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

Rovin Romine

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Confused on this: You mean one subject to Rule 5 now in the minors, right? Because we have a R5 guy in the majors getting full-time work
No, I meant guys that you'd have to put on the 40 man to protect them from a rule 5 pick. Which is what I think @LogansDad was originally getting at.

And that's a totally valid concern.

Here's the list from Soxprospects. Who do we think we need to protect from OAK or CWS grabbing a guy and keeping them on the active roster for the 2025 season? Assuming we have 3 spots to promote into or so?

I think Fitts has to be one. Maybe Yorke if he has a good run in AAA. Kavadas?

Oddly that's why I think some of those guys might, in some circumstances, be given a spin now, instead of the Contreras/Westbrook types. See if they stick at the MLB level. . . But it's risky.

December 2024

Angel Bastardo
Alex Binelas
Brainer Bonaci
Bryce Bonnin
Taylor Broadway
Zach Bryant
Allan Castro
Brendan Cellucci
Juan Chacon
Nathanael Cruz
Theo Denlinger
Kelvin Diaz
Hunter Dobbins
Juan Daniel Encarnacion
Albert Feliz
Max Ferguson
Richard Fitts
Michael Fulmer
Grant Gambrell
Jhostynxon Garcia
Bryan Gonzalez
Luis Guerrero
Francis Hernandez
Nathan Hickey
Gabriel Jackson
Blaze Jordan
Niko Kavadas
Robert Kwiatkowski
CJ Liu
Eduardo Lopez
Matthew Lugo
Elih Marrero
Tyler McDonough
Tyler Miller
Wyatt Mills
Yordanny Monegro
Juan Montero
Wyatt Olds
Eddinson Paulino
Ronald Rosario
Corey Rosier
Reidis Sena
Chase Shugart
Phillip Sikes
Karson Simas
Adam Smith
Nick Sogard
Noah Song
Luis Talavera
Christopher Troye
Tyler Uberstine
Miguel Ugueto
Brian Van Belle
Diego Viloria
Jacob Webb
Jeremy Wu-Yelland
Nick Yorke
Ryan Zeferjahn
 

Rovin Romine

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It's early, given some guys may have break-out seasons, but I followed up on my own post, trying to ID tempting targets for other teams in the Rule 5 draft. At the bottom are guys who might be tempting to call up this year, but aren't eligible for Rule 5, and so would take away a 40 man spot.

This is what I see right now. I did it quickly, so there may be some mistakes. Also, there may be someone who has an exceptional skill or is beginning to take off.

Thoughts and comments and corrections are welcome.

I think Fitts is an obvious one. He's not on the 40 now probably because you never know if a pitcher might need TJS. But apart from a disaster scenario, he's the most obvious one to protect, I think. OAK or CWS could definitely use his arm in the pen in 2025. (As could a more aspirational team. . .but I think those two clubs are good to establish a floor with.)

Kavadas/Lugo/Sogard form the next interesting cluster. Question marks for all, but would OAK or CWS be able to carry them on a roster in 2025? Too early to tell I think.

***

Pitchers in the high minors who are doing well and could transition to another team's pen (Whitlock/Slaten scenario):
Richard Fitts - top 10 RS prospect, possible starter, AAA.
Luis Guerrero - live arm, AAA reliever.​
Pitchers in the high minors who might be dark horses:
Robert Kwiatkowski - AA to AAA relief.​
Grant Gambrell - AAA rotation, notch below Fitts, IMO.​
Ryan Zeferjahn - AAA relief​

Pitchers in the high minors, but not currently standing out:
Brian Van Belle - AAA starter - 6+ ERA​
Chase Shugart - AAA relief - 4+ ERA​
Hunter Dobbins - AA rotation - 4+ ERA​
Angel Bastardo - AA rotation 5+ ERA​
Wyatt Olds - AA relief​
Jacob Webb - AA relief​
Brendan Cellucci - AA relief
CJ Liu - AA relief​
Christopher Troye - AA relief​
Theo Denlinger - AA relief​

Position players in the high minors who look ready to make the jump:
Niko Kavadas - 1B/DH - 3 true outcomes type, but high K rate.
Matthew Lugo - IF/OF - insanely hot bat.
Nick Sogard - IF - all rounder w/ .855 OPS

Position players on the edge (who might take off during this year):
Nick Yorke - legit prospect, just promoted to AAA.​
Blaze Jordan - AA.​
Nathan Hickey - C/1B, Worcester.​
Karson Simas? - weird A to AAA promotion, but hitting there in SSS.​

Position players whose bat is not likely to be ready to make the jump to ML:
Elih Marrero - C AAA, no bat.​
Corey Rosier - OF AAA, .503 OPS.​
Phillip Sikes - OF AA.​
Eddinson Paulino - IF AA.​
Alex Binelas - 1B/DH AA.​
Tyler McDonough - 2B AA.​
Tyler Miller - 1B AA​
Brainer Bonaci - ineligable.​

AND - most likely not in consideration:​
Guys in A+ ball or below:​
Allan Castro​
Zach Bryant​
Bryce Bonnin​
Juan Chacon​
Nathanael Cruz​
Kelvin Diaz​
Juan Daniel Encarnacion​
Albert Feliz​
Jhostynxon Garcia​
Francis Hernandez​
Gabriel Jackson​
Eduardo Lopez​
Yordanny Monegro (But - just promoted to Greenville and pitching very well.)​
Juan Montero​
Ronald Rosario​
Reidis Sena​
Adam Smith​
Luis Talavera​
Miguel Ugueto​
Diego Viloria​
Jeremy Wu-Yelland​
Guys on a full season minors IL or minors 60 day IL​
Noah Song​
Wyatt Mills​
Tyler Uberstine​
Taylor Broadway​
Max Ferguson​
Michael Fulmer​


These are notable guys who might be call-ups this year based on talent but who don't have to go on the 40 man to protect them from rule 5. Ergo they may bump one of the above if they're used.

Chase Meidroth - AAA OBP heavy IF​
Zach Penrod - AAA starter (just promoted)​
 

Fishy1

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It's early, given some guys may have break-out seasons, but I followed up on my own post, trying to ID tempting targets for other teams in the Rule 5 draft. At the bottom are guys who might be tempting to call up this year, but aren't eligible for Rule 5, and so would take away a 40 man spot.

This is what I see right now. I did it quickly, so there may be some mistakes. Also, there may be someone who has an exceptional skill or is beginning to take off.

Thoughts and comments and corrections are welcome.

