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   1. Dan Szymborski Posted: December 19, 2005 at 05:52 AM (#1783833)
Andy Marte threw a party, everyone was there
Two T Fruity, laid a beauty, and everyone went out for air
   2. jim in providence Posted: December 19, 2005 at 05:54 AM (#1783835)
I'd like it if they liked us, but I don't think they like us.
   3. Joel W Posted: December 19, 2005 at 06:49 AM (#1783867)
Look, if there's no market for Lowell and Youkilis and you want to start Marte, well then...you put Youkilis at first, you start Marte and 3rd, you mix and match Lowell in there, maybe try putting Marte in Right when Trot needs to sit, get Lowell some at bats, etc. Maybe you get creative wih Youkilis and sneak him in at second if Loretta needs to sit on a day when one of our fly-ball pitchers is starting (isn't that all of them). You have a lot of talent there, and yes, I think Lowell can still be a solid contributor. Don't sell low, just try to make it work, get them all ABs and then try to sell if a deal comes up. I really can't think of anybody who fits Darren's criteria. Sizemore? Bay? No and No, they just won't be dealt. It just doesn't work, so just have strong bats coming off the bench, you can't have too many good hitters.
   4. Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 19, 2005 at 12:15 PM (#1783989)
Marte's MLE was pretty unimpressive (325/415) for a projected starter. Hella impressive for a 21-year-old, yeah, but not a line that absolutely demands a starting job in the majors the next year.

I tend to think that the best way to handle all the uncertainty (variance, OleP...) in the Red Sox' projections is to hang on to as much depth as possible. I think it's pretty likely that two out of Youkilis/Lowell/Marte will have solid MLB seasons. The issue is how to make the balance work, when to demote Lowell to a part-time role if he's struggling and Marte is ripping it up. And while the prospect of Francona in charge of that situation does worry me, I'd be more worried about heading into 2006 without this sort of depth at the corners.
   5. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: December 19, 2005 at 01:09 PM (#1783996)
If the Mariners lost their minds, you wouldn't do King Felix for Marte? I certainly would.
   6. Passed Ball Posted: December 19, 2005 at 02:42 PM (#1784024)
BJ Upton
   7. OlePerfesser Posted: December 19, 2005 at 03:20 PM (#1784049)
Right you are, MCA: if you got a high-risk mix of players, you can mitigate by having a lot of 'em. And the FO appears to recognize that among the SPs, RPs, IF... but in the OF, they're both risky and thin. GOT to make some moves there.

Recent quotes from the FO makes it seem like they're thinking of Euclis primarily as a 1B these days, and will bring in an Olderdude successor like Snow to pair with him. Or Travis Lee. Or one could certainly see Choi, if the price is right.
   8. TDF, situational idiot Posted: December 19, 2005 at 03:24 PM (#1784055)
Why is Youkilis untradable?
   9. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: December 19, 2005 at 03:28 PM (#1784060)
I know we're talking about us and not them, but I don't think MLB front offices feel the TINSTAAPP in their bones.
   10. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: December 19, 2005 at 03:31 PM (#1784063)
Why is Youkilis untradable?

Because he's cheap, young, good, and we have him for another 4 years.
   11. TVerik, the gum-snappin' hairdresser Posted: December 19, 2005 at 03:34 PM (#1784068)
Because he's cheap, young, good, and we have him for another 4 years.

I read Darren's point as the complete opposite - that he is no longer a "prospect" but isn't really a big leaguer either.

The Red Sox have a big logjam at 3B, but Youks doesn’t have much trade value
   12. OlePerfesser Posted: December 19, 2005 at 04:08 PM (#1784132)
So, Graffanino has accepted arb and will be back.

They've definitely got plenty of depth (or, as those of us who are variance-obsessed would call it, "suck insurance") in the IF. Tentative depth chart:

1B: Euclis; an Olderdude successor; Lowell; Loretta
2B: Loretta; Graffanino; Cora; Pedroia
SS: Cora; Graffanino; Loretta; Pedroia
3B: Lowell; Euclis; Marte; Loretta

Graff's decision might cool their interest in signing the FLA A-Gonz.

