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I like big bats and I cannot lie: Acquiring a hitter

Discussion in 'Red Sox Forum' started by johnnywayback, Oct 11, 2017.

  1. Snodgrass'Muff

    Snodgrass'Muff oppresses WARmongers Gold Supporter SoSH Member

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    That 20 home run power isn't rare anymore does not mean that 50 home run power isn't. Staton's power is still a massively valuable asset. And his contract isn't terrible. The acquiring team this winter would be looking at like 29M per year in AAV or so, which is market rate for a guy his age with his skillset. The injury concerns are significant, but he's not that much more of an injury risk than Harper, and any team considering getting into the bidding on him would have to be tempted to pre-empt that market by trading for Stanton first and getting to pay him 10M less in AAV for about the same length.

    If the White Sox traded for Stanton this winter, they'd probably be a year away. Let's assume they have to include Avisail Garcia to get a deal done. You're still looking at building the offense around Moncada, Abreu and Stanton with Eloy Jimenez on the way. And Giolito, Fulmer and Rodon is a great start for the rotation. They're not really that far away if they bring Stanton in, IMO. At the very least, they'd be a big spending spree in the 18/19 winter away from competing.

    Atlanta's lower minors might get decimated by the punishment for the IFA infractions, but Acuna isn't far off and won't be swept up in that mess, Allard, Sorka, Gohara, and Fried all pitched in AA or higher last year, and they've got Swanson, Albies, Freeman and Inciarte all established at the major league level and under control, and the rotation already has Teheran, Foltynewicz and Newcomb.

    They're not far off at all.
     
  2. PapaSox

    PapaSox lurker

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    Adding Hosmer would provide the Sox with 7 20 HR capable players - Betts, Benintendi, Hanley, Devers, Hosmer & Bradley with an outside chance Bogaerts joining them. That would definitely provide a strong lineup from top to bottom. With Betts being a potential 30 HR any given season. Hanley, Bradley & Bogaerts all had down seasons that could easily be turned around next year. Benintendi would be the leading candidate for RoY if not for Judge and has the capability of hitting 30 HR. Devers is just warming up and could easily hit 30 in a full season. I'm not sold on the fact they need another power bat (30+ HR) who would likely be an aging veteran that would be potentially painful to carry in their later years.
     
  3. Bob Montgomery's Helmet Hat

    Bob Montgomery's Helmet Hat has big, douchey shoulders Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    Then why not just re-sign Moreland, who is a 20 HR guy too?
     
  4. adam42381

    adam42381 Well-Known Member Silver Supporter SoSH Member

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    I’m on the JD Martinez train. Hosmer is NOT the answer.
     
  5. SydneySox

    SydneySox A dash of cool to add the heat Gold Supporter SoSH Member

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    This is not an exciting list.

    And if Moreland was on this list he would not be out of place.

    If Moreland isn't the answer, at what we paid him, it's not clear any of those fellows are.
     
  6. UncleStinkfinger

    UncleStinkfinger lurker

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    Can we afford another 20 million dollar guy? It's seems like we're just chasing our tail again. If the guy we need isn't there this year, lets just be patient and wait till the times right.
     
  7. BJBossman

    BJBossman lurker

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    Draft picks vs. Anthony Rizzo.

    I'm gonna have to go look up who they took with those picks.

    what a wild turn of events. History changing. Love the butterfly effect in baseball. :)
     
  8. bosox79

    bosox79 Member SoSH Member

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    Blake Swihart and Jackie Bradley.
     
  9. Trotsky

    Trotsky Member SoSH Member

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    Definitely no to Hosmer, Moustakas.
    Santana is intriguing as a 1B and backup C (emergency) and likely cheaper.
    I still think the Sox NEED JD Martinez. I think they'll move JBJ even if it's for some low prospects.

    CF Ben10D
    2B Nuñez/Pedroia(DH)
    RF Betts
    LF/DH JD
    3B Devers
    DH/1B Hanley
    1B/DH Santana
    C Vazquez
    SS Xander
     
  10. NJ_Sox_Fan

    NJ_Sox_Fan Member SoSH Member

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    This is all assuming Moncada, Eloy, etc are any good at the MLB level. Same with the Braves and Acuna, Maitan, etc.
     
