Grade the Red Sox trade deadline

How would you grade the additions of Schwarber, Austin Davis and and Hansen Robles?

  • A (Pumped! They killed it)

    Votes: 4 0.9%
  • B (Pretty happy. Did what they had to do)

    Votes: 122 27.8%
  • C (Eh. No First baseman? No SP?!)

    Votes: 199 45.3%
  • D (Really unimpressed)

    Votes: 104 23.7%
  • F (Should almost get fired)

    Votes: 10 2.3%

  • Total voters
    439

Bob Montgomerys Helmet Hat

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I never thought I'd be rooting for Ryan Brasier to get back on the roster, but at least his upside is higher than the guys they have acquired.
Bazardo is almost healthy too.

They also let Feltman go 40 pitches and 2.1 innings today. Wonder if he'd get a look.
Bazardo was really interesting before he got hurt. I wonder if there is any chance that he can contribute this season.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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They’ll have to open up a 40 man spot to activate Brasier. Could cut Perez or Robles, or someone like Potts or Rosario. Getting Feltman up would require another cut.
 

cantor44

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I've been first in line criticizing Bloom about the deadline moves, wanting him to be more aggressive. It seemed especially peculiar to me that the big move he made was for an injured player, and indeed that criticism stands, given that Schwarber couldn't help during those crucial games in the first two weeks of August when the Sox slipped from first to third.

That said, important now to note that maybe, more generally, Bloom bet on the right horses:

Since the July 30 trade deadline:

Kyle Schwarber: .339 with a 1.032 OPS
Bobby Dalbec: .338 with an 1.160 OPS

Joey Gallo: .139 with a .634 OPS
Anthony Rizzo: .250 with a .784 OPS
 

JM3

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If the players aren't going to do defense, I'm not sure why posters should be obligated to.
 

cantor44

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Would anyone want to replace Dalbec and Schwarber with Rizzo and Gallo from the trade deadline up to day?
Eh ... it's not that easy. Bloom's deadline activity is still highly flawed. Schwarber couldn't play for - what was it 3 weeks? - after being acquired, a time the team really needed reinforcements (and dropped from first to third). And his presence on the team either A. Degrades the defense, or B. forces JD out of the line up. No one saw Dalbec's total 180 coming (but glad of it)! .... I like Schwarber as a DH and hope he sticks around (smart player, too). Not sure anyone was clamoring for Gallo, anyway. And Robles and Davis have been very inconsistent, some good, some bad.

I guess if the hypothetical was: would you now trade Dalbec and Schwarber for Rizzo and Gallo, you'd probably get mostly "no's."
 

Njal

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Apr 23, 2010
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I kinda want to change my vote, since I now think that the team might not have been as good as I thought they were. If they were only ok, then it wasn't worth spending very much to get better. If Bloom knew that and I didn't, then he played things just right.
 

JimD

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Eh ... it's not that easy. Bloom's deadline activity is still highly flawed. Schwarber couldn't play for - what was it 3 weeks? - after being acquired, a time the team really needed reinforcements (and dropped from first to third). And his presence on the team either A. Degrades the defense, or B. forces JD out of the line up. No one saw Dalbec's total 180 coming (but glad of it)! .... I like Schwarber as a DH and hope he sticks around (smart player, too). Not sure anyone was clamoring for Gallo, anyway. And Robles and Davis have been very inconsistent, some good, some bad.
You can't just hand-wave away Dalbec's performance with a 'nobody could see that coming'. Bloom & Co. may not have seen it coming, but him staying with the Sox post-deadline wasn't enough of a negative in their eyes to compel them to up the ante in prospect capital for Anthony Russo. They deserve at least a little credit for that non-move paying off now.
 

cantor44

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I kinda want to change my vote, since I now think that the team might not have been as good as I thought they were. If they were only ok, then it wasn't worth spending very much to get better. If Bloom knew that and I didn't, then he played things just right.
What confuses me though, by this logic, is: why spend anything at all then? If they are only ok, and no trades will make them good enough, why trade at all? Stand pat/hold tight to prospects, or sell ....
 

cantor44

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You can't just hand-wave away Dalbec's performance with a 'nobody could see that coming'. Bloom & Co. may not have seen it coming, but him staying with the Sox post-deadline wasn't enough of a negative in their eyes to compel them to up the ante in prospect capital for Anthony Russo. They deserve at least a little credit for that non-move paying off now.
Were folks clamoring for Dalbec to be traded? I certainly wasn't ...I thought he should be on the weak side of a platoon, or coming off the bench ....
 

