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Sunday, December 04, 2016

Wintry Mixing

With the winter meetings kicking off it is likely that we will see some activity on the Red Sox roster front.  This will of course come with a whole bunch of really stupid rumors being kicked around and probably at least one rumor that seems really stupid but actually comes true.  For now I have a few thoughts about potential moves and activity.

The Incomings;

Edwin Encarnacion - If he is getting a Yoenis Cespedes type deal, sign me right the heck up.  I realize the arguments for not signing a dedicated DH but boy oh boy does putting Encarnacion in the middle of the lineup address the absence of David Ortiz pretty conclusively.  If I were Dave Dombrowski it is hard to envision a contract that would be less than four years that I would not hand to EE.  With all that said my hunch is that Encarnacion is returning to Toronto.  They seem eager to keep him, the dollars are not totally outrageous and there does not seem to be a market burgeoning for him for some reason.

Pedro Alvarez - This is a recent rumor and if it is possible to love and hate a move all at once that is how I feel about this move.  In a vacuum I like the idea of Alvarez a lot.  I think he could be a guy who slots into this team really well and at a reasonable price.  However, while I love John Farrell I am not convinced he is the right manager to balance a guy like Alvarez who needs to be platooned.  On top of that, a platoon DH seems like a hell of a thing to give up a roster spot for.

Chris Sale/Zach Greinke - Look, let’s not beat around the bush, trading for either of these guys is a great move.  Sale has the benefit of being under an incredibly favorable contract.  However, my feeling is that while the Sox can use pitching (you NEVER have enough pitching) adding those guys will come at a cost that I think is not the right move for the Sox.

Matt Holliday - This one popped up on MLBTR today and…ick.  He’s aging, he’s declining and he doesn’t stay healthy.  I just don’t really see him being beneficial to this roster.

The Outgoings;

Blake Swihart - I love Blake Swihart, I want Blake Swihart to be the Red Sox catcher for many years, I think the Red Sox should trade him.  This seems like nonsense but I am basing this on my read that the Sox do not seem nearly as high on him as I am.  If they are not going to use him regularly I would like to see them move him along and get some value for him.  I will never understand why the Sox gave up on him so darned quickly last year but that is what you re going to do.

Jackie Bradley - I am considerably less interested in dealing Bradley than others are I think.  While I agree that the Sox would be selling high and that Benintendi could fill his spot but he is still very good.  Adding power to his game bumps up his offensive profile and makes him even more productive.

Pablo Sandoval - I did not really like the signing when it happened and I am not really keen on keeping him around.  Having said that if the Sox are going to trade him I don’t want to see them give up a bunch of money.  Unless he is some kind of clubhouse problem, and I have read nothing that says he is, then he is not an addition by subtraction guy.  Keep him around, let him try and earn playing time and until the Sox have someone who is being blocked by the Fat Panda there is no reason to rush him out the door.

With all of this said I look forward to something completely out of the blue happening.  Dombrowski is not afraid to make a splash and while all signs point to the Sox being relatively quiet this winter strange things have a way of happening.

Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 04, 2016 at 03:59 PM | 64 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. villageidiom Posted: December 04, 2016 at 07:21 PM (#5362307)
Matt Holliday - This one popped up on MLBTR today and…ick.  He’s aging, he’s declining and he doesn’t stay healthy.
So, naturally, he's headed to the Yankees.
   2. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 04, 2016 at 08:53 PM (#5362336)
I'm not thrilled at what appears to be the plan but I'm glad to see guys like Holliday and Beltran coming off the board.
   3. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 05, 2016 at 11:47 AM (#5362565)
Brian Dozier seems to be on the market. I know he plays second now but could he move to third base for a year? Even assuming a regression to 2014/2015 levels he seems like a guy who would be a big upgrade at that spot. I don't really know anything about his defense. He's only got one more year on his deal so while he will be costly he shouldn't be too outrageous.
   4. villageidiom Posted: December 05, 2016 at 01:12 PM (#5362654)
Brian Dozier seems to be on the market. I know he plays second now but could he move to third base for a year?
I don't think he has the arm for it.

I know, I know, Fans Scouting Report. But...

