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Sox talking to Russell Martin?


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#1 mabrowndog


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 01:49 AM

Heyman

redsox seen meeting on russ martin. might require more moves. but boston isnt anti-yankee. also like kuroda, tried for tino


So why would Boston want a 29-year-old catcher who put up a .211/.311/.403/.713 line with 21 HR in 133 G while making $7.5M? Especially when they've already got a backstop 2 years younger who hit .222/.288/.454/.742 with 25 HR in a dozen fewer games, and who's arb-eligible for the final time after making $2.5M?

The theories abound:

#1 - Farrell and the rest of the F.O. aren't exactly enamored with Salty's defense or game calling (he threw out just 18 of 98 runners, or 18%, while Martin nailed 20 of 83, or 24%), and would prefer to see the staff led by a former Gold Glove winner.
#2 - They believe Salty could net a decent trade haul right now.
#3 - The team believes they're more likely to get Martin's 2nd half line (.242/.321/.456/.777, 13 HR, .250 BABIP) than his first half (.179/.300/.348/.648, 8 HR, .193 BABIP).
#4 - The club doesn't believe Lavarnway is ready to start full-time and sees Martin & Salty as an effective LH/RH platoon with combined 35-40 HR potential.
#5 - Boston thinks another first half from Salty like his 2012 (.239/.289/.517/.807, 17 HR) would enable them to sell high mid-season before he turns into last year's 2nd half pumpkin (.200/.286/.371/.658, 8 HR).
#6 - The Sox are merely driving up the Yankees' price of re-signing Martin.

Any others?

#2 drbretto


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 01:59 AM

My guess is some combination of all 6 leading them to at least explore all options. Plus someone here posted a fairly convincing line of logic a while back suggesting he may have been one of the players with a big mouth last season and they've just decided he "doesn't fit" with their future plans.

But mostly, it's more likely it's just that they're gonna kick the tires on all of their options. This is going to be a busy offseason.

#3 E5 Yaz


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 02:00 AM

They could be thinking of switching Salty to 1B. His power would be an asset there, although it's uncertain whether he'd be much use defensively. On the plus side, Pedroia and (at this point) Iglesias are consistently accurate throwers, while Middlebrooks was better in the minors than he showed in Boston.

#4 Rasputin


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 02:00 AM

Any others?


The Red Sox are exploring every single option imaginable.

Every agent for every free agent knows that the Red Sox have more money to spend now than at any time in their recent history, and more reason to spend it than at any time in forty years.

#5 LondonSox

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 02:15 AM

Salty at 1b would be a horrendous choice, he's a catcher so his obp can be offset by power and low replacement. At 1b he just sucks.
Martin makes me ill. If you take away that nuts first month He hit 217//312/387 over nearly 900 ab. He's not good. He's not even ok.
I can see salty putting up 310 obp with a lot more power cheaper. I cannot imagine Martin improving.

#6 Rovin Romine

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 02:16 AM

This has to be in conjunction with a) trading Salty or b) keeping Lavarnway at AAA. Martin catches, DHs, and has minimal third base experience. If he played some first, this would make more sense. Perhaps he's Ortiz insurance? If everyone is healthy/hits, they then trade Salty?

#7 Papelbon's Poutine


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 02:37 AM

The Sox have a lot of needs and a lot of money to spend. Every agent in the game will be leaking that the Sox are interested in their client. Sometimes smoke doesn't mean fire.

(null)

#8 jon abbey


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 02:48 AM

I like Martin and I really hope NY resigns him (mostly because I don't see a better option) but he seems like an especially bad fit at Fenway. Here's his 2012 HR chart overlaid on Fenway (and of course some of those LF ones might not have been high enough to clear the Green Monster):

Posted Image

#9 MikeM

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 04:13 AM

If you take away that nuts first month He hit 217//312/387 over nearly 900 ab. He's not good. He's not even ok.


Take away Salty's May, and he put up a .202/.272/413 line. He's not that good either, and that obp for isn't even ok, especially when factoring in the defense.

