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Abraham: is it time to deconstruct the Sox?


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#1 budcrew08

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:25 PM

Pete Abe said there are a few unmovable pieces, but that everyone including Lester and Pedroia should be open if the Sox continue to fade.
http://www.bostonglo...O0gL/story.html

I think this is ridiculous to think about getting rid of integral pieces on June 12, that's why the trade deadline is July 31.

Who should be off-limits and who should be open to discussion on the trade market on June 12?

Edited by budcrew08, 12 June 2012 - 03:25 PM.


#2 Red(s)HawksFan


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:36 PM

There are 42 games left to be played before the deadline. At the moment, the team is 6.5 games out of the division and 5.5 out of the second wildcard spot. Are they so bad off and in such a tailspin that the prospect of gaining 3-4 games in the standings over the course of the next 42 is impossible? They managed to pick up five games on first place in the span of ten days about two weeks ago, so I'd say no. Still way too early to be considering selling off key players at the trade deadline.

That said, I don't think anyone is off-limits if the price is right. But I think the guys they should be looking to sell high on are the veteran players who are more or less keeping seats warm for injured players or can be replaced with prospects or guys stashed at Pawtucket. Guys like Nava, Sweeney and Podsednik come immediately to mind. Youkilis, of course. Bullpen arms like Atchison, Padilla, and Albers as well.

No need for the firesale on June 12, though. Gotta wait until at least the All Star break, if not later.

#3 PrometheusWakefield


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:37 PM

Untouchable is always a weird word - nobody is untouchable of the Nationals offer Harper for him straight up - but I would think shopping Ortiz, Lester, and Beckett all make sense. I think it's pretty clear from the past 2 years that a pitching staff anchored by Lester and Beckett is unlikely to be championship-quality and we need to figure out our plan to acquire or develop a real ace (Greinke?). I doubt we would see a trade offer that would make me want to move Pedroia or Ellsbury, but I'd say anyone else is totally movable and - it pains me to say this - Ortiz and Youkilis almost have to go, if we aren't serious contenders a month from now.

And while it may be heretical to suggest, should even core players like David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz be considered completely off limits?

Obviously you’re not going to deal all of them. But let’s say the Giants were willing to deal starting pitcher Madison Bumgarner for Youkilis and Buchholz, would you hang up? What if the Mariners agreed to swap their ace, Felix Hernandez, for Lester and Pedroia? No way?

Maybe he's just trying to demonstrate a point with this, but if the Giants or the Mariners made those offers they'd be crazy and our answer would be hell yes. Although actually I guess I could picture a three-way trade where we get prospects for Lester and Pedroia who we send to the Mariners for Felix.

Edited by PrometheusWakefield, 12 June 2012 - 03:44 PM.


#4 Snodgrass'Muff


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:40 PM

I don't think a point will come where blowing it up is the right course of action. So for me, there are plenty of players I don't want to see moved. Pedroia, Ellsbury, Lester, Buchholz, Beckett, Gonzalez, Salty all immediately jump to mind as they could help this team contend in 2 or 3 years if a semi-rebuild is needed. And, of course, the youngins like Kalish, Middlebrooks and Lavarnway should be held onto, while Crawford will be immovable. So that's likely your core with the hope that Barnes and Raunado will make the 25 man by then, as well as Iglesias. Maybe you get lucky and one of Brentz, Bradley or Jacobs is able to fill in the empty roster spot if the team can't retain Ellsbury's services.

If the team is out of contention this year, though, and decide to be sellers (different than deconstructing the team) then Ortiz, Youk and Matsuzaka seem like the most attractive chips they have to cash in. Shoppach might get a lottery ticket prospect back as well.

Edited by Snodgrass'Muff, 12 June 2012 - 03:40 PM.


#5 John Marzano Olympic Hero


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:43 PM

There are 42 games left to be played before the deadline. At the moment, the team is 6.5 games out of the division and 5.5 out of the second wildcard spot. Are they so bad off and in such a tailspin that the prospect of gaining 3-4 games in the standings over the course of the next 42 is impossible? They managed to pick up five games on first place in the span of ten days about two weeks ago, so I'd say no. Still way too early to be considering selling off key players at the trade deadline.


He says as much in the second paragraph of the story:

Plenty can change in the fortunes of a baseball team in seven weeks and as the Red Sox get players off the disabled list, they could theoretically rise in the standings. With the extra wild card this season, greater opportunity exists.


Abraham's point is that the Red Sox brain trust has to decide soon whether this team is able to contend or whether they should start dealing some of their spare parts -- players like you mention. Also, if the deal is right maybe it's time to think about dealing bigger pieces. Though I'm not sure why Seattle would want to trade King Felix for Pedroia and Lester, but I understand what he's trying to say which is: it's not beneficial for the Sox front office to fall in love with these guys. If they are not going to win a World Series, you may as well get rid of them while they still have some value.

And I think that's probably the best outlook to take on this very uninspiring and thoroughly mediocre team.

If the team is out of contention this year, though, and decide to be sellers (different than deconstructing the team) then Ortiz, Youk and Matsuzaka seem like the most attractive chips they have to cash in. Shoppach might get a lottery ticket prospect back as well.