I think Fitts is an obvious one. He's not on the 40 now probably because you never know if a pitcher might need TJS. But apart from a disaster scenario, he's the most obvious one to protect, I think. OAK or CWS could definitely use his arm in the pen in 2025. (As could a more aspirational team. . .but I think those two clubs are good to establish a floor with.)

Kavadas/Lugo/Sogard form the next interesting cluster. Question marks for all, but would OAK or CWS be able to carry them on a roster in 2025? Too early to tell I think.

***

Pitchers in the high minors who are doing well and could transition to another team's pen (Whitlock/Slaten scenario):
Richard Fitts - top 10 RS prospect, possible starter, AAA.
Luis Guerrero - live arm, AAA reliever.​
Pitchers in the high minors who might be dark horses:
Robert Kwiatkowski - AA to AAA relief.​
Grant Gambrell - AAA rotation, notch below Fitts, IMO.​
Ryan Zeferjahn - AAA relief​

Pitchers in the high minors, but not currently standing out:
Brian Van Belle - AAA starter - 6+ ERA​
Chase Shugart - AAA relief - 4+ ERA​
Hunter Dobbins - AA rotation - 4+ ERA​
Angel Bastardo - AA rotation 5+ ERA​
Wyatt Olds - AA relief​
Jacob Webb - AA relief​
Brendan Cellucci - AA relief​
CJ Liu - AA relief​
Christopher Troye - AA relief​
Theo Denlinger - AA relief​

Position players in the high minors who look ready to make the jump:
Niko Kavadas - 1B/DH - 3 true outcomes type, but high K rate.
Matthew Lugo - IF/OF - insanely hot bat.
Nick Sogard - IF - all rounder w/ .855 OPS

Position players on the edge (who might take off during this year):
Nick Yorke - legit prospect, just promoted to AAA.​
Blaze Jordan - AA.​
Nathan Hickey - C/1B, Worcester.​
Karson Simas? - weird A to AAA promotion, but hitting there in SSS.​

Position players whose bat is not likely to be ready to make the jump to ML:
Elih Marrero - C AAA, no bat.​
Corey Rosier - OF AAA, .503 OPS.​
Phillip Sikes - OF AA.​
Eddinson Paulino - IF AA.​
Alex Binelas - 1B/DH AA.​
Tyler McDonough - 2B AA.​
Tyler Miller - 1B AA​
Brainer Bonaci - ineligable.​

AND - most likely not in consideration:​
Guys in A+ ball or below:​
Allan Castro​
Zach Bryant​
Bryce Bonnin​
Juan Chacon​
Nathanael Cruz​
Kelvin Diaz​
Juan Daniel Encarnacion​
Albert Feliz​
Jhostynxon Garcia​
Francis Hernandez​
Gabriel Jackson​
Eduardo Lopez​
Yordanny Monegro (But - just promoted to Greenville and pitching very well.)​
Juan Montero​
Ronald Rosario​
Reidis Sena​
Adam Smith​
Luis Talavera​
Miguel Ugueto​
Diego Viloria​
Jeremy Wu-Yelland​
Guys on a full season minors IL or minors 60 day IL​
Noah Song​
Wyatt Mills​
Tyler Uberstine​
Taylor Broadway​
Max Ferguson​
Michael Fulmer​


These are notable guys who might be call-ups this year based on talent but who don't have to go on the 40 man to protect them from rule 5. Ergo they may bump one of the above if they're used.

Chase Meidroth - AAA OBP heavy IF​
Zach Penrod - AAA starter (just promoted)​
The only two I really see them being eager to protect are Lugo and Fitts. Lugo because of the outrageous season he's having (another home run last night, dear Lord) and the uncertainty surrounding Tyler O'Neill's future with this team, and the need for another solid right-handed bat.

If there's a crunch (which there might not be, the Sox have three first baseman alone I could see them DFA'ing, and several other pitchers), then I think they'd probably be comfortable losing a few of the other guys. Guerrero has an enormously live arm, but the current ownership group hasn't really pursued his type through trades or free agency. When you look at the guys they've acquired since Breslow came on board, Criswell, Campbell, Fitts, Weissert, Slaten, Bernardino: nearly all the guys who they've gone after have been guys with good to great K/BB ratios. (The Kellers and Andersons and Uwasawa's are just DFA-able filler). If it comes down to protecting a player having a good season like Lugo or Fitts, or letting Guerrero go unprotected or DFA'ing Mata (if he ever gets off the IL), they'll pass over Guerrero, I think. If anything, he might be moved at the deadline.

It's hard for me to imagine them protecting Kavadas, Yorke, or Sogard. Kavadas just strikes out too much (he's on a binge right now), it's hard for me to imagine him limiting the K's below like 35% in the bigs. And we've continued to dream on Yorke even though there's really not much there. He's been basically an average minor-league hitter over the last three seasons. He could still break out, but it needs to happen fast, IMO, for them to consider protecting him. Hickey's K rate has ballooned to 34% in AAA, too, and he can't play the field, so he's fast approaching potato territory, IMO. It's possible any or all of these guys turn it around, but it's unlikely given their struggles and overall trajectories so far. Kavadas they might add just because Dalbec will be out of options this year, and with his options, he could be the same kind of ride-the-shuttle type for them for a while, who might even occasionally catch fire.
 

Dewey'sCannon

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Based on where we are today, I'd say they add Fitts, Lugo and Yorke to the 40 man at the end of the year, assuming none of them are either traded or added to the 40 to be called up later this season (not likely but not impossible either). I think Lugo has definitely put himself back on the map with his resurgence this year, and might be shopped as part of a package at the deadline, or might have some use to the Red Sox if O'Neil is shipped out at the deadline or let go at the end of the year.
 

Fishy1

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Yorke, IMO, isn't going to be added. We've got at least five guys who can play second base, between Valdez, Grissom, Hamilton, Romy, and Ceddanne. Mayer and Trevor Story are in the mix there too, for next year. Everyone has 2 or more options, too, and frankly, I like them all better as prospects to be a solution at second base than I do Yorke.
 

Rovin Romine

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The only two I really see them being eager to protect are Lugo and Fitts. Lugo because of the outrageous season he's having (another home run last night, dear Lord) and the uncertainty surrounding Tyler O'Neill's future with this team, and the need for another solid right-handed bat.

