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Edes: Sox make offer to Beltre


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#1 Guest_Corsi Combover_*

Posted 09 December 2009 - 09:24 PM

QUOTE
According to multiple baseball and industry sources, the Red Sox’ interest in free agent third baseman Adrian Beltre is believed to be signficant, with his age (31 in April), premium defense and bat fitting neatly into their stated needs of deepening the lineup and improving their defense.The Red Sox continue to have concerns that Mike Lowell’s lack of mobility has become a liability on defense that’s not going to go away, while Beltre is considered one of the best – if not the best – defensive third basemen in the game.

Beltre’s offense is part of the package as well, with the club seeing Beltre’s production as close enough to what Lowell, 36 next season, could provide.

Things could get more complicated come contract time, however. It’s believed that Beltre, whose last deal was a five-year contract worth $12.4 million a year, is looking for a similar length with his next deal, with an annual average value of approximately $13 million.
http://www.bostonher...re-significant/

Edited by Corsi Combover, 04 January 2010 - 05:42 PM.


#2 Rough Carrigan


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 09:41 PM

There's no way they'll give him EITHER a 5 year contract or $13 million per year. That would have to be a Scott Boras level bargaining position, i.e. totally unrealistic and not worth the effort to exhale breath required to speak it.

#3 OCD SS


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 09:49 PM

I like Beltre; he was my favorite offseason target after '04 (oh, what might have been). While I'd rather the Sox were able to find a true impact hitter (Miggy, Gonzalez), I suspect they're not available at a price Theo finds palatable.

It also give's them cover to talk to Boras about Holliday forever as he drags the negotiations out, and it might help them keep him honest. (He can't piss them off so that they stop taking his calls as they did when he was trying to get Tek a deal last year.)

#4 ToeKneeArmAss


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 09:52 PM

QUOTE (Rough Carrigan @ Dec 9 2009, 10:41 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
There's no way they'll give him EITHER a 5 year contract or $13 million per year. That would have to be a Scott Boras level bargaining position, i.e. totally unrealistic and not worth the effort to exhale breath required to speak it.


I don't have data to refute you, but I am curious as to the certainty of your assertion. Beltre seems like a close-to-ideal fit, and fangraphs (unreliable, I know) has him at $18MM.

A guy at his age is the kind for whom you might be willing to "overpay" - given that none of us know what market prices will be at the end of the contract.

What makes you so sure this won't happen?

Edited by ToeKneeArmAss, 09 December 2009 - 09:54 PM.


#5 PrometheusWakefield


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:26 PM

QUOTE (ToeKneeArmAss @ Dec 9 2009, 09:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
A guy at his age is the kind for whom you might be willing to "overpay" - given that none of us know what market prices will be at the end of the contract.

Ugh, he's the kind for whom I really don't want to overpay. The man hit like an okay shortstop last year. His value comes out of defense, and defensive skills are vulnerable to great fluctuation with age and health. Witness, for example, the huge chunk of cash we're about to give Texas to get rid of a guy who, at 34, went from a +7 to +15 defender to, at 35, a -15.

I have no idea how good Beltre is going to be in 4 years, and I wouldn't go over three for him.

#6 bosockboy


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:31 PM

5/65 is a very tough sell after Figgins got 4/36. I'd say Theo is probably in the 4/48 range for Beltre.

On one hand, I like Beltre and think he's a good fit; he and Scutaro would significantly upgrade the left side of the infield and with Pedroia and Youk makes a great infield, which should set up Buchholz nicely with his groundball tendencies.

On the other hand, the Yanks have the two corner infield spots locked up for the next 7 years; this is the one area where we can be very selective and make a huge lineup dent without them interfering. It's one of the few cards we can play against them, and it seems a tad uninspiring I guess to play that one card on Adrian Beltre.

If Lowell goes to Texas, you have to factor his money into the cost of acquiring Beltre. If they pay the full freight on Mike, they will have paid about 36 million in dead money between Renteria, Lugo and Lowell to play for someone else.

#7 Savin Hillbilly


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:33 PM

QUOTE (ToeKneeArmAss @ Dec 9 2009, 09:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Beltre seems like a close-to-ideal fit, and fangraphs (unreliable, I know) has him at $18MM.

If you're referring to the $18.7M fan projection for 2010, then it's worth pointing out that the fan projection for Figgins is $19.3M, and he just signed for 4/$36.

Beltre is a close-to-ideal fit except for the fact that he hasn't had an OBP over .330 in six years. The ISO plunge last year is also a concern, but it seems reasonable to hope that that's injury-related and he'll bounce back from it. I think he's a legit 25-HR hitter (maybe more for the Sox) and one of the best defensive 3B around, and those are good enough reasons to sign him and accept the fact that he will be a feast-or-famine kind of hitter. But 5/$65 seems a bit steep for a guy who finds it so difficult to get on base. I think 4/$45 would be plenty, and maybe too much.

#8 PedroKsBambino


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:36 PM

QUOTE (ToeKneeArmAss @ Dec 9 2009, 09:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I don't have data to refute you, but I am curious as to the certainty of your assertion. Beltre seems like a close-to-ideal fit, and fangraphs (unreliable, I know) has him at $18MM.

