2018-19 Offseason Thread

MikeM

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How is re-signing your own FA a "substitute" for drafting or developing alternative options? It doesn't affect that process at all. It's not like signing somebody else's QO guy. I mean, yes, the fact that we've really struggled to develop starting pitching is the reason why we needed to sign Eovaldi, but that doesn't mean signing Eovaldi makes it any harder for us to develop starting pitching.
I didn't suggest that signing Eovaldi directly makes it harder for us to develop starting pitchers. Like you yourself did there, I just acknowledged the latter as a contributing factor on why the former happened.

DD needs to sign/acquire/slot X player to fill Y MLB roster spot. If you genuinely need an answer for why going the FA-to-be process route there can still qualify as a poor substitute to having a quality cost controlled option to plug in, even when it's our own FA in question, you can start with the obvious example in why we aren't just simply resigning Craig Kimbrel right now to fill the back end bullpen hole letting him walk will create.
 

Plympton91

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Another reason they need to develop starting pitchers is so they don’t have to pay $18 - $20 million a year for their 4th starter, depending on whether you think Eovaldi or Porcello is the #4. Getting cheap quality from the back end of the rotation will be key to getting back below $246 while resigning The killer B’s.
 

Average Reds

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Another reason they need to develop starting pitchers is so they don’t have to pay $18 - $20 million a year for their 4th starter, depending on whether you think Eovaldi or Porcello is the #4. Getting cheap quality from the back end of the rotation will be key to getting back below $246 while resigning The killer B’s.
This is very true.

At the same time, it's important to recognize that Eovaldi may be the #3 next year, and #2 after that. They are paying for "deep depth" precisely because they are loading up for one more run next year.
 

JimD

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Another reason they need to develop starting pitchers is so they don’t have to pay $18 - $20 million a year for their 4th starter, depending on whether you think Eovaldi or Porcello is the #4. Getting cheap quality from the back end of the rotation will be key to getting back below $246 while resigning The killer B’s.
It's helps that they have been getting cheap quality (relatively speaking) from their Cy Young-caliber ace at the top of the rotation.
 

chawson

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It's helps that they have been getting cheap quality (relatively speaking) from their Cy Young-caliber ace at the top of the rotation.
It's an $89M rotation 1-5 for 2019. I wonder where that would rank historically.
 

SirPsychoSquints

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It's an $89M rotation 1-5 for 2019. I wonder where that would rank historically.
Highest I can find is the 2015 Dodgers, 32.57 for Kershaw, 25 for Greinke, 12.5 for McCarthy (4 starts), 10 for Brett Anderson and then take your pick of league minimum, totaling around $80.5M.

Edit: 2016 Dodgers look like $83.3M, Kershaw/Anderson/Kazmir/McCarthy/Ryu.

Edit2: 2018 Cubs were just over $97M! Lester/Darvish/Hamels/Chatwood/Quintana
 
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SirPsychoSquints

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Another one - Scherzer and Strasburg are listed at 37.4 and 38.3, respectively, on COTs for 2019. That's 75.7 between the two of them, before talking about Corbin at 12.9 and whoever rounds out the rotation.

 

Plympton91

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That’s a pretty sweet deal for the Padres. If Kinsler really is still as good defensively as the stats showed last season, he’s worth twice that even with average offense for the position. $4 million a year is backup infielder money. Tells you how soft the market is for non stars and that Kinsler didn’t want to end up where Brandon Phillips did last season.

Those numbers for Scherzer and Stras can’t be right. Max is a $31 million AAV and Stras $25.
 

TimScribble

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The #RedSox's top 2019 #MLBDraft pick has been dropped 10 spots for exceeding the luxury tax threshold by more than $40 million, a new penalty put in place in 2018. Here's the updated @MLBDraft order: atmlb.com/2FMkR89
 

moondog80

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The difference between picking 30 and 40 isn't all that big, especially if it doesn't come with a similar drop in the amount they can spend.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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The difference between picking 30 and 40 isn't all that big, especially if it doesn't come with a similar drop in the amount they can spend.
The difference in signing bonus allotment between pick 30 and pick 40 in the 2018 draft was about $500,000. The Dodgers, who picked in the 30 spot in 2018, had a total of $5,288,200 in bonus money, the lowest in the league. If we assume the Sox will be in a similar position, that's probably what they're looking at for 2019, less the $500K. The only potential saving grace is that they'll get a compensation pick for losing Kimbrel, but it will come at the end of the fourth round and be worth roughly $400K. Regardless, they're going to have less money to sign draftees than anyone else, and by a big margin with the luxury tax penalties.
 

