Sox should certainly be in on that.

Well, presumably the Sox would be willing to give up a lot more if he's a 2.4 year solution rather than a stopgap.
   11. 1k5v3L Posted: July 18, 2010 at 04:13 PM (#3592465)
Snyder had a bit of a cracked nut problem last year, but in 08 and then this year, he's put up OPS+ of over 100, which is pretty reasonable. Low BA, but decent walk and HR rate. Problem with him is that his defense is declining, particularly his ability to control the running game - but then again, that ability doesn't seem to be required of any Red Sox catcher anyhow...

At mlbtraderumors a few days ago, there was this...
   12. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 18, 2010 at 04:16 PM (#3592469)
Snyder had a bit of a cracked nut problem last year, but in 08 and then this year, he's put up OPS+ of over 100, which is pretty reasonable. Low BA, but decent walk and HR rate. Problem with him is that his defense is declining, particularly his ability to control the running game - but then again, that ability doesn't seem to be required of any Red Sox catcher anyhow...

Levski, what would you think the price for Snyder is? A B and a C prospect?
   13. 1k5v3L Posted: July 18, 2010 at 04:58 PM (#3592487)
That may be reasonable, but I have no idea what DiPoto thinks or wants. Methinks the Dbacks are quite anxious to part with Snyder's contract, so if another team takes on the entire salary, they may not want too much in return.
   14. Chip Posted: July 18, 2010 at 05:38 PM (#3592502)
Gammons on NESN pre-game today said that the Sox are right at the luxury tax threshhold and want to stay below it. So taking on the full salary may not be in the cards.
   15. Nasty Nate Posted: July 18, 2010 at 05:48 PM (#3592509)
Has the new front office configuration in AZ made any moves?
   16. 1k5v3L Posted: July 18, 2010 at 05:53 PM (#3592513)
Don't think so, Nate; I believe they are still curled up in their fetal positions. They did release Dontrelle, however.
   17. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: July 18, 2010 at 06:46 PM (#3592560)
Shoppach?
   18. Harveys Wallbangers Posted: July 18, 2010 at 06:53 PM (#3592578)
Lucroy has taken over as front-line catcher. Melvin might deal Kotteras back to the Sox though clearly Milwaukee needs to backfill its backup role.

Warning in that Kotteras is poor defensively and classic TTO at the plate.
   19. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 18, 2010 at 07:14 PM (#3592602)
Had Kottaras last year. He would also be a solid upgrade over Cash - the improved walk rate this year might get him a career.
   20. The District Attorney Posted: July 18, 2010 at 07:52 PM (#3592620)
What about Chris Iannetta? That's the one that's been bantered around for months, no?

Heck, I've heard Lowell-to-Texas rumblings, and presumably Max Ramirez is even more available after the acquisition of five-tool phenom Bengie Molina...
   21. Spivey Posted: July 18, 2010 at 09:04 PM (#3592664)
Heck, I've heard Lowell-to-Texas rumblings, and presumably Max Ramirez is even more available after the acquisition of five-tool phenom Bengie Molina...

At this point, with Vlad being the best or second best DH in baseball... it's hard to see that really making sense on the Rangers side. I don't know that the Rangers can really afford a 25 man roster spot on Lowell at this point anyways.

I'd think Snyder would make sense. He's not the starter in Arizona, he would be in Boston, and he could potentially be the starter there for a few years. Arizona is looking to shed salary I'm sure, and Boston can afford a few million on him.
   22. The District Attorney Posted: July 18, 2010 at 09:39 PM (#3592693)
Here's where I got the Lowell thing from...
A source confirmed that the Rangers have Boston veteran Mike Lowell on their short list of players who could fill the need for a right-handed-hitting corner infielder... The Rangers would likely give Lowell plenty of at-bats against left-handed pitching in a platoon at first base with Chris Davis.
   23. OCD SS Posted: July 18, 2010 at 10:55 PM (#3592739)
Gammons on NESN pre-game today said that the Sox are right at the luxury tax threshhold and want to stay below it. So taking on the full salary may not be in the cards.


The Globe had a story that said that they were informed that they went over the CBT threshold for this year. I think it's been pretty clear that this was going to be the case from the beginning of the year, so I doubt the Sox were actually caught off guard. If anything this bit of news strikes me as the Sox getting the PR out that they won't just absorb money to get a deal done.
   24. tfbg9 Posted: July 19, 2010 at 12:52 AM (#3592799)
Will any of this matter?

At the moment, I find it hard to envision a scenario where the Sox are within 8-9 games of a playoff spot by 8/1/10.
The Devil Dogs are playing the execrable O's tomorrow, while Boston has the A's at 1015 EDT. I am not optimistic.
   25. puck Posted: July 19, 2010 at 01:28 AM (#3592820)
What about Chris Iannetta? That's the one that's been bantered around for months, no?