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What confuses me though, by this logic, is: why spend anything at all then? If they are only ok, and no trades will make them good enough, why trade at all? Stand pat/hold tight to prospects, or sell ....
Because a team like the Sox is always looking to improve, even if just incrementally. They clearly gave up nothing of much value, and picked up a few interesting pieces. If they don't help the team sneak into the playoffs this year, it can be a several month audition for the future. There is literally no downside.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Were folks clamoring for Dalbec to be traded? I certainly wasn't ...I thought he should be on the weak side of a platoon, or coming off the bench ....
Who said anything about wanting Dalbec traded? The prevailing wish here and elsewhere was getting a 1B that would push him to the bench or Worcester. The "non-move" Jim is referring to is not trading for a 1B (talk of playing Schwarber there aside), not not trading away Dalbec. Jim is suggesting (and I agree with him) that Bloom may deserve some credit for whatever faith he had in Dalbec that led him to not pursue a new 1B at any cost before the deadline.

What confuses me though, by this logic, is: why spend anything at all then? If they are only ok, and no trades will make them good enough, why trade at all? Stand pat/hold tight to prospects, or sell ....
It's not a black or white thing. Even a mediocre team with limited post-season prospects should be trying to improve when they can. Hence the trades made on July 29 & 30. Also hence the claiming of Travis Shaw off waivers and the signing of Jose Iglesias. Not every trade has to be about improving the top 5-10 spots on the roster. Marginal improvements to the bottom of the roster are still improvements that every GM should constantly be looking to make no matter where the team is in the standings.
 

Van Everyman

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Because a team like the Sox is always looking to improve, even if just incrementally. They clearly gave up nothing of much value, and picked up a few interesting pieces. If they don't help the team sneak into the playoffs this year, it can be a several month audition for the future. There is literally no downside.
Exactly. I mean, does anyone think that trading for Max Scherzer, Craig Kimbrel and Anthony Rizzo would have meaningfully made a difference right now? I mean, yes we would probably be a few games higher in the standings and make the playoffs based on Scherzer alone. But the talent level on this team seems pretty defined at this point: they’re above average but much less than it seemed to us on July 31.

I like this team more than many on the game threads. But it would take a minor miracle for this team to make a deep run in the playoffs much less win the World Series. And for all the handwringing that took place after the deadline about how they gave up on the team and should’ve done more, I think most posters here would be furious if they had literally given up the farm for a bunch of players that could only get them to a divisional round at best.

I felt at the time in and feel today that Bloom played this pretty well. I suspect Schwarber will be gone but I’ll be interested to see if Robles’ very live arm plays more consistently after a full offseason in the team’s program.
 

jmcc5400

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You can't just hand-wave away Dalbec's performance with a 'nobody could see that coming'. Bloom & Co. may not have seen it coming, but him staying with the Sox post-deadline wasn't enough of a negative in their eyes to compel them to up the ante in prospect capital for Anthony Russo.
We're in the endgame now.
 

Njal

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Apr 23, 2010
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What confuses me though, by this logic, is: why spend anything at all then? If they are only ok, and no trades will make them good enough, why trade at all? Stand pat/hold tight to prospects, or sell ....
Part of Bloom's job is to manage the media and the fans, while also hedging against the possibility that the Sox will continue to overperform. So he does what he can do to improve the team consistent with the long-term plan and his (hypothetical) suspicion that they are going to fall back to earth. If that's how he was thinking he deserves a solid A.
 

