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Sox Talking To AZ About Eric Byrnes


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#1 Wingack


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 03:47 AM

http://sports.espn.g...r_meetings_2008

The Red Sox are having discussions with the Diamondbacks about a Julio Lugo-for-Eric Byrnes swap. Brynes would serve as a fourth outfielder for Boston; Lugo would play second base for the Diamondbacks.



#2 SoxScout


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 04:08 AM

09:$11M, 10:$11M, no-trade protection

OF Eric Byrnes is among the many D-backs who are working out at the team's facility in Phoenix in the offseason. Byrnes is attempting to return from a debilitating hamstring injury that limited him early and cost him the second half of the season. Doctors found a small spot where the muscle had been pulled away from the bone, but Byrnes opted for a stringent rehab program instead of surgery.

http://ucla.scout.co...12&p=2&c=816776

Don't like that he didn't have surgery (same with Ortiz)... Wonder if this is part of something bigger with Montero.

#3 pdaj

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 08:04 AM

Don't like that he didn't have surgery (same with Ortiz)...


Byrnes actually tore both of his hamstrings last season.

http://www.azcentral...080530dbnb.html

A magnetic resonance imaging exam detected tears in each leg, but manager Bob Melvin said it's too soon to predict whether his struggling left fielder will need to stay on the disabled list for a longer period of time. Byrnes was placed on the 15-day disabled list on Tuesday. Byrnes developed problems in his left hamstring in spring training, and it never completely healed. Melvin thinks the problem in Byrnes' right leg occurred because of overcompensating for the pain in his other leg.

I read a day or two ago that Denver RB, Peyton Hillis, has a 2-3 inch tear of his hamstring. According to the article, surgery is likely and the estimated time needed for recovery is two months. Knowing that, I'm not sure why Byrnes opted strictly for rehabilitation, unless the tears weren't too severe.

http://www.aidyourha...ing-surgery.php

Surgery is not frequently required for hamstring injuries, and is usually reserved for complete tears or avulsion fractures (reattach the muscle to the bone).


http://mlb.mlb.com/n...0...sp&c_id=mlb

"Unless it looks a little bit different and the tendon is farther away from the bone than what they think, there's a good chance he's leaning towards non-surgical too," D-backs manager Bob Melvin said.



If Byrnes is healthy, I love the deal. I'd even help Lugo pack.

#4 yecul


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 08:07 AM

Depending on his ability to cover CF -- used to play there a fair amount, just 1 game in his shortened '08 -- and recovery from injury, this would make some sense. Certainly a lot more sense than Willis.

RH OF who can cover all three spots and is RH. Obviously he'd also need to accept a 4th OF spot. But given the uncertainty of Ellsbury's offense, Drew's injury troubles, and Ortiz's wrist that should be a very active 4th OF getting plenty of playing time.

#5 pdaj

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 08:11 AM

And he can hit LHP, to boot.

#6 Philip Jeff Frye


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 08:30 AM

And he can hit LHP, to boot.

Too bad he can't hit much though. Obviously last year was some sort of injury-riddled disaster, but even in 2007 he only managed an OPS+ of 104. That's the only season in the last 4 he's been above 100.

He's about to turn 33, coming off injuries, owed $22 million and a meathead to boot. Addition by the subtraction of Lugo might be a good thing, but Byrnes is not exactly what I'd like to see out there.

#7 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 08:53 AM

I'm with KMG here. I mean, there's been concerns expressed about Baldelli's ability to stay on the field, and now they're talking about Eric Byrnes?

I don't see any sort of appeal. He's never been a very good hitter, and obviously his 2008 was a complete disaster. He's old. He's owed a ton of money. He's a very, very poor percentage player. He's not a very good defensive player. He's coming off an exceptionally serious injury. And he gives every indication of being a dumbass. He still hasn't touched home plate.

I'd much rather keep Lugo instead of trading him for this guy. Lugo can at least play a passable SS.