Despite sending him to the minors, I've never heard any real complaints about him from the team. I'd be surprised if they're looking to move him. He's signed through 2012 and Olivo's playing time will likely yield a mutual option for 2011, so Iannetta could be their best catching option for next season. Given that, I don't think the Rockies would move Iannetta without receiving someone pretty good in return.
   26. Darren Posted: July 19, 2010 at 01:37 AM (#3592824)
The Red Sox should give something pretty good in return then, because they really need a starting catcher for 2011 and beyond. I'm not sure how Colorado feels about their starting pitching, but I think the Sox should be willing to deal some of that depth for their catcher of the next few years.

I don't want this team making any deals for 2010. Any hope they have for this season depends on players coming back at least as soon as expected and Red Sox players never, ever come back as soon as expected. Play out the string and make a deal only if the player you're getting will help in 11 and beyond. Do not deal for a middle reliever because a) Bowden and co. have as good of a chance at succeeding as anyone you pick up, and b) you suck at that.

Edit: to add that, for the reasons stated above, I wouldn't go after DeJesus, even though he'd be a very nice fit. It will be more helpful to see what Nava and possibly Kalish can do.
   27. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: July 19, 2010 at 05:24 AM (#3592910)
When did things shift from "wonder if Martinez can catch 110 games a year" to "the Sox really need a starting catcher for 2011 and beyond"? The toe injury?
   28. RB in NYC (Now Semi-Retired from BBTF) Posted: July 19, 2010 at 10:29 AM (#3592936)
When did things shift from "wonder if Martinez can catch 110 games a year" to "the Sox really need a starting catcher for 2011 and beyond"? The toe injury?
I have no idea, but this will (probably) be Martinez's third straight year catching less than 100 games, so assuming he can manage 110 in 2011 might be considered hopeful.
   29. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 19, 2010 at 11:32 AM (#3592947)
When did things shift from "wonder if Martinez can catch 110 games a year" to "the Sox really need a starting catcher for 2011 and beyond"? The toe injury?
I think it was when it became clear that he was going to give up a stolen base for every game he started. I really like Victor, but he doesn't seem to have the defensive tools to stick at catcher anymore.
   30. Chip Posted: July 19, 2010 at 12:18 PM (#3592954)
I thought Martinez had been getting better at throwing out runners prior to the injury.

Isn't the actual reason for looking for a catcher for 2011 and beyond is that he's a FA after this year and there's no guarantee he'll be back?
   31. Pingu Posted: July 19, 2010 at 12:54 PM (#3592966)
If the Red Sox are in the neighborhood of 8-10 games out of first and 6-8 games out of the WC by the trading deadline, do they/should they become sellers?

I dont think it will ever happen, but I'm just sayin.....

No question Beltre is playing somewhere else in 2011, he'd net something of value. Martinez as well.
   32. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 19, 2010 at 01:08 PM (#3592972)
This got touched on a bit during the nightmare start but I don't see the Sox as sellers simply because of a lack of interesting players. Beltre has certainly upped his value but I can see the Sox trying to keep him beyond 2010. That leaves Martinez who will just be returning from injury at that point and Fly would be disappointed if I didn't suggest Papelbon. A possible wild card at that point could be Matsuzaka. A couple of good starts between now and then and that $8 million a year for a guy with a low 4.00 ERA seems somewhat appealing but the return on him would be so small as to make it not worthwhile.

I'm with Darren, making a trade for this year seems unwise. The farm has had a bad year so unless you move a top prospect you aren't getting anything in return and giving up quality for a middle reliever is a bad idea. They were leading the Wild Card race through the lost weekend in San Francisco so I don't think there is a need to fill holes, they just need to be healthy. If they drop out of things before they get back to health, c'est la vie.
   33. Answer Guy Posted: July 19, 2010 at 01:32 PM (#3592984)
If the Red Sox are in the neighborhood of 8-10 games out of first and 6-8 games out of the WC by the trading deadline, do they/should they become sellers?


Not seeing it. The players with the trade value are not the ones the team would be interested in selling, unless they've already decided that they will make no effort to bring Beltre back. Martinez is damaged goods so I doubt he nets much interest.
   34. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 19, 2010 at 01:39 PM (#3592993)
Not seeing it. The players with the trade value are not the ones the team would be interested in selling, unless they've already decided that they will make no effort to bring Beltre back. Martinez is damaged goods so I doubt he nets much interest.

Why would trading Beltre preclude bringing him back? I assume if the Sox are the high bidder in the offseason he'd be happy to return to a contender playing in a park that seems to suit him.

I agree on Martinez, I doubt he plays enough before the deadline to re-establish his value.
   35. tjm1 Posted: July 19, 2010 at 01:48 PM (#3593004)
Why would trading Beltre preclude bringing him back? I assume if the Sox are the high bidder in the offseason he'd be happy to return to a contender playing in a park that seems to suit him.


Yes, but it's always easier to keep a guy than to lure him. It's also difficult to express that you want to keep him when you trade him without being guilty of tampering. There are also the draft pick issues. I'd rather just offer Beltre an extension now.
   36. karlmagnus Posted: July 19, 2010 at 01:52 PM (#3593008)
They would certainly get quite a bit for Youkilis, and since they are probably some way off until they have replaced the current aging core, it's worth trading Youk at his peak, before he begins the inevitable decline.