If there's a crunch (which there might not be, the Sox have three first baseman alone I could see them DFA'ing, and several other pitchers), then I think they'd probably be comfortable losing a few of the other guys. Guerrero has an enormously live arm, but the current ownership group hasn't really pursued his type through trades or free agency. When you look at the guys they've acquired since Breslow came on board, Criswell, Campbell, Fitts, Weissert, Slaten, Bernardino: nearly all the guys who they've gone after have been guys with good to great K/BB ratios. (The Kellers and Andersons and Uwasawa's are just DFA-able filler). If it comes down to protecting a player having a good season like Lugo or Fitts, or letting Guerrero go unprotected or DFA'ing Mata (if he ever gets off the IL), they'll pass over Guerrero, I think. If anything, he might be moved at the deadline.

It's hard for me to imagine them protecting Kavadas, Yorke, or Sogard. Kavadas just strikes out too much (he's on a binge right now), it's hard for me to imagine him limiting the K's below like 35% in the bigs. And we've continued to dream on Yorke even though there's really not much there. He's been basically an average minor-league hitter over the last three seasons. He could still break out, but it needs to happen fast, IMO, for them to consider protecting him. Hickey's K rate has ballooned to 34% in AAA, too, and he can't play the field, so he's fast approaching potato territory, IMO. It's possible any or all of these guys turn it around, but it's unlikely given their struggles and overall trajectories so far. Kavadas they might add just because Dalbec will be out of options this year, and with his options, he could be the same kind of ride-the-shuttle type for them for a while, who might even occasionally catch fire.
I'd agree Lugo and Fitts seem to be the two most obvious at the moment.

Generally speaking in a sample size that large a player might catch fire or pumpkin from now to the end of the season (we're not even halfway through yet.)

Some guys might play themselves below needing to be protected, or pumpkin, or just not make sense for a team to Rule 5. But if Kavadas ends up OPSing over .900, maybe some team, not in contention in 2025, would roll the dice on him as a DH. If he does not work out, they return him for a nominal fee.

Sogard is an interesting all-rounder who is currently hitting well - same deal there. If he keeps it up with the bat, maybe someone adds him.

Yorke. . .I just don't know. I think he gets a bad rap because he's been sort of scrummed as a prospect - people dig in because he's a #17 first round pick, and they want results yesterday. But of the 25 HS first and second rounders from 2020 - only 6 have made it to the majors (and 2 have negative fWAR.) So his making AAA (while cutting his K rate to 18% in AA) isn't some sort of crazy-bad result. He also has a chance to develop as a hitter - he's just a couple months past age 22.

Yorke, IMO, isn't going to be added. We've got at least five guys who can play second base, between Valdez, Grissom, Hamilton, Romy, and Ceddanne. Mayer and Trevor Story are in the mix there too, for next year. Everyone has 2 or more options, too, and frankly, I like them all better as prospects to be a solution at second base than I do Yorke.
And yet 2B has been a black hole for us thusfar: (Grissom, Valdez, Rafaela, Hamilton, Reyes, Westbrook, Wong, Short.) No Romy, interestingly.

As far as the MI in 2025 goes:

Story - nominal SS. Should be defensively good, maybe good with the bat? (It has been years now, and he has the surgically-repaired shoulder thing now.)​
Mayer - SS heir-apparent. Seems to have bounced back in AA.​
Hamilton - SS of the moment. Defensively adequate? Starting to hit at the ML level. But does this represent him truly adjusting to the book on him?​
Grissom - nominal 2B. Chronically injured thusfar.​
Valdez - 2B of the moment. Defensively adequate at best. Now hitting. Like Hamilton, the question is has he solved something or will the league adjust.​
Romy - either. Chronically injured career. Chronically injured thusfar.​
Ceddanne. The preference is clearly to use him in CF. May solidify as a hitter or may flash out.​

I look at all that and see a possible world where at the end of 2024 - Story is done/reinjured, Mayer struggles at AAA and isn't quite ready, Hamilton is exposed/has regressed, Grissom is injured/never quite gets it together, Valdez is adequate/regresses, and Romy is injured.

How do Sogard and Yorke look then going into the off-season? Especially if they do well?
 
Last edited:

moondog80

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As far as the MI in 2025 goes:

Story - nominal SS. Should be defensively good, maybe good with the bat? (It has been years now, and he has the surgically-repaired shoulder thing now.)​
Mayer - SS heir-apparent. Seems to have bounced back in AA.​
Hamilton - SS of the moment. Defensively adequate? Starting to hit at the ML level. But does this represent him truly adjusting to the book on him?​
Grissom - nominal 2B. Chronically injured thusfar.​
Valdez - 2B of the moment. Defensively adequate at best. Now hitting. Like Hamilton, the question is has he solved something or will the league adjust.​
Romy - either. Chronically injured career. Chronically injured thusfar.​
Ceddanne. The preference is clearly to use him in CF. May solidify as a hitter or may flash out.​
If I had to bet on the MI starters at this point next year I'd say Mayer at SS, Story at 2B, Grissom UT.
 

Rovin Romine

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If I had to bet on the MI starters at this point next year I'd say Mayer at SS, Story at 2B, Grissom UT.
Seems possible. But the error bars are pretty wide on any individual performance projections at this point. We'll know a lot more by September/October.

For the immediate future, I think it's Hamilton/Valdez. Perhaps not the best defensively, but if they hit as they have been, they'll be solid contributors.

I think they'll play Grissom heavily this year when he recovers and one of the starting spots (2b) will essentially be his to lose (this year and 2025.)

I think Romy's essentially a placeholder, as is Westbrook. I'm sure they'll be happy if either gets hot and sticks as the utility IF, but unless one has a kind of insane breakout, I don't think they plan around them for 2025. Likewise Rafaela will stay in CF if there's any choice about it.

The interesting question is what do they do for 2025 if both Hamilton and Valdez are solid contributors?

And that raises a kind of an interesting inverse outcome prospect if they're in contention this year. If they're in it, and Story is healthy and Mayer is tearing up AAA. . .I'm not sure you want either of them appearing this year. Last year Story showed he wasn't a "switch it back on" hitter - certainly not in this environment. And Mayer will need an adjustment period.

But if they're out of it this year - maybe you do want Story and Mayer to get some ABs. Maybe you start the clock a bit early on Mayer, but I'd rather he get adjustment ABs in a lost year than suffer growing pains in a contending season.
 

moondog80

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Seems possible. But the error bars are pretty wide on any individual performance projections at this point. We'll know a lot more by September/October.

For the immediate future, I think it's Hamilton/Valdez. Perhaps not the best defensively, but if they hit as they have been, they'll be solid contributors.