Plympton91

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I thought there were international bonus pool penalties as well, but this is the second time I’ve seen this quoted and not included any mention of those. So does it not affect international activity?
 

nvalvo

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Looks like we're bringing in Erasmo Ramírez on a minor league deal.

Ramírez will be 29 in May, and has one year of MLB service time remaining before FA. He has split his career between Tampa Bay and Seattle. He is a right handed pitcher.

His best season was his age-25 campaign with the Rays, when he went 11-6 in 27 starts. He also had a few relief appearances, and pitched 163 and one third inning with a 3.75 ERA and a 3.76 FIP. He's never struck out many — his career K/9 is 7.0 — but he also walks very few — career BB/9 2.6, but his better seasons are well below that.

The problem seems to be that he also doesn't get a ton of ground balls, so his results have really tracked with his BABIP and HR/FB rates, as you would expect. And recently, those results have been bad. In 2018, he had ten starts for the Mariners, going 2-4 with a 6.50 ERA. Nothing about his peripherals suggest that that ERA was in any way flukey. He had a HR rate (2.8) higher than his walk rate (2.4), which you don't see all that often.

This is probably just a warm body for the AAA rotation or even bullpen, because he's been pretty bad of late. Maybe Bannister and company see something they like. But you'd have to see him as pretty far down the depth chart to actually make starts for Boston — like 14th or so.
 

HangingW/ScottCooper

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That’s a pretty sweet deal for the Padres. If Kinsler really is still as good defensively as the stats showed last season, he’s worth twice that even with average offense for the position. $4 million a year is backup infielder money. Tells you how soft the market is for non stars and that Kinsler didn’t want to end up where Brandon Phillips did last season.

Those numbers for Scherzer and Stras can’t be right. Max is a $31 million AAV and Stras $25.
I know we only saw a small sample size, but it looks like he can no longer hit a major league fastball. If I was a Padres fan I wouldn't be happy with this signing.
 

nattysez

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Source: Red Sox have a minor-league deal with righty Zach Putnam. 31-year-old missed all of 2018 after undergoing Tommy John surgery in June 2017. Had been an effective reliever with White Sox from 2014-17.
I have no memory of this guy with the ChiSox. Seems like DD's doing a nice job collecting a variety of arms with potential upside.
 

chawson

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I have no memory of this guy with the ChiSox. Seems like DD's doing a nice job collecting a variety of arms with potential upside.
Top 10 swinging strike rates, 2015-17 (min. 80 IP):

1. Chapman - 17.4%
2. Putnam - 17.3
3. Jansen - 17.3
4. Diaz - 17.1
5. Kimbrel - 17.0
6. Giles - 17.0
7. Gregerson - 17.0
8. Miller - 16.9
9. Uehara - 16.9
10. Logan - 16.4
 

edoug

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Putnam, A crafty right-hander?
https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2018/12/red-sox-sign-zach-putnam-minor-league-deal.html

Putnam never lit up the radar gun, sitting at 90.4 mph with his fastball over that four-year stretch on the South Side, but he nonetheless posted a gaudy 16.1 percent swinging-strike rate in that time as well. Beyond that, Putnam excelled in terms of limiting hard contact, as evidenced by a 27.2 percent opponents’ hard-hit rate that ranked well below the league average.
 

moondog80

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Very good numbers 2014-2017. Why is he only getting a minor league deal? TJ isn’t a very big deal.
 

DeadlySplitter

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I still want Ottavino but these signings today are starting to convince me we'll get no one from the high-end reliever market. Putnam seems like a bet to get 80-90% of Ottavino at near-minimum cost
 
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I still want Ottavino but these signings today are starting to convince me we'll get no one from the high-end reliever market. Putnam seems like a bet to get 80-90% of Ottavino at near-minimum cost
As that astute philosopher W. Axl Rose once advised: "All we need is just a little patience..."

To date, there's been very little movement in the reliever market place. I'd be absolutely floored if the Sox don't end up with one of the following: Robertson, Ottavino, Britton, Brach, Herrera...