Wha? To whom is Youkilis or Matsuzaka an attractive option? I can see Ortiz being an attractive option, but he would only be available to an American League club and I don't think that the Sox would trade Papi and risk him coming into Fenway and sinking their chances at the postseason. The Red Sox would be lucky to get a C+ prospect for Shoppach.

#6 trekfan55


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:45 PM

Let's be honest, how many pieces of this team would really bring back value in prospects?

From the article:

Kevin Youkilis, Kelly Shoppach, Mike Aviles, Ryan Sweeney, Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Cody Ross and Nick Punto are veteran position players who could bolster a contender.


What value could we really expect any team to return for any of these players? Maybe Salty could bring back something, but the days when he was the centerpiece for Mark Teixeira are gone. Ryan Sweeney is hurt and scuffling, Ross is on the DL, Aviles is not as bad as many on the board place him but no one is going to trade anything special for him. Youkilis is not coming along well. Shoppach is a backup catcher.

Alfredo Aceves, Matt Albers, Franklin Morales, Vicente Padilla, Andrew Miller, Scott Atchison and Mark Melancon are relievers who could contribute to a team in a pennant race.


I don't really see any value there that would give the Sox a valuable building piece, nor any salary relief.

Finally there is this:

Obviously you’re not going to deal all of them. But let’s say the Giants were willing to deal starting pitcher Madison Bumgarner for Youkilis and Buchholz, would you hang up? What if the Mariners agreed to swap their ace, Felix Hernandez, for Lester and Pedroia? No way?


At least he's not out and out advocating those two trades, he's simply asking if they would be considered. At this point, if Ben got these offers, or similar ones, he would have to consider them, but I don't see them as realistic options.

At the end of the day there is very little that this team can do to break it up and rebuild because unlike the NFL, contracts are fully guaranteed.

#7 Toe Nash

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:49 PM

Abe:

Getting to the playoffs and losing in the wild-card game would not be an accomplishment for this franchise. The 2004 and ‘07 seasons were not that long ago.


This is such a dumb line and shows ignorance of the small sample size nature of the playoffs (especially now with the play-in game). If they get in and their top pitchers have three hot weeks, well, there you go.

If the Sox think they can make the playoffs, they should try to do so even if they wouldn't be favorites. I'm fairly sure Abraham knows this and is just being a negative dick (that is to say, his normal self). Thus, they're not likely to "blow it up" unless they drop another 3+ games on the second wildcard.

#8 Rudy Pemberton


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:50 PM

In order to seriously consider moving guys like Lester, Pedroia, etc. you need to have realistic replacements. There's no one knocking on the door, in the foreseeable future, who can step in for either of those players so I think trading them is largely counterprodoctive. Neither are old, and they are having poor years, so it's difficult to envision why you'd trade them. Guys like Salty, Sweeney, and Youkilis make more sense, b/c you have replacements. But, what can you really get for them, and I suspect Youks is immovable right now. Ultimately, I don't think anyone is untouchable but trading a key player when you don't have a plan to replace them seems irrational. The guys they'd trade probably wouldn't bring enough back to make sense, esp. when its not inconceivable to imagine the team getting things going again.

If the Sox were to move a starter, wouldn't they look to move Beckett?

#9 mauidano


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:53 PM

Good Lord! What is with the panic here? As mentioned throughout the thread. There is a lot of baseball to be played until July 31. Why don't we just relax and be a little more supportive of our team. I get the frustration but the team is feeling it too. They are too good to not be able to get out of the funk. I'm all for wait and see. In the meantime, optimistic.

#10 TomRicardo


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 03:58 PM

It was an awful article and to that a very big nothing to see here. We should be a month away from any discussion like this. It just looks like lazy old PeteAbe couldn't be bothered to try to write one of the many other stories surrounding the team.

Awful journalism doesn't need a main board thread.

#11 brs3


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 04:00 PM

I don't think it's time to deconstruct the team in the sense of trading Pedroia, Lester, Ortiz, etc. However, trading guys like Alfredo Aceves, Matt Albers, Franklin Morales, Vicente Padilla, Andrew Miller, Scott Atchison and Mark Melancon for low level prospects or mediocre players who need a change of scenery might not be a terrible idea. It's definitely possible for this team to turn it around..but it doesn't seem likely. I've accepted the reality that they're not quite good enough to get far this year, so trading some spare parts is fine. I've also accepted that it's not likely to result in some minor league studs coming to Boston. Completely destroying it by trading key components doesn't make sense. Youk might be the biggest name to be traded, because that's something I could've seen even if the Sox were in the hunt.

#12 PrometheusWakefield


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 04:06 PM

We should be a month away from any discussion like this. It just looks like lazy old PeteAbe couldn't be bothered to try to write one of the many other stories surrounding the team.

Well, if we might have to do it in July, shouldn't we start thinking about what it looks like in June? I mean putting aside the issue that it doesn't really matter what any of us think.

#13 budcrew08

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 04:15 PM

It was an awful article and to that a very big nothing to see here. We should be a month away from any discussion like this. It just looks like lazy old PeteAbe couldn't be bothered to try to write one of the many other stories surrounding the team.

Awful journalism doesn't need a main board thread.