YTF

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Were folks clamoring for Dalbec to be traded? I certainly wasn't ...I thought he should be on the weak side of a platoon, or coming off the bench ....
I don't think that's what was suggested.
What confuses me though, by this logic, is: why spend anything at all then? If they are only ok, and no trades will make them good enough, why trade at all? Stand pat/hold tight to prospects, or sell ....
Isn't this sort of what they did? Sure they moved a couple of guys, but was it anyone of prominence?
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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I felt at the time in and feel today that Bloom played this pretty well. I suspect Schwarber will be gone but I’ll be interested to see if Robles’ very live arm plays more consistently after a full offseason in the team’s program.
Everything I have seen states Robles will be a free agent after the season.

Regarding the idea that the team wasn’t good enough to truly contend, was anyone really saying that in late July? I was reading more of “we are solidly in a playoff spot and have Sale and Houck on the way”.

Regardless, don’t we kind of need to see how the next few weeks shakes out anyways?
 

JimD

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It's not a black or white thing. Even a mediocre team with limited post-season prospects should be trying to improve when they can. Hence the trades made on July 29 & 30. Also hence the claiming of Travis Shaw off waivers and the signing of Jose Iglesias. Not every trade has to be about improving the top 5-10 spots on the roster. Marginal improvements to the bottom of the roster are still improvements that every GM should constantly be looking to make no matter where the team is in the standings.
This move was the textbook definition of a marginal improvement:
July 31, 2004 - OF Dave Roberts traded by Los Angeles Dodgers to Boston Red Sox in exchange for OF Henri Stanley
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Everything I have seen states Robles will be a free agent after the season.

Regarding the idea that the team wasn’t good enough to truly contend, was anyone really saying that in late July? I was reading more of “we are solidly in a playoff spot and have Sale and Houck on the way”.

Regardless, don’t we kind of need to see how the next few weeks shakes out anyways?
I don't think people were saying they weren't good enough to contend so much as acknowledging that despite being in first place, the team had flaws and the biggest of which (defense) weren't easily fixed in the trade environment we saw, which was a strong sellers' market. Also, the biggest "miss" that folks were criticizing at the time was not getting a 1B to supplant Dalbec. Regardless of who was available, it's hard to make an argument right now that making such a move would have made that much of a difference in how the team has fared. Dalbec has been as good as anyone at the plate since the start of August, yet the team has still lost ground. Bringing in Rizzo or Bryant or Cron or whomever probably isn't a difference maker.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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This move was the textbook definition of a marginal improvement:
Completely- and I’m sure any statistical analysis will tell you that the Roberts deal (as well as the Cabrera / Mientkiewicz ones) had minimal impact on the teams performance right?

The way we remember this team and this trade deadline and the narrative we will tell ourselves is TBD.
 

Rovin Romine

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Were folks clamoring for Dalbec to be traded? I certainly wasn't ...I thought he should be on the weak side of a platoon, or coming off the bench ....
I'm not part of the scrum (oh bescrummed one :)).

Who said anything about wanting Dalbec traded? The prevailing wish here and elsewhere was getting a 1B that would push him to the bench or Worcester. The "non-move" Jim is referring to is not trading for a 1B (talk of playing Schwarber there aside), not not trading away Dalbec. Jim is suggesting (and I agree with him) that Bloom may deserve some credit for whatever faith he had in Dalbec that led him to not pursue a new 1B at any cost before the deadline.
***
It's not a black or white thing. Even a mediocre team with limited post-season prospects should be trying to improve when they can. Hence the trades made on July 29 & 30. Also hence the claiming of Travis Shaw off waivers and the signing of Jose Iglesias. Not every trade has to be about improving the top 5-10 spots on the roster. Marginal improvements to the bottom of the roster are still improvements that every GM should constantly be looking to make no matter where the team is in the standings.
For posterity, we need to remember that Bloom acquired Schwarber with the expectation (or public statement) that he would be playing 1B. Given that Schwarber and JD occupy the same positions otherwise, and neither is a LF you want to start if you have another option, to me this clearly indicates the Sox had no expectations at the trade deadline that Dalbec was going to blossom into a platoon-regular, let alone a must-play bat. If there was a good chance Dalbec was going to burst out, and the Sox downplayed that publicly, Schwarber's acquisition as a part time DH or PH, or a full time LF, makes little or no sense, given the other solids on the team (JD/Verdugo.)