The recent minor-league signings are merely the prudent search for the next lightning-in-a-bottle Brasier type find.
 

jon abbey

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Top 10 swinging strike rates, 2015-17 (min. 80 IP):

1. Chapman - 17.4%
2. Putnam - 17.3
3. Jansen - 17.3
4. Diaz - 17.1
5. Kimbrel - 17.0
6. Giles - 17.0
7. Gregerson - 17.0
8. Miller - 16.9
9. Uehara - 16.9
10. Logan - 16.4
That is a really crazy stat for a righty who sits at 90, nice score by DD.
 

Tyrone Biggums

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I still want Ottavino but these signings today are starting to convince me we'll get no one from the high-end reliever market. Putnam seems like a bet to get 80-90% of Ottavino at near-minimum cost
Relievers are always volatile. But I wouldn’t rule out Kimbrel coming back on a 1 year deal at a raise and going back on the market next year. I’m guessing the post season struggles have really hurt his market. With him I’m assuming it’s not about the money per year and more about the length of the contract.
 

Devizier

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How about David Phelps, coming off of TJ surgery? He had a few strong seasons as a converted reliever before going under the knife. He should be healthy for 2019 (relatively speaking).
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Relievers are always volatile. But I wouldn’t rule out Kimbrel coming back on a 1 year deal at a raise and going back on the market next year. I’m guessing the post season struggles have really hurt his market. With him I’m assuming it’s not about the money per year and more about the length of the contract.
Sure relievers are volatile, but Kimbrel has the lowest ERA+ in MLB history for pitchers with at least 500 IP. The notion that a pitcher with that kind of record over his eight year career is going to be left with little choice but to take a make-good deal with his old team over a few shaky games in October seems ludicrous to me. He may be asking for six years now, but it's a long way and a long time (100 days until spring training) to fall to end up at that point. Someone is going to pay him for multiple years.
 

Tyrone Biggums

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Sure relievers are volatile, but Kimbrel has the lowest ERA+ in MLB history for pitchers with at least 500 IP. The notion that a pitcher with that kind of record over his eight year career is going to be left with little choice but to take a make-good deal with his old team over a few shaky games in October seems ludicrous to me. He may be asking for six years now, but it's a long way and a long time (100 days until spring training) to fall to end up at that point. Someone is going to pay him for multiple years.
I agree with the overall premise but he did have a much higher era in the 2nd half as well compared to the first half. Not that ERA is the end all but his performance has to have raised some eye brows. Personally the way he melted down in October is the only reason we are having a discussion of this being possible. It just seems like when you look at the possible suitors all of the contenders either have their spots filled, cant afford Kimbrel or are unwilling to spend on a closer (other than maybe Philly).
 

Rasputin

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That's like six years. SIX YEARS!

Goddamn fucking offseason bullshit.

I like the depth. I want the top end. I really have no patience. Of all the off-seasons after we've won the World Series, this is the one that's been the longest.
 

Dewey'sCannon

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It seems that sometimes players, and their agents, misread the market by focusing primarily on only one aspect of market pricing - the cost of comparable talent/FA salaries of similar players. While it's understandable that players would look to this as the most important measure of what they are "worth," it ignores the other important aspect of market pricing: supply and demand. And when it comes to a high-end commodity like a FA closer (or high-leverage reliever), which some teams may view as a luxury item at the "market price" (salaries for comparable talent), the demand may be limited to just a few teams, since almost half the teams are out because they aren't going to be competing for the playoffs, a good number of the rest already have the job(s) filled, and a few more may have the desire, but not the resources to be able to "splurge" for $13-17m/yr for a closer/late-inning guy. And this year, when you have a number of these high-end relievers on the market, you don't have the situation where scarcity of supply is driving up (or maybe even holding up) the prices.

While it's not surprising that players would focus on what their peers are making, and want to meet or exceed that, agents should know better. And the players are at least partially responsible for this dilemma, since they agreed to a CBA with the various CBT threshholds that certainly inhibit spending and constrain the FA market.

There's a whole lot that needs fixing in the CBA. It's been modified/patched up to keep everything going for the last few years, but it's reached a point where there probably needs to be some fundamental changes to the whole approach.
 