2016
59/60/72/74 Reaction/Instincts
63/57/70/67 Acceleration/First Few Steps
55/52/64/62 Velocity/Sprint Speed
59/59/71/69 Hands/Catching
69/66/70/73 Release/Footwork
44/42/58/72 Throwing Strength
64/59/70/68 Throwing Accuracy

The first set of numbers in each row are Dozier's ratings in the Fans Scouting Report this year. They are generally consistent with prior years, but reaction has been declining for a couple of years and hands/catching has dropped this year as well.

The second set of numbers is what I'd project for his 2017 ratings. I calculated typical aging patterns for each attribute, and then projected forward to his age-30 season from each of his last 3 years, and averaged those. If a number doesn't decline from his 2016, it's because his 2016 was abnormally low (or prior years abnormally high) even after you consider normal aging patterns.

The third set of numbers are the 10th best ratings in MLB in 2016, at 2B, Dozier's main position. I generally use this as a benchmark of whether the player is among the best at his position. (It is rare for a player to be top-10 at his position in all attributes. Only one player had 100 G at 2B and got a top-10 rating for everything in 2016: Javier Baez. At 3B, only Machado. At SS, only Simmons and Lindor. In CF nobody, but in under 100 G only Kiermaier and Marisnick made it. You get the idea.) What I find meaningful for a shorthand view is how far under these standards someone falls, on average. Based on those standards Dozier is roughly 18th at 2B skills.

The fourth set of numbers are the 10th best ratings in MLB in 2016, at 3B. Based on his skill gaps relative to those standards Dozier would've been around 19th at 3B in 2016.

That's fine for a shorthand view, but the key is to look for where the differences arise, not on average differences overall. And the two that stand out are Reaction/Instincts (59 vs. 74) and Throwing Strength (44 vs. 72). These are two key elements at 3B, and he falls far short of the skills often exhibited there. The arm is, to me, the more troubling issue.

I took his 2017 projected values and Frankensteined a Brian Dozier using the closest match to 2016 ratings of 3B with at least 100 games. That gets us:

Reaction of Jose Ramirez
Acceleration of Todd Frazier
Velocity of Evan Longoria
Hands of Todd Frazier
Release of Todd Frazier
Throwing Strength of Yunel Escobar
Throwing Accuracy of Josh Donaldson

So, basically, Todd Frazier, except with a very bad arm for 3B and a slightly better reaction time. For reference, in 2016 Frazier was (defensively speaking) a replacement level 3B per BB-Ref and below replacement level per Fangraphs. So, Frazier, but much worse at a key 3B skill.

I think most people would tolerate him at 3B because the sin of a weaker arm at 3B usually manifests on 5-4-3 opportunities and slow rollers, which optically are often viewed as a success by the runner rather than a failure by the original fielder. But tolerating him, and his actually being good, are different things.
   5. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 05, 2016 at 01:21 PM (#5362661)
Thanks, that's really interesting.

Also interesting, Rich Hill is suddenly appropriately named, 3/48. Couldn't be happier for him.
   6. villageidiom Posted: December 05, 2016 at 01:45 PM (#5362694)
In 2015, Rich Hill had $3 million in career earnings, and was pitching in the Atlantic League.

In the past 13 months he has signed MLB contracts worth $54 million. I'm happy for him, too.
   7. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 05, 2016 at 04:15 PM (#5362871)
So Encarnacion ain't getting the offers he wants and is doing everything he can to make the Sox part of the bidding. Bring him here!
   8. Textbook Editor Posted: December 05, 2016 at 04:43 PM (#5362892)
#7--on a 3/$45 deal, sure! I want no parts of (a) more than 3 years or (b) more than $45 mil spent.

As I've written a bunch of times, now that we're not locked into a DH, I think we should utilize the role differently. Ortiz was an outlier in that role (a major one); just focus on getting LA production from the spot (which I think you can do internally) and utilize the $ elsewhere.

I'm probably crazy for thinking this, but I think the production of 2017 DH (various, LA #s) + full year Benintendi in LF > 2016 Ortiz + 2016 LF production.

I'm happy for Hill. He could (assuming health) have a Moyer-type run, which would be a lot of fun to see... But I have a weakness for soft-tosser and knuckleball P.
   9. villageidiom Posted: December 05, 2016 at 04:49 PM (#5362899)
Could happen.

About 3 weeks ago his agent said there were 6 teams (Toronto and 5 others) interested in him. Now he's saying there are 3 (Toronto + Boston + 1 other). So let's assume the Astros and Yankees were two of the others, and they're off the table because they signed someone. Who else backed out? Maybe the Braves, after signing Sean Rodriguez?