  11. nvalvo

    nvalvo Well-Known Member Silver Supporter SoSH Member

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    Prospects and young players are risky, sure, but "established" big leaguers take steps back also. They get hurt, they age, their performance collapses. They get in car crashes and boating accidents. Their knee cartilage grinds to nothing. Discs slip in their backs. Their shoulders and elbows seize up.

    We just saw a prime-aged All Star and World Series MVP sign a five year deal and provide well below zero value. We just saw our entire young core take simultaneous steps backward with the bat.

    Nothing is guaranteed.
     
  12. PapaSox

    PapaSox lurker

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    I thought about it but it didn't feel right. It is strictly a gut thing.

    I'd like a younger, proven player who has shown they can hit. His .318 avg & .384 OBP are also more than acceptable.

    The jest of what I was trying to say was that the lineup with the addition of someone like Hosmer would be fine. I don't believe adding a big bat at $25 - 30million on the wrong side of thirty is the answer. Another 20 HR guy who hit .318 with a descent OBP who is still under 30 would be a nice fit.

    I would also prefer a FA rather than a trade as the Minors are already thin and we'd have to give up ML talent to get someone which would only create additional holes.
     
  13. BJBossman

    BJBossman lurker

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    A name that may be available that hasn't been discussed who has some nice upside but a less than stellar health record: Michael Brantley.

    I'm really curious to see what the Indians do with him.
     
  14. Oppo

    Oppo Member SoSH Member

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    Brantley due $12 million next year and had his best 2 years at 27 (2014) and 28 (2015). Best case scenario is he stays moderately healthy at age 31 and goes for 15/15 with passable defense. I assume you'd either have him DH/4th OF or play LF, move Benny to CF, and move JBJ? A $12 million gamble doesn't seem worth the risk when JBJ is cheaper, healthier, younger.
     
  15. Oppo

    Oppo Member SoSH Member

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    983
    And I'm still irrationally mad he was an all star this year.
     
  16. The Mort Report

    The Mort Report Member SoSH Member

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    I think people are relying too heavily on stats like WAR. While having multiple well rounded players is great, the best teams have specialists, especially ones that aren’t one trick ponies. Sure it’s great to have 6 guys that might get you a steal, but having that one guy that most likely will get that bag is insanely valuable in this day and age. It also effects the other teams. If you have a 4 hitter that might only hit 260 but is a legit chance to go yard it changes how the other team pitches to him. Moose is another one of those guys that does all good but nothing great. We don’t need more of them. We need one or two players that excel in the power department
     
  17. Dr Manhattan

    Dr Manhattan lurker

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    Didn't someone once do a statistical analysis evaluating the difference between a team of 9 identical players with X WAR compared to a team with 3 above average, 3 average and 3 below average , or something like that. I'm not familiar enough with how those simulations are calculated to have a feeling about that but "smell test" wise, I'd agree that the most successful teams tend to have 2 or 3 really well above average players that also influence how the opponents deal with the less good players (like a team of 8 leave average players and Mike Trout, the guys in front of Trout are going to see a lot of strikes, Trout is going to get walked a lot), that must play out differently to having 9 guys equal to Trouts value divided by 9 for example?
     
  18. tonyarmasjr

    tonyarmasjr Member SoSH Member

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    Brantley is not as good, cheap, or young as any of our current outfielders. No thanks.

    Yes, Hosmer's numbers this year were pretty good. It was also the best season of his career.
    Hosmer's wRC+ / HR since 2012: 80/14, 120/17, 98/9, 124/18, 102/25, 132/25 = Total 111/108
    Moreland's wRC+ / HR since 2012: 105/15, 95/23, 78/2 (52 G), 117/23, 86/22, 98/22 = Total 98/107

    Given that Moreland is a better fielder, which eats up a little bit of the gap between them as hitters, there is nothing about Eric Hosmer that makes me want to sign him over Moreland (or the other FA options). The complaint about our 1B options is that we aren't getting enough power from them. He doesn't solve that problem. Overall. he's a small step up from Moreland who will cost at least double the money per year on a mid-to-long-term contract.
     
  19. tonyarmasjr

    tonyarmasjr Member SoSH Member

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    Is this true? Intuitively, I think the best teams probably have an MVP-candidate bat, but I don't know that they're comprised of specialists in different areas. More likely, it's one or two great hitters surrounded by a handful of good players. Is there evidence of your point? Curious to know.
     