A guy at his age is the kind for whom you might be willing to "overpay" - given that none of us know what market prices will be at the end of the contract.

What makes you so sure this won't happen?


That $18 mil isn't unreliable so much as it is just fiction. There's a reason no team is approaching those numbers and it's not for lack of understanding of the value of defense or of player valuation. And I like UZR, cite UZR, and think we should be trying to monetize these things in general....but that number for Beltre is simply not credible. You can't just combine UZR and offense, and you can't just take the output from the metric without a significant regression and an acknowledgement that there's a lot embedded uncertainty (read: error) in there.

While he may be the best option right now (not sure that's true, but anyway...) a true 'perfect fit' would have topped a .330 OBP more recently than 2004. I love his glove too, but he's being wildly overvalued in many circles, imo. I even like the guy, but c'mon....

#9 86spike


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:36 PM

I wouldn't offer Beltre a dime more than Figgins got. What other teams are we bidding against? I doubt the Angels would pay him more than what they refused to pay Chone. The Phils already signed Polanco. Who else is shopping for a 3Bman? Any of them have a big budget?

#10 bosockboy


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:46 PM

QUOTE (86spike @ Dec 9 2009, 10:36 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I wouldn't offer Beltre a dime more than Figgins got. What other teams are we bidding against? I doubt the Angels would pay him more than what they refused to pay Chone. The Phils already signed Polanco. Who else is shopping for a 3Bman? Any of them have a big budget?


The Giants are but apparently aren't interested. The Twins are but I can't imagine them doing anything with a Boras client.

The only fit I could see is St. Louis giving Beltre some of their Holliday/DeRosa money.

But yes, it seems we can control the market for Beltre.

#11 Rough Carrigan


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:47 PM

QUOTE (ToeKneeArmAss @ Dec 9 2009, 09:52 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I don't have data to refute you, but I am curious as to the certainty of your assertion. Beltre seems like a close-to-ideal fit, and fangraphs (unreliable, I know) has him at $18MM.

A guy at his age is the kind for whom you might be willing to "overpay" - given that none of us know what market prices will be at the end of the contract.

What makes you so sure this won't happen?

He had a bad and injury filled year last year. That drives down his value. He's on the wrong side of 30 and not a fatty but he doesn't seem like the workout warrior type. Figgins just got slightly over 2/3 the average annual value that blurb said Beltre wants. Is he a 50% better player than Figgins? Does the market perceive him to be that? To judge by publicity it sure doesn't seem to be the case. I thought there was much more talk of Figgins's impending free agency than Beltre's. And, as others have noted, a couple of the teams that might have constituted his market have turned elsewhere.

Don't get me wrong, based on what little I know at this point, I'd like to see the Sox sign him. I just think that there's no way they'll do it for 5 years and $65 million.

Edited by Rough Carrigan, 09 December 2009 - 10:48 PM.


#12 MartyBarrettMVP

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:48 PM

QUOTE (86spike @ Dec 9 2009, 10:36 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I wouldn't offer Beltre a dime more than Figgins got. What other teams are we bidding against? I doubt the Angels would pay him more than what they refused to pay Chone. The Phils already signed Polanco. Who else is shopping for a 3Bman? Any of them have a big budget?


Well the Angels for one. Scioscia is talking about Brandon Wood at 3B but who knows....although they are allegedly making a push for Halladay.

#13 Robinson Checo

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:58 PM

When Beltre left LA and signed with Seattle he cited wanting to stay on the west coast as on of his major reasons. Has that changed? If San Fran gets involved, he may opt for there even if it is for lesser dollars (which would upset Boras, but has happened before). I would hate to see the Sox sign him to anything longer than 2 years with an option.

#14 86spike


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 10:59 PM

QUOTE (MartyBarrettMVP @ Dec 9 2009, 10:48 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Well the Angels for one. Scioscia is talking about Brandon Wood at 3B but who knows....although they are allegedly making a push for Halladay.


but as I said, the Halos wouldn't beat 4/$36M for hometown hero Figgins so why would they turn around and pay Beltremore than that? Especially with Wood already in house?

Boras isn't going to let Beltre sign anything without calling Theo to see if he'll beat it anyway, so I hope like he'll Theo learned a lesson from his Lugo gaffe and won't shoot first and ask questions later.


#15 Adirondack jack

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 11:08 PM

QUOTE (bosockboy @ Dec 9 2009, 08:31 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
5/65 is a very tough sell after Figgins got 4/36. I'd say Theo is probably in the 4/48 range for Beltre.


I think this range is still very high. Basically Boras took reality and is multiplying by two.

We're talking about a hitter with a OBA of 303, 328, 319, 327, 304 in the previous 5 years and plays a corner position.

Handing the keys over for the next four years at the above rate isn't worth it. Just hold onto Lowell and use Youk at third mostly, or something, because that dollar amount / years is craziness.

Edited by Adirondack jack, 09 December 2009 - 11:11 PM.


#16 Guest_Corsi Combover_*

Posted 09 December 2009 - 11:12 PM

QUOTE (Adirondack jack @ Dec 9 2009, 11:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think this range is very high. Basically Boras took reality and is multiplying by two.