I'm good with Boston staying disciplined here. I think EE wants to be there or Toronto, but the exchange rate isn't working in Toronto's favor if he also wants to get paid well.
   10. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 05, 2016 at 05:02 PM (#5362911)
just focus on getting LA production from the spot (which I think you can do internally)


League Average DH in 2016 - .254/.328/.452

I don't see that being likely from internal sources. At least not in a way that doesn't sacrifice something else (e.g. Hanley as DH but the 1st base is the hole). Maybe Shaw but then 3rd base is a waste land. (I'll believe in Panda when he does it).

The problem with all of this of course is that league average represents a big step down from what we had last year so it has to be picked up somewhere. I'm a bit concerned that the Sox are too confident in what we have internally coming back. I think it's still a good team, maybe even the division favorites when all is said and done but I think there is more decline than upside built in. The advantage is that the Sox are starting from a better place than 93 wins; whether you prefer PR (98-64) or third order (103-59!) the Sox have some wiggle room.

But I don't want to be unambitious. This is a team that should be thinking of playing games at a National League park next October. I think EE gets us closer to that. Of course so do an assortment of other things but spending just money and a draft pick to get him is so appealing to me.
   11. Textbook Editor Posted: December 05, 2016 at 05:30 PM (#5362926)
League Average DH in 2016 - .254/.328/.452


Well, if you're going internally, my best guess would be some combination of Shaw/Sandoval/Ramirez gets the bulk of DH chores. Yes, if Hanley is DH for say 40 games you possibly weaken 1B production, but this assumes they don't stretch themselves and use these two:

Holt (2016): .255/.322/.383
Young (2016): .276/.352/.498

Granted, perhaps the power might not be there, but using these guys (+ mixing in the above 3) on a regular basis gets you LA production at least in OBP. (And I'm not even including Swihart in this list, though were it my team, I would, as I'd have him catch at least 60 games and then DH a bunch as well...)

I just think Encarnacion is a good candidate to give you 1 good season and 3 middling ones. It makes no sense to me to chase Ortiz's DH production--and pay premium prices to do so.

Now, if you say EE would sign for 2/$40, maybe that's a contract I'd support... I just do not want to be tied to a declining DH for the next 4 years. Eventually Pedroia's not going to be able to handle 2B--where's he go after that? Or Hanley if the glove collapses?

I guess I would just argue that getting the P sorted out is to me the far bigger problem/issue to tackle. If we have limited $ to spend (and I think we do), I'd rather it go to the run prevention side of the ledger.

   12. villageidiom Posted: December 05, 2016 at 06:23 PM (#5362945)
And Boston has officially made their first move of the winter meetings!

They have exercised the 2018 option on Farrell's contract.
   13. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 05, 2016 at 06:23 PM (#5362946)
but the exchange rate isn't working in Toronto's favor if he also wants to get paid well.


With half the games in Toronto and applying the Canadian tax rate, is that higher then the U.S. rates? On $25 mil a year an extra 5% is a far whack of coin. Maybe this is part of his considerations?
   14. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 05, 2016 at 09:21 PM (#5363002)
My concern is I don't see where the money can be spent on the pitching side. Relievers are generally a hot mess of inconsistency and I don't think we will be in on Chapman or Jansen and I have no interest in any starters.

Now that assumes free agents only. I don't think we are going to chase a trade for Sale or Greinke.
   15. 'Spos Posted: December 05, 2016 at 09:28 PM (#5363006)
With half the games in Toronto and applying the Canadian tax rate, is that higher then the U.S. rates?


The tax is only on the games in Canada, IIRC. And applies to all visiting players too.

The big problem for the Jays is that no matter how carefully you hedge against a big change in the relative dollar values, it's an unknown. Maybe a very big one.

[edit] Also, if you've got a decent tax lawyer the difference between Toronto & Boston is probably close to the difference between Boston and Texas.
   16. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 05, 2016 at 10:03 PM (#5363013)
Also, if you've got a decent tax lawyer the difference between Toronto & Boston is probably close to the difference between Boston and Texas.


I would imagine if I were earning $25mil per then I'd be able to afford a pretty good tax lawyer/accountant person.

The tax is only on the games in Canada, IIRC. And applies to all visiting players too.


