Benintendi to Royals for Franchy Cordero, Mets RHP prospect Josh Winckowski, and 3 PTBNLs

Minneapolis Millers

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“We have frameworks in place with the clubs as to how and when we’re going to do that,” Bloom said. “There’s not names of the players we’re embargoing right now.”

With regard to the PTBNLs, I'm interested how this will work. If the Sox don't have a list of potential names, will the Royals/Mets get to list X number of untouchable players and then the Sox can pick?
I think “embargoed” here means locked in - guaranteed that an agreed upon list of players will all be there to choose from. Bloom is saying that’s not the case. Instead, I think they have a list of players from which Bloom can pick, but guys whom KC and the Mets could also trade or pull back from that list. ALL of the possible players aren’t locked in. They’ve just agreed on a group of guys who are in play to be the PTBNLs. Or, it could also mean that KC and NY have identified guys who are NOT available, but anyone below/outside of that list is fair game.
 

Yo La Tengo

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I think “embargoed” here means locked in - guaranteed that an agreed upon list of players will all be there to choose from. Bloom is saying that’s not the case. Instead, I think they have a list of players from which Bloom can pick, but guys whom KC and the Mets could also trade or pull back from that list. ALL of the possible players aren’t locked in. They’ve just agreed on a group of guys who are in play to be the PTBNLs.
If so, it will be fascinating to see how the three teams perceive value as the minor league season begins, and how that plays out with players being added/pulled back from the list. Is there a deadline for the choices to be finalized?
 

Yo La Tengo

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Here is Sean McAdam's take: "Bloom said the Sox have some general parameters for the identity of the PTBNL — that is, they’ll likely choose from a group of players already agreed upon by both sides, but only after Red Sox scouts have had additional time to evaluate the players in question."
 

OurF'ingCity

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What worries me most about this deal and all of the other deals that Bloom has made recently, is that the Sox seem to be jumping onto the "Three True Outcome," bandwagon, acquiring guys like Renfroe, Cordero and Hernandez whose "upside" is long-ball and not much else. Putting together a team like this (including Dalbec and Devers) seems almost blasphemous in the shadow of the GREAT 2018 team that brought home all of the marbles by playing "baseball," instead of HR derby. It also seems almost nonsensical given the news that MLB plans on deadening the ball. I really don't want to watch a team that batss .220 and strikes out 15 times a game.
The 2018 team was 9th in the league in HRs and first in the league in slugging so it’s not like they were some small-ball team (those don’t really exist anymore).

And in terms of strikeouts, the Rays by far led the league in Ks last year and won the AL pennant.

I totally get where you are coming from in terms of aesthetics, but it’s a proven path to success. It’s also worth noting that the Sox actually had the third highest BA last year, so it seems reasonable to me that Bloom may feel it’s ok to take a small step back in that department if it means increased power.
 

brandonchristensen

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Yep. I responded prior to my first cup of coffee and misread your post. J.D. Martinez is on the vet list as well.
It’s kind of sad.
I root for the laundry (notable exceptions include people like Brady) but when the players are completely expendable it is hard to work up a ton of enthusiasm.
 

ShaneTrot

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It really is a drag that the Sox have moved on from their great homegrown 2018 OF. I am assuming JBJ will not be back. I understand the economics of it and AB has sucked for a while but I have been rooting for these guys since they were drafted and it is just depressing. I would love to know what the internal discussions of this trade were. If AB reverts back to his 2018 form and Cordero is feast or famine this trade will look pretty shitty.
 

OurF'ingCity

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If AB reverts back to his 2018 form and Cordero is feast or famine this trade will look pretty shitty.
Well, yeah, but that’s true of every trade ever - there’s always a risk that the guy you traded away plays really well and the guy you traded for plays like shit.

The question is how likely is each to happen? Obviously Bloom views it one way and KC views it a different way. (And of course it’s also possible that both Franchy and Beni play well, or they both suck or can’t stay healthy, in which case the trade is still a marginal benefit to the Sox because they avoided paying Beni’s increasing salary over the next two years.)
 