We're talking about a hitter with a OBA of 303, 328, 319, 327, 304 in the previous 5 years and plays a corner position.

Handing the keys over for the next four years at the above rate isn't worth it. Just hold onto Lowell and use Youk at third mostly, or something, because that dollar amount / years is craziness.

I think the Sox view Beltre as a .280/.340/.500 guy with Gold Glove defense. You pay a premium for that.

#17 bombdiggz

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 11:17 PM

In the Mike Lowell thread, I wondered how much it would take to sign Beltre without Boras dragging it out until February. Never did I imagine it would be 5/65. Man do I love Beltre on this team, but that is just crazy talk.

As I said in the other thread. I think we take care of the Lowell business, IF Texas is really willing to give up Ramirez and sit contently with Youk and Kotchman, saying we are ready to go into the year with Youk at 3rd, Kotchman at 1st and see what the market dictates Beltre's value is.

#18 Adirondack jack

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 11:17 PM

QUOTE (Corsi Combover @ Dec 9 2009, 09:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I think the Sox view Beltre as a .280/.340/.500 guy with Gold Glove defense. You pay a premium for that.


Except that Beltre career line is .270 / .325 /. 453

Sure, pay a premium for the player you describe, but it isn't Beltre. Not in this market and not coming off his injury riddled season.

Start talking four years and it just seems apparent to me that sliding Youk back over is the most reasonable course.


Edit: Wouldnt the park effects balance out that he's past his prime years..

Edited by Adirondack jack, 09 December 2009 - 11:19 PM.


#19 bosockboy


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Posted 09 December 2009 - 11:27 PM

QUOTE (Adirondack jack @ Dec 10 2009, 12:17 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Except that Beltre career line is .270 / .325 /. 453

Sure, pay a premium for the player you describe, but it isn't Beltre. Not in this market and not coming off his injury riddled season.

Start talking four years and it just seems apparent to me that sliding Youk back over is the most reasonable course.


Edit: Wouldnt the park effects balance out that he's past his prime years..


Lowell had bottomed out far worse in Florida and the Sox correctly gambled his swing would translate to Fenway. Beltre is a bit younger than 2005 Lowell and has similar pull tendencies and is an elite defender. I think 5/65 is too high for sure, but I could probably live with 4/44 or so. I think he can rebound; Safeco was the worst possible park for him to play in with his pull swing.

#20 finnVT

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Posted 09 December 2009 - 11:33 PM

QUOTE (Adirondack jack @ Dec 9 2009, 11:17 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Edit: Wouldnt the park effects balance out that he's past his prime years..

Why would these things be equal? There's no way aging from 30 to 31 is like moving from Safeco to Fenway..

I think you have to look at his performance away from Safeco over the last few years to decide if this is worth pursuing.
2006 .283/.343/.462/.806
2007 .288/.320/.538/.858
2008 .292/.349/.512/.862
2009 .279/.324/.393/.717

2009 was obvious a disappointment, though also was fewer games than the previous years. If you think he can put up 2007-08 type numbers, he's worth quite a lot as a .290/.330/.520 type player with GG level defense. The thing driving the price down would be the uncertainty.

#21 jtn46


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:10 AM

QUOTE (bosockboy @ Dec 9 2009, 11:27 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Lowell had bottomed out far worse in Florida and the Sox correctly gambled his swing would translate to Fenway. Beltre is a bit younger than 2005 Lowell and has similar pull tendencies and is an elite defender. I think 5/65 is too high for sure, but I could probably live with 4/44 or so. I think he can rebound; Safeco was the worst possible park for him to play in with his pull swing.
The Sox wisely grabbed Lowell, but they bought extremely low on Lowell, the commitment to Lowell was only 2 years, and 75% of the reason the Sox made that deal was to get Josh Beckett. I'm sure to make that trade, the Sox were prepared to eat Lowell's 2007 if he didn't bounce back offensively.

I would be perfectly fine buying low like that with Beltre, but giving him a 4-year deal is not buying low. He's coming off a .265/.304/.379 season. Giving him 4 years is paying for a projection.

Edited by jtn46, 10 December 2009 - 12:10 AM.


#22 FanSinceBoggs

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:38 AM

The Red Sox's reported interest in Beltre might suggest that Adrian Gonzalez is not a realistic target for them.

Beltre would be an obvious defensive improvement over Lowell. I think Beltre has a better bat at this point of his career as well. Assuming the Red Sox sign Beltre, and then sign Bay/Holliday for leftfield, they would be making only incremental improvements to the offense in 2010: Beltre over Lowell, Scutaro, and an entire year of Victor Martinez.

Such improvements are nice, but will they be enough? Would such moves keep the Red Sox in second place in 2010? Probably. But such improvements would go a long way toward securing the Wild Card spot. Although, as the Red Sox proved last season, they could win the Wild Card with Mike Lowell as well, and so a Beltre acquisition might not change very much.

If the Red Sox can't make more than incremental improvements to the offense then it'll be important for them to improve run prevention. A defensive player like Beltre is a step in that direction, but probably won't get them any closer to the World Series unless the Red Sox upgrade their starting rotation as well. Felix Hernandez is obviously the number one target in this area. If he isn't available, then Halladay and Lackey are next in line.

