2024 Red Sox Spring Training

HfxBob

New Member
Nov 13, 2005
602
You never know quite what to take at face value with free agents still looming, but Breslow is sounding more and more OK with just who they have.

“Over the last couple of weeks, I do think it’s become evident that there are a number of guys that we have in camp that appear ready to take a step forward,” chief baseball officer Craig Breslow said. “And I think that’s a credit to the work that they’ve done and a credit to the pitching infrastructure and the work that Andrew (Bailey) has done. We’ve also maintained that if there was an opportunity to improve the team through some external acquisition that we needed to be responsible and try to track that down as well.”

https://theathletic.com/5333754/2024/03/11/red-sox-pitcher-lucas-giolito-surgery/
Seems to me he covered all the bases as per usual LOL

Steps forward are great, but I expect they were counting on Giolito for 170-180 innings. An acquisition has to be coming.
 

dynomite

Member
SoSH Member
Today's lineup, a bit of a shuffle in the middle:

LF Duran L
3B Devers L
SS Story R
DH Masataka L
RF O'Neil R
1B Casas L
CF Rafaela R
2B Valdez L
CWong R

Bello on the mound
Not concerned with them experimenting for various reasons today. I will say I don't understand any regular season lineup where the guy with the highest OPS on the team in '23 (Casas at .856) bats later than 4th, and in particular, after Yoshida (.783) and O'Neill (.776 career) unless they're leading off. Ultimately I want as many ABs as possible for Devers and Casas.
 

Rovin Romine

Johnny Rico
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
24,332
Miami (oh, Miami!)
Not concerned with them experimenting for various reasons today. I will say I don't understand any regular season lineup where the guy with the highest OPS on the team in '23 (Casas at .856) bats later than 4th, and in particular, after Yoshida (.783) and O'Neill (.776 career) unless they're leading off. Ultimately I want as many ABs as possible for Devers and Casas.
I'm not super worried about their bats. I want as many live pitching fielding innings for those two as possible.

For ABs v. live ML pitching, the rookies (Abreu/Grissom) and Story really need to log early ABs against the ML starters who are stretching out in ST. Yoshida needs to get back on track as well, but Story has the far bigger recent history where he wasn't productively swinging the bat.
 

dynomite

Member
SoSH Member
I'm not super worried about their bats. I want as many live pitching fielding innings for those two as possible.

For ABs v. live ML pitching, the rookies (Abreu/Grissom) and Story really need to log early ABs against the ML starters who are stretching out in ST. Yoshida needs to get back on track as well, but Story has the far bigger recent history where he wasn't productively swinging the bat.
Totally, I'm sure there's a reason why they're adjusting the lineup today. I just mean once the real games start I hope we don't see Yoshida batting in front of Casas routinely.
 

Max Power

thai good. you like shirt?
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
7,987
Boston, MA
I don't think there's a way to both optimize the lineup and not string too many lefties in a row. The three best hitters on the team are probably Devers, Yoshida, and Casas, all lefties. The guy you want to hit leadoff is Duran, another lefty. It's not ideal, Story and O'Neill are going to have to hit higher in the lineup than their lines would suggest.
 

sezwho

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
1,986
Isle of Plum
I'm not super worried about their bats. I want as many live pitching fielding innings for those two as possible.

For ABs v. live ML pitching, the rookies (Abreu/Grissom) and Story really need to log early ABs against the ML starters who are stretching out in ST. Yoshida needs to get back on track as well, but Story has the far bigger recent history where he wasn't productively swinging the bat.
Nice, this makes sense. Was trying to figure out why they might be doing that.
 

Cassvt2023

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 17, 2023
533
Rafaela with another HR today, a two run shot. How can you not have him in the opening day lineup, starting in CF and hitting in the 7-9 spot?
 

johnlos

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 22, 2014
250
Rafaela with another HR today, a two run shot. How can you not have him in the opening day lineup, starting in CF and hitting in the 7-9 spot?
79346

I think it's happening! Especially since we never signed a RH outfielder. Abreu can wait for the inevitable O'Neill injury at AAA.

79347

Stats don't account for the 3rd HR today. I like the BBs from Abreu, but considering his defense CR just has to show competency with the bat for the job to be his.
 

Cassvt2023

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 17, 2023
533
View attachment 79346

I think it's happening! Especially since we never signed a RH outfielder. Abreu can wait for the inevitable O'Neill injury at AAA.