I almost put this in the Media forum, but I thought the topic would be interesting to discuss.

#14 Adrian's Dome

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 04:19 PM

The team has to at least see what's up with Ellsbury and Crawford before making any kind of decision on the remainder of the season, let alone guys like Hill, Bailey, Nava, and Ross.

#15 glennhoffmania


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 04:25 PM

I think it's pretty clear from the past 2 years that a pitching staff anchored by Lester and Beckett is unlikely to be championship-quality and we need to figure out our plan to acquire or develop a real ace (Greinke?).


Really? Can you expand on this? On what do you base the conclusion that Lester and Beckett are unlikely to lead a championship-quality pitching staff?

#16 budcrew08

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 04:54 PM

Really? Can you expand on this? On what do you base the conclusion that Lester and Beckett are unlikely to lead a championship-quality pitching staff?


Just to pile on, but is 2007 that far back? Didn't Lester and Beckett lead that championship pitching staff? I mean, Lester pitched the clincher for crying out loud.

#17 LeoCarrillo


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 04:57 PM

PeteAbe: "And while it may be heretical to suggest, should even core players like David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz be considered completely off limits?"

The only one of these I'd dangle is Lester. For all the handwringing about how he's disappointingly un-ace-like, he only makes $7.625M this year; $11.625M next and with a $13M team option for 2014. If he does the usual Lester and turns into summer Cy Young for six weeks yet the team still gains no ground, because of his comparative inexpensiveness you may be able to get a prospect haul from a title-hungry team looking for a No. 2 or lights-out No. 3.

The others make little sense
Buchholz doesn't have Lester's reputation as an "almost-ace" plus we also control him through 2017.
Papi has 10/5, no?
Pedroia is the all-star soul of the team and plays for a discount.
Ells, even though we joke that's he's outta here in 2014, I think you've gotta try and resign him first.

Edited by LeoCarrillo, 12 June 2012 - 04:59 PM.


#18 TomRicardo


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 05:23 PM

Well, if we might have to do it in July, shouldn't we start thinking about what it looks like in June? I mean putting aside the issue that it doesn't really matter what any of us think.


No because it is a completely futile action. We have no idea what teams will want what. I suppose you could look at Youkilis though I am starting to think Adrian Gonzalez is injured. Way too many factors between June and July.

#19 Eric Van


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 05:26 PM

This team is struggling because of injuries and of underperformance by many key players: essentially all the starters other than Doubront, plus Gonzalez, Pedroia (because of injury), and Youkilis (ditto, at least in part). Have any of these players been permanently exposed as less than what we thought they were? Or are most or all of them just, you know, struggling as players sometimes do?

Let's say it's the latter. In which case, as currently comprised, the team is really only one player away from championship caliber: a true ace. They have several guys who have been that in the past, or looked like they were on their way, so they may find it internally.

I think it's likelier that at the trading deadline they'll be looking to move Matsuzaka and obtain a much better starter (two different trades), than having a fire sale. The latter is worth thinking about now in case it later becomes a reasonable option. But it's obviously not currently on the table.

And speaking of obtaining an ace ... when Jed Hoyer left to go the winter meetings before the 2006 season, he felt that the team lacked any kind of ace, and he couldn't see any way that we might obtain one. And then the Marlins made Beckett available. So you never know.

#20 dbn

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 05:40 PM

People need to remember that, unlike many teams that are "sellers" before the deadline, the Red Sox intend to be contenders every year, which includes next year. So, even if you decide before the deadline that the 2012 team is too far back in the standings and hurt to reach the playoffs this year, they shouldn't trade anyone who can help them next year unless either (1) they can get back equal value for a Red Sox that has an in-house replacement, or (2) someone is willing to overpay with a prospect for someone who isn't too important for next season (or isn't signed for next season).

To me it's moot (at least at this point) because I think it's crazy to say this team can't win. Their chances at the playoffs might not even be great, but they're far from zero.

[edit: ... or, more concisely, unlike small market teams they shouldn't trade someone who can help next year for anyone who won't help them until >2013]

Edited by dbn, 12 June 2012 - 05:43 PM.


#21 Rough Carrigan


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 05:56 PM

The Red Sox rank second in the AL in runs scored.
The Red Sox rank 13th out of 14 teams in the AL in ERA.
The Red Sox rank 19th out of 30 teams in MLB in defensive efficiency.

The problem is the pitching and to a lesser degree the defense.

But this discussion is premature.

#22 drbretto


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 06:02 PM

The discussion is definitely premature, but it says a lot that this thread hasn't been immediately locked yet. With all of the new guys doing so well in a pinch over the last two years on the cheap, it wouldn't be out of the question come trade deadline that some significant selling takes place. I don't think this is a thought that would even have been entertained less than a year ago.

I would not feel comfortable trading away Ortiz. I just think his role is a little bit more than just the numbers he puts up. He's an ambassador of the game and a symbol of the greatest era in Red Sox history. I don't want to see him in another uniform. If they ever traded Pedroia, I may take my allegiance with him. Almost anyone else though, I'd listen to any offers, IF they're still under .500 heading up to the deadline.

#23 Kull


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 07:28 PM

People need to remember that, unlike many teams that are "sellers" before the deadline, the Red Sox intend to be contenders every year, which includes next year.