I don't believe the Red Sox can stand pat with their starting rotation if Adrian Beltre is their idea of an offensive upgrade. . . .



#23 paulftodd


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:43 AM

Beltre obviously would be a defensive upgrade, but a couple of observations.

1. His hitting against RHP is awful since coming to the AL (2009-272 OBP, 2008-290 OBP. 2007-314 OBP, 2006-321 OBP, 2005-296 OBP). I suspect he saw more breaking stuff in the AL and hits a CB/slider from a RHP as well as Willy Mo Pena did. Fan Graphs pitch values shows him a well below average on breaking stuff, and he sees fewer FB's in the AL. Last year he had trouble even with the FB, but that may have been the shoulder.

2. His age makes him an attractive signing for 3 years, but given he came from the DR and broke in at MLB level at age 19, are we so sure he is not older? No proof that he is, but the age of any player from the area at that time signed at the age of 15 has to be suspect given what we know today. In those years you expect a hitter to improve, say from age 26-30, but Beltre simply hit a wall and even declined before his injury riddled 2009 season.

3. It may well be that Fenway will boost his offensive numbers, especially given Beltres H-A splits with the Mariners, but his power is more CF, CF-RF so I don't think Fenway should be much better for him than Safeco. Never did anything at Fenway with the Mariners, but of course, good pitching eats up hackers like Beltre.

4. Lowell had 2 great years before his lousy 2005 season, Beltre has not put up anything close with the Mariners. He had a huge 2004 with LAD in a contract year never seen before or after leading a number Mariner fans to believe he was juiced in 2004 to get a big contract.

If they really do sign Beltre for big money, well, this has "Lugo" written all over it.






#24 Dionysus


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:43 AM

QUOTE (FanSinceBoggs @ Dec 10 2009, 12:38 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
If the Red Sox can't make more than incremental improvements to the offense then it'll be important for them to improve run prevention. A defensive player like Beltre is a step in that direction, but probably won't get them any closer to the World Series unless the Red Sox upgrade their starting rotation as well. Felix Hernandez is obviously the number one target in this area. If he isn't available, then Halladay and Lackey are next in line.

I don't believe the Red Sox can stand pat with their starting rotation if Adrian Beltre is their idea of an offensive upgrade. . . .


Obviously, it all depends on your opinion of the men's abilities, but one could say we are upgrading our rotation already by bringing back a full year of a healthy Daisuke, and a full year of a grown-up Buchholz. Whatever we get our of those two HAS to be better than what we got from their spots last season - possible significantly so.

Edit: Don't take this to mean that I'm pushing for a Beltre signing. I really don't like his bat and if he thinks he's getting 4 years, its a joke.

Edited by Dionysus, 10 December 2009 - 12:47 AM.


#25 Quintanariffic

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:47 AM

QUOTE (paulftodd @ Dec 10 2009, 12:43 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
2. His age makes him an attractive signing for 3 years, but given he came from the DR and broke in at MLB level at age 19, are we so sure he is not older? No proof that he is, but the age of any player from the area at that time signed at the age of 15 has to be suspect given what we know today. In those years you expect a hitter to improve, say from age 26-30, but Beltre simply hit a wall and even declined before his injury riddled 2009 season.

This is what wikipedia sez:

QUOTE
He was signed out of the Dominican Republic by the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1994. Beltré attended Liceo Maximo Gomez High School, where he developed into one of the school’s top players. In 1994, while working out at Campo Las Palmas, the Los Angeles Dodgers facility, he was spotted by scouts Ralph Avila and Pablo Peguero. Though only 15 and weighing just 130 pounds, he had a lightning-quick swing and electric throwing arm. On the insistence of Avila and Peguero, the Dodgers signed Adrian in July. He received a $23,000 bonus. When it was revealed that Beltre had signed his initial contract at the age of 15, commissioner Bud Selig suspended the Dodgers' scouting operations in the Dominican Republic for a year, due to the fact that signing a player at that age was prevented under MLB rules.[1]


If Selig penalized the Dodgers for it, my guess is that he had pretty solid evidence of Beltre being the age he is currently listed at. Also, there is this:

QUOTE
In his effort to maintain his Gold Glove title, Beltré forgoes personal safety including the use of a protective cup.

That sentence is a bit of a non-sequitor, but it's awesome.

#26 paulftodd


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 01:05 AM

QUOTE (Quintanariffic @ Dec 10 2009, 01:47 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
This is what wikipedia sez:



If Selig penalized the Dodgers for it, my guess is that he had pretty solid evidence of Beltre being the age he is currently listed at. Also, there is this:


The minimum age for signing a player was 16. I am sure the Dodgers believed he was 15 since that was what the player represented himself at via a birth certificate (might be his younger brothers or a falsified certificate), and signed him anyways, earning the wrath of Bud Selig (this practice used to be rampant and was ignored until Selig took action). The point is that if a player is 18-19 and has the same tools and skills as a 16 yo, the 16 yo is more valuable as they are believed to have a higher upside, which is why players falsify their ages to be younger (not older), since they are more likely to be signed and at a higher price.