I think they'll play Grissom heavily this year when he recovers and one of the starting spots (2b) will essentially be his to lose (this year and 2025.)

I think Romy's essentially a placeholder, as is Westbrook. I'm sure they'll be happy if either gets hot and sticks as the utility IF, but unless one has a kind of insane breakout, I don't think they plan around them for 2025. Likewise Rafaela will stay in CF if there's any choice about it.

The interesting question is what do they do for 2025 if both Hamilton and Valdez are solid contributors?

And that raises a kind of an interesting inverse outcome prospect if they're in contention this year. If they're in it, and Story is healthy and Mayer is tearing up AAA. . .I'm not sure you want either of them appearing this year. Last year Story showed he wasn't a "switch it back on" hitter - certainly not in this environment. And Mayer will need an adjustment period.

But if they're out of it this year - maybe you do want Story and Mayer to get some ABs. Maybe you start the clock a bit early on Mayer, but I'd rather he get adjustment ABs in a lost year than suffer growing pains in a contending season.

Agree with most of this. The biggest upside of not contending (or fringe contending) is the freedom to let guys fail for a while. Jarren Duran needed it, for one. Grissom gets all the time he can handle this year. And if Hamiton and/or Valdez show they are for real, that's the proverbial good problem to have.

I think the problem with calling up Mayer this year is that as things are, you don't have to put him on the 40 man until next year (4 years after he signs). Makes it that much harder to get through the rule 5 draft. Do I have that right?
 

jon abbey

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Agree with most of this. The biggest upside of not contending (or fringe contending) is the freedom to let guys fail for a while. Jarren Duran needed it, for one. Grissom gets all the time he can handle this year. And if Hamiton and/or Valdez show they are for real, that's the proverbial good problem to have.

I think the problem with calling up Mayer this year is that as things are, you don't have to put him on the 40 man until next year (4 years after he signs). Makes it that much harder to get through the rule 5 draft. Do I have that right?
Also if he gets more than 130 ABs this year, he loses rookie status for next year and BOS loses a shot at an extra first round pick if he wins Rookie of the Year.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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I think the problem with calling up Mayer this year is that as things are, you don't have to put him on the 40 man until next year (4 years after he signs). Makes it that much harder to get through the rule 5 draft. Do I have that right?
Correct. Mayer doesn't need Rule 5 protection until December 2025. I think with him, if you're adding him before then, it's because you think he's ready to be a full time big leaguer. You don't add him as a short-term solution or just to get him a cup of coffee at the end of this season unless you are 100% sure he'll make the club next spring. And even if you do think he's on track for that (say 90% sure), there's no real harm in waiting until the end of spring training (or whenever you decide it's time for him to be in the majors) to make the transaction that adds him to the 26/40-man. That roster spot could be valuable to have available in December/January/February.
 

Cassvt2023

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Garrett Crochet is 2nd in the AL in K's. (1 behind Jack Flarety). Our Sox lineup tonight features Wong, O'Neill, Dalbec, Rafaela, a severely struggling Cooper, a rookie w/ less than 10 ML at bats in Westbrook, two LHH in Duran and Devers and Refsnyder. I''ll put the over/under on strikeouts at 13.5 for the game. Who's taking what?
 

Rovin Romine

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Agree with most of this. The biggest upside of not contending (or fringe contending) is the freedom to let guys fail for a while. Jarren Duran needed it, for one. Grissom gets all the time he can handle this year. And if Hamiton and/or Valdez show they are for real, that's the proverbial good problem to have.

I think the problem with calling up Mayer this year is that as things are, you don't have to put him on the 40 man until next year (4 years after he signs). Makes it that much harder to get through the rule 5 draft. Do I have that right?
Yep. It's a slim/speculative possibility to be sure, and depends on what they think their 2025 chances are. But 100 ABs may be something you want to front-load in some scenarios.
 

Yelling At Clouds

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Yorke, IMO, isn't going to be added. We've got at least five guys who can play second base, between Valdez, Grissom, Hamilton, Romy, and Ceddanne. Mayer and Trevor Story are in the mix there too, for next year. Everyone has 2 or more options, too, and frankly, I like them all better as prospects to be a solution at second base than I do Yorke.
Easier said than done, obviously, but I'm guessing they'll (continue to) try to trade Yorke instead of losing him for nothing, possibly as part of like a 4-for-1 kind of deal to help alleviate the 40-man crunch. I do think he'd get picked in the Rule 5 if left unprotected.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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But other teams have 40 man issues too, so a 4-1 deal seems pretty unlikely. How often are position players, especially those with a fairly low ceiling, taken and kept in the rule 5? He doesn’t fit the profile of guys usually selected.
 

Yelling At Clouds

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But other teams have 40 man issues too, so a 4-1 deal seems pretty unlikely. How often are position players, especially those with a fairly low ceiling, taken and kept in the rule 5? He doesn’t fit the profile of guys usually selected.
Not as frequently as pitchers - just two position players were taken last year, which seems typical (in 2022, the A's took Ryan Noda, who was a decent starting 1B for them last year - not so much this year, though). But without going through every team's 40-man situation, I could see a team like Washington taking a basically free shot on a former first round pick who has had some flashes of success in the minors.
 

Rovin Romine

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Not as frequently as pitchers - just two position players were taken last year, which seems typical (in 2022, the A's took Ryan Noda, who was a decent starting 1B for them last year - not so much this year, though). But without going through every team's 40-man situation, I could see a team like Washington taking a basically free shot on a former first round pick who has had some flashes of success in the minors.
Bridging off this with a gentle reminder that categorical speculation like this is absolutely fine. As is suggesting Player X has no future on the team and might be traded. We're here to take a look at the in-house options and how it all pieces together.

But this is not the place for anyone to lay out their favorite Yorkeian Fantasy.

(He tends to bring that out in folks.)
 

Yelling At Clouds

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Bridging off this with a gentle reminder that categorical speculation like this is absolutely fine. As is suggesting Player X has no future on the team and might be traded. We're here to take a look at the in-house options and how it all pieces together.

But this is not the place for anyone to lay out their favorite Yorkeian Fantasy.

(He tends to bring that out in folks.)
You know, I was going to say more, but I remembered which thread I was in!
 

simplicio

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I could see either Seattle or Colorado claiming Yorke. Both have negative production at 2B this year.