Basically I'm of the opinion that they just got lucky with Dalbec. Now they may need to fudge things defensively to get all the big bats into a lineup, but it's far better than not having that third power-bat to juggle at all.
 

nighthob

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Or they could sell high on Dalbec and move KS to 1st to keep the spot warm for Tris Casas, with the intention of moving him to DH when JD's contract is up.
 

billy ashley

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Or they could sell high on Dalbec and move KS to 1st to keep the spot warm for Tris Casas, with the intention of moving him to DH when JD's contract is up.
I'm skeptical anyone is going to buy high on Dalbec. He's had an awesome month plus of play, after being useless for half the season. Dalbec was always streaky in the minors (though his valleys weren't this bad - the peaks have always been fun, though) and his defense has been brutal.

I think he's played himself into being given the starter slot next season, while we wait for Casas. If the putrid first half was just an adjustment period (I'm skeptical of this) he's a super valuable DH candidate and likely worth more than anything we could reasonably hope to acquire in a trade. If instead, he is what he has been this season, a guy with 70 raw power, bad contact skills, able to go on the occasional tear, he'll be an okay stopgap for another half-season.

Casas is likely being promoted to AAA if Portland doesn't make the majors. I think it's reasonable to expect he'll be ready by mid-year, 22.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Or they could sell high on Dalbec and move KS to 1st to keep the spot warm for Tris Casas, with the intention of moving him to DH when JD's contract is up.
Sell high on a dirt cheap player who seems to be figuring it out on both sides of the coin to pay 8 figures annually to a guy who hasn't exactly shown great proficiency defensively at the position (in extremely limited playing time) doesn't seem like the sort of thing that you want to do. I like Schwarber, but I don't know if I like him that well. The return for Dalbec would need to be an absolute steal of a player.

I contend that if/when Casas is ready, and they need to move Dalbec, left field could be a fit for him.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Dalbec has played well in the second half and shown a lot of improvement, there’s no point in giving a guy like Schwarber $15m per to take his place, especially when he can’t even play first. I think you need a good backup (obligatory Mark Canha plug) since all the upper tier 1b options would block Casas; or go after a guy like Bryant who could play first but not only first. You need insurance for Bobby, but also need potential cheap production which he offers.

I think we hope JD opts out, and that they don’t go after Schwarber. They need to be more athletic, more dynamic, and better defensively. There’s better ways to spend that money.
 

nvalvo

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For posterity, we need to remember that Bloom acquired Schwarber with the expectation (or public statement) that he would be playing 1B. Given that Schwarber and JD occupy the same positions otherwise, and neither is a LF you want to start if you have another option, to me this clearly indicates the Sox had no expectations at the trade deadline that Dalbec was going to blossom into a platoon-regular, let alone a must-play bat. If there was a good chance Dalbec was going to burst out, and the Sox downplayed that publicly, Schwarber's acquisition as a part time DH or PH, or a full time LF, makes little or no sense, given the other solids on the team (JD/Verdugo.)