Time to get busy with that OF depth chart.
   13. PJ Martinez Posted: December 19, 2005 at 04:11 PM (#1784136)
Youkilis is not untradeable, but he's probably more valuable as a player than as trade bait. Because Boston hasn't given him a shot, he doesn't seem to have "bona fide MLer" status (even though he clearly deserves it, IMO). Also, his one major skill, OBP, is not a "tool," and while that means less than it used to, it still means something, I think. Oakland doesn't need him, nor does Arizona, I don't think, or Toronto... not sure who out there would both want him and value him sufficiently to make trading him worth it, at this point.
   14. 1k5v3L Posted: December 19, 2005 at 04:19 PM (#1784147)
Youkilis will be 27 next March. Is that still considered young? He's younger than Sarah Jessica Parker, by about two decades, but he's getting long in the tooth--and only has 287 major league at bats to his credit.

Marte could probably use another year in AAA. He's struggling this year in winter ball, and the Sox really need to make sure that his elbow is indeed fine, regardless of what his agent says. No need to rush him.

The Sox should seek to give Youkilis as many at bats this year as possible and try to pawn him off next offseason for some real need--and free up 3b for Marte. He is the future 3bman in BOS, not Youkilis.

And I wouldn't trade King Felix for Marte. That's crazy talk.
   15. Rick Vaughn Posted: December 19, 2005 at 04:24 PM (#1784166)
Youk was the only ML-ready infield position player with options last season. That's why he was up and down so much last season. He definitely deserves to be in Boston.
   16. s.zielinski Posted: December 19, 2005 at 04:35 PM (#1784185)
Sizemore? Bay [for Marte]? No and No, they just won't be dealt. It just doesn't work, so just have strong bats coming off the bench, you can't have too many good hitters.

I agree. If the Pirates would not trade Jack Wilson for Andy Marte when the Braves had him pegged for AAA while playing behind Chipper Jones, I can't imagine the Pirates trading Bay for Marte straight up or for any feasible package of players the Red Sox could put together. To be sure, Marte is a fine prospect. But his minor league career has been such that he inspires far less confidence than, say, Miguel Cabrera, Joe Mauer, Felix Hernandez or Mark Prior did when they were ready to break into the majors. The fact that the Braves traded Marte for a shortstop (Renteria) in the decline phase of his career already tells us that Marte is not an A list prospect.

The Red Sox might be better off letting Marte develop, perhaps into the kind of player Mike Lowell was before his decline, instead of waiting in vain for another team to make a big mistake. Even the McClatchy Pirates aren’t that dumb.
   17. Dizzypaco Posted: December 19, 2005 at 04:37 PM (#1784188)
Both Graffanino and Loretta have played short in the past. Anyone have an idea of whether they are good at it and/or whether they have expressed a willingness to do so in the future?
   18. Kevin Sweet Child Romine (aco) Posted: December 19, 2005 at 04:57 PM (#1784225)
If a player accepts arbitration, can he be traded right away, or is it like he signed as a FA and can't be traded until July(?) without his permission? I ask because I don't see the sense in having Loretta and Graffanino on the same roster. Graffanino might be more attractive to other teams as a trade target if he is signed for 1-year only and won't cost a first-round pick.
   19. Kyle S Posted: December 19, 2005 at 05:00 PM (#1784235)
i think you guys should trade him to fill your hole at SS. I'm offering a former All Star and even might kick in a few bucks to help pay the freight. How's Edgar Renteria and $8m sound?
   20. 1k5v3L Posted: December 19, 2005 at 05:02 PM (#1784242)
aco, I think he cannot be traded until June 1st without his permission.
   21. 1k5v3L Posted: December 19, 2005 at 05:08 PM (#1784256)
this is interesting (from benmaller)

A 33-year-old veteran of 10 major league seasons, Graffanino earned $1.1 million last season in the second year of a two-year, $2.2 million deal. He finished the year with a .309 average, seven home runs and 38 RBI in time split with the Sox and Kansas City Royals, meaning he could be in position to earn roughly $2 million in arbitration. Just the same, salaries earned through the arbitration process are generally non-guaranteed, meaning the Sox could cut Graffanino during spring training and be responsible for only a fraction of his salary. Because the Sox do not regard Graffanino as a candidate to play shortstop, he is not expected to impact the club’s pursuit of other options at that position.
   22. Joel W Posted: December 19, 2005 at 05:30 PM (#1784285)
Did we lose a thread talking about Graffanino at SS? Cause I remember making a post about how our defense just won't matter that much in the infield next year since all of our pitchers will be flyball pitchers, but then questioning myself on how much that will actually translate into runs, and now I can't find it.
   23. Joel W Posted: December 19, 2005 at 05:31 PM (#1784287)
Nevermind, it's in newsblog!
   24. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: December 19, 2005 at 05:33 PM (#1784295)
The Sox should seek to give Youkilis as many at bats this year as possible and try to pawn him off next offseason for some real need--and free up 3b for Marte. He is the future 3bman in BOS, not Youkilis.