#8 smastroyin


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:05 AM

As I said in the GM thread, I wouldn't be happy about the Byrnes poison pill even if it netted Montero. Getting just Byrnes seems pretty much awful to me. That is real money and Byrnes really isn't anything special. I am not a GM and do not have access to all of the scouting, etc., but one for one this seems fantastically bad to me. Like "Josh Byrnes has pictures of me fucking Stacy Lucchino" bad. But, I also hate Byrnes with a passion.

#9 24JoshuaPoint


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:08 AM

I agree it seems like it's a big chunk of money for someone in his condition. There is no telling he can come back to anything like 06 or 07. And part of the appeal is the 'scrappiness in the outfield' which at his age is probably not a good idea any longer.

Didn't he win the lead pipe award a few times??

#10 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:08 AM

As I said in the GM thread, I wouldn't be happy about the Byrnes poison pill even if it netted Montero. Getting just Byrnes seems pretty much awful to me. That is real money and it goes one year longer than Lugo is owed anything. I am not a GM and do not have access to all of the scouting, etc., but one for one this seems fantastically bad to me. Like "Josh Byrnes has pictures of me fucking Stacy Lucchino" bad. But, I also hate Byrnes with a passion.

I agree with everything you say here. I know Theo is fond of Josh Byrnes from him Boston days, but there's no earthly reason to help him out by taking a horribly shitty contract and player off his hands.

Byrnes has good numbers against LHP, which might be the only reason to even kick the tires on him, maybe with the thought of using him to give Drew some days off. But Byrnes can't stay on the field, didn't hit at all last year, makes a ton of money, and just comes across as a boneheaded, low-percentage player better known for his goofy TV analysis than any accomplishments on the field. He's probably the worst percentage player in baseball.

I admit I hate the guy. I can't stand seeing him play.

#11 86spike


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:11 AM

I think some of you guys haven't been paying attention to Byrnes since 2004 and his Oakland shenanigans.

The guy is not a bum. Look at his 2006 and 2007 stats. He would be an excellent 4th OFer on this team and I'd rather pay him too much for that role than Lugo too much to be the utility IFer.

#12 pdaj

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:11 AM

I believe last year's DL stint was the first of his career.

#13 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:12 AM

I think some of you guys haven't been paying attention to Byrnes since 2004 and his Oakland shenanigans.

The guy is not a bum. Look at his 2006 and 2007 stats. He would be an excellent 4th OFer on this team and I'd rather pay him too much for that role than Lugo too much to be the utility IFer.

Look at his mess of a 2008, though. Then look at his serious injury. Then look at his horrible contract.

He is a bad fit in every conceivable way. I don't want to trade Lugo for this guy; I'd rather keep Lugo who can at least play SS than a guy who may not be physically capable of playing OF any more.

#14 86spike


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:13 AM

Look at his mess of a 2008, though. Then look at his serious injury. Then look at his horrible contract.

He is a bad fit in every conceivable way.


Are you talking about Lugo or Byrnes?

#15 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:15 AM

Are you talking about Lugo or Byrnes?

Lugo's 2008 season was Pujols-esque in comparison to Byrnes'.

Are folks really so anxious to get rid of Lugo that they'd take on more money for a long period of time for a player with such obvious, gaping flaws in his game? Assuming he's ever able to get back on the field, that is. To be honest I'm having a difficult time understanding why Theo's even considering such a deal.

#16 paulie102704

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:16 AM

I think some of you guys haven't been paying attention to Byrnes since 2004 and his Oakland shenanigans.

The guy is not a bum. Look at his 2006 and 2007 stats. He would be an excellent 4th OFer on this team and I'd rather pay him too much for that role than Lugo too much to be the utility IFer.


Have to agree with Spike here. I think the Sox logic on this one is that if they are going to overpayy for a part time player, they would rather have Byrnes than Lugo. I mean you can bring back the genius or one of the many other utility guys for a couple million to fill that role. Byrnes (if healthy, a BIG if), gives you some depth back in the OF that you lost with the Coco trade. If we add Baldelli to the mix, this could be a very formidable bench. Or it could be a very injured bench. I like the upside though.