So maybe Beltre is 30, maybe he is not. Who knows.

Edited by paulftodd, 10 December 2009 - 01:07 AM.


#27 Quintanariffic

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 01:08 AM

QUOTE (paulftodd @ Dec 10 2009, 01:05 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The minimum age for signing a player was 16. I am sure the Dodgers believed he was 15 since that was what the player represented himself at via a birth certificate (might be his younger brothers or a falsified certificate), and signed him anyways, earning the wrath of Bud Selig (this practice used to be rampant and was ignored until Selig took action). The point is that if a player is 18-19 and has the same tools and skills as a 16 yo, the 16 yo is more valuable as they are believed to have a higher upside, which is why players falsify their ages to be younger (not older), since they are more likely to be signed and at a higher price.

So maybe Beltre is 30, maybe he is not. Who knows.

The point is, MLB conducted an investigation in order to make this determination, and in the post 9/11 world had access to the information they needed. Age-gate is like 5 years ago, dude.

Next you'll tell me how inferior AFL competition is, right?

#28 paulftodd


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 03:01 AM

QUOTE (Quintanariffic @ Dec 10 2009, 02:08 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The point is, MLB conducted an investigation in order to make this determination, and in the post 9/11 world had access to the information they needed. Age-gate is like 5 years ago, dude.

Next you'll tell me how inferior AFL competition is, right?


Well, this was in 1995, long before 9/11 and at a time when everyone accepted whatever proof of age was submitted.

As for the last point, everything is relative.

#29 Quintanariffic

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 04:23 AM

QUOTE (paulftodd @ Dec 10 2009, 03:01 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Well, this was in 1995, long before 9/11 and at a time when everyone accepted whatever proof of age was submitted.

And if Beltre has entered the US from the Dominican since 9/11, he has faced the much more stringent visa checks which nabbed all of the other age-gaters.

QUOTE
As for the last point, everything is relative.

There have been some spectacular cop-outs on this site, but this may take the cake.


#30 Adirondack jack

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 05:18 AM

QUOTE (finnVT @ Dec 9 2009, 09:33 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Why would these things be equal? There's no way aging from 30 to 31 is like moving from Safeco to Fenway..


For the most part, I agree you, and was responding to the assertion that a .280 / .340 / .500 hitter was walking through the door (And he was worth 4/48) and basically phrased the snip you grabbed horribly.

There are reasons I wouldn't grab Beltre's career line of .270 / .325 / .453 and simply bump it up across the board (as I assumed the poster did) given the swing in competition, his age, his injury and the train-wreck performance last year, etc. etc.

At a certain cost it'll make sense to go down the Youk at-third avenue and four-years and or $50 had long exceeded that point, for me, was the general premise.

#31 Todd Benzinger

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 05:52 AM

If the Sox wind up paying more for Beltre than Figgins got... Yikes.

I'm still unclear why they weren't in on Figgy given the low price tag. Did he WANT to end up in Seattle for some reason?

#32 OCD SS


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 07:58 AM

QUOTE (paulftodd @ Dec 10 2009, 01:05 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
So maybe Beltre is 30, maybe he is not. Who knows.


Yeah, and maybe you're the age you think you are, and maybe you're not. Who knows?

If I had to guess, Beltre is not going to get more than 3 years. I could see Theo giving him around $30M, maybe a little more, but I think we'll all be pleasantly surprised with his contract (similar to the reaction to Scutaro).

#33 Miskatonic PhD


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 08:14 AM

OK, a few scattered thoughts after reading.

1. Boras will no doubt, and rightly in this one case, point out that whatever the Sox paid to ditch Lowell has no bearing on his client's salary expectations.

2. If said expectations are for more than Figgins got, he's likely going to be sad.

3. I don't care what a player says about their desire to stay on the west coast/east coast/martian colonies after they sign.

4. You hire Boras, it's a pretty good bet that a cozy discount to play at/near home just isn't happening.

5. For a 3B he really does project wretchedly on offense, doesn't he? Whoever said he hit like an above-average SS has it right. And whoever mentioned that corner infield is one place the Sox might not face MFY tax has that right. While I won't scream at a short deal, giving them time to get something actually impressive done, I look at Beltre and think, "Theo, seriously? This is the best you could do?"

#34 Soxfan in Fla


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 10:30 AM

QUOTE (Adirondack jack @ Dec 10 2009, 05:17 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Except that Beltre career line is .270 / .325 /. 453

Sure, pay a premium for the player you describe, but it isn't Beltre. Not in this market and not coming off his injury riddled season.

Start talking four years and it just seems apparent to me that sliding Youk back over is the most reasonable course.


Edit: Wouldnt the park effects balance out that he's past his prime years..



I think its reasonable to think his numbers will increase across the board playing in Fenway as a RH pull hitter. Considering where those numbers are and what they aspire him to be, playing 81 games in Fenway instead of Safeco could jump the numbers to the levels they think he can get.

#35 Wade Boggs Hair

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 11:03 AM

QUOTE (Miskatonic PhD @ Dec 10 2009, 08:14 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
5. For a 3B he really does project wretchedly on offense, doesn't he? Whoever said he hit like an above-average SS has it right. And whoever mentioned that corner infield is one place the Sox might not face MFY tax has that right. While I won't scream at a short deal, giving them time to get something actually impressive done, I look at Beltre and think, "Theo, seriously? This is the best you could do?"