Seattle's Polanco experience is going poorly (plus he's now injured) and I don't see them picking up his option for '25. Dylan Moore is controlled next year and has acquitted himself well there, but can also play all over the field. Ryan Bliss and the rest of their prospects at the position are not demonstrating upside. Seems easy enough for them to carry Yorke and option Bliss, and Moore can play wherever if Nick can stick.

The Rockies have another year of Brendan Rogers, but he's never managed to be an average hitter and, like the M's, they really don't have anything in their pipeline.

(hope this isn't out of bounds for the thread, just saying I think there's a real risk of losing Yorke if they don't protect him).
 

YTF

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Let's talk about Garret Cooper for a moment. I think that it's fair to say that in the moment most of us saw the trade for Cooper as one that made sense. It seemed like a no brainier with his availability coinciding with the Casas injury. Some 5-6 weeks later it's pretty clear that this hasn't worked out as hoped and that Cooper seems to have little, if anything. to offer the team. Considering this AND the fact that the 40 man roster has no position players left to promote, is it time to cut Cooper loose and avail that 40 spot for better usage? If O'Neill finds himself back on the IL the Sox could really use another OF on the 40 man, especially if the team does move on from Cooper as RF Snyder would likely become the RH option at 1B.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Let's talk about Garret Cooper for a moment. I think that it's fair to say that in the moment most of us saw the trade for Cooper as one that made sense. It seemed like a no brainier with his availability coinciding with the Casas injury. Some 5-6 weeks later it's pretty clear that this hasn't worked out as hoped and that Cooper seems to have little, if anything. to offer the team. Considering this AND the fact that the 40 man roster has no position players left to promote, is it time to cut Cooper loose and avail that 40 spot for better usage? If O'Neill finds himself back on the IL the Sox could really use another OF on the 40 man, especially if the team does move on from Cooper as RF Snyder would likely become the RH option at 1B.
They're going to have to make a 40-man move if O'Neill needs to go back on the IL, and DFAing Cooper to clear room for a Contreras or someone like that makes some sense. The problem is doing that would still leave the roster short on healthy bodies.

Seems like a more likely plan if O'Neill goes on the IL again is shifting Mata to the 60-day IL to clear 40-man space for another outfielder. He's already been on the IL for 60 days so he could be still be activated as soon as he's ready (which may not be for a while still). They'd just need to make an additional move when that time comes.
 

YTF

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They're going to have to make a 40-man move if O'Neill needs to go back on the IL, and DFAing Cooper to clear room for a Contreras or someone like that makes some sense. The problem is doing that would still leave the roster short on healthy bodies.

Seems like a more likely plan if O'Neill goes on the IL again is shifting Mata to the 60-day IL to clear 40-man space for another outfielder. He's already been on the IL for 60 days so he could be still be activated as soon as he's ready (which may not be for a while still). They'd just need to make an additional move when that time comes.
Good that they still have a potential Mata 60 day at their disposal, I wasn't aware. So they could potentially shift Mata and DFA Cooper and add two healthy and hopefully productive bodies.
 

Rovin Romine

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Addition by subtraction by addition. Yoshida returns after a 2 game rehab - Cooper DFA'd.


***
This is a snapshot comparison from the opening day roster to today, not a complete record of ups and downs.
* is LHH, Bold is opening day roster, call-up replacements are indented, whether originally on the roster or not.

Catchers:
Wong
McGuire*

Infielders:
Triston Casas* (60 day IL, 4/21, left rib fracture)
Garrett Cooper (up 4/30, DFA 6/11)
Dominic Smith*​
Enmanuel Valdez* (optioned AAA 5/2, called up 5/29)​
Vaughn Grissom (10 day IL, 6/2, hamstring.) (prev: hamstring: delayed ST, up 5/3)
Jamie Westbrook​
Trevor Story (60 day IL, 4/6, shoulder, out for year)
David Hamilton*​
Rafael Devers* (shoulder and left knee issues -no IL-: 4/17-4/24)
Pablo Reyes (DFA 4/28)
Romy Gonzalez (10 day IL, 5/31, hamstring.) (prev: wrist sprain: IL 4/11-5/8)
Zach Short (up 5/1, DFA 5/8)
Bobby Dalbec (optioned AAA, 5/2, called up 6/2)​

Outfielders:
Masataka Yoshida* (prev: thumb jamb: 4/29-6/11)
Tyler O'Neill (prev: concussion: IL 4/16-4/23; hamstring: 5/26-6-4)
Rob Refsnyder (prev: toe, delayed ST, up 4/18)
Wilyer Abreu* (10 day IL - 6/3, sprained ankle)
Tyler Heineman: optioned 6/5
Jarren Duran*
Ceddanne Rafaela

Minors (40 man)
Tyler Heineman: catcher.​
MiL players of note (non-40):
Kavadas - 1B LHH (poor defender?, 3 true outcome hitter). As of 6/4, .955 OPS.​
Hickey - C/DH LHH (bat first player). As of 6/4, .695 OPS.​
Sogard - IF/OF SH. As of 6/4, .833 OPS.​
Meidroth - 3B/2B (adequate fielder at best, OPB/contact heavy). As of 6/4, .795 OPS. (.432 OBP).​
Conteras - OF LHH (probably not relevant to immediate needs, age 29 journeyman type). As of 6/4, .679 OPS. .812 in May.​

Notes:
Pablo Reyes DFA'd 4/29 for Garrett Cooper, outrighted to WOR 5/6, traded to Mets for cash, 5/25. OPS+ 28 for Sox.​
Ceddanne Rafaela moved from CF to SS 4/19, then back to CF with Hamilton hitting/fielding better.​
Zack Short acquired from Mets (DFA'd) for cash, 5/1, DFA'd 5/8 for Romy Gonzalez, traded to ATL for cash on 5/9.
Dominic Smith signed 5/1.​
Garrett Cooper signed 5/1, DFA'd 6/11 for Yoshida returning from the IL (thumb). OPS+ 119 for CHI, only 29 for Sox.​
Enmanuel Valdez was on the opening day roster. Optioned to AAA 5/2. Better fielding, poor hitting. Up again 5/29.​
Voodoo Dalbec was on opening day roster, optioned 4/8 for Romy Gonzalez, up 4/12 after Romy injury. Optioned 5/2 for Grissom. Up again 6/2 with Gonzalez/Grissom injuries.​
Jamie Westbrook was added to the 40-man on 6/2, when Whitlock was put on the 60-day IL.​
 

Brohamer of the Gods

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We could possibly have a glut of outfielders soon, who all happen to be among our better hitters. With Yoshida back and I assume exclusively DH, does Rafaela go back to SS with Hamilton to 2nd for now at least. I can even see trying Ref at 1B to get as many productive bats in the line up as possible.