Exactly. "Blowing it up" is something this ownership will never do. That said, how realistic is it that the Sox will be contenders after the next 6 weeks? They've played 61 games, which is not a small sample size. During that period, their record against the ten teams with the best records in baseball (both leagues) is 11-18. Pretty poor. Against teams in the bottom 2/3 of the standings the record is 18-14. Not horrible, but a long way from championship caliber.

Taking this a step further, over the next 6 weeks they'll play 20 games against the elite and 23 against the rest. Using the W-L percentages they've shown to this point, that projects to 8-12 vs. the iron and a meagre 13-10 against the rest. That would leave their record on July 31st at 50-54, decidedly mediocre.

Interestingly, 21 of the next 24 games (thru July 4th) are against teams in the bottom tier. That's when we'll really know if this team is going to have any chance at the playoffs, because the 17 of the next 19 are against the top ten. If the record is hovering around .500 on July 5th, the party's over.

#24 Pumpsie


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 08:43 PM

If this team hadn't been struck with one of the worst string of injuries a team can have, we'd be sitting very pretty right now and this idea of "blowing it up" would appear ludicrous. How is it not ludicrous now when we take into consideration all the injuries? There's no reason to think like this at the present time.

#25 OCD SS


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 08:57 PM

Christ, does everything have to be an apocalypse?

This team is underperforming now, and has choked and collapsed incredibly the last few years, but it has a solid core for at least 2 more years. They may move players who are not in their long term plans (Youks, Matsuzaka), but this is not a team that needs to be blown up. If the team isn't competitive this year so be it, we'll chalk up another year to crap luck with injuries (3 years in a row!) and look to a competitive team next year.

I've been willing to part ways with Papi in the past, but I think he's willing to keep going on short term commitments and the Sox shouldn't sever that relationship by dealing him for a marginal prospect when they're going to be looking for a DH again next year.

#26 Buzzkill Pauley


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Posted 12 June 2012 - 09:14 PM

Who should be off-limits and who should be open to discussion on the trade market on June 12?


Youk, Lars, anyone in the bullpen, Shoppach, DMac, Punto, and Podsednik should be on the trade market.

Not that a less-than-favorable trade should be consummated, but those names should be out there.

#27 barclay

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 10:20 PM

Exactly. "Blowing it up" is something this ownership will never do. That said, how realistic is it that the Sox will be contenders after the next 6 weeks? They've played 61 games, which is not a small sample size. During that period, their record against the ten teams with the best records in baseball (both leagues) is 11-18. Pretty poor. Against teams in the bottom 2/3 of the standings the record is 18-14. Not horrible, but a long way from championship caliber.

Taking this a step further, over the next 6 weeks they'll play 20 games against the elite and 23 against the rest. Using the W-L percentages they've shown to this point, that projects to 8-12 vs. the iron and a meagre 13-10 against the rest. That would leave their record on July 31st at 50-54, decidedly mediocre.

Interestingly, 21 of the next 24 games (thru July 4th) are against teams in the bottom tier. That's when we'll really know if this team is going to have any chance at the playoffs, because the 17 of the next 19 are against the top ten. If the record is hovering around .500 on July 5th, the party's over.


This is sane, reasonable advice. Just to pile on and ignoring for the moment the “other” teams (admittedly unacceptable, for its clearly a new era now) we are presently 6 1/2 games behind the first-place Yanks, who have gone 10-2 to our 4-8 in the last two weeks. Baseball is a game of ebb and flow – we are due upwards motion. Before we meet the Yanks in a series just before the all-star break we face, in the next 20, the Marlins (3h, 1a), Cubs (3a), Braves (3h), Jays (3h), Mariners (4a), A’s (3a) while the Yanks face the Nats (3a), Mets (3a), Braves (3h, 1a), WS (4h), Indians (3h) and Rays (3a). I wouldn’t be surprised to see us 2-3 games back by the time we meet them. If we are 10 back, well, then we suck for sure and this thread will take off.

#28 twothousandone

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Posted 12 June 2012 - 10:21 PM

Since I don't live in Boston. how does he pronounce his name? is it three syllables, like the President, or two?

Trade Pedroia? Who plays second base next year? Trade Lester? For whom?

We often set up threads on this board for trade proposals, because we can't help it, but a professional sportswriter suggests it's as simple as "buyers or sellers"?

Of the aforementioned 14 players, is there one the Red Sox could not absolutely, positively live without?

Of course not, but can they return more value for next year? That's always the question, because a five-year rebuilding project is going on in Chicago (North), not Boston.

And while it may be heretical to suggest, should even core players like David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz be considered completely off limits?

Who does Cleveland want for Dillon Howard? Other than Pedroia, I'd make that deal, though for Lester they may have to take Jenks..

#29 OCD SS


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 06:18 AM

Youk, Lars, anyone in the bullpen, Shoppach, DMac, Punto, and Podsednik should be on the trade market.

Not that a less-than-favorable trade should be consummated, but those names should be out there.


So basically the Sox shouldn't be afraid to deal failed prospects or guys off the bench? That is pretty much a list of players that might get released, not traded.

#30 Rasputin


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 06:22 AM

Guys, it ain't hard.