I get that, but you are playing 1/2 your games there and other players are playing maybe 10 at the most. 71 games at a higher tax rate on half your huge income could be quite a bit.
   17. villageidiom Posted: December 05, 2016 at 11:26 PM (#5363033)
With half the games in Toronto and applying the Canadian tax rate, is that higher then the U.S. rates? On $25 mil a year an extra 5% is a far whack of coin. Maybe this is part of his considerations?


My point was more that Boston needs $24m USD to pay him $24m USD in salary, whereas Toronto needs $32m CAD to pay him $24m USD. To outbid Boston they need to overcome an effective 33% surcharge from the exchange rate. EE gets $24m before tax either way. The tax differences would also play a part, as you note.
   18. the Hugh Jorgan returns Posted: December 06, 2016 at 12:05 AM (#5363039)
#17,
I understood what you were saying, sorry if I seemed confused about it. I was just spitballing the idea that maybe an extra 5% of taxes on say $12.5mil of your $25mil contract is a consideration. In the situation I just put out there you are looking at an extra $625K just in taxes, that's a fair bit pocket money.

I'm not as sold on the idea of EE as Jose is. I'd be happy to go maybe 4/85 or something but I don't think that'll get it done. I'd rather the team trade for some more SP, but then that means giving up one of top farm kids. If you could somehow pry Greinke and Goldy away and not give up too much then you've got something but that is probably going to cost Moncada et al.

I'm against the idea of trading JBJ as I think now he's pretty much good money to give you at least 3 WAR every year and an OF of Benintendi, JBJ and future HOFer Mookie Betts is one to enjoy for the next 4 years at least.
   19. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 06, 2016 at 07:39 AM (#5363074)
I'm probably crazy for thinking this, but I think the production of 2017 DH (various, LA #s) + full year Benintendi in LF > 2016 Ortiz + 2016 LF production.


You are crazy for thinking that. For all that it was a rotating door of players LF for the Sox ended up at .268/.337/.423. That means if you drop DH to a LA production (.254/.328/.452 as noted) you need Benintendi to turn into pre-2016 Andew McCutchen (.298/.388/.496 career).
   20. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:12 AM (#5363101)
WE HAVE ACTUAL NEWS (and it seems good):

The Sox have landed Tyler Thornburg and Corey Knebel. No news yet on the return which is fairly important.
   21. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:15 AM (#5363105)
I think this is what EE (well, his agent) is doing:

1. Try to convince other teams that Boston is bidding, so they'd better bring their top offers.

2. After he gets top offers, play those teams against each other until he gets in the range he wants.

3. Sign with whoever has the top offer.


I think Boston is, right now, simply trying to short-circuit 1 by emphasizing how DH is not a priority. (They're focused on getting a setup guy, and then maybe they'll see what's available for DH, per Dombrowski via Bradford.) They're trying to keep the market down for EE. THE ONLY REASON Boston has for keeping the market down is if they want to sign him. It does Boston no good if EE is more affordable for the Rangers or Indians.

And that, my fellow Therapudlians, is my argument that Boston IS planning to sign EE.
   22. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:16 AM (#5363106)
I like that theory.
   23. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:22 AM (#5363110)
Whoa, Travis Shaw and Josh Pennington. Wasn't expecting THAT!
   24. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:29 AM (#5363119)
Whoa, Travis Shaw and Josh Pennington. Wasn't expecting THAT!

OK, so those who were suggesting Travis Shaw was not the 3B solution are now 100% correct, though for reasons that are different from what they likely intended.

Hey, y'know how we always say not to trade position players for relievers? I might be OK with this one. Shaw feels to me like they sold high on him, and not a Reddick 2: Corner Infielder Boogaloo situation. And at first glance that seems like a good return.
   25. Nasty Nate Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:32 AM (#5363123)
The Sox have landed Tyler Thornburg
The Sox have traded for a high-K reliever with a few saves under his belt. When will his elbow and/or shoulder inevitably disintegrate? June?
   26. Nasty Nate Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:34 AM (#5363126)
This makes it slightly more likely that Edwin will be signed to DH, right?
   27. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:37 AM (#5363128)
26 - I hope so.

Hey, y'know how we always say not to trade position players for relievers? I might be OK with this one. Shaw feels to me like they sold high on him, and not a Reddick 2: Corner Infielder Boogaloo situation. And at first glance that seems like a good return.