View attachment 79347

Stats don't account for the 3rd HR today. I like the BBs from Abreu, but considering his defense CR just has to show competency with the bat for the job to be his.
Both Speier and Pete Abe have alluded to what I have been saying on here for weeks now in their recent columns. Refsnyder's roster spot may be in jeopardy.
 

bernie carb 33

New Member
Feb 2, 2024
68
View attachment 79346

I think it's happening! Especially since we never signed a RH outfielder. Abreu can wait for the inevitable O'Neill injury at AAA.

View attachment 79347

Stats don't account for the 3rd HR today. I like the BBs from Abreu, but considering his defense CR just has to show competency with the bat for the job to be his.
Abreu's 46% K rate is striking, lol. But he'll have to improve at some point.
 

Yo La Tengo

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 21, 2005
921
Both Speier and Pete Abe have alluded to what I have been saying on here for weeks now in their recent columns. Refsnyder's roster spot may be in jeopardy.
Abreu's 46% K rate is striking, lol. But he'll have to improve at some point.
Abreu's 13 Ks in 28 ABs this spring makes me wonder why anyone is looking to ditch Refsnyder when Abreu can be sent down to AAA and, hopefully, get on track. O'Neill, Rafaela, and Refsnyder against lefties helps even out the line-up as well.
 

Rovin Romine

Johnny Rico
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
24,332
Miami (oh, Miami!)
Refsnyder's roster spot may be in jeopardy.
Not sure why?

Catchers:
McGuire LHH
Wong

Infielders:
Triston Casas LHH
Rafael Devers LHH
Trevor Story
Vaughn Grissom (Valdez interim)
Pablo Reyes (Bench, plays all IF positions)
Note: Rafaela (plays SS)
Note: Refsnyder (plays 1B?)


Outfielders:
Masataka Yoshida LHH
Tyler O'Neill
Wilyer Abreu LHH
Jarren Duran LHH
Rob Refsnyder
Ceddanne Rafaela

Abreu's 13 Ks in 28 ABs this spring makes me wonder why anyone is looking to ditch Refsnyder when Abreu can be sent down to AAA and, hopefully, get on track. O'Neill, Rafaela, and Refsnyder against lefties helps even out the line-up as well.
Yep.
 

nvalvo

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 16, 2005
21,668
Rogers Park
Yeah, I would see the competition as between Abreu and Rafaela for a starting OF spot, not between Rafaela and Refsnyder for a RH bench OF spot. Both of those guys need everyday PAs. Whoever starts in AAA is the first man up for an injury.

So it would either be:

L Duran LF/CF
R Rafaela CF/RF/SS
R O'Neill RF/LF/CF
R Refsnyder LF/RF/CF
L Yoshida DH/LF

or

L Duran CF/LF
R O'Neill LF/RF/CF
L Abreu RF/CF
R Refsnyder LF/RF/CF
L Yoshida DH/LF
 

Petagine in a Bottle

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 13, 2021
12,256
All of this is compelling evidence that depth matters- we were worried about blocking guys a week ago and now we are an injury away from Dalton Guthrie making the team.
 

Cassvt2023

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 17, 2023
533
Cause it's Cassvt, firing Refsnyder is their shtick.
I guess I’m just not a huge fan of a 32 yr old OF with .8 career WAR and a .678 career OPS who plays marginal defense and hit 1 HR in over 200 at bats last season taking a roster spot on a team in transition that needs to see what they have with younger guys with much higher upside. Yes, he hits LHP well.other than being a good guy in the clubhouse, that’s really his only calling card.
 

Rovin Romine

Johnny Rico
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
24,332
Miami (oh, Miami!)
I guess I’m just not a huge fan of a 32 yr old OF with .8 career WAR and a .678 career OPS who plays marginal defense and hit 1 HR in over 200 at bats last season taking a roster spot on a team in transition that needs to see what they have with younger guys with much higher upside. Yes, he hits LHP well.other than being a good guy in the clubhouse, that’s really his only calling card.
When he's actually blocking someone in AAA, maybe this is a point. Not really until then though.
 

Cassvt2023

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 17, 2023
533
J.D. Davis rakes LHP as well, has more power, more positional versatility, and by all accounts is a great clubhouse veteran. What would he cost?
 