#17 smastroyin


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:19 AM

Lugo is not great, but in general I am not in favor of trading trash for trash just for the sake of doing it.

Byrnes put together a couple of good years, where good year equals "roughly average hitter who isn't actually good enough defensively to play full-time at a premium defensive position." Lugo at least plays a premium defensive position, even if his bat is trash. There is no shortage of guys who can hit for 90-100 OPS+ and play corner OF, including Jeff Bailey and Chris Carter. I know there is a feeling that Byrnes can actually cover CF but he was marginal there before destroying BOTH of his hamstrings and when he was 3 years younger. I wouldn't want to bet the house on him being a good solution in CF, even if the house was one of those crack houses on 8 mile road selling for $2000. There is a shortage of guys who can play SS. I find Byrnes to be more redundant with this teams current roster than Lugo, and actually, unless Tex walks through the door, Lugo is your primary backup for SS and for 3B (through Lowrie moving there).

There are some pieces of it that make sense, but the pieces make more sense than the actual player in this case, especially with that contract.

FTR, SJH I was wrong about the contract length which is why I editted. I thought Byrnes had a guarantee into 2011, he doesn't.

#18 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:20 AM

Have to agree with Spike here. I think the Sox logic on this one is that if they are going to overpayy for a part time player, they would rather have Byrnes than Lugo. I mean you can bring back the genius or one of the many other utility guys for a couple million to fill that role. Byrnes (if healthy, a BIG if), gives you some depth back in the OF that you lost with the Coco trade. If we add Baldelli to the mix, this could be a very formidable bench. Or it could be a very injured bench. I like the upside though.

Who backs up SS in case Lowrie gets injured or goes through the inevitable young player struggles? Cora is gone and not coming back (he wasn't offered arb).

#19 Rough Carrigan


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:24 AM

The problem I have with this is that the Red Sox can live with Lugo being on the roster at $9 million per the next two years. Whereas, Byrnes is KILLING the Diamondbacks by taking up $11 million of their $66 million payroll. They need this trade more than the Sox do. This has to be sweetened for the Sox.

#20 86spike


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:25 AM

Don't get me wrong... I don't think Byrnes is a must-have addition to the team. That said, if you want a RHH guy to fill in at RF and CF for a combined 50-60 games a season and get 300 or so at-bats, who has some pop... Byrnes fits the bill. Obviously his health would need to be determined before you finalize a trade. His salary doesn't bother me since we already owe almost that much to Lugo.

I'd also imagine that Montero is a part of the discussion here.

#21 Rough Carrigan


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:26 AM

Lugo is not great, but in general I am not in favor of trading trash for trash just for the sake of doing it.

Byrnes put together a couple of good years, where good year equals "roughly average hitter who isn't actually good enough defensively to play full-time at a premium defensive position." Lugo at least plays a premium defensive position, even if his bat is trash. There is no shortage of guys who can hit for 90-100 OPS+ and play corner OF, including Jeff Bailey and Chris Carter. I know there is a feeling that Byrnes can actually cover CF but he was marginal there before destroying BOTH of his hamstrings and when he was 3 years younger. I wouldn't want to bet the house on him being a good solution in CF, even if the house was one of those crack houses on 8 mile road selling for $2000. There is a shortage of guys who can play SS. I find Byrnes to be more redundant with this teams current roster than Lugo, and actually, unless Tex walks through the door, Lugo is your primary backup for SS and for 3B (through Lowrie moving there).

There are some pieces of it that make sense, but the pieces make more sense than the actual player in this case, especially with that contract.

FTR, SJH I was wrong about the contract length which is why I editted. I thought Byrnes had a guarantee into 2011, he doesn't.

It's not literally a bible, but the fielding bible had Byrnes at +25 in left field and +4 in center in 2007. But, hell, for the cost of Byrnes, you could just about have Lugo and sign Corey Patterson, who's not as good a hitter as Byrnes but is a much better fielder.