  20. uncannymanny

    uncannymanny Well-Known Member Gold Supporter SoSH Member

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    3,405
    There was this fivethirtyeight article a few seasons ago: https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/whats-the-best-way-to-build-a-major-league-baseball-team/

    Kind of the result you’d expect, lots of variance and no true answer.
     
  21. Oppo

    Oppo Member SoSH Member

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    Depends if you buy his .250+ ISO over the last 2 years (175 games).
     
  22. The Gray Eagle

    The Gray Eagle Member SoSH Member

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    Might not be exciting, but there are 5 guys there who hit more homers than anyone on the Red Sox this year, and most of them will be available for relatively little, compared to the other names being talked about.
    Cabrera would be a huge disaster to acquire. I love Stanton but giving up talent to take that contract would also end up a disaster within a few years. JD Martinez would be a great addition for the next couple of years but he will likely get more years and money than we should pay.

    I guess if you believe that everyone in our lineup will hit the same or worse than they did this year, you probably want a big name at a huge price. I don't think it's necessary, I think some of our guys will hit better next year than they did this year.

    I also don't agree with this idea that we should dump Bradley for whatever we can get to make room for a hitter. With his glove, Bradley wasn't an overall problem this year. Hanley was an overall weak spot this year, he should be considered a part time player going into next year who should get about 350 PAs, most of them at first base. If we go into this year with Hanley penciled in as the everyday DH, given his age, he is one of the few guys who should be expected to hit like he did this year, which means he would be bad again and have his contract for 2019 guaranteed, which would be a disastrous double whammy. He basically can't be traded at this point, but he could maybe help us as a part-timer for next year only.
     
  23. Savin Hillbilly

    Savin Hillbilly loves the secret sauce SoSH Member

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    I think this is a point we need to keep in mind: some of the Sox' key hitters significantly underperformed expectations this year for reasons that are most likely either temporary (injury) or random (BABIP luck).

    For instance: Betts had a .268 BABIP this year after averaging .318 for his first three years. A bit of this difference may be accounted for by his hitting more fly balls and fewer line drives, but that shift was not enormous, and certainly not enough to account for a >50-point drop in BABIP. If you dive further in, you can see that his BABIP went down on all three batted ball types, even though his Hard% went up on both ground balls and line drives. It's hard to interpret this as anything but outrageously bad luck.

    With a .318 BABIP, Mookie's slash this year would have been .304/.379/.498. Even with a .300, it would have been .288/.365/.482. That difference would undoubtedly have made up a significant chunk of the 25-run drop in his offensive performance this year. Is there any reason to assume his BABIP, and therefore his overall line, won't bounce back in 2018? Bogaerts should be better as well, and even Bradley might bounce back a bit, though I'm less sanguine there.

    One thing I'm hoping a new hitting coach might address: Bogaerts and Betts went overboard, I think, in the selectivity department, finishing with the lowest and 4th-lowest Z-Swing, respectively, among 144 qualifying MLB hitters. I think they could both benefit from being a little more aggressive early in counts next year; I don't think there's any danger of either of them turning into a hacker.

    We need a first baseman (unless we think Travis is ready) and if possible he should bring the threat of 25+ HR to the table. But the rest of our offense is likely to be better, so we don't necessarily need a Stanton or a Martinez. I would lean toward Santana. Good defender, consistent 20-25 HR hitter, and quintessential pitcher-grinder with a K/BB consistently near 1. Going into his age-32 season, he shouldn't require more than a 4-year commitment at most, and we might be able to get by with 3 + option if the AAV is high enough.
     
  24. sean1562

    sean1562 lurker

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    Is Sam Travis even a prospect anymore? HE has been pretty mediocre at AAA
     
  25. dhappy42

    dhappy42 Member

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    Maybe we could trade a healthy Tyler Thornburg back to the Brewers for Travis Shaw. /snark
     
  26. Savin Hillbilly

    Savin Hillbilly loves the secret sauce SoSH Member

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    I threw his name in somewhat pro forma. He certainly hasn't shown much lately, but this was his rebound year from a pretty serious injury. I'm assuming the organization still considers him a prospect, but I would be surprised if they're counting on him as anything but an occasional shuttle rider next year.
     