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It’s kind of sad.
I root for the laundry (notable exceptions include people like Brady) but when the players are completely expendable it is hard to work up a ton of enthusiasm.
Agreed. It’s a human endeavor, and more than just rooting for laundry. Personalities make it more enjoyable. We like remembering the Idiots and the Beards. When ALL of the players simply come and go, and the rosters constantly churn, sports fandom becomes a less memorable and fun activity. Hell, I got annoyed with myself the other day because I couldn’t remember who played 2d base in 2018! (Spoiler alert: Nunez, then Kinsler, with a dash of Brockstar thrown in). With Pedey hurt, the position has seen constant turnover.

But all that said, how long were the Idiots or Beards together? Pedro - a Sox legend - played just 7 of his 17+ seasons with us, just one World Series, and played for 4 other teams. The most we can really hope for is that a few players stay and provide continuity across multiple iterations of the team. Pedroia, Ortiz. We were certainly hoping Betts and the other OF killer bees would be long termers. Didn’t happen. But maybe X and Devers are the next cornerstone guys...
 

DeadlySplitter

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Hopefully we'll have extended them by the time Jeisson Rosario, who seems likelier to be our CF of the future than Duran, is ready.
Gilberto Jimenez?

What worries me most about this deal and all of the other deals that Bloom has made recently, is that the Sox seem to be jumping onto the "Three True Outcome," bandwagon, acquiring guys like Renfroe, Cordero and Hernandez whose "upside" is long-ball and not much else. Putting together a team like this (including Dalbec and Devers) seems almost blasphemous in the shadow of the GREAT 2018 team that brought home all of the marbles by playing "baseball," instead of HR derby. It also seems almost nonsensical given the news that MLB plans on deadening the ball. I really don't want to watch a team that batss .220 and strikes out 15 times a game.
I'm getting moderately worried about this as well. I mentioned the "low OBP, high SLG" mold earlier in this thread. it's the new "Moneyball", but is it about to fall apart due to the ball? the deadening is probably being overblown, but... It's already meandering baseball to watch.
 

YTF

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I'm going to be cautiously optimistic about this deal. It's going to likely be a few years before it can be assigned any sort of grade, but it does free up a little cash in the short term, it does gain a little bit of control between the MLB players exchanged and there is one more thing to be considered here concerning age and the likelihood that Cordero "figures things out" at age 26. Cordero has played in 95 MLB games over parts of 4 seasons, never playing in more than 40 games in any one of those seasons. Benintendi at roughly the same age has appeared in 485 games over parts of 5 seasons. having played 151, 148 and 138 games in three of those seasons. Moving forward, both players can certainly improve, but given Cordero's limited play at this level (and yes I realize there may be a reason for that) I find it reasonable to think that you could possibly have one of those late bloomers here. It's a risk, most trades are, but looking at that montage of Franchy's homeruns up thread I can't help but of think of the impact that he could make on this team with a bit more plate discipline. Perhaps the team has him buddy up with the likes of Martinez and Bogaerts to work on that. Perhaps some former Sox (Pedroia) can impart some hitting wisdom on him some of the others. I think Guys like Renfroe, Franchy and to some extent Hernandez bring a bit more power to this team than we saw last season, but we also need to get back to that "keep the line moving" philosophy that we saw a few years ago. Different lineup for sure, different abilities, but nothing bad happens offensively if you keep the line moving.
 

brandonchristensen

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Agreed. It’s a human endeavor, and more than just rooting for laundry. Personalities make it more enjoyable. We like remembering the Idiots and the Beards. When ALL of the players simply come and go, and the rosters constantly churn, sports fandom becomes a less memorable and fun activity. Hell, I got annoyed with myself the other day because I couldn’t remember who played 2d base in 2018! (Spoiler alert: Nunez, then Kinsler, with a dash of Brockstar thrown in). With Pedey hurt, the position has seen constant turnover.