#22 smastroyin


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:31 AM

It's not literally a bible, but the fielding bible had Byrnes at +25 in left field and +4 in center in 2007. But, hell, for the cost of Byrnes, you could just about have Lugo and sign Corey Patterson, who's not as good a hitter as Byrnes but is a much better fielder.


Right, but he's much worse in CF than he is on the corners and that was before his hammy problems. So my point remains, people counting on his value coming from being able to play a premium defensive position are barking up the wrong tree (IMO).

When I look at the Sox depth chart I see a lot more clunky OFer's than I do infielders. Byrnes is better than those guys in the field, but at least they can out there and take the position and not be a complete negative. I don't know what other guys are looking at, but presumably they think that either Tex is a foregone conclusion or that Lowrie and Lowell are each going to play 150 games.

#23 paulie102704

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:32 AM

Off the top of my head, and please correct me if I am wrong, Rivas, Counsell, Punto (Love Punto), Hairston, etc. I guess I just like the potential upside to Byrnes, his two torn hammies nothwithstanding. I would rather go to war with the Byrnes upside, Punto, and Baldelli to round out the depth than Jeff Bailey and company.

#24 Seabass177


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:39 AM

Put me in the camp that has what many would deem an irrational hatred of Eric Byrnes, but seems completely reasonable to me. I can't stand the way he plays, hate his contract, hate his hamstrings and don't think he's a fit for the Sox. He'd be a serviceable 4th OF if he was making $4M per the next two years, but he's not. You can find Eric Byrnes' - the Sox probably have one or two in Pawtucket right now. Yes, Lugo is a bit of a headache and moving his contract would be nice, but he can back up the middle IF next year if you can't move him for something of some value. Don't just dump him for the sake of dumping him, while taking on $6M more over the next two years.

In closing,

He still hasn't touched home plate.

Exactly.

Edited by Seabass177, 11 December 2008 - 09:40 AM.


#25 86spike


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:42 AM

You can find Eric Byrnes' - the Sox probably have one or two in Pawtucket right now.


Which RHH outfielders in Pawtucket can be expected to hit 15-20 HRs in the big leagues next year?

#26 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:48 AM

Which RHH outfielders in Pawtucket can be expected to hit 15-20 HRs in the big leagues next year?

What reasonable person would expect Byrnes to do the same? In a full time role, pre-injury, in 2007 he hit 21 home runs in 626 ABs. Now that he's 2 years older and has injured both hamstrings and would be in a hypothetical part-time role, what makes you think he'll even come close to those marks again?

#27 jayhoz


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:49 AM

Which RHH outfielders in Pawtucket can be expected to hit 15-20 HRs in the big leagues next year?


Neither Eric Byrnes nor anyone in Pawtucket will sniff enough plate appearances to get 15- 20 HR's.

#28 smastroyin


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:56 AM

I'm willing to admit that I hate Byrnes. He is a good to great corner defender who is getting older and has potentially bad legs. I think his offense is vastly overrated due to the fact that he hits more HR than he looks like he should be able to. He doesn't really do much else well with the bat and he's 33. This is not an $11 MM player. Lugo may still be a $9 MM player based on the market for SS. I know that is not a fair way to evaluate trades but I think it is a fair way to look at what the open market might say about both players, and in that case, I do not think that it is an even trade. Now, you make uneven trades all the time to fit needs, but noone has made a compelling argument for why Byrnes is any more a necessity than Lugo. If Byrnes were making less or if Arizona were adding Montero (in which case the Sox would have to add something, don't think I'm saying Lugo is the awesome and the Sox should be able to get whatever they want for him), then ok we are talking about something. But straight up this trade stinks and it sucks and it stinks. Again, my opinion.

#29 bankshot1


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 09:59 AM

Neither Eric Byrnes nor anyone in Pawtucket will sniff enough plate appearances to get 15- 20 HR's.


Given Drew's attendence record over the past few years, whoever Theo plugs into the 4th OF role, should have minimal health issues. And is one of the reasons why Baldelli (who I otherwise would like to see on the Sox) or Byrnes, may not be suitable.

Edited by bankshot1, 11 December 2008 - 10:00 AM.