Agreed. I think Shaw is good and can be a solid MLB regular but he's not a difference maker and if things work out Moncada is the regular third baseman by Opening Day 2018 and hopefully sooner. I'd love to see them give Sam Travis a look over there too. Maybe he can't do it but a little versatility can't hurt.
   28. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 09:40 AM (#5363131)
Looks like Mauricio Dubon is also headed to Milwaukee. Disappointing but he's not a guy to get too worked up over in my opinion.
   29. Nasty Nate Posted: December 06, 2016 at 10:04 AM (#5363148)
Jose, where did you hear that Corey Knebel is part of the trade? None of the online reports I see include him.
   30. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 10:08 AM (#5363153)
It was on one of the early reports I saw on Twitter. It may be wrong because as you say it's not showing up anywhere now.
   31. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2016 at 10:20 AM (#5363169)
Looks like Mauricio Dubon is also headed to Milwaukee. Disappointing but he's not a guy to get too worked up over in my opinion.
Yeah.

HOT TAKES! GETCHA HOT TAKES HEAH!

Thornburg: Sox get 3 years of quality relief at arbitrated rates, minus whatever injury time he's destined to have because he's a Sox front-line reliever acquired in trade. It's what they do.

Knebel: Sox get 1 cost-controlled and 4 arbitrated years, at a greater level of production at the MLB level than Pennington would likely achieve.

Shaw: Sox lose 2 cost-controlled and 3 arbitrated years, and whatever production he can muster on the steady diet of breaking pitches he'll get.

Dubon: Sox lose whatever utility infielder production he would have had in a few years, and/or whatever else they could have gotten in trade for the same, which is far less value than people will be screaming about after Thornburg's eventual injury.

Pennington: Sox lose an eventual minor-league free agent.

EDITed to remove Knebel from the equation. COLD TAKE!
   32. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 10:42 AM (#5363188)
Who is the idiot who said the Sox were getting Knebel? That ####### guy.
   33. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 10:43 AM (#5363190)
Kidding aside I like Pennington. I'm intrigued to see what happens with him, I think he can be something useful.
   34. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: December 06, 2016 at 10:49 AM (#5363195)
Maybe-Not-So-Fat Panda the presumptive starter at 3B for 2017?

And definitely agree this opens the door even more for EE.
   35. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2016 at 10:51 AM (#5363199)
withdrawn due to errors
   36. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2016 at 10:54 AM (#5363202)
withdrawn because it refers to the post having errors
   37. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2016 at 11:05 AM (#5363213)
Perusing the 40-man roster, I see it'll be at 38 with the swap of Shaw and Thornburg. They still have no DH - yeah, yeah, it's December - and they have a lot of players without options on the 40-man. To be precise, some of the players (like Pedroia) have options but the team needs permission before sending them down. There are a LOT of these, some more surprising than others.

Per soxprospects.com, here are the players who can't be sent down without permission, if at all:

Vazquez
Ramirez
Pedroia
Sandoval
Bogaerts
Holt
Young
Leon
Brentz

Porcello
Price
Buchholz
Pomeranz
Wright
Kimbrel
Kelly
Ross, Jr.
Hembree
Workman
Elias
Abad

That's 21 players. If we add Benintendi / Bradley / Betts / Thornburg as unlikely to be sent down, that's 25 players for a 25-man roster that still lacks a DH. And we still haven't addressed Carson Smith, Matt Barnes, and Eduardo Rodriguez, each of whom could arguably be better than some of these folks but do have options.

When I first looked at this I'd misread some players as not having options who actually do, and thought that the problem was greater than it actually is. I'd thought we had a bloodbath coming. But still, somewhere between 1 and 4 of these players have to go, and not necessarily in return for MLB-level talent because we'd still have the same 25-man roster crunch unless they're bundled together. If it's not a bloodbath, I assume some bloodletting will take place.
   38. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 11:09 AM (#5363218)
I think Brentz, Abad and maybe Elias have a real good chance to just get punted. There is also a pretty high likelihood of one or more of those pitchers being on the DL because they are pitchers.
   39. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:11 PM (#5363359)
Lots of Chris Sale chatter. What do we think would be a deal? Just spitballing here;