At face vale and given the choice between the two on who i'd rather see catching games for the Boston Red Sox in 2013+, i'll personally take Martin. Salty isn't getting any better then what you see as a whole now imo, and by no means should be viewed as "the answer" going forward. Given what we saw out of Lavarnway last year, I'd also find it fairly disappointing in the event Ben wasn't out there at least trying to explore all available options. Never hurts to hedge your bets some if/when possible.

All that said though, screw paying anything substantial there for that type of upgrade (the 3/$20m he reportedly turned down last winter). It's worth the look, but ultimately won't be worth the money/investment.

Edited by MikeM, 09 November 2012 - 04:16 AM.


#10 YTF

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 09:14 AM

They could be thinking of switching Salty to 1B. His power would be an asset there, although it's uncertain whether he'd be much use defensively. On the plus side, Pedroia and (at this point) Iglesias are consistently accurate throwers, while Middlebrooks was better in the minors than he showed in Boston.


Yaz, I realise that you're just thinking out loud here and perhaps trying to sort this out like most, but there is something in your statement that I never really understood and it's not just you. Defense aside, if his power is an asset wouldn't it be an asset at any position? And does THAT really matter if you put a lesser "power" behind the plate? If that's the case why not leave him where he is and get additional power to play first? I know that's a VERY simplistic way of looking at this and more thought goes into these things, but again I never got the idea of a certain type of hitter being needed at a certain position. As long as the over all blend works I'll take a lesser "power" guy at the corners, or DH or corner OF if you can get that out of the middle infield, CF or behind the plate.

#11 Savin Hillbilly


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 10:21 AM

The theories abound:

#1 - Farrell and the rest of the F.O. aren't exactly enamored with Salty's defense or game calling (he threw out just 18 of 98 runners, or 18%, while Martin nailed 20 of 83, or 24%), and would prefer to see the staff led by a former Gold Glove winner.


I think you got it on the first try. I suspect they may feel that C defense is a weakness worth spending a little of their payroll flexibility to address.

The problem with Salty is that he's a 'tweener. His offense is good enough for a strong defensive catcher, and his defense is good enough for a strong offensive catcher, but unfortunately he's neither. The Sox may be thinking that if they can't have both, they should at least have one of the two.

And after all, Martin's wOBA was only a couple of ticks behind Salty's this year (.316 to .319). If the Sox think that what they saw this year is pretty much Salty's offensive ceiling, then Martin would be an overall upgrade, and probably not a terribly expensive upgrade either. They could either bump Salty to the backup job or package him in a trade (he's certainly good enough to have some trade value).

#12 OttoC


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 11:11 AM

While Martin seems to be fairly well regarded defensively, his wild pitch rate seems high, which suggests to me that he may not block balls well. I don't know of any way to quantify this but it seems to me that most wild pitches come on balls in the dirt; therefore, you need to look at both passed ball and wild pitch rates when evaluating catchers' defense.

#13 Edelpeddle

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Posted 09 November 2012 - 12:16 PM

I would love to get rid of Saltalamacchia. We have him for his offense and he has a sub-.290 OBP and strikes out over 30% of the time. His defense is a liability and the pitchers don't seem to like pitching to him.

#14 E5 Yaz


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 01:21 PM

Yaz, I realise that you're just thinking out loud here and perhaps trying to sort this out like most, but there is something in your statement that I never really understood and it's not just you. Defense aside, if his power is an asset wouldn't it be an asset at any position?


'dog was asking for ideas so, yeah, I was just throwing something against the wall to see if it stuck. But here's what I was thinking:

While Salty's much better defensively than he's gotten credit for, he might not be the type of catcher a manager such as Farrell would want back there to help stabilize the pitching staff. Salty is far from a "quiet" catcher mechanically. He moves a lot, he stabs at the ball, his framing technique is hurky-jerky. Part of this is due to his size; but the case might be that he's not a catcher long-term.