No, he does not project "wretchedly" on offense. You might consider checking out the extremely detailed discussion of how Beltre would hit on the Red Sox in the "Improving the 1B/3B . . ." thread (both pro and con). Beltre is one of the worst hitters for Safeco and one of the better hitters for Fenway. His road numbers over the last few years are not only good, but arguably better than Grandpa Lowell's. He played through injury last year but still was comparable to Lowell playing through injury.

Also, feel free to discuss the players available now or prospectively available in 2010 whom you would look at and say "Theo, seriously. This is the best you could [have] do[ne]."

#36 Rudy Pemberton


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 11:36 AM

The road #s for Beltre are interesting; but they really need to be put in context. Historically- the bulk of his road damage has been done in NL parks (esp. in the NL West). If he joins the Red Sox; he's not going to be playing many games in those locations.

Let's take a closer look at how Beltre's road stats shake out by opponent / park. Looked at OPS, parks with 40+ PA. In his career, he's got an 826 OPS on the road.

COL: 1139
CIN: 1089
PIT: 1024 (PNC)
MON: 1012 (Olympic Stadium)
PIT: 1008 (Three Rivers)

KC: 1005
FLA: 1003
MIN: 1001
CHI(N): 982
HOU: 924
AZ: 887

TEX: 862
SD: 814

BOS: 531
MFY: 534
TOR: 792
TB: 475
BAL: 720

What do we make of this? Furthermore, if the rumors of the Sox being not interested in Holliday mean that they are really interested, does the rumored significant interest in Beltre indicate that the Sox are not interested?) smile.gif

Edited by Rudy Pemberton, 10 December 2009 - 11:46 AM.


#37 Wade Boggs Hair

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 11:50 AM

QUOTE (Rudy Pemberton @ Dec 10 2009, 11:36 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
The road #s for Beltre are interesting; but they really need to be put in context. Historically- the bulk of his road damage has been done in NL parks (esp. in the NL West). If he joins the Red Sox; he's not going to be playing many games in those locations.

Let's take a closer look at how Beltre's road stats shake out by opponent / park. Looked at OPS, parks with 40+ PA. In his career, he's got an 826 OPS on the road.

COL: 1139
CIN: 1089
PIT: 1024 (PNC)
MON: 1012 (Olympic Stadium)
PIT: 1008 (Three Rivers)

KC: 1005
FLA: 1003
MIN: 1001
CHI(N): 982
HOU: 924
AZ: 887

TEX: 862
SD: 814

BOS: 531
MFY: 534
TOR: 792
TB: 475
BAL: 720

What do we make of this? Furthermore, if the rumors of the Sox being not interested in Holliday mean that they are really interested, does the rumored significant interest in Beltre indicate that the Sox are not interested?) smile.gif


It says to me that he's an adequate to good hitter in small sample sizes on the road everywhere except when playing against the three of the best pitching staffs in the AL on their turf. He doesn't have 100 PAs at Fenway, the Toilet/Bidet or the Trop. His BABIP at those parks in less than 100 PAs is .204, .167 and .224, respectively. Even if you think some or all of BABIP is driven by strength of contact and not by luck, those numbers do not look predictive at all.

Edited by Wade Boggs Hair, 10 December 2009 - 11:52 AM.


#38 Maalox


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:12 PM

QUOTE (Wade Boggs Hair @ Dec 10 2009, 01:50 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
It says to me that he's an adequate to good hitter in small sample sizes on the road everywhere except when playing against the three of the best pitching staffs in the AL on their turf.

But aren't those exactly the situations we want him for? Are those exactly the situations that held the Sox back in 2009? Isn't easing the difficulty of beating the Yankees at the Bidet the highlighted, blinking, A440-screaming reason the team needs to be beefed up?

This team is in the playoffs more or less every year. It sure seems that Job One of this offseason is to improve our chances of beating the teams we have trouble beating.

#39 bd11

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:34 PM

QUOTE (paulftodd @ Dec 10 2009, 12:43 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Beltre obviously would be a defensive upgrade, but a couple of observations.

1. His hitting against RHP is awful since coming to the AL (2009-272 OBP, 2008-290 OBP. 2007-314 OBP, 2006-321 OBP, 2005-296 OBP). I suspect he saw more breaking stuff in the AL and hits a CB/slider from a RHP as well as Willy Mo Pena did. Fan Graphs pitch values shows him a well below average on breaking stuff, and he sees fewer FB's in the AL. Last year he had trouble even with the FB, but that may have been the shoulder.

2. His age makes him an attractive signing for 3 years, but given he came from the DR and broke in at MLB level at age 19, are we so sure he is not older? No proof that he is, but the age of any player from the area at that time signed at the age of 15 has to be suspect given what we know today. In those years you expect a hitter to improve, say from age 26-30, but Beltre simply hit a wall and even declined before his injury riddled 2009 season.