  27. Red(s)HawksFan

    Red(s)HawksFan Member SoSH Member

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    Technically, Travis is still a prospect. Players generally aren't considered to have "graduated" from prospect status until they lose rookie eligibility. Travis still qualifies as a rookie for 2018.

    But all that aside, he still has two option years left, so even if he's not the odds on favorite to start at 1B on Opening Day next year, he still has value as a depth piece.
     
  28. ConigsCorner

    ConigsCorner Member SoSH Member

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    Devers really needs to re-shape his body, including changing his nutrition ala Pedey between 2006 and 2007. Maybe more so. I'm betting he gained weight with the ML per diem and 4-star hotel room service.

    The first time I watched Pedroia at spring training in 2006, I walked away thinking he had really quick hands at 2B, but was surprisingly chubby.
     
  29. ConigsCorner

    ConigsCorner Member SoSH Member

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    Thank you!
     
  30. tonyarmasjr

    tonyarmasjr Member SoSH Member

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    That first sentence is easy to say, but the options really aren't there. I don't think Santana gets less than 4/$90M. He's the premier 1B option, even though he's 32. I wouldn't hate signing him, but that's a lot of money (given our contract situation) to give to a 1B who isn't primarily a power threat. Hosmer is significantly worse, but younger. I think they're both going to get paid. I hope we can find better places to put that money, but it may not be on this year's crop of FAs.
     
  31. The Mort Report

    The Mort Report Member SoSH Member

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    Sorry I was a few post work beers down when I wrote that, it is MY belief that is how good teams are constructed. I look at it like it’s the same reason you don’t want an all right handed lineup. Sure you’d love to have 9 switch hitters with the same numbers from each side, but that’s really not doable. If a game is close and an opponent knows there is a guy coming up in 2 batters that has good power, they might hold off using a better reliever for a player who can have a greater impact on the game
     
  32. BJBossman

    BJBossman lurker

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    I'm curious what he gets on the FA market if the Indians don't pick up that option.
     
  33. nvalvo

    nvalvo Well-Known Member Silver Supporter SoSH Member

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    He meant “still a prospect” in the other sense: does anyone still expect him to be a good big leaguer?

    I agree with you. He hasn’t exactly seized the opening like we hoped, but his optionable years are still very valuable as depth.
     
  34. EdRalphRomero

    EdRalphRomero wooderson SoSH Member

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    Wait...why would Devers reshape the body that got him an .819 OPS and a starting job with the Red Sox at age 20? Lots of guys on the team should be looking to make changes, but Devers?
     
  35. Oppo

    Oppo Member SoSH Member

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    Ah, didn't realize the $12 million was an option ($1 million buyout). Can't see the Indians picking it up.
     
  36. Dahabenzapple2

    Dahabenzapple2 lurker

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    76 AB and no HR - 1 RBI

    I know RBI are not what we look at today but ONE in 76 AB?

    His "performance" if you could call it that was as bad as possible. Did he ever even hit a ball that might have been close to a HR?

    To consider him anything other than AAAA material is foolhardy. Too many dead weight bench guys this year was a problem. The combined numbers of Holt, Travis, Young, Marrero cry for improved depth. Sam Travis appears to be part of the problem and not the solution. Plus he adds nothing in the field or on the base paths.
     
  37. BJBossman

    BJBossman lurker

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    Exactly. Rather than give another big deal, going for a pillow contract for a guy like Brantley is just another option.
     
  38. mikeford

    mikeford woolwich! SoSH Member

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    If it's contributing to him being an absolute butcher in the field...
     
  39. Snodgrass'Muff

    Snodgrass'Muff oppresses WARmongers Gold Supporter SoSH Member

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    Most of the issues he had were with throws. His reactions and range looked fine. I don't think his "body" is to blame for the errors.
     
  40. EdRalphRomero

    EdRalphRomero wooderson SoSH Member

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    3,104
    This. And also he's got a pudgy face but by baseball player standards he is far from out of shape. This picture is from game 4


    [​IMG]
     
  41. Green Monster

    Green Monster Member SoSH Member

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    Justin Upton has an opt out which he can exercise after the WS. He is 30yo and has 4 years at $22M+ left on his deal. Would likely take in the range of 6/$150M

    upload_2017-10-14_20-16-40.png
    sounds like the Angels are trying to convince him not to opt out so it might not matter if they are successful. Signing him would necessitate moving an outfielder (likely Bradley).
     