Basically I'm of the opinion that they just got lucky with Dalbec. Now they may need to fudge things defensively to get all the big bats into a lineup, but it's far better than not having that third power-bat to juggle at all.
This is a bit of a strange claim, and it's of a piece with your work in the other thread. I thought it might be worth parsing out the underlying difference that you seem to have with a lot of other people on the board (although I will speak for myself). In both instances, the argument is about how quickly expectations should be adjusted when they don't immediately come to fruition.
  • Let's stipulate for the sake of argument that, last off-season when they named him the starter, Bloom and co. thought that Dalbec could be a useful regular at 1B with a SLG-heavy .800ish OPS: hardly a star, but a useful player, worth maybe 1 WAR; a good value on a pre-arb salary. I don't have any special insight into their projections, but I think that's plausible. Let's say the season starts and he posts monthly OPSes of .619, .672, .780, .540, 1.205, and (so far in September) 1.001, as he in fact has, and now has a .786 OPS for the season and is trending up. The question becomes: were they right about Dalbec? Your view seems to be that because they *should* have given up on Dalbec after his poor first half, they are wrong and thus "lucky" when he does what they initially thought he was going to do, only later than they thought he was going to do it.
  • Similarly, in the other thread (about "disappointment"), your view is that the people who thought in March that the Sox were a high-80s win team, like me, should nevertheless be disappointed with a team that looks likely to be a low-90s win team, because "a reasonable observer" would have adjusted expectations upward after a strong first few months. It is the sequence in which they won the 90-odd games makes it a disappointment.
I don't think your view on these issues is indefensible or anything, but my view is different on both questions, and I don't think that that is as irrational as you're making it out to be.
  • I think that young players' development is routinely non-linear. I think Dalbec is showing, however belatedly, that the front office was right to think he could be a useful regular. He just had to make some difficult adjustments to major league pitching, and it took him a couple hundred PAs to do that.
    • There were leading indicators that may have led them to stick with him, such as improvements to his contact% and particularly his z-contact% that were apparent before his strikeout rate started falling. (Albeit, improvements from very bad to merely mediocre.)
    • The glove emphatically still needs work, and may ultimately be what dooms him as a player.
  • My view on the overall team situation is that the prevailing preseason view has been proved out. I include links to old posts of mine just to demonstrate that these were views held ex ante:
    • The team will go as far as their pitching depth will take them.
      • Me, on March 26, in response to the E-Rod dead arm crisis: "Just in general, nobody threw enough IP last season, so every team is going to have their pitching depth severely challenged."
      • By its very nature, this is a problem that can pop up at any time in a season. For the first half we were incredibly lucky with the health of our big league rotation, but 60 percent of the Worcester rotation and Thad Ward hit the IL, with Mata and Ward having surgery. The returns to health of Sale, Houck, and Seabold help a ton here, but we were really hanging by a thread for a few weeks there, even in the first half as the team was cruising.
      • A number of pitchers, especially Matt Barnes (who was really holding the room together in the bullpen), hit a wall after exceeding their 2020 IP number by 15 or so.
      • Our COVID outbreak — not an unlikely event during a pandemic! — hit our SS depth hardest, but our pitching depth quite hard too: Pivetta, Sale, Perez, Barnes, Sawamura, Valdez, Taylor... that's a lot of innings to replace.
      • The commissioner changing the policies on sticky stuff mid-season and pulling the rug out from under Garrett Richards didn't help us very much, either.
    • The defense is a big problem. This has also been the case all season, and matters are actually considerably better by some measures (such as BABIP allowed) than they were in 2020.
      • Me, on April 5, after the first few games: "The defense... looks pretty awful. I think we're going to need to overhaul the infield next off-season, and luckily there are a ton of great shortstops on the market to help us do just that. Devers is a DH, and Bogaerts would be better served at third, where his steady hands and good arm will serve him well and his limited range will be less of a liability. I wanted Lindor, but I'd be delighted with Story or Seager, both of whom should get to free agency."
      • The defense has in fact been bad (Fangraphs says 20th, but by some measures it is 29th or 30th), but as long as our pitching staff was near the top in strikeouts (we've since dwindled to fifth), the impacts were obscured somewhat.
      • An imperfect but vivid measure: we allowed 37 UER through the first 81 games, and 40 in the 66 games since. 0.45 UER/game is pretty terrible; 0.60 UER/game is a hard way to make a living.
I just don't agree that those views are really contradicted by the team exceeding expectations over the first few months in a way that argues for the kind of volatility in expectations you're proposing.

If I'm not disappointed with the team, it's because the emergence of controllable players like Whitlock, Arroyo, Pivetta, Renfroe and Dalbec (and another ~3 win season from Verdugo), a promising draft and some pretty great performances on the farm all make us look closer to sustainable contention than I thought we were pre-season. The week to week vicissitudes from veterans like JD Martinez, Kyle Schwarber or Garrett Richards tell us much less about the proximity of the "next great Red Sox team," as Ben Cherington used to say. The 2023, 2024, and 2025 Red Sox look much better now than they did in April; there's just a lot more value in the organization at all levels.
 

chawson

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There’s also the chance that we trade JDM, likely in the NL if they adopt the DH. He’s hardly a liability at 1/$22M, and a team that thinks they’re on the cusp (Miami? San Diego?) could flip him again at the deadline if they’re not in contention.