3. It may well be that Fenway will boost his offensive numbers, especially given Beltres H-A splits with the Mariners, but his power is more CF, CF-RF so I don't think Fenway should be much better for him than Safeco. Never did anything at Fenway with the Mariners, but of course, good pitching eats up hackers like Beltre.

4. Lowell had 2 great years before his lousy 2005 season, Beltre has not put up anything close with the Mariners. He had a huge 2004 with LAD in a contract year never seen before or after leading a number Mariner fans to believe he was juiced in 2004 to get a big contract.

If they really do sign Beltre for big money, well, this has "Lugo" written all over it.

I thought this post was sensational. I'm astonished by how many people are drinking the "he will improve the defense" cool aid. How many wins at third base would he add over available guys like DeRosa, Kennedy (admittedly not the defender Beltre is), Feliz or Crede, all of whom you could acquire at a fraction of what Boras will hold up some sucker for Beltre? Beltre is a free swinger who has not produced and does not hit good pitching, which was obviously the Sox' biggest problem in their short playoff stint. Overpriced, non-producing free agents have been Theo's achilles heel during his tenure and this is an easy one to first guess if it happens.

#40 Wade Boggs Hair

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:45 PM

QUOTE (Maalox @ Dec 10 2009, 12:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
But aren't those exactly the situations we want him for? Are those exactly the situations that held the Sox back in 2009? Isn't easing the difficulty of beating the Yankees at the Bidet the highlighted, blinking, A440-screaming reason the team needs to be beefed up?

This team is in the playoffs more or less every year. It sure seems that Job One of this offseason is to improve our chances of beating the teams we have trouble beating.


Yes, but my argument isn't that Adrian Beltre will suck against the Yankees and Rays and in Fenway but it's okay because of his strong suits.

My argument is that career splits of fewer than 100 plate appearances in unfamiliar ballparks three time zones away on the opposite coast against great pitching and driven by unsustainably low BABIP are not sufficient conditions for concluding that Beltre cannot succeed in the situations you describe.

Beltre has 10 BB v. 8 Ks as a hitter at Fenway, but no one is suggesting that coming to Fenway blesses him with Chipper Jones' batting eye. A .200 BABIP in that same sample does not mean coming to Fenway curses him with Kevin Cash's bat, either.

Edited by Wade Boggs Hair, 10 December 2009 - 12:47 PM.


#41 Jed Zeppelin


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:46 PM

How is it "drinking the kool-aid" if he will improve the defense? The left side of the infield was a huge problem last season.

Edited by Jed Zeppelin, 10 December 2009 - 12:48 PM.


#42 bd11

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 12:54 PM

QUOTE (Jed Zeppelin @ Dec 10 2009, 12:46 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
How is it "drinking the kool-aid" if he will improve the defense? The left side of the infield was a huge problem last season.


Because you can accomplish that important task without paying $10-15m a year to a guy whose production will nowhere near match his salary.

#43 Jed Zeppelin


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 01:52 PM

QUOTE (bd11 @ Dec 10 2009, 12:54 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Because you can accomplish that important task without paying $10-15m a year to a guy whose production will nowhere near match his salary.


No, you can't. Derosa is a lot worse defensively. Kennedy is a natural 2b and wasn't good at 2b or 3b last season. Also he can't hit. Crede has had three back surgeries in three years. Feliz is the only one who might qualify, but does anyone really want a surefire .700 OPS player starting at third base for the Red Sox?

Beltre is a much better defender than all of those players, except probably Crede but again, his GP for the last three years are 46, 97 and 84

Edited by Jed Zeppelin, 10 December 2009 - 02:07 PM.


#44 PedroSpecialK


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 01:58 PM

QUOTE (bd11 @ Dec 10 2009, 12:54 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Because you can accomplish that important task without paying $10-15m a year to a guy whose production will nowhere near match his salary.

And you can pay a premium for a guy who has proved that, away from Safeco and Chavez Ravine in his career, he's a .287/.338/.488, and has a +13.9 career UZR/150, or you could pay a few million less AAV for Joe Crede (+10.2 career UZR/150, .254/.304/.444 career hitter) or Adam Kennedy (-11.4 UZR/150 at 3B, .277/.330/.391). Given the Sox' deep pockets, I know which one I'd prefer.

#45 Toe Nash

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 02:07 PM

QUOTE (Maalox @ Dec 10 2009, 12:12 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
But aren't those exactly the situations we want him for? Are those exactly the situations that held the Sox back in 2009? Isn't easing the difficulty of beating the Yankees at the Bidet the highlighted, blinking, A440-screaming reason the team needs to be beefed up?

This team is in the playoffs more or less every year. It sure seems that Job One of this offseason is to improve our chances of beating the teams we have trouble beating.

But the Sox were 15-21 on the road against the AL Central and West last year, and couldn't score at Anaheim in the playoffs. Winning on the west coast is always tough, but Chicago, Cleveland, KC, and Oakland are teams the Sox should be able to handle, and they were 6-8 on the road against those teams.

It's always going to be tough to beat the good AL East teams on the road. It shouldn't be as tough to beat the crappy AL Central and West teams as it was last year.

Edited by Toe Nash, 10 December 2009 - 02:12 PM.