Youk is underrated by the fans outside Boston, but not by the stat-heads, so you just need to find a stat-head front office.
   37. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 19, 2010 at 02:17 PM (#3593026)
They would certainly get quite a bit for Youkilis, and since they are probably some way off until they have replaced the current aging core, it's worth trading Youk at his peak, before he begins the inevitable decline.

Youk is underrated by the fans outside Boston, but not by the stat-heads, so you just need to find a stat-head front office.


Youkilis is an interesting case. Normally I'd say trading someone like him was crazy, but the fact that he didn't reach superstar levels until he was nearly 30, makes me think his peak may be very short.

If I were a Red Sox fan, I'd be worried about a Hafnerion collapse in a year or two.

Yes, but it's always easier to keep a guy than to lure him. It's also difficult to express that you want to keep him when you trade him without being guilty of tampering. There are also the draft pick issues. I'd rather just offer Beltre an extension now.

Really? He's only been there 1/2 a season. With Boras as his agent, I'd guess he's going to test FA. Once he walks out of the clubhouse on the last day of the season, there's no difference between keep and lure. I'm pretty sure he goes to the high bidder, and the Sox certainly have the wherewithal for that.
   38. Answer Guy Posted: July 19, 2010 at 02:29 PM (#3593035)
If I were a Red Sox fan, I'd be worried about a Hafnerion collapse in a year or two.


They're simply not going to trade Youkilis in the middle of this on the chance he declines rapidly. That would be a way bigger white flag than trading someone like Beltre or Martinez.
   39. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 19, 2010 at 02:32 PM (#3593037)
If I were a Red Sox fan, I'd be worried about a Hafnerion collapse in a year or two.
This sounds a lot like wishcasting to me.

Hafner peaked at 27-29 and was just about done by 30. The only category of comparison you offered was age at peak, and Hafner and Youkilis aren't actually comparable in their age at peak. On top of that, Hafner was an injury-prone DH. Youkilis is both durable and a good defensive 1B, a capable 3B. I don't see anything similar about them at all.
   40. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 19, 2010 at 02:35 PM (#3593039)
Trading Youkilis is obviously a terrible idea - he's signed to a very favorable contract, even if he declines off his current peak. $12M in 2011, $12M in 2012, $13M team option for 2013.

karl's obviously trolling us on this one, and snapper's hardly any better.

If the Red Sox go 3-7 or 2-8 over their next ten, we can have this "blow it up" discussion. Until then it just looks like fodder for karl and wishcasting Yankee fans.
   41. Spivey Posted: July 19, 2010 at 02:38 PM (#3593042)
I cannot believe there are serious comments about trading Youkilis. A team like Boston should be trying to accumulate these guys, not get rid of them. He's in his prime and shows no signs of slowing down.
   42. Cowboy Popup Posted: July 19, 2010 at 02:48 PM (#3593046)
Yes, but it's always easier to keep a guy than to lure him. It's also difficult to express that you want to keep him when you trade him without being guilty of tampering. There are also the draft pick issues. I'd rather just offer Beltre an extension now.

What kind of extension would you offer Beltre? He's got a history of inconsistency, so I really have no idea what might be considered fair for him. If there is the possibility of acquiring a 3rd baseman (unlikely) or 1st baseman (more unlikely now that the Padres are good, I'm not sure they even move him in the offseason) in the offseason, I would offer him arbitration. But since I am unaware of any other good available options for either corner, I think you are right that it makes sense to try and lock him down for a couple of years, I just have no idea how you price a guy like him. And I think it's going to be pretty difficult to get him to sign a favorable deal with the year he is having.

I cannot believe there are serious comments about trading Youkilis. A team like Boston should be trying to accumulate these guys, not get rid of them. He's in his prime and shows no signs of slowing down.

QFT.
   43. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 19, 2010 at 02:53 PM (#3593049)
Now, there were two comments about trading Youkilis. The first was by karlmagnus, who believes the Red Sox are several years removed from real contention and should be blown up (this is, of course, also what he believed in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009.) The second was by snapper, who was enjoying life if km's fantasy world for a short moment.

The seriousness of these comments I leave for you to judge.
   44. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 19, 2010 at 03:02 PM (#3593058)
I can see Beltre having a Damon-esque off-season. Get an offer that to the outside world looks reasonable, turn it down in hopes of something big, then twist in the wind for awhile. Fairly or not I think a lot of teams are going to look at him with skepticism, his two biggest years are contract years, and he's on the wrong side of 30 (albeit not by a lot). Also, for a guy who has made his name largely on defense leading the league in errors does not help. I think that's unfair becuase he gets to a LOT of balls that other guys don't get too.

I'm reallly enjoying him though. Obviously part of that is the great year but he's quirky enough to be fun, the one knee homers, the don't touch his head routine, and I'm a sucker for good base runners and he seems to be one.
   45. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: July 19, 2010 at 03:04 PM (#3593060)
How do you guys feel about Ryan Doumit? His glove's a little rough, but the bat's solid, and the Pirates would probably pick up salary if it meant more talent in return.
   46. Pingu Posted: July 19, 2010 at 03:10 PM (#3593062)
Because of the year he's having, I see the chances of Beltre excercising his option at <0%. I see it as just as unlikely that the Red Sox offer enough cash & years in an extension to keep him away from FA. He's almost certainly not on this team next year. Victor is probablly a little more likely, but I'm not holding my breath considering the lack of any type of preliminary contract talk. I dont see him coming back.