JDM doesn’t have a tremendous amount of trade value (and can block trades to three clubs annually). If Bloom likes Schwarber’s bat long-term but doesn’t wanna gum up the defense for a year with both him and Martinez on the roster, it could work out well.

Of course, this assumes that JDM doesn’t opt out. But if he does, just sign Schwarber. There may even be a way to inform JDM of this plan before his decision: ”We love what you’ve done in Boston, but we have a deal in place for you from an NL team looking to fill their DH spot.”
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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He almost certainly will opt out- and if he does, the Sox should not immediately reallocate that money to another player who can’t play the field. Sign Simien, Correa, or Bryant - move Devers to DH, Bogaerts to 3b….something. Replacing JD with Schwarber does nothing to improve this team.
 

Rovin Romine

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This is a bit of a strange claim, and it's of a piece with your work in the other thread. I thought it might be worth parsing out the underlying difference that you seem to have with a lot of other people on the board (although I will speak for myself). In both instances, the argument is about how quickly expectations should be adjusted when they don't immediately come to fruition.
  • Let's stipulate for the sake of argument that, last off-season when they named him the starter, Bloom and co. thought that Dalbec could be a useful regular at 1B with a SLG-heavy .800ish OPS: hardly a star, but a useful player, worth maybe 1 WAR; a good value on a pre-arb salary. I don't have any special insight into their projections, but I think that's plausible. Let's say the season starts and he posts monthly OPSes of .619, .672, .780, .540, 1.205, and (so far in September) 1.001, as he in fact has, and now has a .786 OPS for the season and is trending up. The question becomes: were they right about Dalbec? Your view seems to be that because they *should* have given up on Dalbec after his poor first half, they are wrong and thus "lucky" when he does what they initially thought he was going to do, only later than they thought he was going to do it.
  • Similarly, in the other thread (about "disappointment"), your view is that the people who thought in March that the Sox were a high-80s win team, like me, should nevertheless be disappointed with a team that looks likely to be a low-90s win team, because "a reasonable observer" would have adjusted expectations upward after a strong first few months. It is the sequence in which they won the 90-odd games makes it a disappointment.
I don't think your view on these issues is indefensible or anything, but my view is different on both questions, and I don't think that that is as irrational as you're making it out to be.
  • I think that young players' development is routinely non-linear. I think Dalbec is showing, however belatedly, that the front office was right to think he could be a useful regular. He just had to make some difficult adjustments to major league pitching, and it took him a couple hundred PAs to do that.
    • There were leading indicators that may have led them to stick with him, such as improvements to his contact% and particularly his z-contact% that were apparent before his strikeout rate started falling. (Albeit, improvements from very bad to merely mediocre.)
    • The glove emphatically still needs work, and may ultimately be what dooms him as a player.
  • My view on the overall team situation is that the prevailing preseason view has been proved out. I include links to old posts of mine just to demonstrate that these were views held ex ante:
    • The team will go as far as their pitching depth will take them.
      • Me, on March 26, in response to the E-Rod dead arm crisis: "Just in general, nobody threw enough IP last season, so every team is going to have their pitching depth severely challenged."
      • By its very nature, this is a problem that can pop up at any time in a season. For the first half we were incredibly lucky with the health of our big league rotation, but 60 percent of the Worcester rotation and Thad Ward hit the IL, with Mata and Ward having surgery. The returns to health of Sale, Houck, and Seabold help a ton here, but we were really hanging by a thread for a few weeks there, even in the first half as the team was cruising.
      • A number of pitchers, especially Matt Barnes (who was really holding the room together in the bullpen), hit a wall after exceeding their 2020 IP number by 15 or so.
      • Our COVID outbreak — not an unlikely event during a pandemic! — hit our SS depth hardest, but our pitching depth quite hard too: Pivetta, Sale, Perez, Barnes, Sawamura, Valdez, Taylor... that's a lot of innings to replace.
      • The commissioner changing the policies on sticky stuff mid-season and pulling the rug out from under Garrett Richards didn't help us very much, either.
    • The defense is a big problem. This has also been the case all season, and matters are actually considerably betterby some measures (such as BABIP allowed) than they were in 2020.
      • Me, on April 5, after the first few games: "The defense... looks pretty awful. I think we're going to need to overhaul the infield next off-season, and luckily there are a ton of great shortstops on the market to help us do just that. Devers is a DH, and Bogaerts would be better served at third, where his steady hands and good arm will serve him well and his limited range will be less of a liability. I wanted Lindor, but I'd be delighted with Story or Seager, both of whom should get to free agency."
      • The defense has in fact been bad (Fangraphs says 20th, but by some measures it is 29th or 30th), but as long as our pitching staff was near the top in strikeouts (we've since dwindled to fifth), the impacts were obscured somewhat.
      • An imperfect but vivid measure: we allowed 37 UER through the first 81 games, and 40 in the 66 games since. 0.45 UER/game is pretty terrible; 0.60 UER/game is a hard way to make a living.
I just don't agree that those views are really contradicted by the team exceeding expectations over the first few months in a way that argues for the kind of volatility in expectations you're proposing.