OurF'ingCity

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It seems that sometimes players, and their agents, misread the market by focusing primarily on only one aspect of market pricing - the cost of comparable talent/FA salaries of similar players. While it's understandable that players would look to this as the most important measure of what they are "worth," it ignores the other important aspect of market pricing: supply and demand. And when it comes to a high-end commodity like a FA closer (or high-leverage reliever), which some teams may view as a luxury item at the "market price" (salaries for comparable talent), the demand may be limited to just a few teams, since almost half the teams are out because they aren't going to be competing for the playoffs, a good number of the rest already have the job(s) filled, and a few more may have the desire, but not the resources to be able to "splurge" for $13-17m/yr for a closer/late-inning guy. And this year, when you have a number of these high-end relievers on the market, you don't have the situation where scarcity of supply is driving up (or maybe even holding up) the prices.
I still suspect Kimbrel will end up with a nice, multi-year deal eventually, but to the extent he has to take a hit on contract value part of it will almost certainly be due to the fact that he has made pretty clear his desire to be a "9th-only" guy with some occasional appearances in the 8th inning. The obvious trend recently has been towards guys who can be slotted into any inning with or without guys on base - pretty much all the "hot" relievers on the market other than Kimbrel (Ottavino, Robertson, etc.) fall into this category. At this point I'm not even sure that Kimbrel expressing a willingness to be more flexible would make much of a difference given that, anecdotally at least, he has seemed to struggle in situations other than those where he starts clean in the 9th and pitches for three outs only.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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That's like six years. SIX YEARS!

Goddamn fucking offseason bullshit.

I like the depth. I want the top end. I really have no patience. Of all the off-seasons after we've won the World Series, this is the one that's been the longest.
Well, maybe if they hadn't been so good and let the World Series go to a full seven games before they won it, the off-season wouldn't be so long. :D
 

Minneapolis Millers

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Philly has money to spend, but they've already signed Cutch and probably need to see whether they can get Machado or Harper before "settling" for some other ways to spend their coin (on, say, a good but pricey reliever). And that's likely true of other teams as well.

Eventually, though, Kimbrel's getting paid, unless he is unreasonably rigid in his demands. I think his floors are three years and $15M/year. I'm still expecting something like 4/$64M.
 

geoduck no quahog

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...There's a whole lot that needs fixing in the CBA. It's been modified/patched up to keep everything going for the last few years, but it's reached a point where there probably needs to be some fundamental changes to the whole approach.
It's been said many times by many people: Any type of revenue sharing scheme won't work well unless a minimum payroll comes along with it.
 

Dewey'sCannon

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It's been said many times by many people: Any type of revenue sharing scheme won't work well unless a minimum payroll comes along with it.
Or at least you have to provide an incentive to spend for low payroll teams that's equivalent to the disincentive to spend for the high payroll teams. Teams should not be able to accept revenue sharing or competitive balance money and just put it in the owner's pocket.
 

Rasputin

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According to this article, the Red Sox were one of the 11 teams that went to see Troy Tulowitzki's workout.

https://wfan.radio.com/articles/news/yankees-could-be-eyeing-troy-tulowitzki-fallback-plan-manny-machado
I'm sure that's just due diligence, but there's a part of me that wants Tulo as a Pedroia backup plan.

Well, maybe if they hadn't been so good and let the World Series go to a full seven games before they won it, the off-season wouldn't be so long. :D
I suspect this is incorrect.

Pitchers and catchers first workout is on February 13.

It is barely 50 days away
So...twelve years is what you're saying?

It's been said many times by many people: Any type of revenue sharing scheme won't work well unless a minimum payroll comes along with it.
This is the thing that's made sense to me. Guarantee the players a percentage of revenue. If salaries don't meet that threshold, the extra is made up by a tax on the highest and lowest payroll teams. If you're cutting the payroll to the bone to tank, pay a tax. If you're maxing payroll to GFIN, pay a tax.
 

chawson

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An interesting thing about Tulo is that the extension he signed in 2010 stipulates that he “may be traded only once during contract” (if I’m reading that correctly), which of course already happened.

I figured that the Jays cut him because he was cooked (which may still be the case). But if that contract detail is true, then the Jays had no choice but to drop him even if he was healthy and productive, as they wouldn’t be able to trade him anyway, and the roster spot is more valuable to them in their rebuild.
 

sean1562

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I cant imagine a dumber move then signing Tulo to play SS and then trading Xander. We would see Lin at SS for 100-120 games of the year