Not this year, but if Teel develops into a true C1 I could see Wong occasionally starting at 1B to give Casas a day off here and there if Wong's bat continues to be worthy of getting him in the line up as frequently as possible.
 

RS2004foreever

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We could possibly have a glut of outfielders soon, who all happen to be among our better hitters. With Yoshida back and I assume exclusively DH, does Rafaela go back to SS with Hamilton to 2nd for now at least. I can even see trying Ref at 1B to get as many productive bats in the line up as possible.

Not this year, but if Teel develops into a true C1 I could see Wong occasionally starting at 1B to give Casas a day off here and there if Wong's bat continues to be worthy of getting him in the line up as frequently as possible.
Hamilton is showing he can hit - but he is not a shortstop.
I would move Raffy to short.
 

Rovin Romine

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Hamilton is showing he can hit - but he is not a shortstop.
I would move Raffy to short.
SSS with defensive stats, but if you go to fangraphs, you'll see Hamilton and Rafaela are equally bad at SS. Rafaela has more range but makes more errors. Rafaela is very very good in CF however.

I think this is where we defer to the coaching staff to pick the right player for the right role. My guess is that Hamilton will be the primary SS and given some more time to stabilize, with Rafaela remaining the primary CF and backing up Hamilton at SS.

One factor in this is O'Neill's tweaky knee. I can see him taking some DH ABs from Yoshida.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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As elite as he is defensively, Rafaela is also rocking a 595 ops. In a world where everyone is healthy, is he starting? I think given where the team is, that answer is yes, but likely necessitates a trade of O’Neill.
 

Brohamer of the Gods

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Yeah, I could see our "glut" of outfielders lasting about a week before someone goes down again. It is stunning to me that we can't find league average guys for 1B and 2B, but here we are. I don't know if Grissom will pan out, but this time let's make sure he is entirely healthy, regained weight, and gets a full ten days in Worcester before recalling him to Boston.
 

Fishy1

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With Hamilton and Rafaela not being great shakes at SS, Romy will definitely enter the SS equation. He's actually got the skill and steadiness to play the position, and he's an ex-prospect with plenty of pedigree who had his career derailed by injuries. He wasn't hitting great but his statcast numbers were fantastic in limited sample size. He has issues staying healthy but he'll get a shot when he returns, I would think.

I could also see them playing Yoshida in LF and Duran in center to protect O'Neill's knee.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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SSS with defensive stats, but if you go to fangraphs, you'll see Hamilton and Rafaela are equally bad at SS. Rafaela has more range but makes more errors. Rafaela is very very good in CF however.

I think this is where we defer to the coaching staff to pick the right player for the right role. My guess is that Hamilton will be the primary SS and given some more time to stabilize, with Rafaela remaining the primary CF and backing up Hamilton at SS.

One factor in this is O'Neill's tweaky knee. I can see him taking some DH ABs from Yoshida.
Perhaps in the small sample sizes this year Hamilton and Rafaela are equal but historically there's a lot more daylight between the two. Rafaela's best position may be CF but he's historically been a plus defender at short as well. Certainly better than the stats this season suggest. If the Red Sox want to put their best available defensive SS at the position, it has to be Rafaela. The only reason not to, IMO, is if he's needed in the OF. And if O'Neill, Abreu, Duran and Refsnyder are all healthy, they can afford to have Rafaela in the infield.
 

Rovin Romine

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Perhaps in the small sample sizes this year Hamilton and Rafaela are equal but historically there's a lot more daylight between the two. Rafaela's best position may be CF but he's historically been a plus defender at short as well. Certainly better than the stats this season suggest. If the Red Sox want to put their best available defensive SS at the position, it has to be Rafaela. The only reason not to, IMO, is if he's needed in the OF. And if O'Neill, Abreu, Duran and Refsnyder are all healthy, they can afford to have Rafaela in the infield.
I see the equation this way: currently Hamilton is emerging as a plus offensive player. Maybe not a great player, but at even mildly above league average, his bat (and speed) would theoretically play at SS or 2B. Meanwhile Rafaela is treading water offensively, and has much room to improve.

So it really comes down to whether Hamilton is capable of playing an average-ish defensive SS or not.
-If no (and if he can play an average 2B) then you clearly start Rafaela at SS and Hamilton at 2B.​
-If maybe (where we are now) then you see if Hamilton can mature into an average defensive SS.​
-If yes, you still have to weigh the loss of removing Rafaela from the OF against whatever defensive gain he'd have over an averageish Hamilton. (And while I have little doubt Rafaela is better than Hamilton at SS, the question really comes down to how much better he is.)​
I think this is slightly complicated by Valdez starting to hit. Valdez can only play 2B or DH (3B exp in the minors.) So if he's hitting, and if the DH spot is used to rest O'Neill or start Yoshida, there's no place to put Hamilton's bat but SS, as Valdez will be at 2B. Not every game, of course, but until Grissom returns, that would be the most sensible starting group.
 

Rovin Romine

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With Hamilton and Rafaela not being great shakes at SS, Romy will definitely enter the SS equation. He's actually got the skill and steadiness to play the position, and he's an ex-prospect with plenty of pedigree who had his career derailed by injuries.
Can anyone remind the thread (and me) how Romy is expected to grade out at SS?
 

Fishy1

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Can anyone remind the thread (and me) how Romy is expected to grade out at SS?
He's only played about 90 innings there in the big leagues, but he was touted as being exceptionally versatile coming up through the minor leagues. Vast majority of his time at MLB was at second base, because the White Sox had Tim Anderson at SS, who is obviously a maven.

But he was mostly a short stop in the minor leagues. Just 4 errors there in 200 innings in 2022. He only made 1 errors in 400 innings at second base in the majors.

He looked great at SS in limited time at the beginning of the year, as I remember it.

I'm most intrigued by the fact that he slashed his K rate in half this year. Obviously 40 PA isn't enough time to decide, but K rates do stabilize way faster than other parts of a batting profile.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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I see the equation this way: currently Hamilton is emerging as a plus offensive player. Maybe not a great player, but at even mildly above league average, his bat (and speed) would theoretically play at SS or 2B. Meanwhile Rafaela is treading water offensively, and has much room to improve.