nvalvo

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 16, 2005
21,668
Rogers Park
J.D. Davis rakes LHP as well, has more power, more positional versatility, and by all accounts is a great clubhouse veteran. What would he cost?
Probably not a ton, but he’ll likely want a role with more reliable PA than we can offer and now he gets to pick.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 11, 2007
6,409
I guess I’m just not a huge fan of a 32 yr old OF with .8 career WAR and a .678 career OPS who plays marginal defense and hit 1 HR in over 200 at bats last season taking a roster spot on a team in transition that needs to see what they have with younger guys with much higher upside. Yes, he hits LHP well.other than being a good guy in the clubhouse, that’s really his only calling card.
I'm sure you're aware that there's no reason why he couldn't be optimally platooned to only give other OF'ers a rest against LHP. He seems to be okay in that role (and is paid pretty well for that) and there's not many players that would be comfortable with that. That said, it's looking like he'll hit the DL and likely start in AAA with both Rafaela and Abreu making the ML team. I think pretty much everyone is okay with that except for those that are more interested in conserving Rafaela's service time (which would be a real dick move by the team and would hurt their long term relationship IMO).
Rafaela is really looking like he's a budding star. I know there's metrics out there that show he lacks plate discipline but he's also shown that he can pull back against shitty outside pitches and what's the point of taking a strike just to take a strike? If he can make good contact when the ball is in the zone, great. If he can make good contact with borderline slightly outside pitches (Vlad Sr. being the ideal version of this) that's fine. I don't even have to squint to see him producing a SLG heavy .750 OPS with 20HR's. Having his Plus Defense in CF, moving Duran to LF (improvement over last year's LF) greatly improves the team. If he gets sent down I'll be really disappointed in Breslow and Cora.
 

8slim

has trust issues
SoSH Member
Nov 6, 2001
24,895
Unreal America
I guess I’m just not a huge fan of a 32 yr old OF with .8 career WAR and a .678 career OPS who plays marginal defense and hit 1 HR in over 200 at bats last season taking a roster spot on a team in transition that needs to see what they have with younger guys with much higher upside. Yes, he hits LHP well.other than being a good guy in the clubhouse, that’s really his only calling card.
I'm with ya. He had a nice stretch a couple seasons ago, which was a total outlier in his career. Since then he's been utterly mediocre, if not below average. If the team was loaded with long-tenure talent in the OF I could see keeping him around. But we decidedly don't have that. I guess it's better to have him on the team than a young AAAA player who's scuffling, but I'd prefer to see his ABs as limited as possible.
 

simplicio

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 11, 2012
5,130
I'm with ya. He had a nice stretch a couple seasons ago, which was a total outlier in his career. Since then he's been utterly mediocre, if not below average. If the team was loaded with long-tenure talent in the OF I could see keeping him around. But we decidedly don't have that. I guess it's better to have him on the team than a young AAAA player who's scuffling, but I'd prefer to see his ABs as limited as possible.
He hasn't been mediocre though, he was just misused last year, largely because of Duran & Duvall's injuries + Yoshida only fielding 80 something games left him hitting against too much RHP. He rakes as a platoon bat, that's his value. Allegedly he's also been working at first, which is another position of need.

Citing his career numbers as an indicator of his current value is either dumb or intentionally misleading; he was a bad journeyman player who couldn't figure it out and got shuffled all over the field in his 20s, then found a way to be an effective platoon guy at 30. His WRC+ vs LHP since 2021: 123, 177, 133.

I agree about wanting to limit his ABs; I don't ever want him hitting vs righties. But he can play the outfield and potentially first, and we have a guy in Abreu who looks very much like he needs a platoon partner, and I'm never going to be sad to see Refsnyder vs LHP.
 

joe dokes

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
30,515
J.D. Davis rakes LHP as well, has more power, more positional versatility, and by all accounts is a great clubhouse veteran. What would he cost?
Davis, who seems to be a defensive butcher everywhere, has played mostly 3B, with just enough LF and 1B to say (skill nothwithstanding) "he can probably play there."
Refsnyder can play all 3 OF positions (and has played them all better defensively than Davis has played anywhere.) He also has played as many MLB innings at both1B and 2B (though not in a while) as Davis has played at 1B. In terms of "positional versatility," it seems to be a wash *at best*.
 
Last edited:

Max Power

thai good. you like shirt?
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
7,987
Boston, MA
He hasn't been mediocre though, he was just misused last year, largely because of Duran & Duvall's injuries + Yoshida only fielding 80 something games left him hitting against too much RHP. He rakes as a platoon bat, that's his value. Allegedly he's also been working at first, which is another position of need.

Citing his career numbers as an indicator of his current value is either dumb or intentionally misleading; he was a bad journeyman player who couldn't figure it out and got shuffled all over the field in his 20s, then found a way to be an effective platoon guy at 30. His WRC+ vs LHP since 2021: 123, 177, 133.