But all that said, how long were the Idiots or Beards together? Pedro - a Sox legend - played just 7 of his 17+ seasons with us, just one World Series, and played for 4 other teams. The most we can really hope for is that a few players stay and provide continuity across multiple iterations of the team. Pedroia, Ortiz. We were certainly hoping Betts and the other OF killer bees would be long termed. Didn’t happen. But maybe X and Devers are the next cornerstone guys...
Yeah I’m not sure. I love Devers and Xander, but they’re just two players. It kind of feels like we are Oakland now. Revolving door of numbers and statistics.
 

DeadlySplitter

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As far as the homegrown OF all being gone... this was inevitable bringing the Tampa way to Boston, at least while biding our time for the farm to be top 10 in the league again, and for bad contracts to expire.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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Maybe the deadening of the ball is all the more reason to grab guys who this would seemingly not affect?
 

Minneapolis Millers

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...

I'm getting moderately worried about this as well. I mentioned the "low OBP, high SLG" mold earlier in this thread. it's the new "Moneyball", but is it about to fall apart due to the ball? the deadening is probably being overblown, but... It's already meandering baseball to watch.
I understand the concern, but let’s not get carried away. Three true outcomes doesn’t describe X, JDM, Devers, or Verdugo, and Verdugo is the best player acquired by Bloom so far. Bloom is looking for value, and there Is insufficient evidence to suggest that he is wedded to just one type of value.
 

Kliq

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It’s kind of sad.
I root for the laundry (notable exceptions include people like Brady) but when the players are completely expendable it is hard to work up a ton of enthusiasm.
Baseball in particular, because it is every day and win or lose, whether the team is good or bad, you want to be able to enjoy the time you spend watching the games. Having players that you have grown to like and enjoy watching them play day-in-and-day-out is the real treat of baseball, imo. Watching a collection of relatively unrecognizable players, where every hitter is part of a platoon and no pitcher throws more than three innings, is not nearly as enjoyable.
 

brandonchristensen

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Baseball in particular, because it is every day and win or lose, whether the team is good or bad, you want to be able to enjoy the time you spend watching the games. Having players that you have grown to like and enjoy watching them play day-in-and-day-out is the real treat of baseball, imo. Watching a collection of relatively unrecognizable players, where every hitter is part of a platoon and no pitcher throws more than three innings, is not nearly as enjoyable.
Exactly my thoughts.
 

The Slidey Dog

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I know. However, I answered the question asked.

That said, there have been some posts in here that talk about his improving contact rate.
Yes, agreed, wasn't being critical, genuinely curious. I miscalculated above as Chwason pointed out, however, 35% is still real bad and I get the difference in eras (I am clearly getting old now to consider 2003 a different era), so I guess an even better question would be how often does a 27 year old break-out that has X% strike out rate above league average? I definitely do not have the talent to even know how to go about answering that.
 

Saints Rest

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It really is a drag that the Sox have moved on from their great homegrown 2018 OF. I am assuming JBJ will not be back. I understand the economics of it and AB has sucked for a while but I have been rooting for these guys since they were drafted and it is just depressing. I would love to know what the internal discussions of this trade were. If AB reverts back to his 2018 form and Cordero is feast or famine this trade will look pretty shitty.
OTOH, if this means Hernandez is the CF and Chavis is the 2B, we could be looking at an all-homegrown IF: X, Devers, Vaz, Dalbec, Chavis.
 

Kliq

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Exactly my thoughts.
It's why the Mookie trade bothered me. You can make clear arguments that it doesn't make sense to pay one player $300 million, you can get way better value by getting prospects back and remaining flexible with your roster, etc. That all may give you a better chance at winning a title, by hoping that a random guy like Randy Arozarena will get hot in one post-season and then suddenly you didn't need a star outfielder to make the World Series because this random guy making peanuts got hot. While I like winning World Series; so much of my enjoyment in baseball comes from a random night in June and watching Mookie go first-to-third, or making difficult plays look routine in right field, or having an 13 pitch at bat end in a Grand Slam.
 