The ones who should be trade bait are the ones that can easily be replaced in house.

That's some subset of RF C 3B and bullpen with short an outside possibility.

#31 MarcSullivaFan

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Posted 13 June 2012 - 07:01 AM

Trading Pedroia is ridiculous. He's one of the best 2B in the league, he's only turning 29, and he's signed for 10 mill a year in 2013 and 2014. Not to mention the PR disaster. Not going to happen.

#32 John Marzano Olympic Hero


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:08 AM

So basically the Sox shouldn't be afraid to deal failed prospects or guys off the bench? That is pretty much a list of players that might get released, not traded.


Agreed on this.

This team is under .500 right now, hasn't made the playoffs in two seasons and hasn't won a playoff game since 2008. There should be zero untouchables on this team. None.

Edit: I'm not saying that they need to blow this thing up, but many of you are talking as if this is the 1927 Yankees. Who on this team shouldn't be traded if the right deal is on the table?

#33 Seven Costanza


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:26 AM

I agree with JMOH in this thread 98%. I however would not trade Pedroia. Keeping butts in the seats is important- and trading Pedroia would not go over well with the typical Red Sox fan. (Nor would trading Ortiz, but I think Pedroia would be much worse)

Anyone else should be fair game.

#34 Plympton91


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:30 AM

Agreed on this.

This team is under .500 right now, hasn't made the playoffs in two seasons and hasn't won a playoff game since 2008. There should be zero untouchables on this team. None.

Edit: I'm not saying that they need to blow this thing up, but many of you are talking as if this is the 1927 Yankees. Who on this team shouldn't be traded if the right deal is on the table?


First, I'd argue that if you want to ensure the best team for 2013, then the fact that they haven't won a playoff game since 2008 is as irrelevant as "The Curse" was in 2003. Alternatively, it might suggest that they should have a sense of urgency in improving the team right now to make the best possible run this year, so as not to extend the streak. I come down on the latter side. Just as this is not the '27 Yankees, neither are they the 2002 Oakland A's. They do not have to choose between "Go For It Now" and "Build for Tomorrow." They can have both.

Second, I think many people would ask you to define "right deal" and then some fraction of people would probably disagree with how you defined it. Consistent with the above, I would define the right deal as one that improved the odds of winning in 2012 balanced against the appropriately discounted reduction in probability of winning in 2013 and beyond. Of course, because they are a large market, large payroll team with $30 million coming off the books at the end of 2012, I see that loss to future competitiveness from trading any but the very best prospects as de minimus. Likewise, I would view any trade that damaged the odds of winning in 2012 as likely not worth it unless it returned high upside prospects performing well in the high minors at a position of organizational need.

As Ras said, some players seem to have both value to other teams and in house replacements waiting in the wings. Those deals could be explored. If, in 2 weeks, Bard looks reacclimated to the bullpen and somebody wants to give us the equivalent of Jeff Frye and Mark Bladensburg for Padilla, then go ahead.

#35 SaveBooFerriss


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:47 AM

I also think it is still too early to give up on this season. If this team can go on an 10-2 run (which I think they did 3 times last year), they will be right in it.

If they do look out of it at the end of July, I think you only look to trade the pieces that likely will not help the team next year. They should be able to compete next year with just a few tweaks.

#36 OCD SS


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 08:55 AM

Edit: I'm not saying that they need to blow this thing up, but many of you are talking as if this is the 1927 Yankees. Who on this team shouldn't be traded if the right deal is on the table?


But this is basically an empty statement. The issue isn't that the Sox wouldn't make a deal if the right one is on the table, it's that the right deal is so unlikely to be put on the table for some players that it's not really worth talking about.

#37 John Marzano Olympic Hero


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 09:04 AM

But this is basically an empty statement. The issue isn't that the Sox wouldn't make a deal if the right one is on the table, it's that the right deal is so unlikely to be put on the table for some players that it's not really worth talking about.


I'm not sure if I agree with that. There are plenty of examples where teams overpay at the deadline for a player that they think can push them over the top. In 1992 Jose Canseco was arguably the best player in the league, at least top five, and the A's were bowled over by the offer that the Rangers gave them. Obviously, there were some things in the background that led to that trade (most notably LaRussa being fed up with Canseco's act) but I don't think that was widely known at the time. In any event, the A's won the West but lost to a Blue Jays buzzsaw.

In other words, there are examples of successful teams trading their key players during the season when they get "the right offer".

#38 yecul


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 09:07 AM

As was mentioned small trades can be made whether they think they are in it or not. Shoppach or even Salty. Albers or someone similar. Who cares? They can be moved and replaced. If the replacement fails, no huge loss because we're not talking critical pieces.

The question is larger trades. Do they move, say, Beckett? There are lots of issues here. 1. Timing -- while Boston may want to move him in this hypothetical, they need a trade partner and most mid-season trades take place later in the season. Other teams have to figure out what THEY have as well. 2. Money -- many of Boston's players are paid a lot of money and have multiple years left. 3. Team evaluation -- this isn't just about the rest of 2012, but also about next year and perhaps even the year after. Are they a legit contender in a realistic scenario? Imagining a fantasy land where all the breaks go their way with no injuries and peak performance and you wnat to masturbate to 100 wins or whatever, well, sure that's possible, but it's also unlikely. You can't manage your roster with those expectations.

