2024 Lineup (What we actually have - no trade speculation.)

simplicio

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No. As of today Dalbec is the one with significant recent experience, but Refsnyder has also played there in the past. There are a number of cheap names (Solano, Cooper, etc) still on the market.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Any word recently on who's going to be backup 1B? (Please not Dalbec)
The in-house options are Reyes, Refsnyder, and Dalbec. Two of them are locks for the 26-man right now. Considering Casas should be a 150+ game guy at this point, a dedicated back-up 1B probably doesn't need to be a priority. Upgrading the in-case-of-injury fill-in from Dalbec would certainly be welcome but I suspect being able to stash that guy in Worcester has its advantages.
 

simplicio

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Reyes is 5'8" and has more career innings as a pitcher than at 1B. We aren't going into the season with him as our primary backup.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Seems to me that, barring any additions, Dalbec makes the team.

Bench of Refsnyder, Reyes, McGuire, Dalbec. Don’t see any other viable candidates on the 40-man (or any NRI) to take his spot.
 

Ale Xander

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Any word recently on who's going to be backup 1B? (Please not Dalbec)
It’s Dalbec

why not him? He’s experienced, is just as good defensively as Casas and had 2 great at bats yesterday and a season in the minor leagues last year and also brings some speed for the position and doesn’t cost much and can also back up 3B and maybe even be an emegency COF and MIF
 

simplicio

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It’s Dalbec

why not him? He’s experienced, is just as good defensively as Casas and had 2 great at bats yesterday and a season in the minor leagues last year and also brings some speed for the position and doesn’t cost much and can also back up 3B and maybe even be an emegency COF and MIF
34% K rate in AAA is why not.

"Just as good defensively as Casas" is really funny though, well done.
 

Ale Xander

Hamilton
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34% K rate in AAA is why not.

"Just as good defensively as Casas" is really funny though, well done.
Better then 34% GIDP rate
A K counts for only one out, last time I was at a game.

he’s actually better defensively I just wanted to be kind to Casas
 

Fishy1

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34% K rate in AAA is why not.

"Just as good defensively as Casas" is really funny though, well done.
I'd prefer we replaced him but I'd honestly be happy with him getting in there against LHP. He'll crush those guys, he's cheap, and he'll do just fine as a pinch hitter for our glut of lefthanders. Still possible something changes but if not, it isnt the end of the world.
 

simplicio

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Neither Casas nor Devers need a platoon, so backing them up with someone who can't hit RHP just serves to reduce your flexibility on when you give them a day off.
 

Ale Xander

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Neither Casas nor Devers need a platoon, so backing them up with someone who can't hit RHP just serves to reduce your flexibility on when you give them a day off.
You give Casas a day off against lefties (.215) against whom Dalbec rakes
 

BaseballJones

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Casas just had a 121 WRC+ vs LHP, he doesn't need a day off against them.
He needs a day off against someone. He can't play every day. May as well give him a day off against lefties when they can put in a RH bat that crushes them.
 

Auger34

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I'd prefer we replaced him but I'd honestly be happy with him getting in there against LHP. He'll crush those guys, he's cheap, and he'll do just fine as a pinch hitter for our glut of lefthanders. Still possible something changes but if not, it isnt the end of the world.
If Dalbec is the answer, that’s an incredibly fucking low bar to clear. Even for “cheap”
 

simplicio

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Only 20% of the starters in the rest of the division are LHP. Our 1B backup is going to see RHP sometimes and I'd prefer we got someone that has demonstrated an ability to do that at some point in the last 3 years instead of getting progressively worse.
 

Fishy1

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Only 20% of the starters in the rest of the division are LHP. Our 1B backup is going to see RHP sometimes and I'd prefer we got someone that has demonstrated an ability to do that at some point in the last 3 years instead of getting progressively worse.
Again, I don't disagree! But the reality is that Solano et al are good enough hitters to probably find a full-time job somewhere and are trying to get that. They don't want to sit on the bench 75% of the time and spell Devers and Casas once a week or only step-in when someone is injured.
 

simplicio

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It's possible Solano's good 2023 played him into a full time gig somewhere, but the reason he's stayed at the top of my wishlist is that he took a backup/utility job for $2m last year and did kind of exactly what we're still looking for.
 

AB in DC

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He needs a day off against someone. He can't play every day. May as well give him a day off against lefties when they can put in a RH bat that crushes them.
Well, that's fine, but we don't need to waste a roster spot on a guy whose only role is to fill in for those 10-20 games. Better to have someone already on the roster handle it.
 

6-5 Sadler

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My favorite Bobby Dalbec stat. He struck out in 52.8% of his plate appearances last year (small sample size yada yada yada). You have to go back 140 years to find another position player who struck out as frequently (min: 50 PA).

It’s unbelievable that a team with playoff aspirations would roster Bobby Dalbec, even in a limited role. Garrett Cooper just got a NRI with the Cubs.
 

Rovin Romine

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My favorite Bobby Dalbec stat. He struck out in 52.8% of his plate appearances last year (small sample size yada yada yada). You have to go back 140 years to find another position player who struck out as frequently (min: 50 PA).

It’s unbelievable that a team with playoff aspirations would roster Bobby Dalbec, even in a limited role. Garrett Cooper just got a NRI with the Cubs.
The Cubs don't have a 1B. Garrett Cooper is an at-best marginal fielding 1B, who hits poorly overall. His skill is a platoon bat v. LHP. Which isn't always consistent year to year. He's like Mini-Rob-Refsnyder-on-the-verge-of-becoming-a-DH.