Sorry to be the bastion of negativity, but I am having a real hard time coming around to the 33% chance of making the playoffs argument. I just dont see it as being remotely that high, and a little realism might help set this team up for next season.

Obv making a trade now is premature, but are we going to learn any more about this team in 12 days? If they are w/in pissing distance of the WC at the trading deadline, then sure, stay put, hold out for the injuries to heal. To me Bowden and Doubront make a better than typical "trade" to help the bullpen. However, if they do go 3-7 or 2-8 on this west coast trip, then I think its certainly defensible to trade your non-2011 bodies for help down the road.
   47. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: July 19, 2010 at 03:17 PM (#3593069)
Rod Barajas is available.


I believe that most of the serious upgrades to Cash would be considered way too valuable to a team to wind up as the second or third-string catcher when Varitek and Victor are healthy.

I think (I'm a Yankees fan, of course) that Youkilis might bring back the greatest return, short of a starting pitcher unexpectedly traded. But I agree with Matt in the intro that superstar returns should not be the goal here, and Youk is too valuable to be part of a swap in which they get back average players.
   48. Pingu Posted: July 19, 2010 at 03:28 PM (#3593073)
Of course Youkilis would bring back the greatest return. He's the best player on the team and he's in his prime and signed to a reasonable amount for several years. He's also of greatest value to the RED SOX thru 2013, so he's not going anywhere.
   49. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 19, 2010 at 03:30 PM (#3593075)
Now, there were two comments about trading Youkilis. The first was by karlmagnus, who believes the Red Sox are several years removed from real contention and should be blown up (this is, of course, also what he believed in 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009.) The second was by snapper, who was enjoying life if km's fantasy world for a short moment.

The seriousness of these comments I leave for you to judge.


I'm not really serious about trading him, just saying his career shape perplexes me. I didn't realize the Red Sox controlled him at such reasonable prices, so they are fine money wise. But, if he were a FA, it would be tough to value him with confidence.
   50. Biff, highly-regarded young guy Posted: July 19, 2010 at 03:51 PM (#3593093)
I still can't believe Youkilis became the kind of hitter he currently is. That said, trading him would be 100% nutso crazy.
   51. Answer Guy Posted: July 19, 2010 at 04:05 PM (#3593107)
Sorry to be the bastion of negativity, but I am having a real hard time coming around to the 33% chance of making the playoffs argument. I just dont see it as being remotely that high, and a little realism might help set this team up for next season.


I'm not high on their chances this year either, as that injury-riddled lineup is really being exposed now.

But I still do like this team's chances for 2011-12 and I see no reason to make those prospects dimmer for the sake of a marginally better chance at an inside straight this season.
   52. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 19, 2010 at 06:51 PM (#3593317)
But I still do like this team's chances for 2011-12 and I see no reason to make those prospects dimmer for the sake of a marginally better chance at an inside straight this season.
Of course. No one has advocated emptying out what's left on the farm.

The issue is that the Red Sox can make small-bore moves that could have effects in the range of a win - which is a lot for a midseason trade. A competent catcher, a #3 reliever, these could improve the Red Sox in 2010 without having any particular impact on the Red Sox of 2011-2012 - that is, I think they could be obtained without giving up Kelly, Kalish, or Iglesias.

BPro still has the Sox between 27 and 33 percent to make the playoffs. The team is weaker without two of their stars, obviously, but the numbers show the difference being closer to a win than two or three. It's not enough to kill the projection of the season going forward.

I don't know what "exposed" means in this context, really. Baseball is still a game mostly composed of discrete events. An injured shooting guard can be exposed because defenses drop back off him and cover other players, and so the entire team suffers, beyond simply the difference in individual quality from the starter to his backup. Baseball teams don't really get "exposed" like that. Kevin Youkilis is still Kevin Youkilis with Daniel Nava in the lineup. Papi and Scutaro and Drew and Beltre aren't going to be "exposed". Cash sucks, he sucked when he was playing while hte Red Sox were winning some games, he sucks now while they're losing games. Nava, Hall, McDonald and Patterson are flawed players, but I expect them to continue to play at about the level they've played all year - they're reasonably dangerous hitters, though not as good as the guys they're replacing.
   53. karlmagnus Posted: July 19, 2010 at 08:55 PM (#3593432)
Trade Youk to someone who's really salivating and you could re-stock the farm in one deal.

I've only been "blow it up and start again" since July 31, 2008 -- and so far since then I've seen steady decline overall, as I would have expected.
   54. Nasty Nate Posted: July 19, 2010 at 09:05 PM (#3593437)
same record at halfway point in 2010 as in 2009 and as in 2008 and one less than at halfway point in 2007. seems more like a great plain than a steady decline...
   55. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 19, 2010 at 09:17 PM (#3593449)
I don't know what "exposed" means in this context, really.


One hit, McDonald's 1st inning double on Saturday, from "non-regulars" in the three games this weekend. Maybe "exposed" isn't the right word but the nanny will hide anything else I want to call it.