So it really comes down to whether Hamilton is capable of playing an average-ish defensive SS or not.
-If no (and if he can play an average 2B) then you clearly start Rafaela at SS and Hamilton at 2B.​
-If maybe (where we are now) then you see if Hamilton can mature into an average defensive SS.​
-If yes, you still have to weigh the loss of removing Rafaela from the OF against whatever defensive gain he'd have over an averageish Hamilton. (And while I have little doubt Rafaela is better than Hamilton at SS, the question really comes down to how much better he is.)​
I think this is slightly complicated by Valdez starting to hit. Valdez can only play 2B or DH (3B exp in the minors.) So if he's hitting, and if the DH spot is used to rest O'Neill or start Yoshida, there's no place to put Hamilton's bat but SS, as Valdez will be at 2B. Not every game, of course, but until Grissom returns, that would be the most sensible starting group.
I guess I have very little faith that Hamilton can be average-ish at short, offensively or defensively. At best defensively I think he can be below average (call it a 4 on a scale of 1-10). More than anything else, it's his arm that's the problem. It's max effort for him to make a routine throw to first. Because of that, he rushes and botches other things that he could probably handle if he were to slow himself down a bit. For the time being, as long as he's putting up a 120 OPS+, he's tolerable out there. I don't think he's going to sustain that though, which is why I lean toward playing Rafaela there when available. Neither has a long term future at short though (for different reasons).

In the short term I lean toward your scenario where Hamilton could play an average 2B with Rafaela at short. The complicating factor there is Valdez seems to be figuring it out and would be a superior bat and an equal defender to Hamilton at 2B. I guess the bottom line for me is I think Hamilton's the flash in the pan who won't sustain things. Ride him while he's hot I suppose, but it won't last.
 

Brohamer of the Gods

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I see the equation this way: currently Hamilton is emerging as a plus offensive player. Maybe not a great player, but at even mildly above league average, his bat (and speed) would theoretically play at SS or 2B. Meanwhile Rafaela is treading water offensively, and has much room to improve.

So it really comes down to whether Hamilton is capable of playing an average-ish defensive SS or not.
-If no (and if he can play an average 2B) then you clearly start Rafaela at SS and Hamilton at 2B.​
-If maybe (where we are now) then you see if Hamilton can mature into an average defensive SS.​
-If yes, you still have to weigh the loss of removing Rafaela from the OF against whatever defensive gain he'd have over an averageish Hamilton. (And while I have little doubt Rafaela is better than Hamilton at SS, the question really comes down to how much better he is.)​
I think this is slightly complicated by Valdez starting to hit. Valdez can only play 2B or DH (3B exp in the minors.) So if he's hitting, and if the DH spot is used to rest O'Neill or start Yoshida, there's no place to put Hamilton's bat but SS, as Valdez will be at 2B. Not every game, of course, but until Grissom returns, that would be the most sensible starting group.
You also have to factor in getting another bat into the line up that is better than Valdez. Who has been hitting better, but not great. I would much prefer any of the outfielders hitting than Valdez
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Comparing Rafaela to Hamilton at SS is crazy. Errors, Schmerrors!!! Yes, they do stink... but Rafaela is getting and will get to hits way outside of Hamilton's range. Rafaela's errors are mostly mental and he'll clearly overcome those. Hamilton doesn't have nearly the range. So.... he grades out better on "errors" (really...... errors? I guess... .we've had discussions about Rafaela's RBI's recently, so error are being discussed again?) but won't have nearly the amount of hits that could even become an error.
 

Rovin Romine

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Comparing Rafaela to Hamilton at SS is crazy. Errors, Schmerrors!!! Yes, they do stink... but Rafaela is getting and will get to hits way outside of Hamilton's range. Rafaela's errors are mostly mental and he'll clearly overcome those. Hamilton doesn't have nearly the range. So.... he grades out better on "errors" (really...... errors? I guess... .we've had discussions about Rafaela's RBI's recently, so error are being discussed again?) but won't have nearly the amount of hits that could even become an error.
Even with the SSS caveat, I was surprised to see how close they are at SS. Far closer than I expected:

84077

84076

84075



I guess I have very little faith that Hamilton can be average-ish at short, offensively or defensively. At best defensively I think he can be below average (call it a 4 on a scale of 1-10). More than anything else, it's his arm that's the problem. It's max effort for him to make a routine throw to first. Because of that, he rushes and botches other things that he could probably handle if he were to slow himself down a bit. For the time being, as long as he's putting up a 120 OPS+, he's tolerable out there. I don't think he's going to sustain that though, which is why I lean toward playing Rafaela there when available.
I don't disagree with what you've said, but I still think much of this comes down to what the coaches think they can do with Hamilton. We've seen Duran and Valdez drastically improve aspects of their defense, so who knows? To my eye, Hamilton often overcompensates on his throws, often where a more smoothly/quickly released but less effortful throw would do the job.
 

Fishy1

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For what it's worth, Romy appears to have altered his stance from when he was in Chicago. He used to be in more of a crouch with an open stance. He's eliminated that in favor of a straight up-and-down stance with feet squared.

Chicago Romy


Red Sox Romy

Seems to mirror what they did with Wong, who was more open-stanced last year (much of the time, anyways), and had a toe tap, and is now more straight-up and has eliminated the toe tap.And both guys cut their K rates dramatically so far this year. (Romy was only at 16% K's in AAA this year, too, after sitting at 25% or higher for years. Again, small sample sizes, but K rates do stabilize very quickly).

Something to watch, anyway. He's got options, like Valdez, Grissom, and Hamilton, which allows the Cora and the FO to experiment with these guys a little.
 

simplicio

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He's also logged innings everywhere but catcher. A roster with him and Rafaela together (and healthy) has an extraordinary amount of flexibility.
 

Fishy1

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He's also logged innings everywhere but catcher. A roster with him and Rafaela together (and healthy) has an extraordinary amount of flexibility.
Yeah, it's an interesting group. Nobody is playing great on both sides of the ball, and the one guy who is lighting it up on offense is Hamilton... who's basically the last guy I would have expected.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Even with the SSS caveat, I was surprised to see how close they are at SS. Far closer than I expected:

View attachment 84077

View attachment 84076

View attachment 84075





I don't disagree with what you've said, but I still think much of this comes down to what the coaches think they can do with Hamilton. We've seen Duran and Valdez drastically improve aspects of their defense, so who knows? To my eye, Hamilton often overcompensates on his throws, often where a more smoothly/quickly released but less effortful throw would do the job.
There's no way in hell that Rafaela has worse range (UZR) than Hamilton. I really can't stand these defensive stats... I know... we all like them when they support what we see and hate them when they don't. But just no. Across the board. There's not a human alive that watches Hamilton play SS and then watches Rafaela and sees Rafaela as the inferior SS (especially on "range").
 