I don't say that to gloss over Dalbec's flaws.

But Garrett Cooper is probably not the answer to any team's issues.

And also, he's not on the roster.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Dalbec in his career has been worth 0.0 bWAR. He’s as replacement level as it gets. Probably not much different than Cooper; seems like there is some appetite for just someone different. Hopefully Casas is Lou Gehrig; the idea of a DL stint and extended Dalbec playing time is not appealing but at this point, any replacement will likely be a similar player.

Hopefully Breslow has a hitting academy too and it can work some magic here. Unless they make a last minute signing of a Cron, Solano, or Duvall- it’s looking like Bobby or bust.
 

Rovin Romine

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Saw that a bit earlier. I think Cora likes the idea of getting both O'Neill and Rafaela in there for a more L/R balance in the lineup.
Grissom is a RHH, Valdez is a LHH. So this is really about replacing Valdez with a RHH, and assumes (probably correctly) that Rafaela will outhit Reyes v. LHP, and the other two OF (Yoshida/Duran) will as well.

So maybe it's something we see early in the year before Grissom comes back.

But I don't know if it's really needed, and I'd prefer to see Devers/Story/Valdez/Casas working together as an IF for a solid week, as opposed to figuring out what might or might not work as a low-percentage sub sometime later in the season.
 

loneredseat

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Dec 8, 2023
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I like this lineup. I'd run with it until Grissom gets back and then move Rafaela to center, and share LF, RF, and DH between O'Neill, Duran, Abreu, and Yoshida. Valdez is the odd man out.
 

Cassvt2023

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I think you have to take into account that the team starts the season on the West Coast for the 1st 10 games. We already know that they will be without Grissom and Refsnyder. I don't think Cora is going to feel comfortable starting Yoshida in the field at those parks, with maybe the exception of a day game after a night game. So the best lineup that will also give them the best defensive alignment is probably with Rafaela in CF and Duran on a corner with a platoon of the other two OF's. Valdez starts at 2B against RHP, Reyes against RHP. Cora has as much as said this. Looking at the rotations of the first three opponents, they may only see 2-3 lefties in those 10 games.
 

moondog80

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Who sees the fewest PA between Rafaella/Duran/O'Neill/Yoshida/Abreu? The most?
 

BaseballJones

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Rafaela: 23
Duran: 27
O'Neill: 28
Abreu: 24
Casas: 24
Devers: 27
Wong: 27
Bello: 24

At least I like the look of that.
 

OCD SS

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Yeah, I actually agree. Those are the rules, so they really should use them for the extra year.
C-Note looks like the kind of player who's going to be very good while young, but as his athleticism slips he'll decline more quickly. If he's fixed his chasing problems at the plate, then it makes sense to improve the team now as this squad will need all the help it can get. If he develops beyond what they expect they can extend him, or trade him to make room for one of the other OF prospects coming up. If he hasn't fixed his pitch recognition and his offense craters they can always send him back down and re-establish the extra year...
 

nvalvo

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C-Note looks like the kind of player who's going to be very good while young, but as his athleticism slips he'll decline more quickly. If he's fixed his chasing problems at the plate, then it makes sense to improve the team now as this squad will need all the help it can get. If he develops beyond what they expect they can extend him, or trade him to make room for one of the other OF prospects coming up. If he hasn't fixed his pitch recognition and his offense craters they can always send him back down and re-establish the extra year...
Yup, and if he’s good enough that we care about that additional year, we should be aiming for an extension.

I love this.

I think it’s a good vibes thing in the organization, too. Let’s set the expectations with the young core we’re hoping to promote over the next two years that the team isn’t going to nickel and dime them on service time.
 

Bob Montgomerys Helmet Hat

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Yup, and if he’s good enough that we care about that additional year, we should be aiming for an extension.

I love this.

I think it’s a good vibes thing in the organization, too. Let’s set the expectations with the young core we’re hoping to promote over the next two years that the team isn’t going to nickel and dime them on service time.
Is a full year of control really nickel and diming?
 

nvalvo

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Is a full year of control really nickel and diming?
Yes, IMO. Maybe that’s not the right idiom, but the message it sends to the players on the farm is awful: we are an organization that cares about excellence and integrity and competing for championships and we want to build a group of people who care about each other and those common goals — unless we get a chance to suppress your career earnings somewhat by not putting the best team we can on the field for six weeks. Then all that goes out the window.
 

Bob Montgomerys Helmet Hat

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Yes, IMO. Maybe that’s not the right idiom, but the message it sends to the players on the farm is awful: we are an organization that cares about excellence and integrity and competing for championships and we want to build a group of people who care about each other and those common goals — unless we get a chance to suppress your career earnings somewhat by not putting the best team we can on the field for six weeks. Then all that goes out the window.
I mean, that's the Collective Bargaining Agreement and this happens all the time. I guess I'm just not one who believes that every time management acts in accordance with the Agreement and makes a smart business decision they are acting in bad faith.
There are plenty of things in the CBA that I don't like, but it is the agreed upon deal. Abiding by it is just business, as is a player leaving their original team for more money, once they hit free agency.
 

snowmanny

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I was really annoyed when they burnt a year of control on Bogaerts during a season they finished last and he had an OPS+ of 84. But they did eventually extend him a few years.