I've only been "blow it up and start again" since July 31, 2008 -- and so far since then I've seen steady decline overall, as I would have expected.


I know, I know, don't feed the troll...

Record on 7/31/08 - 60-42, .588
Record since 7/31/08 - 182-132, .578

If that's the rate of decline, you'll forgive me for not panicking.
   56. shattnering his Dominicano G Strings on that Mound Posted: July 19, 2010 at 09:29 PM (#3593466)
Not a regular here at Sox Therapy, but one angle to this that hasn't been considered when discussing the odds of a trade, odds of the Sox winning a WC berth, or how improvements might impact the team, is that The Rays and Yankees are most likely not the same teams today as they will be during 'the stretch run', or, for that matter, the trading deadline.

There have been tons of rumors regarding both teams. If Tampa Bay truly is willing to move Bossman Jr, or a pitcher like Wade Davis, they can get a lot in return. The Yankees have a plethora of options due to their financial clout (we all know this). The Yankees don't have glaring holes, really, but can handle an upgrade that most teams wouldn't even consider (say, from Vasquez to Oswalt, for instance; and yes I do value Oswalt above Vasquez while also being aware that Vasquez has really turned it around since the dreadful beginning to his season).

To my mind at least, The [Get Back, Devil] Rays are the snake in the grass. They could really benefit from upgrades at DH, 1B, or 1st/2nd Starter types. Plus their farm is so loaded that they can afford to give away legit talent with no present fear of gutting the system.

I may well be wrong, but I just don't see how the Sox can overcome all of this and land a WC. They've simply lost too many key contributors and the primary competition is likely to improve if they stand pat.
   57. Famous Original Joe C Posted: July 19, 2010 at 09:37 PM (#3593473)
If that's the rate of decline, you'll forgive me for not panicking.

Jose, why even bother to engage him?
   58. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: July 20, 2010 at 01:24 AM (#3593674)
I may well be wrong, but I just don't see how the Sox can overcome all of this and land a WC. They've simply lost too many key contributors and the primary competition is likely to improve if they stand pat.

This is actually a really good point. Neither of the Sox' main competitors is going to remain static.

Great point about the Rays needing upgrades at easy positions, too. Oh, I know who they should get - Pat Burrell!
   59. Lassus Posted: July 20, 2010 at 01:42 AM (#3593696)
No one answered poor Vlad on the Doumit question, but it IS a serious question. He's not non-useful as a catcher.
   60. Pingu Posted: July 20, 2010 at 02:02 AM (#3593737)
Doumit would help, especially if you assume, as I do, that Victor is a goner.

I just looked up his $$$, $5.1M in 2011, then a 2-yr option for $7.25 2012 and $8.25 in 2013.
Presumably his injury history, poor defense, and inconsistent offense mean the Pirates wouldnt require multiple prospects in return.

I'd still rather have Iannetta. Younger, cheaper, and likely better, but obv depends on the players it took to get him.

If theres one trade a Red Sox team on the razors edge of being buyers or sellers SHOULD ABSOLUTELY make its got to be a catcher that is under contract for at least 2011. Iannetta, Snyder, Doumit seem the most obvious candidates there. It helps them this year, 3 catchers isnt the worst thing to have, esp when each can hit a tick, 2 could DH/1B if needed, and you're expanding rosters not long after the third one gets back. It also improves the team next year and beyond by fixing an upcoming glaring hole.
   61. Darren Posted: July 20, 2010 at 03:05 AM (#3593825)
Maybe the Red Sox could agree to take on an expensive contract in addition to the catcher so they don't have to give up as much. Wait...
   62. The District Attorney Posted: July 20, 2010 at 04:19 AM (#3593880)
Doumit has thrown out a pitiful 11% of basestealers this season. It's a far more reasonable 25% for his career, so I dunno what's up, but it seems like there's at least some risk of not actually fixing the problem you're having with V-Mart...
   63. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 20, 2010 at 12:57 PM (#3593968)
Jose, why even bother to engage him?


Sometimes I just can't help myself. He is very frustrating.
   64. Smiling Joe Hesketh Posted: July 20, 2010 at 03:25 PM (#3594086)
Just put him on ignore and be done with it. I fail to understand why people haven't done this.
   65. Pingu Posted: July 20, 2010 at 09:05 PM (#3594455)
Rockies turned down an offer of Jed Lowrie for Iannetta. Interesting start.
   66. shattnering his Dominicano G Strings on that Mound Posted: July 20, 2010 at 09:37 PM (#3594483)
Iannetta is a smart gamble, I think, and I like this move. Iannetta really seems like the sort of guy that could click with a hitting coach/ballpark/situation/etc and translate his AAA hitting to MLB. Lowrie seems like a sort of laughable opener to me, give his lost development due to injury, but regardless of one's opinion of him as a player, that's obviously not gonna get it done. But what would it take to get him?
   67. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:02 PM (#3595133)
As long as Little Timmy "Choke Away the 4-0 Lead to a Bad Hiting Team in a Crucial Game" Wakefield isn't our starting pitcher, the Red Sox are an awesome club: 48-30, .615 in the AL East.