OurF'ingCity

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Yeah I’m not sure. I love Devers and Xander, but they’re just two players. It kind of feels like we are Oakland now. Revolving door of numbers and statistics.
This seems like a massive overreaction to a trade of Benintendi, a guy who had one good year and a few average years with the Sox. Really I think this kind of feeling is a hangover from the Mookie trade - which, yeah, I don't think there's much question the Red Sox screwed up that whole process. But to suggest this is somehow a new approach is just wrong. Most obviously we only have to look back to the Lester situation to see something similar.

And, more broadly, the fact that some major league players are leaving in free agency or are being traded to restock the farm system is what happens to every team going through a transition period. Just look at the Sox between 2004 and 2007 (and this was the era before the severe luxury tax penalties): Nomar was traded. Lowe and Pedro left. Damon and Millar were gone. And that's only over the course of three seasons - the turnover between the 2013 and 2018 teams was even more dramatic, as there was really no one other than Xander and JBJ that meaningfully contributed to both teams and the Sox sucked for a good portion of that interim period.

I'm as sad as anyone when stars - particularly home-grown or long-tenured ones like Pedro, Lester, Betts, etc. leave or are traded. But I don't see any evidence that the Sox are somehow now more willing to trade or decline to re-sign any given player than they were at any other point at least since Theo arrived on the scene. (And some of the times that they have decided to re-sign or extend someone, like Sale, have been pretty disastrous.)
 

sean1562

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I do feel like sometimes we forget that Chris Sale is still on this team and likely to be here through 2025. Cy young caliber pitcher that won a WS with us? I really don't think the guy is going to turn into a garbage pitcher and could easily be a dominant pitcher for the next few years. ERod has been here since 2015, Xander seems like he will probably be around for a bit too. Everyone loved the 2018 team but we can't just lock that roster in for a decade and keep the dream alive.
 

BaseballJones

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I did include Vaz, but technically, EdRo was acquired via trade. Shall we say Tanner Houck instead?
EdRo was acquired in a trade, but as a minor leaguer. So technically he moved to Boston via Boston's minor league system. So I guess it depends on what you mean by "home grown"?
 

ngruz25

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I haven't been able to find much info about Cordero's most recent injury, so I went digging. He underwent surgery on 8/11/2020 to repair a broken hamate bone in his right wrist. That sounds pretty scary as I always equal a hamate bone injury as the "power sapping" injury. That's the same injury that both Nomar and Wily Mo Pena had.

Cordero returned after surgery to play in five games in September 2020. In his first game back, he hit two homers (off rookie relievers Kodi Whitley and Seth Elledge). So the fact that Cordero came back from his surgery and found success seems to be good.

Wily Mo also had hamate bone surgery in June 2006 and returned to play in late July 2006. Their injuries sound eerily similar: initially diagnosed as wrist sprains, later revealed to be hamate bone fractures, underwent surgery and came back to play within a month or so. Both were pretty successful at the plate upon their return. I don't know enough about the diagnosis to know how much it affected the rest of Wily Mo's career.

To add another data point, Jose Ramirez fractured his hamate bone in 2019 and went on to hit the crap out of the ball in 2020. So maybe the long term effects aren't so bad.
 

bigq

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It’s kind of sad.
I root for the laundry (notable exceptions include people like Brady) but when the players are completely expendable it is hard to work up a ton of enthusiasm.
I’m in the same boat. I wanted to see Benintendi have a long and productive career in Boston. As I age I have less interest in keeping up with the roster changes. Thank goodness for SoSH or I might lose track altogether.
 

brandonchristensen

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This seems like a massive overreaction to a trade of Benintendi, a guy who had one good year and a few average years with the Sox. Really I think this kind of feeling is a hangover from the Mookie trade - which, yeah, I don't think there's much question the Red Sox screwed up that whole process. But to suggest this is somehow a new approach is just wrong. Most obviously we only have to look back to the Lester situation to see something similar.

And, more broadly, the fact that some major league players are leaving in free agency or are being traded to restock the farm system is what happens to every team going through a transition period. Just look at the Sox between 2004 and 2007 (and this was the era before the severe luxury tax penalties): Nomar was traded. Lowe and Pedro left. Damon and Millar were gone. And that's only over the course of three seasons - the turnover between the 2013 and 2018 teams was even more dramatic, as there was really no one other than Xander and JBJ that meaningfully contributed to both teams and the Sox sucked for a good portion of that interim period.