Rovin Romine

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There's no way in hell that Rafaela has worse range (UZR) than Hamilton. I really can't stand these defensive stats... I know... we all like them when they support what we see and hate them when they don't. But just no. Across the board. There's not a human alive that watches Hamilton play SS and then watches Rafaela and sees Rafaela as the inferior SS (especially on "range").
It's a really small sample size, and it does not agree with my subjective impression either.

That said, if the players were really night and day at the position, you'd expect there to be a greater difference in throwing errors, fielding errors, number of assists, number of DPs turned, conversions, etc.

One thing I think we're forgetting is that Hamilton is fast - faster than Rafaela in terms of foot-speed. Another is that (AFAIK) first-step and positioning mean a lot. And those are coachable things. It won't fix Hamilton's arm issue, but could minimize it.
 

SirPsychoSquints

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There's no way in hell that Rafaela has worse range (UZR) than Hamilton. I really can't stand these defensive stats... I know... we all like them when they support what we see and hate them when they don't. But just no. Across the board. There's not a human alive that watches Hamilton play SS and then watches Rafaela and sees Rafaela as the inferior SS (especially on "range").
But UZR isn't just range, it's converting balls in your zone into outs. Errors will impact your UZR, too.

Edit: You can even see the Range portion of UZR (RngR) shows Rafeala as stronger than Hamilton.
 

Sin Duda

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Wow! The Sox pounded the Yanks pitchers right past 3.00 ERA. They had been shutting in the 2.50-2.75 level for weeks. They're now at 3.02. And a snapshot in time of today's starting lineup has an average of about .780 OPS, which would lead MLB. I know a couple guys are due for regression, but Casas and Abreu returning will certainly help.
 

Rovin Romine

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Romy returns. Westbrook back to the WOR.


***
This is a snapshot comparison from the opening day roster to today, not a complete record of ups and downs.
* is LHH, Bold is opening day roster, call-up replacements are indented, whether originally on the roster or not.

Catchers:
Wong
McGuire*

Infielders:
Triston Casas* (60 day IL, 4/21, left rib fracture)
Garrett Cooper (up 4/30, DFA 6/11)
Dominic Smith*​
Enmanuel Valdez* (optioned AAA 5/2, called up 5/29)​
Vaughn Grissom (10 day IL, 6/2, hamstring.) (prev: hamstring: delayed ST, up 5/3)
Jamie Westbrook (optioned to AAA 6/17)
Trevor Story (60 day IL, 4/6, shoulder, out for year)
David Hamilton*​
Rafael Devers* (shoulder and left knee issues -no IL-: 4/17-4/24)
Pablo Reyes (DFA 4/28)
Romy Gonzalez (prev: wrist sprain: IL 4/11-5/8, hamstring: 5/13-6/17.)​
Zach Short (up 5/1, DFA 5/8)
Bobby Dalbec (optioned AAA, 5/2, called up 6/2)​

Outfielders:
Masataka Yoshida* (prev: thumb jamb: 4/29-6/11)
Tyler O'Neill (prev: concussion: IL 4/16-4/23; hamstring: 5/26-6-4)
Rob Refsnyder (prev: toe, delayed ST, up 4/18)
Wilyer Abreu* (10 day IL - 6/3, sprained ankle)
Tyler Heineman: optioned 6/5
Jarren Duran*
Ceddanne Rafaela

Minors (40 man)
Tyler Heineman: catcher.​
Jamie Westbrook: 2B​
MiL players of note (non-40):
Kavadas - 1B LHH (poor defender?, 3 true outcome hitter). As of 6/4, .955 OPS.​
Hickey - C/DH LHH (bat first player). As of 6/4, .695 OPS.​
Sogard - IF/OF SH. As of 6/4, .833 OPS.​
Meidroth - 3B/2B (adequate fielder at best, OPB/contact heavy). As of 6/4, .795 OPS. (.432 OBP).​
Conteras - OF LHH (probably not relevant to immediate needs, age 29 journeyman type). As of 6/4, .679 OPS. .812 in May.​

Notes:
Pablo Reyes DFA'd 4/29 for Garrett Cooper, outrighted to WOR 5/6, traded to Mets for cash, 5/25. OPS+ 28 for Sox.​
Ceddanne Rafaela moved from CF to SS 4/19, then back to CF with Hamilton hitting/fielding better.​
Zack Short acquired from Mets (DFA'd) for cash, 5/1, DFA'd 5/8 for Romy Gonzalez, traded to ATL for cash on 5/9.
Dominic Smith signed 5/1.​
Garrett Cooper signed 5/1, DFA'd 6/11 for Yoshida returning from the IL (thumb). OPS+ 119 for CHI, only 29 for Sox.​
Enmanuel Valdez was on the opening day roster. Optioned to AAA 5/2. Better fielding, poor hitting. Up again 5/29.​
Voodoo Dalbec was on opening day roster, optioned 4/8 for Romy Gonzalez, up 4/12 after Romy injury. Optioned 5/2 for Grissom. Up again 6/2 with Gonzalez/Grissom injuries.​
Jamie Westbrook was added to the 40-man on 6/2, when Whitlock was put on the 60-day IL, up from 6/2 to 6/17.​
 
Last edited:

Bosoxman2004

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It appears likely that this weekend could be the first time that all of the OF/DH candidates are healthy at the same time (Duran, Rafaela, O'Neill, Abreu, Refsnyder & Yoshida). It'll be interested to see what they do with all of these options available.

Here are two ways I could see them utilizing them:

1. Duran in left, Rafaela in center, Abreu in right, Hamilton at SS, Valdez at 2b, Smith/Refsnyder at 1b, O'Neill/Yoshida at DH
2. O'Neill in left, Duran in center, Abreu in right, Rafaela at SS, Hamilton at 2b, Smith/Refsnyder at 1B, Yoshida/Refsnyder at DH

Refsnyder and O'Neill are both RHH OFers and both are having VERY good seasons thus far. Utilizing one or both of them at 1B seems like it would be the best way to upgrade the team as currently constituted thus removing Dalbec from the equation again.

It would seem to me that removing Rafaela from CF would hurt the team defensively. I think we might end up with 1 VERY expensive bench player in Yoshida going forward.

What do y'all think are the best ways to maximize the roster if everyone mentioned is healthy?