We're even worse when he relieves (1-3). Give him a Day and send him on his way. He never was all that good, never could beat the good teams, but in 2010 he's sort of "single-fingertippedly" killing the Sox.

Tim Wakefield:

In the postasean: 5-7, 6.75(with 5 straight series equal to or higher than his career postseason ERA mark--IOW,
he's been especially bad since the semi-miraculous relief stint in the '04 ALCS)

Against the NYY's: 11-17, 4.92(with another ~10% of unearned runs)

Against winning teams: 67-94, 4.81(with another ~10% of unearned runs)

Not a good guy to have pitching important games. Important games are usually vs the NYY's, or another good team, or in October.

Looks like we might have our real starters back for a while. Maybe they can fuel a run.
   68. SoSH U at work Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:09 PM (#3595146)
Looks like we might have our real starters back for a while. Maybe they can fuel a run.


I'm just hopeful our real starter doesn't suck worse than Wakefield has, which, you know, he did during his time on the club this year.

And I've got to admit, every time I start to think Wake should just hang it up, I read one of your dickish posts on him and I hope he hangs around longer just to piss you off. Hang in there Timmy.
   69. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:27 PM (#3595173)
And I've got to admit, every time I start to think Wake should just hang it up, I read one of your dickish posts on him and I hope he hangs around longer just to piss you off. Hang in there Timmy.


You might try to be less impressionable, then.
Yes, I'm too mean to the multi-millionarire Timmy, by pointing out facts about his actual record.
And you might also improve your reading skills:


we might have our real starters back for a while



I'm just hopeful our real starter doesn't suck worse than Wakefield has


edit: clarity, sarcasm
   70. Pingu Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:33 PM (#3595180)
Anyone else notice a difference in Wakefields delivery last night?? I cant put my finger on what it was, but different arm action and his body seems to have a lot more movement, especially side-to-side and especially from the windup. I didnt see his Texas start, but unless I havent been paying close attention, it looks different from earlier this year and previous years.

Anyways, he's clearly not too good right now (even tho he wasnt awful last nite) and I feel bad he's going to get bumped again, but barring trade theres no alternative.

What do you guys think about Dustin Richardson. I'd like to keep him and Bowden on the roster until they prove they shouldnt be. Is it too early to think about releasing Okajima?
   71. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:40 PM (#3595185)
BTW, when I just re-looked at those numbers I posted above on Wakefield, the thing that jumps-out is that
the regular season W-L records seem worse than they ought to, given the teams he pitched for, and their ability to
put up runs. A 4.8ish ERA for a Red Sox starter from '95-'10 ought to get you a better than a .416 winning %, no?

Perhaps this is where I get my impression of Wakefield as a pitcher who finds a way to lose the big game. Because he, like, does?

Here's hoping he either tuns it around or enjoys a happy retirement.
   72. SoSH U at work Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:43 PM (#3595188)
I can read just fine. You're looking forward to the return of all our real starters, even though one of them was positively awful in eights starts this year (worse, in fact than Wake), an item that seems to consistently elude you and your eternal quest for facts.

You might try to be less impressionable, then.


Hey, I'm not perfect. When it comes to Wake, anything that makes you miserable makes me a little happier.
   73. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:44 PM (#3595190)
Is it too early to think about releasing Okajima?


Yes.
   74. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:50 PM (#3595201)
even though one of them was positively awful in eights starts this year


He was, we are told, injured. And, unlike Wake, he has not repeatedly let me down in big games over the years.
BTW, this was an under-credited high pressure dominant start by the man:


http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/BOS/BOS200709150.shtml

I was among the pants-pissers of 2007. Yes.
   75. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:57 PM (#3595208)
When it comes to Wake, anything that makes you miserable makes me a little happier.


So when he, say, ruins the 2010 Red Sox season, that makes you happier? You need to work on this aspect of your personality. Its not good for one to delight in hate.

Myself, I wish he didn't stink. I like the man. But he does stink. And he was never all that good to begin with.
   76. SoSH U at work Posted: July 21, 2010 at 04:59 PM (#3595209)
BTW, this was an under-credited high pressure dominant start by the man:


http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/BOS/BOS200709150.shtml


He was great in 2007, no question. Enough so (along with Lowell) to make the ######## about the Hanley deal silly.

That season is also the only time he's been that guy you want to pretend he is during his time in Boston.
   77. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:02 PM (#3595214)
It appears to me that Wakefield may be washed up. He's 43, and I'm afraid he's lost the ability to prevent hard contact, which is the bread and butter of every knuckleballer. The Sox need to think about when to cut bait. Hopefully they can keep the front five healthy down the stretch.

Teddy's hated Wake for years, while Wake steadily put up solid numbers, did whatever was asked of him, and played many key roles in the greatest decade in Red Sox history. Eventually, of course, like all ballplayers and all everyones, Wakefield would decline. And now it seems like he has declined, and teddy is using that as an excuse to act like he was right all along. He's wrong.
   78. SoSH U at work Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:03 PM (#3595215)
So when he, say, ruins the 2010 Red Sox season, that makes you happier? You need to work on this aspect of your personality. Its not good for one to delight in hate.