Moncada
Bradley
Devers
Swihart

Am I way off? Two top 20 prospects, one established MLB regular and pretty good fourth player. What would we think?
   40. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:16 PM (#5363366)
Moncada, Kopech two prospects
   41. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:17 PM (#5363370)
Holy crap.
   42. jmurph Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:19 PM (#5363374)
I hate this so much. So, so much. Can't think of a (Red) Sox deal I've hated more. HATE it. My god.
   43. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:19 PM (#5363375)
Basabe rumored to be one of the prospects.
   44. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:20 PM (#5363381)
You're insane jmurph. Nothing personal but unless there is a big name in that fourth slot I love this. Moncada is a potential star, Kopech is a Single A pitcher, Basabe is nothing special and Sale has three years of a very reasonable deal.
   45. madvillain Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:22 PM (#5363384)
Depending on who the other two prospects are I will either be thrilled or just mildly happy with this trade from a White Sox perspective.
   46. jmurph Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:25 PM (#5363387)
Jose, I can't stand Sale. I understand that he's good, I get that. And cheap. I'm not just talking value here. I want no part of having to cheer for him every fifth day, however good he is. This is like Lackey again (I mean getting Lackey, who I and every other sane human also hated), only they're also giving up Moncada instead of just money. It makes me like the 2017 team measurably less than I would have, with the added risk of missing out on an extremely high potential career in Moncada.
   47. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:30 PM (#5363390)
Luis Alexander Basabe is one of them it appears. He's a nice get. Still in A ball last year but he's got some pop, coming along pretty well.
   48. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:34 PM (#5363397)
The fourth player appears to be Victor Diaz, lottery ticket arm in Low A.
   49. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:35 PM (#5363402)
This is an incredibly good trade in my opinion.

Stud prospect
Stud project
project
lottery ticket

I'm shocked at this.
   50. Mike Webber Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:49 PM (#5363434)
I think the Red Sox are fairly certain that Marco Hernandez can handle third base if Pablo let's them down. Hernandez's biggest problem is he may be too valuable as a utility player for him to win the 3b job.
   51. Nasty Nate Posted: December 06, 2016 at 01:56 PM (#5363448)
Earlier in the offseason, people asked what they could spend money on, if not E.E.

We have the answer now.
   52. Textbook Editor Posted: December 06, 2016 at 02:05 PM (#5363458)
NN--If they trade Buchholz, they basically swap the Sale $ in for Buchholz's $... Not saying they'd do that to save the $ to get EE, of course, but... I count basically 7 starters:

Sale
Porcello
Price
Pomeranz
Buchholz/EdRod/Wright

6 of whom (I think) can't be optioned (everyone but EdRod).

Hell, at this point I don't know what to think regarding the back end of the rotation or how that will shake out. It's possible they think EdRod could stand some regular AAA starts but then that leaves Buchholz/Wright as the 5th/6th guy. Maybe you leverage Wright as the starter and try to get 2-3 IP out of Buchholz over 50 appearances, figuring he's going to break after 100 IP anyway?
   53. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2016 at 02:06 PM (#5363461)
Earlier in the offseason, people asked what they could spend money on, if not E.E.

We have the answer now.

That's not big money. By definition, their new acquisition will be getting paid (puts on sunglasses) Sale prices. YEEEEEEEAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!
   54. Textbook Editor Posted: December 06, 2016 at 02:19 PM (#5363484)
One question... With Moncada now gone, what is the long-term 2B solution in-house if/when Pedroia's not able to man 2B 140 G a year? Hernandez?

I ask only because living in Philly, I saw the Utley fall from elite status happen fairly hard and fast and it's pretty much a given 2B don't last into their late 30s (and Pedroia is under contract until 37, I think)... At some point in the next 2-3 years this will likely become a thing.
   55. villageidiom Posted: December 06, 2016 at 02:22 PM (#5363489)
One question... With Moncada now gone, what is the long-term 2B solution in-house if/when Pedroia's not able to man 2B 140 G a year? Hernandez?
Mookie Betts was moved off 2B only because it wasn't vacant.

EDIT: Not saying that's the long-term solution. But it's a possibility.
   56. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 02:30 PM (#5363508)
One question... With Moncada now gone, what is the long-term 2B solution in-house if/when Pedroia's not able to man 2B 140 G a year? Hernandez?