I agree about wanting to limit his ABs; I don't ever want him hitting vs righties. But he can play the outfield and potentially first, and we have a guy in Abreu who looks very much like he needs a platoon partner, and I'm never going to be sad to see Refsnyder vs LHP.
Right. And it's a role you'd never want a young player that you think can blossom into a starter to take. Rafaela should get daily at bats, either at the major league or minor league level. A bench role with major league club would do more harm than good for him.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 11, 2007
6,409
Right. And it's a role you'd never want a young player that you think can blossom into a starter to take. Rafaela should get daily at bats, either at the major league or minor league level. A bench role with major league club would do more harm than good for him.
I don't think he was arguing to sit Rafaela vs lefties over RFsnyder as much as Abreu.... but I'd also rather give Abreu as much AB's as possible. I don't think you should make calls on platoon abilities for players based off a career in the ML's of less than 3 years. They may struggle, but long term they may adapt and having a competent guy is fine.
It's a moot point though... RFsnyder isn't going to be on the 26 man to start the season. But if he was, I wouldn't "platoon partner" him, as much as cycle him through all the other guys to give them a each a break. But NEVER against a RHP.
 

simplicio

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 11, 2012
5,130
I don't think he was arguing to sit Rafaela vs lefties over RFsnyder as much as Abreu.... but I'd also rather give Abreu as much AB's as possible. I don't think you should make calls on platoon abilities for players based off a career in the ML's of less than 3 years. They may struggle, but long term they may adapt and having a competent guy is fine.
Abreu's split has been getting more pronounced in the minors over the last three years though. From only a 22 point difference in OPS in 2021 to 180 points last year.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 11, 2007
6,409
Abreu's split has been getting more pronounced in the minors over the last three years though. From only a 22 point difference in OPS in 2021 to 180 points last year.
I still don't like making a call on a guy until they've had 3 years experience. If Abreu has shown that weakness, then he's a guy you move in slowly against LHP rather than just pulling the plug on him without even half a season of AB's under his belt. Protect him against the top guys, be willing to PH for him after the 5th inning but far too soon despite his mL splits.
 

chawson

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
4,675
Davis, who seems to be a defensive butcher everywhere, has played mostly 3B, with just enough LF and 1B to say (skill nothwithstanding) "he can probably play there."
Refsnyder can play all 3 OF positions (and has played them all better defensively than Davis has played anywhere.) He also has played as many MLB innings at both1B and 2B (though not in a while) as Davis has played at 1B. In terms of "positional versatility," it seems to be a wash *at best*.
This was true until last year, FWIW, when he somehow made dramatic improvements at 3B (which were supported by defensive metrics like OAA).
 

joe dokes

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
30,515
This was true until last year, FWIW, when he somehow made dramatic improvements at 3B (which were supported by defensive metrics like OAA).
Maybe. (I think. Evaluating defensive stats is not my skill).
As of that story in May 2023 Statcast had him at 4 OAA. He ended up at 5 for the season. (I can't say I know what that means exactly. He got hot early?)
In 2023, Fangraphs had him dead last in DRS.

It's not impossible that he got better. But even if he has, it's at a position he has no shot at playing in Boston. This began as something of a comparison between Davis and Refsnyder, which I narrowed to defense alone, based on the ""similar positional flexibility" suggestion. At least as to that single issue, I'm not seeing it, even if he is a better 3Bman than he used to be.
 

Ale Xander

Hamilton
SoSH Member
Oct 31, 2013
73,088
So what are we looking at?
Duran at Worcester, Grissom on IL, and bench of Valdez (until VG is ready), Dalbec, McGuire and Refsnyder?
OF of Abreu Rafaela O’Neill DH Masa
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 11, 2007
6,409
So what are we looking at?
Duran at Worcester, Grissom on IL, and bench of Valdez (until VG is ready), Dalbec, McGuire and Refsnyder?
OF of Abreu Rafaela O’Neill DH Masa
Wha?
There’s no way Duran starts in AAA.
Refsnyder has a broken toe and is likely out 3 weeks.

Unless something happens I’m guessing opening day will be:
RF- Abreu/Oneill
CF- Rafaela
LF- Duran
DH- Yoshida
Devers, Story, Valdez, Casas across the infield
Wong at C

Reyes, Dalbec, McGuire
 

Cassvt2023

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 17, 2023
533
Wha?
There’s no way Duran starts in AAA.
Refsnyder has a broken toe and is likely out 3 weeks.

Unless something happens I’m guessing opening day will be:
RF- Abreu/Oneill
CF- Rafaela
LF- Duran
DH- Yoshida
Devers, Story, Valdez, Casas across the infield
Wong at C

Reyes, Dalbec, McGuire
At this point, I wouldn’t discount Romy Gonzalez making the opening day roster, especially now that RR is out for the first few weeks. Lots of positional versatility, good speed, which helps in this age, and it seems like he is getting a long look in ST.
 