#30 pdaj

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 10:04 AM

Given Drew's attendence record over the past few years, whoever Theo plugs into the 4th OF role, should have minimal health issues. And is one of the reasons why Baldelli (who I otherwise would like to see on the Sox) or Byrnes, may not be suitable.


Coco logged 361 AB last season, even with Ellsbury getting his 554. 15-20 capability or not, the Red Sox' 4th OF will have a serious role to play on this team. Byrnes' health issues are a legitimate concern. It makes me wonder how badly the Sox want to rid themselves of Lugo.

Edited by pdaj, 11 December 2008 - 10:05 AM.


#31 86spike


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 10:10 AM

What reasonable person would expect Byrnes to do the same? In a full time role, pre-injury, in 2007 he hit 21 home runs in 626 ABs. Now that he's 2 years older and has injured both hamstrings and would be in a hypothetical part-time role, what makes you think he'll even come close to those marks again?



Neither Eric Byrnes nor anyone in Pawtucket will sniff enough plate appearances to get 15- 20 HR's.


you are correct that Byrnes would not get enough at bats to hit 15-20 HRs (and neither would any of our AAA outfileders)... but the point is Byrnes has hit that many in MLB while we have no RHH outfielders in Pawtucket who have that profile.

I'm just debunking the erroneous claim that the Sox have AAA OFers as good as Byrnes. They don't.

By the way... I just got a lurker PM about AZ signing Felipe Lopez on a one year deal, so looks like their interest in Lugo must be zilch now... so this is a moot discussion.

Here's the rotoworld link.

#32 TheYaz67

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 10:25 AM

I'm willing to admit that I hate Byrnes. He is a good to great corner defender who is getting older and has potentially bad legs. I think his offense is vastly overrated due to the fact that he hits more HR than he looks like he should be able to. He doesn't really do much else well with the bat and he's 33. This is not an $11 MM player. Lugo may still be a $9 MM player based on the market for SS. I know that is not a fair way to evaluate trades but I think it is a fair way to look at what the open market might say about both players, and in that case, I do not think that it is an even trade. Now, you make uneven trades all the time to fit needs, but noone has made a compelling argument for why Byrnes is any more a necessity than Lugo. If Byrnes were making less or if Arizona were adding Montero (in which case the Sox would have to add something, don't think I'm saying Lugo is the awesome and the Sox should be able to get whatever they want for him), then ok we are talking about something. But straight up this trade stinks and it sucks and it stinks. Again, my opinion.


Adam Everett, a better defender at SS than Lugo, just signed for $1M. Everett has a career 69 OPS+, compared to Lugo's 65 and 78 OPS+ efforts in the past two years for the Sox. I'm not seeing that Lugo is worth anything near what he is being paid - he is below replacement level and anything useful (replacement level or better) you get offered for him you should take... too bad another potential Lugo suitor seems to have slipped through Theo's hands.

#33 86spike


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 10:28 AM

Here's the source info on the Felipe Lopez deal with AZ:

Jon Heyman:

The Arizona Diamondbacks have agreed to sign infielder Felipe Lopez to a $3.5-million, one-year contract, SI.com has learned. Lopez hit .283 with six home runs and 46 RBIs. Lopez figures to fill the Diamondbacks have an opening at second base, with Orlando Hudson sure to sign elsewhere as a free agent. Lopez and Hudson are longtime friends. According to the Arizona Republic, Lopez was in Hudson's wedding part (Hudson got married several days ago).


No Lugo in Phoenix, I'd say.

#34 Seabass177


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 10:52 AM

Which RHH outfielders in Pawtucket can be expected to hit 15-20 HRs in the big leagues next year?

Well, Bill James and Marcel project that Jeff Bailey could hit 7-8 HR in 185-200 AB's next year, while hitting around .268 and OPSing somewhere from .780 to .830 or so. I see no reason to pay Eric Byrnes and his suspect hammies $11M while Bailey could probably give you very similar production.