I think between Hernandez and Holt they are fine in a DL stint situation but 3-4 years down the road when it's a genuine concern...who the hell knows or really cares? CJ Chatham? Jagger Rusconi? Not Currently Insystem? I think you can get a bit crazy worrying about all contingencies. The Sox as they stand now look pretty for the next 2-3 seasons. No reason they can't figure that out when the time comes. I'd bet the 2021 second baseman is currently at Cal State Fullerton or someplace like that.
   57. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 02:44 PM (#5363539)
Good point by Chris Hatfield; with the crummy starting pitcher market the Sox should be able to do well with Buchholz and/or Pomeranz.
   58. Nasty Nate Posted: December 06, 2016 at 02:48 PM (#5363546)
I haven't thought this through, but what about Clay to Atlanta for Kemp (obviously with some salary considerations), and make him be the DH?
   59. Textbook Editor Posted: December 06, 2016 at 02:55 PM (#5363558)
Good point by Chris Hatfield; with the crummy starting pitcher market the Sox should be able to do well with Buchholz and/or Pomeranz.


Are we assuming Pomeranz is broken/not worth a #4/#5 slot? Because he's on a decent deal; I'm not sure I'd want to toss him aside. And--at worst--wouldn't he perhaps be a very useful multi-inning LHP out of the pen?

Buchholz being on a 1-year deal makes trading him a bit hard--in that trading FOR him is sort of a "win-now" move to improve your #4/#5 starter... but realistically you can't count on Clay giving you more than maybe 120 good innings over a full season. That has value, but not the type where you get anything really useful back unless he's packaged with other pieces.
   60. Norcan Posted: December 06, 2016 at 03:00 PM (#5363569)
I haven't thought this through, but what about Clay to Atlanta for Kemp (obviously with some salary considerations), and make him be the DH?


Isn't Atlanta's rotation pretty full though after all their moves? They have Teheran, Foltynewicz, Colon, Garcia and Dickey slotted in for their rotation. If they were acquiring Sale or Archer, that's one thing but Buchholz isn't worth making room for. Plus, before they acquired Kemp last season, their GM talked about needing a power hitting righthanded outfielder. He filled that hole pretty nicely for them after the trade so I can't see them trading Kemp away for, right now, an unnecessary pitcher.
   61. Jose is El Absurd Pollo Posted: December 06, 2016 at 03:00 PM (#5363570)
Both guys have value but if the Sox want to try and make a move, they have the pieces for it. Buchholz for Kemp or some other guy like that as the DH doesn't sound bad. On the other hand if the Sox want to replenish a little depth in the system they could probably do that with Pomeranz.

My guess is that both guys will still be here come April with Pomeranz out of the bullpen.
   62. Nasty Nate Posted: December 06, 2016 at 03:08 PM (#5363583)

Isn't Atlanta's rotation pretty full though after all their moves? They have Teheran, Foltynewicz, Colon, Garcia and Dickey slotted in for their rotation. If they were acquiring Sale or Archer, that's one thing but Buchholz isn't worth making room for. Plus, before they acquired Kemp last season, their GM talked about needing a power hitting righthanded outfielder. He filled that hole pretty nicely for them after the trade so I can't see them trading Kemp away for, right now, an unnecessary pitcher.
Yeah, you are right. I forgot about all their additions.
   63. Norcan Posted: December 06, 2016 at 03:58 PM (#5363681)
I like the trade for Sale. On paper, it's a win-win for both sides and considering Sale's quality, that makes for a really fun deal. Sale is going to be a must-watch because his stuff makes him so fun to watch. He's a bit like Pedro in that he gets swings and misses and Ks with three different, excellent pitches. Porcello and Price can be equally as effective but they can be pretty dull to watch.

Oh, I like the deal for Thornburg too. It looks like it could be another win-win type deal too for both sides. Maybe Kelly could've become the 8th inning reliever next season but at least they don't have to hope for it. This just lengthens the bullpen and gives them a bunch of strikeout relievers.
   64. madvillain Posted: December 06, 2016 at 04:09 PM (#5363697)
Sale can also be really frustrating at times because he appears to *want* to pitch with only changeup and and a 93 mph fastball. I mean, he can, but it seems rather obvious, more than most guys, he tries to save his arm. It's a good long term strategy but in division game in say June when he's only thrown 2 sliders through 3 innings and he's down 2-0 it can get a little tiresome.

Luckily the Sawx have a much better offense than the Sox and he's more likely to be up 3-2 in that scenario.

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