#46 j44thor

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 02:17 PM

QUOTE (PedroSpecialK @ Dec 10 2009, 01:58 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
And you can pay a premium for a guy who has proved that, away from Safeco and Chavez Ravine in his career, he's a .287/.338/.488, and has a +13.9 career UZR/150, or you could pay a few million less AAV for Joe Crede (+10.2 career UZR/150, .254/.304/.444 career hitter) or Adam Kennedy (-11.4 UZR/150 at 3B, .277/.330/.391). Given the Sox' deep pockets, I know which one I'd prefer.


But would you rather have Crede for 1yr at say 6M or Beltre at 4/40? My problem with Beltre is that he probably gets 2 years too long and you have yet another Lugo/Lowell situation on your hands. What if Beltre doesn't hit any better at Fenway and more importantly continues to suck vs. RHP.

Another thing to consider with Beltre is whether or not he can handle a media market like Boston. I don't know one way or another but lets not forget he has spent his entire baseball career on the West Coast.

I really think a Beltre signing ends up similar to the Lugo signing. But at least Beltre won't cost the Sox Rick Porcello so he has that going for him.

#47 PedroSpecialK


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 02:31 PM

It's a fair argument, I just think that Beltre would be a serious upgrade over the likes of Crede. He doesn't cost anything as far as talent is concerned, as you pointed out, and he solves the 3B problem for the foreseeable future. Even if his offense remains around .260/.320/.400 (unlikely, given his splits), that's more value than Crede would provide, albeit at a 50-75% higher AAV. I'm not sure I buy the media argument, but I see your point.

I agree that 4 years would be troublesome, but 3/33 wouldn't be a bad deal for the Sox - due to the dearth of teams with money to throw around who are looking for a 3B, I'd say that's not too bad an estimate, and could even be lower.

#48 bosockboy


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 02:35 PM

A Beltre-Scutaro-Pedroia-Youkilis defensive infield would almost make me want to see how much the Braves will eat of Derek Lowe's salary to come be a 5th starter here. If you're gonna invest that much in defense, you might as well invest in groundball pitchers or what's the point?

#49 bd11

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Posted 10 December 2009 - 02:38 PM

QUOTE (PedroSpecialK @ Dec 10 2009, 01:58 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
And you can pay a premium for a guy who has proved that, away from Safeco and Chavez Ravine in his career, he's a .287/.338/.488, and has a +13.9 career UZR/150, or you could pay a few million less AAV for Joe Crede (+10.2 career UZR/150, .254/.304/.444 career hitter) or Adam Kennedy (-11.4 UZR/150 at 3B, .277/.330/.391). Given the Sox' deep pockets, I know which one I'd prefer.


To suggest that you could pay a "few million less AAV for Crede or Kennedy" is silly. More like $8-10m less AAV and anywhere from 2-4 years less on the contract. Do you really believe Beltre is worth that extra coin? I'd rather the Sox use their deep pockets for a difference maker who can help the stagnant offense as opposed to Julio Lugo II (fielding exempted of course).

Edited by bd11, 10 December 2009 - 02:41 PM.


#50 The Gray Eagle


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Posted 10 December 2009 - 02:42 PM

FWIW, Crede made $2.5 million last year, he'll be lucky to get that much again on a 1-year deal. He's not the answer for us, unless we had the roster space to use him as a backup at third, which we probably don't.

More importantly, we just plugged the biggest gaping OBP holes in the lineup now that we've got Scutaro and will have Martinez all year. I'd hate to see us now open up another hole by committing to four years of a 325 OBP type like Beltre. He's never hit in Fenway, and he's never hit in 440 plate appearances in AL East parks, (including the "great pitching" he faced in Baltimore, Toronto and pre-2008 Tampa.) He's done his road damage in NL West parks. He's also coming off a terrible year. It doesn't make sense to just rule that out and blame it all on injuries, as though now that he's in his 30's and got hurt last year, he'll somehow never get hurt again.

Going after Beltre gambles a big four-year commitment on the assumptions that from ages 31-34, he'll bounce back from last year, that he'll stay healthy, he'll not decline defensively, and he'll somehow learn to hit in the AL East. Too much wishful thinking IMO.

If you move Youkilis to third, you'll go from horrible defensively to league average, according to Fielding Bible. We've already gone from horrible to a little above league average at SS. Rather than weakening the offense to improve the defense even more by making a long-term commitment to a low OBP guy, it makes more sense to continue to improve the offense by adding a first baseman who can hit.

Adrian Gonzalez would obviously be the ideal target, but since they probably weren't going to move him, why not bring in the JD Drew of first basemen, Nick Johnson? He'd probably be available on a one-year-plus-option type of deal. With his bat and Kotchman's glove, you'd have first base covered nicely. Johnson was solid defensively until last year, and Kotchman is good insurance defensively and for the inevitable injuries. Though Johnson did play 133 games last year, 22 more than Beltre did. And Johnson put up a .426 OBP last year, and is .402 lifetime.

With Johnson, our lineup would become an OBP machine with solid defense, with no new long-term commitment to a guy in his 30's, and space available when SD finally does trade Gonzalez.

Edited by The Gray Eagle, 10 December 2009 - 02:48 PM.