If I'm not disappointed with the team, it's because the emergence of controllable players like Whitlock, Arroyo, Pivetta, Renfroe and Dalbec (and another ~3 win season from Verdugo), a promising draft and some pretty great performances on the farm all make us look closer to sustainable contention than I thought we were pre-season. The week to week vicissitudes from veterans like JD Martinez, Kyle Schwarber or Garrett Richards tell us much less about the proximity of the "next great Red Sox team," as Ben Cherington used to say. The 2023, 2024, and 2025 Red Sox look much better now than they did in April; there's just a lot more value in the organization at all levels.
If you think that the Sox knew on July 28 that Dalbec would become a "must play" bat over the next month, and so altered their approach at the trade deadline, go ahead and state your case for it. I'd be interested in reading it.

FWIW, I don't play the game of trying to "get" someone in one thread because they disagree with me in another. If you asked me what your take was in a subjective opinion thread, I assure you, I'd have to look it up to answer.
 

chawson

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He almost certainly will opt out- and if he does, the Sox should not immediately reallocate that money to another player who can’t play the field. Sign Simien, Correa, or Bryant - move Devers to DH, Bogaerts to 3b….something. Replacing JD with Schwarber does nothing to improve this team.
Before you spend the next few months hoping the Sox sign Bryant, know that he grew up in Las Vegas and has family ties to the Bay Area, idolized Barry Bonds and the Giants growing up, and has called staying long-term “definitely enticing” because he and his wife “both thought [they] would end up there at some point.”

I don’t think I’m gonna convince you that Schwarber’s a great bat to have in our lineup the next 3-4 years. But I think Bogaerts or Devers would both have major grievances if the FO moved either to DH. They’re both young enough that doing so would tank their value, and they’d sooner trade either to a team willing to play them in the field.
 
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Petagine in a Bottle

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Ok, well Bryant is just one guy, there are others. Conceptually, I like Schwarber well enough but a long term deal to a defensively challenged player who isn’t really an elite offensive player feels too risky to me and not what the team needs. Granted, I know there is a difference of opinion regarding his offensive performance this year and what it means going forward and I respect that.

I think you may be right about Bogaerts and Devers; if they are adamant about remaining at SS and 3B, than the Sox may have to make the difficult decision to move on from both players (frankly, I think X is a goner after next year anyways). If there’s a team that values a Devers as an elite 3b and will trade commensurate value, it’s worth considering.

Semien has to be the primary target this off-season, IMO. Acquiring him would give the organization a lot of flexibility next year and beyond.
 

chawson

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Ok, well Bryant is just one guy, there are others. Conceptually, I like Schwarber well enough but a long term deal to a defensively challenged player who isn’t really an elite offensive player feels too risky to me and not what the team needs. Granted, I know there is a difference of opinion regarding his offensive performance this year and what it means going forward and I respect that.
Maybe the occasion of his second-consecutive game-winning hit could help drive the point home, but if Schwarber’s not an elite offensive player, what’s your definition?