    #141 Green Monster, Oct 14, 2017
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2017
  42. Harry Hooper

    Harry Hooper Well-Known Member Lifetime Member SoSH Member

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    Yes, remember John McGraw and Mel Ott? Don't mess with the kid.
     
  43. MikeM

    MikeM Member SoSH Member

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    It's not really about the shape he's in right this moment. It's how that body type tends to project out once the natural and youth fueled metabolism factor he mostly appears to have been coasting by on up to this point fades, which unavoidably tends to happen sooner then people realize (a lot of rough studies will put the normal body type age at 25, but any other bodybuilder/trainer I know would definitely put the noteworthy drop it in the early 20's), and at a more accelerated rate in such cases as this. In that context and as far as his own metabolism is concerned..that 20 is actually on the pretty old side.

    None of which is to say fat guys can't play third base in the majors or anything mind you, but I'm guessing the added variable and much higher probability that his weight *might* play out to be an ongoing issue going forward is one of the factors going in to every one of those scouting reports questioning whether Devers will stick at 3rd in the long term.
     
  44. Yo La Tengo

    Yo La Tengo Member SoSH Member

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    Looking at the available options, I'm leaning more toward nibbling around the edges this year and then taking a big run at Machado next year.

    Something like sign Eduardo Nunez or Howie Kendrick as an every day fill in (needed based in large part on Pedroia's health), see if Jonathan Lucroy would sign a one-year contract to re-establish his value (and pair him with Vazquez plus DH on occasion... and he's also played 50 games at 1B over his career). Depending on what comes together, look for an affordable outfielder and/or 1B and/or back up infielder who plays shortstop.

    And, if there is still a desire to add power, look at testing the waters to see if a deal could be made centered on JBJ and a prospect for Kyle Schwarber, who really doesn't fit in the NL. I'm guessing the Cubs may be ready to pull the plug on the Schwarber-as-outfielder experiment.
     
  45. ConigsCorner

    ConigsCorner Member SoSH Member

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    Like the creative thinking.

    Stupid question: Would the scenario of signing Machado mean moving Devers to 1B?
     
  46. HangingW/ScottCooper

    HangingW/ScottCooper Member SoSH Member

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    Because they have money and they don't have a deep farm system?
     
  47. pdub

    pdub Member SoSH Member

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    I definitely think so, Machado is much better than Devers defensively. And Devers, despite some defensive roughness, is too young to be thrown in as a permanent DH already.
     
  48. Yo La Tengo

    Yo La Tengo Member SoSH Member

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    Yes to Machado at third in this fantasy scenario (he also played 45 games at shortstop in 2016... just saying).

    The other part of holding back with this year's free agents is the total uncertainty about David Price, combined with the much deeper free agent field following next season. I like the idea of remaining flexible this year, seeing how Price performs and whether he decides to opt out, maybe working out one or more long term extensions, then dive in following next season. This approach would also allow the Sox to jump at any useful free agent who fails to get their expected contract this winter.
     
  49. nvalvo

    nvalvo Well-Known Member Silver Supporter SoSH Member

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    I think patience and flexibility is often the right approach, but not right now.

    Here's why:

    Chris Sale: 2018 option, 2019 option, FA
    David Price: 2018 (opt out) 2019-2022
    Drew Pomeranz: 2018 arb 3, FA
    Rick Porcello: 2018, 2019, FA
    Eduardo Rodriguez: pre arb.

    Health permitting, we have an excellent starting rotation lined up for 2018, and probably 2019 — especially if Porcello can even split the difference between his 2016 and '17. Then things become much less clear.

    While we have Price, Sale, and Pomeranz, our rotation lines up with anyone's, and we are a contender even with a so-so offense. To me, that means that it's time to commit to the team and take two more whacks at the postseason with this rotation.
     
  50. SydneySox

    SydneySox A dash of cool to add the heat Gold Supporter SoSH Member

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    13,437
    While I agree with the timeline, your post isn't complete without anything addressing our financial context; how the team is shaped not just on the field but against the luxury tax.
     

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