Andy Marte is definitly the future of the franchise at 3B.

what about 1B? Youkiils is probably the best 1B we have in the system right now.
   25. ElGuaposGhost Posted: December 19, 2005 at 06:14 PM (#1784399)
Darren - the two in Zona - Jackson or Quentin
   26. Dizzypaco Posted: December 19, 2005 at 06:25 PM (#1784429)
what about 1B? Youkiils is probably the best 1B we have in the system right now.

This may be true, but its not a lot of comfort. Youkilis has no speed, probably no power, and not much defense. He gets on base, but that's of limited value if the Sox bat him toward the bottom of the order, especially given his lack of speed.

A third baseman who gets on base but does little else has value. A first baseman who does the same doesn't have much value. When I see Youkilis at first, I think "Dave Magadan".
   27. 1k5v3L Posted: December 19, 2005 at 06:30 PM (#1784444)
Darren - the two in Zona - Jackson or Quentin

Except that AZ is trying to trade away its current 3bman, not acquire another one. And AZ isn't peddling Q or J. Which isn't to say that Marte shouldn't be of an interest to AZ (should be of interest to any team), it's that AZ has cheap young options at 3b, and should have more when Santos moves there, and potentially if/when Justin Upton moves there too. Unless Upton stays at SS and Drew moves to 2b.
   28. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: December 19, 2005 at 06:53 PM (#1784519)
I wouldn't trade Marte for him, obviously, but does Shawn Green represent anything remotely like a CF option? I know he played some last year - was he a disaster? A Manny, Green, Nixon outfield with a flyball staff would be a nightmare, but Sizemore is not just going to fall into the Red Sox laps.
   29. 1k5v3L Posted: December 19, 2005 at 06:57 PM (#1784534)
god bless you, griffy. you can have shawn green for a pair of manny's cleats. that being said, even though he seemed to make good reads on balls in cf, and managed to glove most of what he could reach, he just doesn't have the speed to play cf. and time isn't on his side. plus, he has a no trade clause and can only be traded to sdp, sfg, and ana without concent.
   30. Joel W Posted: December 19, 2005 at 07:01 PM (#1784552)
.268/.400/.417 Dizzy, that is the line ZiPS gives Youkilis. I think that seems about dead on. That has A LOT of value. At the bottom of the lineup, it turns the lineup over. At the top, it sets up the sluggers. Speed or no speed, a first baseman who gets on base at .400 and slugs anything over .400 will be really valuable. No, he won't be Carlos Delgado, but it's a very nice cheap solution at 1b. These are exactly the types of players you need to score a ton of runs. Slot Youkilis right ahead of Tek in the 6th slot, or in the lead-off spot, and he'll help the team.

There's nothing wrong with being Dave Maggadan.
   31. Famous Original Joe C Posted: December 19, 2005 at 07:02 PM (#1784555)
Andy Marte threw a party, everyone was there
Two T Fruity, laid a beauty, and everyone went out for air


Long live Mr. Show.
   32. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: December 19, 2005 at 07:32 PM (#1784638)
Didn't we all have Youkilis as a slightly above-average 3B?

I'm a big "fielding" guy. I think YOukilis would be a good fielding 1B.. combined with his numbers, should make him very valuable.
   33. ellsbury my heart at wounded knee Posted: December 19, 2005 at 07:38 PM (#1784660)
It's hard coming up with reasonable-sounding trades in which the Red Sox give up bascially nothing and get a somewhat useful player back. Green isn't even that useful. At least he's Jewish.

Long live Mr. Show.

David Cross is a Red Sox fan, as is Sarah Silverman.
   34. Dizzypaco Posted: December 19, 2005 at 08:24 PM (#1784796)
A first baseman who is a good fielder, and hits .268/.400/.417, but who is slow and hits in front of Alex Cora, has limited value. He would be nowhere near as good as Kevin Millar was before 2005.

It wouldn't be the end of the world, but its nothing that great either.

One of the reasons that the Sox were so good the last few years is that Theo and the gang made sure they were likely to be above average offensively at virtually every position, with a couple of big bats in the middle. That may be coming to an end.
   35. Joel W Posted: December 19, 2005 at 08:36 PM (#1784840)
A sample of a Dave Magadan translated line w/ EQA listed after the standard ba/obp/slg

.279/.402/.402/.286

Kevin Millar 2004
.295/.386/.479/.295
Kevin Millar 2003
.273/.354/.480/.282

So if Kevin Youkilis puts up a .260/.400/.415 line, he will be extactly as good as Kevin Millar before 2005. Yes he'd be slow. Millar was slow, so he doesn't gain there.