I'm as sad as anyone when stars - particularly home-grown or long-tenured ones like Pedro, Lester, Betts, etc. leave or are traded. But I don't see any evidence that the Sox are somehow now more willing to trade or decline to re-sign any given player than they were at any other point at least since Theo arrived on the scene. (And some of the times that they have decided to re-sign or extend someone, like Sale, have been pretty disastrous.)
Yeah I mean it's just part of what's been happening in Boston. Less about this trade in particular.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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I just think this is the way of sports now - MLB, NBA, NFL - all of these sports have guys changing teams more and more, and I think it will continue to be even more so with players having more power and more say in where they go
 

allmanbro

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I haven't been able to find much info about Cordero's most recent injury, so I went digging. He underwent surgery on 8/11/2020 to repair a broken hamate bone in his right wrist. That sounds pretty scary as I always equal a hamate bone injury as the "power sapping" injury. That's the same injury that both Nomar and Wily Mo Pena had.

Cordero returned after surgery to play in five games in September 2020. In his first game back, he hit two homers (off rookie relievers Kodi Whitley and Seth Elledge). So the fact that Cordero came back from his surgery and found success seems to be good.

Wily Mo also had hamate bone surgery in June 2006 and returned to play in late July 2006. Their injuries sound eerily similar: initially diagnosed as wrist sprains, later revealed to be hamate bone fractures, underwent surgery and came back to play within a month or so. Both were pretty successful at the plate upon their return. I don't know enough about the diagnosis to know how much it affected the rest of Wily Mo's career.

To add another data point, Jose Ramirez fractured his hamate bone in 2019 and went on to hit the crap out of the ball in 2020. So maybe the long term effects aren't so bad.
The hamate bone power thing is not as big of a problem as it is sometimes presented. Others who have had hamate injuries include Giancarlo Stanton, Juan Soto, and Matt Olson, some of the biggest power hitters around.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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I just think this is the way of sports now - MLB, NBA, NFL - all of these sports have guys changing teams more and more, and I think it will continue to be even more so with players having more power and more say in where they go
Agreed and I've learned to become less and less attached to individual players as a result. Having a player come up, stay, and play out his whole career with one team is becoming an antiquated notion, and our fascination with it is rooted in nostalgia. Nostalgia for a time when players had no control whatsoever over where they plied their craft (the reserve clause era). We're now on to arguably the third generation of players who have no connection to or memory of a time when players staying on one team for the length of their career was the norm rather than the exception.

I learned to be numb to players leaving whether it's a free agent signing elsewhere or the team trading them away. I can root for them passionately and enjoy them when they're playing for the Sox and be just as dispassionate about it when they leave town.
 

OurF'ingCity

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Agreed and I've learned to become less and less attached to individual players as a result. Having a player come up, stay, and play out his whole career with one team is becoming an antiquated notion, and our fascination with it is rooted in nostalgia. Nostalgia for a time when players had no control whatsoever over where they plied their craft (the reserve clause era). We're now on to arguably the third generation of players who have no connection to or memory of a time when players staying on one team for the length of their career was the norm rather than the exception.

I learned to be numb to players leaving whether it's a free agent signing elsewhere or the team trading them away. I can root for them passionately and enjoy them when they're playing for the Sox and be just as dispassionate about it when they leave town.
At the risk of going on too much of a tangent this is also kind of true in terms of employment more broadly. It's anecdotal, but I know a ton of people in my parents' generation (Boomers, basically) that stayed at one job their entire careers, or maybe made one job change due to change in circumstances, moving to be closer to family, etc. Whereas in my generation (early 30s) it feels exceedingly rare to encounter someone even at that age who has been with a single employer their whole career.