It's all a math game. I dont' think they can make the move just yet. Ultimately I think they will be sellers. I also think that in an ideal scenario they'd be moving large chunks of the roster, but that's not even remotely plausible. This is going to be the Celtics. Aging, inflexible, good if things roll right, but ultimately less than their competition. This Red Sox team isn't as strong as the Celtics, but it's a rough comparison. They'll "turn things around" this year and make a run. Maybe even sneak in. But they will not win a playoff series. Ditto 2013. So, for me, I am ok with making moves when they become available.

Edit -- Regarding Pedroia, the offer that would get him will not come, so it's fairly moot. I don't think they would move him unless it was a super ridiculous offer for talent, leadership and marketing reasons. He's good and popular.

Edited by yecul, 13 June 2012 - 09:10 AM.


#39 BellhornsBiatch

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Posted 13 June 2012 - 09:49 AM

Trading Pedroia is ridiculous. He's one of the best 2B in the league, he's only turning 29, and he's signed for 10 mill a year in 2013 and 2014. Not to mention the PR disaster. Not going to happen.

I've been a big believer in the 'blow-it-up' concept since the middle of last year. It might just be my own perception of the team I've seen the last two years juxtaposed against my, most likely romanticized, memories of the 2003 and 2004 teams, but there is a hunger and enjoy-ability I've seen missing from this team for the last few years. Whether it's due to older, veteran players who now have gotten used to the grind of a 162 game season, or have had their ups and downs in this city with fans and media or what have you, something intrinsic to my definition of The Boston Red Sox is missing. I don't think it's any coincidence that in 2010 when Kalish and Nava came up, young, unproven players not used to getting MLB game checks, this team as a whole became lively again. In 2011, Lavarnway provided the much needed boost as we scuffled our way through the end of the season, and here in 2012 Middlebrooks (and Nava again) were the sparks.

When Aviles started the season hitting the stitching out of the baseball, I fantasized about being able to move Ross and Aviles at the deadline for REAL prospects. Both guys looked slated to hit 20-25 bombs at positions of need, and that was gravy on top of whatever could be had for Youkilis or Beckett. Pedroia to me, is untouchable. He might have had a bad string of odd injuries here in the last few years, but this is the guy you want guys like Kalish, Lavarnway, Middlebrooks and Iglesias to play the game like. This is the guy you want them to emulate and go to work with some element of his approach. Based on Utley's deal, maybe you try to lock him up while hes up and down, make sure he knows he doesn't have to gut the rest of this season out because his deal's coming up. To me, Ortiz, while he would have value as a bat, provides very little flexibility to other ball clubs in a trade. Ortiz should get his 2 year deal to retire a Red Sox. I might be a sucker for the guy that brought us that trophy, but the guy has earned his money and his respect time and time again even after we all buried him alive.

With Buchholz rounding back into form, the Bard-experiment's failure is at least partially mitigated by the fact a guy you slotted to be a 1b or a 1c two years ago is finally starting to look like himself again. The Bard experiment was equally important, in my opinion, to Beckett's future with this team. Had he shown enough consistency for the team to think they had a low cost rotation option for years to come would probably make them more willing to deal a guy like Beckett or even Lester, who recently I'm beginning to wonder if he remembers he's from the birthplace of Grunge and not Country.

2 years ago I had fixings on an outfield of Reddick, Ellsbury and Kalish. Since then we got Crawford, Ross, Sweeney but when I turn on my TV set it's Podsednik, MacDonald and Gonzalez. Incredible. While I know I'll never see a completely homegrown Boston Red Sox team, I have to believe that there is some correlation between signing guys for $20M+/year and the lack of something on these teams. Everytime I hear the word "irrevocable" in UCC, all I can think of is Manny-ing Gonzo or Crawdaddy.

edit: Cot's lists Pedroia as up after 2014 - my B.

Edited by BellhornsBiatch, 13 June 2012 - 09:53 AM.


#40 Worst Trade Evah


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 10:02 AM

You mean, you like watching power-house teams that win 98 games, as opposed to an injury-wracked team that is struggling at the .500 mark?

Honestly, it's hard to take posts like the above seriously. "Hunger and enjoyability?" All this stuff goes away if the team wins, which is something that everyone wants. But whatever specific recommendations come out of posts like this are generally disastrous. Talking about trading people like Pedroia, Lester, etc, is more or less nuts. Sure, if Harper for Pedroia or whatever is there, go for it. Good luck with that.

If this team gets healthy, they can win. The front office just has to assess how likely that is, and how much ground they can make up when they do. But the core of this team is good and I don't have much patience with the blow-it-up sentiment, especially now.

#41 Buzzkill Pauley


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 11:10 AM

Everytime I hear the word "irrevocable" in UCC, all I can think of is Manny-ing Gonzo or Crawdaddy.


And what happened when Theo Manny-ed Manny? Nothing. Nobody picked him up.

Not even after an excellent three-year run of ho-hum .325/.426/.611 production.