One of the reasons the Sox have had such a good offense the past few years is that they've had guys who get on base all the way through the lineup, with two big bats in the middle. Kevin Youkilis, for all we know, will be at least average at first, and will score runs.
   36. Dizzypaco Posted: December 19, 2005 at 08:43 PM (#1784860)
Not every EQA is equal in terms of the runs it creates. If Youkilis hits at the top of the order, he's valuable, maybe more than Millar. If he hits seventh or eighth and they have a non-hitter at short, I'll take Millar (pre 2005 version).
   37. Joel W Posted: December 19, 2005 at 08:45 PM (#1784865)
Also, a solution to the Alex Cora problem is to bat Youkilis either 1st or 9th or 6th. 9th he'd just turn the lineup over for the top. 6th you could bat him ahead of Varitek who should slug pretty well. 1st he'd be a solid leadoff hitter and wouldn't GIDP very often, especially if Alex Cora is batting 9th since he'll never get on!

There's another solution, and that's to not have Alex f'ing Cora as our opening day SS and instead play Pedroia.
   38. sublime Posted: December 19, 2005 at 09:27 PM (#1784969)
This may be true, but its not a lot of comfort. Youkilis has no speed, probably no power, and not much defense. He gets on base, but that's of limited value if the Sox bat him toward the bottom of the order, especially given his lack of speed.


A guy who gets on base 40% of the time and costs 350k is of limited value to a team?

If his ZIPs are true and he puts up a .815ops he would have been sandwiched between Lyle Overbay and Dmitri Young using last years stats. Usuing EqA, we are looking at a Sean Case type, again for 350k. Of course, he could suck but so could any other guy we hand the job to. His OBP skills are not offset by the fact he will be in the bottom half of the order, they are probably magnified.
   39. Dave Cyprian Posted: December 20, 2005 at 12:45 AM (#1785415)
Tony Maz is reporting that Graffinino is going to accept arbitration. Good news if you ask me. Depth.
   40. Dave Cyprian Posted: December 20, 2005 at 12:48 AM (#1785421)
I guess this was covered. Sorry.
   41. Dizzypaco Posted: December 20, 2005 at 12:48 AM (#1785422)
Millar hit 20 to 25 home runs a year for several years, with high slugging percentages. The chances that Youkilis will hit 20 to 25 home runs a year, or have a slugging percentage of .500 over several years, is quite small.

Getting on base is less of an asset with Alex Cora coming up after you than with Manny Ramirez and David Ortiz. And somehow, I think pitchers will come right after Alex Cora no matter who is batting before him.
   42. John DiFool2 Posted: December 20, 2005 at 12:48 AM (#1785424)
A third baseman who gets on base but does little else has value. A first baseman who does the same doesn't have much value. When I see Youkilis at first, I think "Dave Magadan".

Or Carlos Quintana.
   43. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: December 20, 2005 at 02:24 AM (#1785576)
How "slow" is Kevin Youkilis? By all accounts he's AT LEAST faster than Kevin millar, Manny, and Papi.
   44. sublime Posted: December 20, 2005 at 02:42 AM (#1785610)
a lot of this 'debate' on youk being low in the batting order may be moot depending on where damon lands. if he doesnt resign, i can see youk batting 2nd (of course depending on who they replace damon with, jeremy reed would be nice). personally, if youk is putting up a .400 OPB i think he should be in the 2 hole regardless.
   45. Curt Schillings Bloody Red Sock Posted: December 20, 2005 at 05:17 PM (#1786255)
Since I live in Richmond, VA, and my season tickets are about 40 feet from third base, I got to see a lot of Andy Marte last year. He battled through some minor injuries for the first half of the season, but this kid can play. He can really mash the ball – in a way that doesn’t show up in the numbers (The Diamond in Richmond is a strong pitcher’s park—404 to center and 385-390 in the alleys), and he has great reflexes and a good arm at the hot corner. I think he could make the jump to the majors this year if pressed, but the Sox have lots of third basemen, so he really should spend one more year in AAA.

And the reason Atlanta gave him up for a 30+ year-old SS is that they don’t have anyone at SS who would be ML ready in the next three years. And, despite being in his decline phase, Renteria is still a pretty good option at short.
   46. Noel Redding Posted: December 21, 2005 at 09:10 PM (#1788837)
Trading Youkilis for Billy Hall would make sense for both teams.

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