So I think it is a combination of now being very far away from the reserve clause era, as you say, and also just a general societal shift towards more job and location mobility and being less tied to any given location or job.
 

scottyno

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Honestly, I have no idea. It sure doesn’t feel like it or look like it. If they are, I stand corrected and this team is more fucked than I imagined.
They're expected to win in the mid 80s and compete for the playoffs despite going through a semi rebuild, what exactly is fucked about that? Outside of the Dodgers no team is competitive year after year any more.
 

Trautwein's Degree

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I just think this is the way of sports now - MLB, NBA, NFL - all of these sports have guys changing teams more and more, and I think it will continue to be even more so with players having more power and more say in where they go
Every league is basically cycles of 2 to 4 year competitive windows and then 2 to 4 year rebuilds if you get lucky in the draft and/or free agency. No team is exempt from this.
 

Hank Scorpio

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They're expected to win in the mid 80s and compete for the playoffs despite going through a semi rebuild, what exactly is fucked about that? Outside of the Dodgers no team is competitive year after year any more.
Anyone who expects this team to win in the mid 80s is delusional.
 

dynomite

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They're expected to win in the mid 80s and compete for the playoffs despite going through a semi rebuild, what exactly is fucked about that? Outside of the Dodgers no team is competitive year after year any more.
Agreed that this version of the dreaded "bridge year" 2021 Red Sox will hopefully not be as bad as many rebuilding teams have been (the 50-win Astros in the early 2010s, the 2020 Red Sox, etc.).

Still, I think it's not quite true that the Dodgers are the only MLB franchise that's able to be competitive nearly every year (obviously depending on what we mean by "competitive"). If the definition is "competing for a playoff spot basically every season," I think the Yankees (ugh), Rays, and Cardinals are also examples.

Obviously Bloom's background is with the Tampa Bay Rays. Let's start with the 2008 season, when they became the "Rays" and changed their fortunes. Since then:

- The Rays have had 8 seasons with 90+ wins (or a winning % of .555+, AKA last year) and 2 seasons with fewer than 80 wins.
- The Yankees have had 7 seasons with 90/.555+ (plus two 89/.550 seasons where they made the playoffs) and none with fewer than 83 wins.
- The Cardinals have had 7 seasons with 90/.555+ (plus SIX seasons of 86/.517+) and none with fewer than 84 wins.

Meanwhile the Red Sox, with all their advantages over Tampa, have had 6 seasons with 90+/.556+ and 4 seasons of fewer than 80 wins (counting last year).

Now, of course, the Red Sox also have 2 World Series titles in that period of time, whereas the Yankees (ugh) and Cardinals each have 1 and the Rays have none.

Some of this is philosophical: is the goal to be "good" every year, or to count rings? Are those two related? Are championships somewhat random products of being good and getting lucky, or do you need to go all in and then rebuild?

Still, it sounds like Bloom's goal -- I suppose most GM's goal -- is to be "good" every year while also competing for championships.
 

BaseballJones

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Every league is basically cycles of 2 to 4 year competitive windows and then 2 to 4 year rebuilds if you get lucky in the draft and/or free agency. No team is exempt from this.
The Dodgers and the Yankees seem to be immune. Since 1996, the Yankees have won fewer than 92 games 5 times (not counting 2020 obviously), and never fewer than 84 games. They've missed the playoffs just 4 times in the last 25 years.

The Dodgers have won 92+ games each of the last 7 years (not including 2020), and have been to the playoffs every year since 2013, going to three World Series.

They have figured something out.
 

nvalvo

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Anyone who expects this team to win in the mid 80s is delusional.
I get that people are mad, but would you mind if I asked you to show your work? Projections aren't perfect, but they all have the Sox between 80 and 89 wins.

What do you see that leads you to think that everyone is not only wrong but "delusional?"
 

Kliq

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The Dodgers and the Yankees seem to be immune. Since 1996, the Yankees have won fewer than 92 games 5 times (not counting 2020 obviously), and never fewer than 84 games. They've missed the playoffs just 4 times in the last 25 years.

The Dodgers have won 92+ games each of the last 7 years (not including 2020), and have been to the playoffs every year since 2013, going to three World Series.