Except that after that fail move, the Sox also addressed what was the actual problem from the 2003 team -- pitching and on-field decision-making. And they won the next World Series fairly memorably.

#42 Clears Cleaver


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 12:13 PM

everyone is focused on this year, but the reality is the picture becomes bleaker looking forward. there is no young pitching coming in 2013 that is going to help. the existing roster is not going to improve dramatically and ellsbury is going to walk after next year. Papi may be gone, too. and building through the draft is not as easy as it was for a large-market team. This team is not going to win anything this year. and their relative place within the league is not going to improve with this 40-man roster going forward unless Lester all of a sudden becomes a 220ip ace and crawford and Adrian Gonzalez play like it is 2009.

blowing it up is not just a reflection on this year, (bad luck with injuries and poor starts are too much to overcome this year, fine) but you have to look around and realize that this team is not likely competitive in its division going forward and the albatross contracts of Adrian Gonzalez, LAckey, Crawford couple with declining revenues means there is no way to buy themselves out oif the problem. besides middlebrooks and pedroia, there isn't one player I wouldn't trade to get younger. I suspect Beckett will be the guy who goes after they get rid of some of the bullpen excess. he will bring something back. maybe DiceK, too, if he shows he can go 6+IP. Youks, mcdonald, etc have no value. either do the albatross guys

#43 Eric Van


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 12:52 PM

The Red Sox rank second in the AL in runs scored.
The Red Sox rank 13th out of 14 teams in the AL in ERA.
The Red Sox rank 19th out of 30 teams in MLB in defensive efficiency.

The problem is the pitching and to a lesser degree the defense.

But this discussion is premature.


The Sox rank 6th in MLB in UZR (4th in the AL) and 2nd in MLB in DRS, so defense has been very much an asset. (Fenway has a huge negative impact on defensive efficiency.)

As for hitting versus pitching, when you look at it situationally, it changes completely.

The hitters are 4th in MLB in wRC+ but 24th in WPA. That means they've been woeful in the clutch, and have piled on runs in blowouts while being stymied in far too many close, low-scoring games.

The starting pitchers are 19th in FIP-, 20th in SIERA, 24th in ERA-, but 17th in WPA. That means they've had some bad on-base karma that has been more than offset by good pitch-to-the-score karma. Overall, both the peripherals and results are a bit below average. Looking at RA is misleading both because of Fenway and (combining the two karmas) a lot of runs have scored against them by teams blowing games open with big innings.

The relievers are 7th in FIP-, 5th in SIERA, 10th in ERA-, and 11th in WPA. So they've had great numbers overall, but disproportionately so with the bases empty or other non-clutch base situations. They've been prone to giving up key hits and as a result have merely been good in terms of effectiveness.

The main reason they're in last place is not the pitching; in overall WPA they're 9th in MLB. It's the inability of the offense to hit when it counts (24th in WPA). That shouldn't have predictive value going forward, which is another reason that it's likelier they'll be buyers than sellers in July.

#44 glennhoffmania


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 01:03 PM

The hitters are 4th in MLB in wRC+ but 24th in WPA. That means they've been woeful in the clutch, and have piled on runs in blowouts while being stymied in far too many close, low-scoring games.


This supports what I was thinking. They certainly seem to have lost a bunch of games when they couldn't score at all and the pitching did its job. And they seem to have lost several very close games where they had a chance to win. I was surprised that they rank second in runs, but the blowouts would explain that. And I don't think some of Bobby's moves in the latter innings of close games can be ignored.

#45 Smiling Joe Hesketh


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 01:03 PM

Well, pressing in the clutch certainly does seem to have some carry over effect, since they were doing the same thing last September as their world crashed and burned around them. And I would also guess that another reason they're not hitting in the clutch is because 1) they've got a million guys on the DL so they're using their replacements, and 2) established major leaguers like Youkilis and Gonzalez are having overall terrible years. Pedroia hasn't hit at all since hurting his thumb, which is no help either.

#46 Toe Nash

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Posted 13 June 2012 - 01:06 PM

everyone is focused on this year, but the reality is the picture becomes bleaker looking forward. there is no young pitching coming in 2013 that is going to help. the existing roster is not going to improve dramatically and ellsbury is going to walk after next year. Papi may be gone, too. and building through the draft is not as easy as it was for a large-market team. This team is not going to win anything this year. and their relative place within the league is not going to improve with this 40-man roster going forward unless Lester all of a sudden becomes a 220ip ace and crawford and Adrian Gonzalez play like it is 2009.


They can get better in 2013 just by getting healthy. Lackey should provide innings and probably improve on what Dice-K / Bard have given them so far. Crawford hasn't been healthy his entire time here and obviously Gonzalez isn't himself either because of health or mechanics. There's also Kalish.

There's no young pitching chomping at the gates but Matt Barnes could help by 2nd half 2013 and should definitely help in 2014. Also, Doubront could improve on his performance this year (or at least duplicate it, as there's nothing in his performance to suggest he's getting lucky) and maybe with the rest of the season as a starter and an offseason Bard can put together consistent outings and help (or they scrap the starter idea and hopefully get back a great reliever).

blowing it up is not just a reflection on this year, (bad luck with injuries and poor starts are too much to overcome this year, fine) but you have to look around and realize that this team is not likely competitive in its division going forward and the albatross contracts of Adrian Gonzalez, LAckey, Crawford couple with declining revenues means there is no way to buy themselves out oif the problem.