Cassvt2023

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 17, 2023
533
…and Duran starting season at AAA is one of the silliest things I’ve read here in a long time. Cora has basically said that if he’s not traded that he is the lead off hitter.
 

nvalvo

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 16, 2005
21,668
Rogers Park
At this point, I wouldn’t discount Romy Gonzalez making the opening day roster, especially now that RR is out for the first few weeks. Lots of positional versatility, good speed, which helps in this age, and it seems like he is getting a long look in ST.
I am a booster. His big league time (239 PA of .600 OPS in parts of three seasons with CWS; 86 K to 5 BB) has been terrible, but he was hurt a fair amount, notably with a shoulder injury. If he's actually healthy, his minor league track record was solid: he was a .250/.350/.450 type with much more manageable K/BB numbers (~25%/~10%), although he lost a season to the pandemic so he was a touch old at most levels. He plays everywhere: at least 100 professional innings at every non-battery position. The White Sox lost him to a 40-man squeeze, but their loss was our gain: he has two options remaining!

With that massive caveat — IF HE'S ACTUALLY HEALTHY — I have him over Dalbec, Hamilton, Reyes, and maybe even Refsnyder on my personal Red Sox position player 40-man depth chart. Feels Brock Holt-y to me: no real a carrying tool, but the kind of all-around competence and flexibility you like to see in a bench player.
 

bernie carb 33

New Member
Feb 2, 2024
68
W/R/T Romy Gonzalez and the OD roster, is Romy out of options? He probably has options since he was claimed off waivers. I'm thinking CJ Cron making the ODR for a power bat/ platoon at 1b.
 

simplicio

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 11, 2012
5,130
Fangraphs displays player options. The post directly above yours also discusses Romy's options, with an exclamation mark.
 

Rovin Romine

Johnny Rico
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
24,332
Miami (oh, Miami!)
I am a booster. His big league time (239 PA of .600 OPS in parts of three seasons with CWS; 86 K to 5 BB) has been terrible, but he was hurt a fair amount, notably with a shoulder injury. If he's actually healthy, his minor league track record was solid: he was a .250/.350/.450 type with much more manageable K/BB numbers (~25%/~10%), although he lost a season to the pandemic so he was a touch old at most levels. He plays everywhere: at least 100 professional innings at every non-battery position. The White Sox lost him to a 40-man squeeze, but their loss was our gain: he has two options remaining!

With that massive caveat — IF HE'S ACTUALLY HEALTHY — I have him over Dalbec, Hamilton, Reyes, and maybe even Refsnyder on my personal Red Sox position player 40-man depth chart. Feels Brock Holt-y to me: no real a carrying tool, but the kind of all-around competence and flexibility you like to see in a bench player.
He's intriguing if he can hit anywhere close to average at the ML level, and an absolute keeper if he's very close to average. However, his MiL/ML batting records don't inspire me to wish for 300ABs out of the gate "to see if he can't figure things out." But that's mostly because I think we have a dark horse shot this year, even with plenty of development time for high-upside but untested players (Grissom/Abreu/Rafaela - Duran to an extent).

If we're clearly out of it at some point, sure, bring him up with an eye toward him being the 2025 utility man. Or if he's called up as the 26th man to start the season and gets hot with the bat, you'd obviously just keep him up while he's doing that.

But no more Cora marginal-player scrappy infielder "we've got to get him at bats because we believe he'll start hitting" bullshit. It's like Jimy Williams come again.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 13, 2021
12,256
Seems to me like Romy stands a decent chance to make the roster if they plan on starting Reyes at 2b and want a more defensive minded backup infielder. If they start Valdez, then I don’t see how Romy could make it. Even if he makes the team, though, he seems likely to go down when Grissom is back.
 

Rovin Romine

Johnny Rico
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
24,332
Miami (oh, Miami!)
Seems to me like Romy stands a decent chance to make the roster if they plan on starting Reyes at 2b and want a more defensive minded backup infielder. If they start Valdez, then I don’t see how Romy could make it. Even if he makes the team, though, he seems likely to go down when Grissom is back.
I could see the Reyes/Romy combo if they believe Valdez hasn't made any defensive strides or has backtracked. But I think they start with Valdez in Grissom's spot, as Valdez is first down on the depth chart and has the potential to be a ML regular with average-ish defense.
 

KillerBs

New Member
Nov 16, 2006
943
If they decide they just cant stomach Enmanuel's glove, I was thinking Hamilton (or even Sogard?) would be a more likely option to platoon with Reyes at 2b. I would prefer they just run with Valdez at 2b vs RHPers until Grissom is ready. Cant really see a role for Romy G.

As for the 13th bat, I can't see how it is not still Dalbec v. Cron.