They have figured something out.
It's not surprising, but those are two teams that have simultaneously been great at scouting/developing talent while also not shying away from opening up the checkbook to sign top talent. In theory, the Red Sox could be in a similar position as a larger-market team that has historically been willing to spend, but they will have to step up the scouting/development aspect, particularly when it comes to pitching.

Going from Dombroski to Bloom; it's hard to find two GM's who have different approaches to team building. That kind of shift in organizational philosophy is going to be quite dramatic and probably take several years to sink in.

Part of me does worry, and this is baseless speculation really, that Henry/Werner have seen the success Tampa has had, and believe they can get away with spending significantly less and still turn out a winning team, allowing them to have their cake and eat it too. Now that they've successfully turned Fenway Park into the region's biggest tourist trap, as well as having a huge fanbase of hardcore, loyal supporters, they can still rake it in while also paying significantly less for players. In the long run, players like Devers and X are not going to be playing here for that much longer, because paying those players their market value is not what the Tampa/Bloom system calls for.
 

chrisfont9

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I'm not a big fan of lottery tickets. I don't play the lottery - you rarely win. I'd prefer to get one decent prospects to four lower level lottery tickets.
Isn't the real story here that the Sox have some idea about when their window will reopen, and it's not right now? Frittering away the Bs and all the greatness of 2018 is partly about that having been the window, which then closed because of salary increases and injuries. Compared to LA, who have a steadily open window due to all the prospects at different ages. Anyway, if we are reloading for the next period, the thinking is that Benny is now past Arb, expensive by then, and maybe he doesn't fit that window. Makes me worry Xander isn't long for this team.
 

soxhop411

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The Dodgers and the Yankees seem to be immune. Since 1996, the Yankees have won fewer than 92 games 5 times (not counting 2020 obviously), and never fewer than 84 games. They've missed the playoffs just 4 times in the last 25 years.

The Dodgers have won 92+ games each of the last 7 years (not including 2020), and have been to the playoffs every year since 2013, going to three World Series.

They have figured something out.
You also need to take the divisions into account.
NL West
2020: two teams above 500
2019 two teams above 500
2018 3 teams above 500
2017 3 teams above 500
2016 2 teams above 500
2015 two teams above 500
2014: two teams above 500
2013 two teams above 500

Al east:
2020: three teams above 500
2019 thee teams above 500 (two with 90+ wins)
2018 3 teams above 500 (3 with 90+ wins)
2017 2 teams above 500 (2 with 90+ wins)
2016 FOUR teams above 500
2015 THREE teams above 500
2014: THREE teams above 500
2013 FOUR teams above 500 (2 with 90+ wins)

In only two of those years did the NL West have two 90+ win teams.
It’s easy to make the playoffs every year when the division you play in is crap. As the Indians can attest to (when they make the playoffs and then get easily beaten by the yankees)
 
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OurF'ingCity

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They have figured something out.
I don't think they have figured out some different approach than any other team, I think they are just much better at executing it because they have really good front offices and, apparently, really good scouting/player evaluation teams with minimal turnover at the top.

Cashman we know has been with the Yankees forever. Friedman has been with the Dodgers since 2014 (not coincidentally roughly coinciding with the beginning of their recent run of success), which doesn't sound like that long until you remember that the Sox have had three GMs during that time. I think longevity and consistency in approach in a front office is massively underrated, not just in baseball but in all sports - this is a big part of why BB has been able to field competitive teams (well, until last year) even in quasi-"rebuilding" years. Conversely, as Kliq points out, changing the entire team approach from Cherington's approach to DD's and then to Bloom each required huge changes that took or will take a few years to shake out.

The Rays are another good example - they have had a bit more turnover at the top but every time they have promoted from within, which allows them to keep the same approach and institutional knowledge year over year.
 

dynomite

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I don't think they have figured out some different approach than any other team, I think they are just much better at executing it because they have really good front offices and, apparently, really good scouting/player evaluation teams with minimal turnover at the top.
I'm less familiar with the Cardinals, another team I think deserves mention in this conversation. Do they have the same minimal turnover, or is their model different?
 