They probably can't add a huge contract (and if they did, it should be Ellsbury) but the farm system is pretty good. FG had it ranked 11th in the preseason, BA had it 9th and Law had it 18th, and that was before Bradley took a big step forward, Barnes blew away all competition, Bogaerts continued to hit and Middlebrooks broke out. Also many Sox prospects have outperformed what the "experts" thought they would do (Law famously hated Pedroia) -- think Hanley, Lester, Doubront, Pedroia, Youkilis.

The future is reasonably bright and there's no reason to trade one of the friendlier contracts like Pedroia or Buchholz unless you're bowled over.

Edited by Toe Nash, 13 June 2012 - 01:07 PM.


#47 TomRicardo


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 01:06 PM

everyone is focused on this year, but the reality is the picture becomes bleaker looking forward. there is no young pitching coming in 2013 that is going to help. the existing roster is not going to improve dramatically and ellsbury is going to walk after next year. Papi may be gone, too.


So you are saying you expect to start next year with Sweeney, McDonald, Podnesik as your starting OF?

Also what rotation spot to you think is going to be open? How many bullpen arms are we going to lose? What does it matter what arms are available?

Barnes will be at least at AA next year. Britton, and Ranuado are mixed bags but still at AA. Tazawa and Wilson could start the year in the Starting rotation in AAA.

You really don't have a point besides the Dark One Lackey is coming back.

#48 budcrew08

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Posted 13 June 2012 - 01:44 PM

The Sox rank 6th in MLB in UZR (4th in the AL) and 2nd in MLB in DRS, so defense has been very much an asset. (Fenway has a huge negative impact on defensive efficiency.)

As for hitting versus pitching, when you look at it situationally, it changes completely.

The hitters are 4th in MLB in wRC+ but 24th in WPA. That means they've been woeful in the clutch, and have piled on runs in blowouts while being stymied in far too many close, low-scoring games.

The starting pitchers are 19th in FIP-, 20th in SIERA, 24th in ERA-, but 17th in WPA. That means they've had some bad on-base karma that has been more than offset by good pitch-to-the-score karma. Overall, both the peripherals and results are a bit below average. Looking at RA is misleading both because of Fenway and (combining the two karmas) a lot of runs have scored against them by teams blowing games open with big innings.

The relievers are 7th in FIP-, 5th in SIERA, 10th in ERA-, and 11th in WPA. So they've had great numbers overall, but disproportionately so with the bases empty or other non-clutch base situations. They've been prone to giving up key hits and as a result have merely been good in terms of effectiveness.

The main reason they're in last place is not the pitching; in overall WPA they're 9th in MLB. It's the inability of the offense to hit when it counts (24th in WPA). That shouldn't have predictive value going forward, which is another reason that it's likelier they'll be buyers than sellers in July.


I'm not a SABR geek, but this is one of the best posts I've read on SoSH. EV gives the stats and why they're important, even to the non-stat guy.

#49 Buzzkill Pauley


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:02 PM

So basically the Sox shouldn't be afraid to deal failed prospects or guys off the bench? That is pretty much a list of players that might get released, not traded.


The question was who should be dangled on June 12, not who should be available at the trade deadline.

#50 Paradigm


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Posted 13 June 2012 - 02:50 PM

The Red Sox have 25 players on their active roster and a few more on the disabled list. Like any major league team, only a few of these players have any value whatsoever in trade. If you propose that the sox should trade Darnell McDonald or Matt Albers, just give it up. Nobody trades for scrubs like that.

Let's imagine the Sox are 10 games back at the deadline. I think you only realistically have a few guys to trade:

Aceves: wouldn't return a closer's value, only a 7th inning guy's value, so perhaps a B-/C+ prospect

Beckett: competing teams always need pitching, and he has a reasonable contract. Whatever you think the Astros would get for Wandy Rodriguez, that's what the Sox would get for Beckett.

Buchholz: around until 2016, so he's not going anywhere.

Doubront: cost controlled for a while, and showing lots of promise. Sticks around. Not the prototypical piece for a playoff run.

Lester: 2.5 years left on his deal. Would command a serious return since the Sox have no incentive to trade him. I couldn't imagine trading him for anything less than two elite prospects since he has 2.5 years left on his deal.

Matsuzaka: perfect trade candidate because he's a FA in 2013 and the fans have no loyalty to him. Might get a B prospect back for him if you're lucky.

Saltalamacchia: so few trade partners (a team that needs a catcher) and I see him as a long-term solution.

Gonzalez: expensive, but also a cornerstone player. Won't get traded.

Middlebrooks: stuck like glue

Ortiz: can only be traded to an AL Central or West team that needs a DH. Very unlikely to happen.

Pedroia: the face of the franchise, won't be traded. Also, let's not forget that he's an amazing player.

Youkilis: aging, always hurt, moderately effective. Expect a B+ prospect in return.

Crawford: Injured, expensive, ineffective. Nobody would take the contract.

Ellsbury: Injured, might not accrue enough statistical value to make a judgment call by july 31.