You can't say that claiming the PawSox might have talent that's equivalent to Byrnes is erroneous on face value, because Byrnes' health is an unknown. And he wasn't all that good to begin with. The Sox simply do not need him.

#35 Pandemonium67

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 10:59 AM

One thing we don't know is how the Sox perceive Lugo's attitude about being next year's Cora. If they think he'll be a whiny prick, they'll want to get rid of him. Even for an expensive, aging, sub-par OFer with bad legs.

They'll still have to find next year's Cora, though.

#36 xjack


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 11:00 AM

I like Bailey's bat, but is he really capable of playing right field for a significant stretch of time?

#37 Quintanariffic

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 12:14 PM

Adam Everett, a better defender at SS than Lugo, just signed for $1M. Everett has a career 69 OPS+, compared to Lugo's 65 and 78 OPS+ efforts in the past two years for the Sox. I'm not seeing that Lugo is worth anything near what he is being paid - he is below replacement level and anything useful (replacement level or better) you get offered for him you should take... too bad another potential Lugo suitor seems to have slipped through Theo's hands.

And Renteria, coming off an 84 OPS+ season and who is awful in the field, just signed a contact for 2/$19.5MM. Now you can argue that Brian Sabean is an idiot, but just throwing Everett out there isn't really relevant.

#38 bd11

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 12:26 PM

The extra year of Byrnes' contract over Lugo's should be a non-starter.

#39 Joshv02

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 12:33 PM

The extra year of Byrnes' contract over Lugo's should be a non-starter.

Both deals expire in 2010, no? (Lugo has a vesting option that won't vest, but that is for 2011.)

#40 Cuzittt


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 01:30 PM

I like Bailey's bat, but is he really capable of playing right field for a significant stretch of time?


We know that of the 34 games that Bailey played in the OF in Pawtucket this year, 26 of them were in RF. Which probably says more about Chris Carter than Bailey... but as a 4th OF, he would probably be adequate enough.

#41 bd11

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Posted 11 December 2008 - 02:49 PM

Both deals expire in 2010, no? (Lugo has a vesting option that won't vest, but that is for 2011.)

You are correct, my bad, from Cot's:

Eric Byrnes of
3 years/$30M (2008-10)
  • 3 years/$30M (2008-10)
    • signed extension 8/7/07
    • $2M signing bonus (paid in 2 installments in 2008)
    • 08:$6M, 09:$11M, 10:$11M
    • no-trade protection
  • 1 year/$4.575M (2007)
    • re-signed 2/07 (avoided arbitration, $5M-$4.25M)
  • 1 year/$2.25M (2006)
    • signed as a free agent 12/05 after being non-tendered
  • 1 year/$2.2M (2005)
    • avoided arbitration 1/05 ($2.5M-$2M)
    • performance bonuses: $25,000 each for 350 & 400 PAs
    • $25,000 one-time assignment bonus if traded
  • 1 year/$0.328M (2004)
  • 1 year/$0.3M (2003)
  • agent: Michael Sasson


#42 mt8thsw9th


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 03:04 PM

We know that of the 34 games that Bailey played in the OF in Pawtucket this year, 26 of them were in RF. Which probably says more about Chris Carter than Bailey... but as a 4th OF, he would probably be adequate enough.


This wasn't Fenway's RF and he can't shift over to CF. Bailey would be a horrible 4th OF. I think the ability to at least field all three OF positions adequately should be as much a prerequisite as batting right handed should be when assessing the team's needs. At his best Bailey is an extra RHH on the bench that can rotate through 1B/DH/LF. Basically, a guy who's likely going to be stuck at AAA until he's really needed.

#43 Rudy Pemberton


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Posted 11 December 2008 - 04:38 PM

Regarding Lugo, in his last 1101 plate appearances, he's made 804 outs. He's hit 243 / 301 / 332 during that time. He hasn't been a good offensive player for awhile. Byrnes was better than average not that long ago. I'd certainly be interested here as it shouldn't be that hard to find a guy to do what Lugo has done, and be content as a backup. If Byrnes was OK with limited playing time, it's a sound move even if he is a douchebag.