His primary asset is power, and he's played a bit of first base, so that's where I was going with the suggestion. His asset that becomes a bigger plus, because his defensive might not subtract as much from his overall value as keeping him at catcher does. That the Sox have accurate infield arms minimizes the potential for problems.

Personally, I think they move him to another team. Liked the red type, though.

#15 Rudy Pemberton


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 01:28 PM

Sox only control Salty for one more year; I assume he gets $5-$6M next year. Would folks be comfortable committing 4 years, $36-$40M to him? I assume that's what it would take. If you can move Salty; sign Martin for 2 years, then you potentially add some assets and have more clarity on the catching situation. No idea what you do with Lavarnway in such a situation; but Salty seems expendable since he's unlikely to be part of a long term solution.

#16 rembrat


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 01:37 PM

I like Martin and I really hope NY resigns him (mostly because I don't see a better option) but he seems like an especially bad fit at Fenway. Here's his 2012 HR chart overlaid on Fenway (and of course some of those LF ones might not have been high enough to clear the Green Monster):

Posted Image


If you go back before his Yankee days you'll see almost no opposite field homeruns. He's always been a pull guy and considering this could probably do well in Fenway. My guess for the spray chart you listed?

He is smarter than he looks and he knows RF is the easiest way out of Yankee Stadium.

That said

"Anything to get the Red Sox out would be awesome for me," said Martin, who has been involved in the rivalry for one season.


When asked why, Martin sounded like the truest Bleacher Creature.
"Because I hate the Red Sox," Martin said.


But..

"I guess it just comes with the territory," Martin said. "When you wear the pinstripes, you just kind of learn to be that way."


I personally would love him if he were on my team but hate him on the Yankees. He is sorta like Youkilis in that regard, I suppose.


#17 Rasputin


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 01:49 PM

Sox only control Salty for one more year; I assume he gets $5-$6M next year. Would folks be comfortable committing 4 years, $36-$40M to him? I assume that's what it would take. If you can move Salty; sign Martin for 2 years, then you potentially add some assets and have more clarity on the catching situation. No idea what you do with Lavarnway in such a situation; but Salty seems expendable since he's unlikely to be part of a long term solution.


I don't see how Martin is any more likely to be part of a long term solution than Salty.

Here's the bottom line. Salty isn't that great. The available options to replace him aren't that great, and one of the better ones is in the organization now. If you can acquire a catcher that is legitimately good, you explore that option, but you can't, because nobody is going to give them up and improving at catcher has to get in line behind left, right, first, pitching, and short. You go into 2013 with Salty and Lavarnway hoping that Lavarnway steals the job and proves he can be the man for at least a few years.

#18 Rudy Pemberton


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 01:51 PM

I don't see how Martin is any more likely to be part of a long term solution than Salty.


He's not; the point is that Salty is an asset that you might be able to turn into something; and if you can get Martin on a 2-year deal, you at least add a year of stability.

Ultimately, I think it's all about defense and how Farrell values these guys in that regard.

#19 DanoooME


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Posted 09 November 2012 - 11:22 PM

Sox only control Salty for one more year; I assume he gets $5-$6M next year. Would folks be comfortable committing 4 years, $36-$40M to him? I assume that's what it would take. If you can move Salty; sign Martin for 2 years, then you potentially add some assets and have more clarity on the catching situation. No idea what you do with Lavarnway in such a situation; but Salty seems expendable since he's unlikely to be part of a long term solution.


Matt Swartz at MLBTR predicts Salty will get $3.9M. Link to full list here.

I can't see committing that kind of money to him if Lavarnway is still around. I'd rather see them deal Salty at a relative high point in his value and sign somebody like David Ross to split time with.Ryan.

#20 Fred not Lynn


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Posted 27 November 2012 - 08:58 PM

Yeah, with Ross and maybe Napoli the Sox seem pretty set behind the plate...

Of course shortstop still seems to be a perpetual question mark.

http://bats.blogs.ny...play-shortstop/

No, I am not serious for the Red Sox. Not as sure about Canada's NEC team, though.




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