I'll get right on that.
   79. Pingu Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:03 PM (#3595216)
Excuse me for saying, but you two sound like an old married couple.
   80. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:04 PM (#3595218)
Myself, I wish he didn't stink. I like the man. But he does stink. And he was never all that good to begin with.
But he only started stinking this year. You can slice his numbers in whatever random directions you like and spit back only the bad stuff, but the simple fact is that he's been a solidly average pitcher for years and years, and it's been great to have him on the club.
   81. SoSH U at work Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:05 PM (#3595221)
It appears to me that Wakefield may be washed up. He's 43, and I'm afraid he's lost the ability to prevent hard contact, which is the bread and butter of every knuckleballer. The Sox need to think about when to cut bait. Hopefully they can keep the front five healthy down the stretch.


I tend to agree with this, and as much as I hoped he'd catch Clemens, I'd rather see him announce his retirement than continue to scuffle as he has.
   82. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:24 PM (#3595236)
It's worth noting that Wake is the Red Sox' 6th starter. I would bet that most teams aren't getting appreciably better than 5.58 out of their #6 starter.

Looking it up I'm struck by the fact that the Rays have used five starters all year long and the Yankees have had only two starts outside their top five. Well that just won't do.

Jed Lowrie, starting shortstop sayeth Extra Bases.
   83. Chip Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:27 PM (#3595237)
I love how a mid-week road game in the third week of July becomes "crucial" merely because Wakefield was the starter.

6 IP, 3 ER? Quality start! If Lackey had done the same, Mr. Statistical Cherrypicking Situational Logician would be telling us that's good pitching.
   84. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:27 PM (#3595242)
You can slice his numbers in whatever random directions you like


This is intellectually dishonest. That's not what I did. I feel I demonstrated that Wake has never been able to
pitch well against good teams or pitch well when it counts the most. Big games matter, they're not random.

He has markedly less successful pitcher than the Red Sox teams he has pitched for, over his career.
Were he solidly average, you'd expect him to be about as successful as the teams he has pitched for.

He was never all that good. Now he stinks. But I've alreaqdy said that.
   85. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:31 PM (#3595245)
If you want to just go by Red Sox wins, here are the Red Sox records in games started by Wakefield:

1995: 18-9
1996: 18-14
1997: 15-14
1998: 22-11
1999: 7-10
2000: 8-9
2001: 6-11
2002: 11-4
2003: 16-17
2004: 16-14
2005: 18-15
2006: 11-12
2007: 19-12
2008: 15-15
2009: 14-7
2010: 5-11
-----------
Total: 219-185

From 2003-2010, the Sox have gone 114-103 in games Wakefield started.
   86. Pingu Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:32 PM (#3595246)
And now he's headed (temporarily perhaps) to the pen where Atchinson's ability to pitch multiple innings makes him somewhat redundant. Its likely he'll be needed again at some point, but right now, he's not a good use of a roster spot.
   87. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:32 PM (#3595250)
I love how a mid-week road game in the third week of July becomes "crucial" merely because Wakefield was the starter


It is when half your line-ups out, and the 2 teams you're chasing have lost already, and you've been spotted a 4 run lead.
The team needed him to hold that lead. He failed. Typically.


"6 IP, 3 ER? Quality start! If Lackey had done the same, Mr. Statistical Cherrypicking Situational Logician would be telling us that's good pitching."

No, I'd say it was typical pitching for Lackey. Lackey beats good teams, Wakefield doesn't. Provide evidence that
Wakefield has not pitched far worse against good teams or in the playoffs. Oh right. You can't.
   88. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:34 PM (#3595252)
This is intellectually dishonest. That's not what I did. I feel I demonstrated that Wake has never been able to
pitch well against good teams or pitch well when it counts the most. Big games matter, they're not random.
During the regular season, it doesn't matter whether you're facing the Angels or the Royals - every game counts the same. As I showed above, the Red Sox have a perfectly solid record in games he started.

It may be the case that latter-day Tim Wakefield will pitch worse than expected in the playoffs, and should be shunted out if possible. During hte regular season, though, Wakefield's overall numbers tell the story.
The team needed him to hold that lead. He failed. Typically.
No, it's not typical - not until this season. The Red Sox have done well in games Wake has started. He's been a solidly average starting pitcher.
   89. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:38 PM (#3595259)
Were he solidly average, you'd expect him to be about as successful as the teams he has pitched for.
No, you wouldn't. Not unless these clubs had average pitching staffs, and the Red Sox have had solidly above average pitching staffs. Wakefield has consistently been a 4th-5th starter. Obviously no one expects a team to win the same number of games with their 4th-5th starter on the mound as with their best pitchers going.
   90. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:39 PM (#3595262)
Again, anybody who wishes to, find evidence to refute this:

Not a good guy (Wakefield) to have pitching important games. Important games are usually vs the NYY's, or another good team, or in October.

Last night, he failed at his specialty: beating the sub-.500 team.
   91. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:43 PM (#3595270)
You haven't shown that the numbers presented meet any level of statistical significance. They might, but I'm not convinced.