OurF'ingCity

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I'm less familiar with the Cardinals, another team I think deserves mention in this conversation. Do they have the same minimal turnover, or is their model different?
Yep, same thing. John Mozeliak has been the de facto GM (now technically president of baseball ops) since 2007, and he came up as an assistant to the prior GM, Walt Jocketty, who himself had been there since 1994.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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It's not surprising, but those are two teams that have simultaneously been great at scouting/developing talent while also not shying away from opening up the checkbook to sign top talent. In theory, the Red Sox could be in a similar position as a larger-market team that has historically been willing to spend, but they will have to step up the scouting/development aspect, particularly when it comes to pitching.

Going from Dombroski to Bloom; it's hard to find two GM's who have different approaches to team building. That kind of shift in organizational philosophy is going to be quite dramatic and probably take several years to sink in.

Part of me does worry, and this is baseless speculation really, that Henry/Werner have seen the success Tampa has had, and believe they can get away with spending significantly less and still turn out a winning team, allowing them to have their cake and eat it too. Now that they've successfully turned Fenway Park into the region's biggest tourist trap, as well as having a huge fanbase of hardcore, loyal supporters, they can still rake it in while also paying significantly less for players. In the long run, players like Devers and X are not going to be playing here for that much longer, because paying those players their market value is not what the Tampa/Bloom system calls for.
Thing is, the shift from Dombrowski to Bloom is a significant one, but no less significant than the shift from Cherington to Dombrowski in terms of philosophy. Cherington by and large was a continuation of the Epstein era, which was predicated on building a base of home grown talent and flexing the team's financial might to fill in the gaps. And it was largely effective for a decade plus (3 titles in 10 years between the two GMs). I think handing the reins to Bloom is very much trying to go back to the Epstein/Cherington style of internal development and judicious use of financial advantages.

Worth noting that the trouble found during the transition from Epstein to Cherington and the transition from Dombrowski to Bloom are similar in one aspect...over-extending financially in a rush to win another title. First it was the signing of Crawford and Lackey and trading for Gonzalez (an unsuccessful spending spree), then it was the signing of Price and JD Martinez, and trading for Sale and Kimbrel, resulting in the greatest season in team history. Basically a departure from sound long term team building due to impatience on ownership's part.

I don't think the Rays are what ownership is trying to emulate. It's the Dodgers. It took a few years for Friedman to get the Dodgers where he wanted them. He benefited from the high priced veteran roster he inherited (results, in part, of the Punto trade) and a weak division to keep winning division titles as he built the organization he wanted. Bloom won't have the luxury in the AL East.
 

Rwillh11

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Anyone who expects this team to win in the mid 80s is delusional.
I don't expect them to be a playoff team unless everything breaks perfectly, but I'd take the over on 81 wins. The rotation is decent and has depth, the bullpen is better and the offense is still good, should be better than last year unless JD is truly cooked.
 

chawson

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At the risk of going on too much of a tangent this is also kind of true in terms of employment more broadly. It's anecdotal, but I know a ton of people in my parents' generation (Boomers, basically) that stayed at one job their entire careers, or maybe made one job change due to change in circumstances, moving to be closer to family, etc. Whereas in my generation (early 30s) it feels exceedingly rare to encounter someone even at that age who has been with a single employer their whole career.

So I think it is a combination of now being very far away from the reserve clause era, as you say, and also just a general societal shift towards more job and location mobility and being less tied to any given location or job.
There's also the case that most front office execs have different educations and see players through the lens of speculative asset trading that's more informed by financialization than baseball tradition. I have criticisms of that and the way the game is going, but I expect it'll swing back in the other direction soon enough. Five years ago, it was "speed and defense" teams like the Royals that won championships.

I also get that people had attachments to Benny. He's got a 'heartthrob' and throwback quality that appeals to a lot of older fans in New England. I but I also don't see that we need to overreact to this or bemoan some fundamental loss of tradition. Mookie is a Hall of Famer, but Benny's not a star. He's a Mark Kotsay-style player in a league where that skill set is not nearly as valuable as it used to be.