Even if it is the case, if a guy happens to be better at beating weaker clubs than would be expected, and worse at beating better clubs, this is close to meaningless for his regular season value.

Wake's sucked this year. It's your insistence that he's sucked in the past that everyone's disputing.
   92. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 05:59 PM (#3595282)
Obviously no one expects a team to win the same number of games with their 4th-5th starter on the mound as with their best pitchers going.


Of course not. They'd expect him to win at the rate of the team, I suppose, were he average. Those other guys are gonna
pitch .600-.650 ball.

You left out that the Sox could, more or less, always hit a little from 1995-2010
   93. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 06:05 PM (#3595290)
They might, but I'm not convinced.


Nonsense. You simply explain them away. Because you like the ballplayer involved.

It's your insistence that he's sucked in the past that everyone's disputing.


Strawman. I said he was never all that good, ie mediocre, and that he sucked against good teams, the NYY's, and in the playoffs.
Most big games would fit into these categories.
   94. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 06:10 PM (#3595296)
B-R has win probability added. If a guy is "un-clutch" in the way you've described it - pitching worse with a small lead, always blowing the game when it matters - then WPA should precisely account for this.

In fact, Tim Wakefield has been, just as I've been claiming, perfectly average in WPA for the Red Sox. Here are the numbers:

1995: +2.9
1996: -0.5
1997: +0.0
1998: +0.2
1999: -0.2
2000: -0.0
2001: -0.6
2002: +2.3
2003: +0.5
2004: -1.4
2005: +1.5
2006: +0.0
2007: +0.5
2008: +1.0
2009: +1.0
2010: -1.0

For a total of 6.9 wins above average by win probability added. Again, the criticism of Wakefield that you've consistently articulated is one that is covered quite precisely by WPA. If he "typically" lost the lead when it was given to him, that's exactly what WPA would show. It hasn't been typical, so it's not in the WPA numbers.
   95. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 06:11 PM (#3595298)
if a guy happens to be better at beating weaker clubs than would be expected, and worse at beating better clubs, this is close to meaningless for his regular season value.



When you play in the AL East it really, really isn't meaningless.

And I'm not sure he's especially good at beating up on the bad teams.
   96. tfbg9 Posted: July 21, 2010 at 06:21 PM (#3595312)
WPA? WPA is a bit of a garbage stat.

And maybe he just WPA's against crappy teams? :-)

In 1392.0 innings against good teams, Wakefield has won at a .416 clip, and posted an ERA .80 higher than against the weak teams. I don't know if the ERA spread is particularly big, but its far bigger than Beckett and Lackey's.

Put it this way. The average good team is at what, .560? So if the average Red Sox team during Wake's tenure is at .550 or so, wouldn't you expect something near a .500 record in ballgames vs these teams? Not .416?

I suppose this is the kind of thing that gives me the distinct impression that Wake can't beat good teams.

I need to get some work done.
   97. Nasty Nate Posted: July 21, 2010 at 06:24 PM (#3595314)
Of course not. They'd expect him to win at the rate of the team, I suppose, were he average.


not necessarily, the 'rate of the team' changes depending on the success of the best SP. The success of, say, Lester doesn't say anything about the success of Wakefield, but it would affect how Wake succeeds compared to the rate of the team.
   98. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 06:27 PM (#3595321)
Here's another way of getting at it. I already found the real Red Sox record in games Wakefield pitched. I got Wakefield's run support and RA numbers over the same period, and found Wakefield's pythagorean expected record for each season, then compared that record to Wake's real record. Once again, no evidence of teddy's "unclutchy" claim.

This is season, real record, expected record, difference. (I couldn't run the numbers for 1999-2002 because his relief numbers screw things up.)

1995: 18-9, 18-9, +0.1
1996: 18-14, 12-20, +6.0
1997: 15-14, 15-14, +0.1
1998: 22-11, 21-12, +1.0
2003: 16-17, 19-14, -2.7
2004: 16-14, 15-15, +1.0
2005: 18-15, 18-15, +0.1
2006: 11-12, 10-13, +0.5
2007: 19-12, 17-14, +2.2
2008: 15-15, 17-13, -1.8
2009: 14-7, 13-8, +1.0
2010: 5-11, 5-11, -0.2
--------------------------
Total: 187-151, 180-158, +7.3

Once again, no evidence of unclutchiness. The team's winning percentage matches what you'd expect given Wake's pitching and the team's offense.
   99. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: July 21, 2010 at 06:29 PM (#3595324)
I suppose this is the kind of thing that gives me the distincde impression that Wake can't beat good teams.
But, you see, during the regular season, I don't care. If your only criticism of Wake is that he "can't beat good teams", I think you're criticizing him for something that's close to meaningless. As long as his overall numbers are average - as I've shown they are from many vantage points - then he's been average and his contribution to the Red Sox has been exactly that.
   100. SoSH U at work Posted: July 21, 2010 at 06:32 PM (#3595329)
Once again, no evidence of unclutchiness. The team's winning percentage matches what you'd expect given Wake's pitching and the team's offense.


But did you separate out the games from the big games*?

* Big games being defined, in the Teddionary, as those games Wakefield loses.
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