Here are the hitters with the highest adjusted wOBA since 2019: Trout, Soto, Freeman, Harper Acuña, Kendrick, Judge, Alvarez, Tatis Jr., Cruz, Muncy, Springer, Rendon, Yelich, Ozuna, Betts, Donaldson, Ohtani, Bellinger, Schwarber, Tucker, Olson, Goldschmidt, Soler, S. Perez, Turner, Winker, J.D. Martinez.

The only conceivably acquirable players on that list are Freeman (good luck), Cruz (in his age-42 season), Donaldson (36, potentially available as a salary dump), Schwarber and Soler. The Sox already staff one of those guys — still quite young at 28 — and he’s doing lengthy post-game press conferences where he takes full responsibility for his mishaps, thinks our park is one of the only “real ballparks left,” and inspires comments from the manager that he “feels like he’s been here for five years” because he “fits right in the clubhouse.”

I have no idea what’s going to happen, but it really seems like a good fit to me.
 

Yo La Tengo

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Semien has to be the primary target this off-season, IMO. Acquiring him would give the organization a lot of flexibility next year and beyond.
Why not Baez instead of Semien? Semien turns 31 later this week, Baez turns 29 in December. Both have played SS and 2B. Baez has had the better offensive stats (although Semien has had a spectacular season) and I think the general consensus is that Baez is the better defensive player. I'll concede that it appears Semien is a team leader while Baez can be a bit of a headache.

I like the idea of signing a second baseman who could move to SS if Xander opts out (or can be convinced to move to another position) and who could potentially move again if/when Mayer is ready.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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I admit to not loving low OBP guys like Baez; but he is definitely an appealing target for the same reasons that Semien is, with the added benefit of being younger. Worry how a guy like that will age, and it seems like all the rumors have him returning to the Cubs, but I think he has to be in the consideration set.
 

Yo La Tengo

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Notably, Xander doesn’t turn 29 until October. Bringing in a replacement who is older/same age as him could be a tough sell.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Notably, Xander doesn’t turn 29 until October. Bringing in a replacement who is older/same age as him could be a tough sell.
There’s a position for Baez or Simien that isn’t SS, though. They only move to SS when Bogaerts opts out after ‘22. I don’t think they could sign a guy like Seagar, Story, or Correa.

Ultimately, they should know Bogaerts contract demands once the other SS’s sign in the off-season. Problem is, at that point he has increased leverage as the only good SS in the market next offseason.

But, you are right that any concerns the Sox have with Bogaerts ability to play SS in the future are likely issues that would come up if they signed any of the other SS too. Guess you have to figure where they could move to (as they age and when Mayer is ready), complicated by Devers presence at 3b and what the plan is with him.
 

grimshaw

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There’s a position for Baez or Simien that isn’t SS, though. They only move to SS when Bogaerts opts out after ‘22. I don’t think they could sign a guy like Seagar, Story, or Correa.
Semien is a really weird player. He's had parts of 6 seasons with a wRC+ between 91 and 98, and then two MVP caliber seasons. He's also had a year with 35 errors and a year with 11 DRS. I'm not sure he's a fit since he was only a part time SS this season. Giving him another year off from the position, and then moving him over the year after doesn't seem ideal. I doubt he'd bite for a deal where he has to stay at 2b after the season he just had. He signed with little leverage for this season.
 

nvalvo

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If you think that the Sox knew on July 28 that Dalbec would become a "must play" bat over the next month, and so altered their approach at the trade deadline, go ahead and state your case for it. I'd be interested in reading it.

FWIW, I don't play the game of trying to "get" someone in one thread because they disagree with me in another. If you asked me what your take was in a subjective opinion thread, I assure you, I'd have to look it up to answer.
I genuinely thought I was trying to clarify a difference of perspective — i.e., talk about baseball — rather than "get" someone. I am sorry if it came across otherwise.

And the first sentence is not at all what I said. I think you're exactly right that ON JULY 28, Dalbec didn't look great to the FO or anyone else, but I just think it's strange to say that they "got lucky" when the guy they chose to be their starting 1B in the offseason turned out to produce quite close to his projections, just saving the bulk of that production for August and later.

That question of the volatility of expectations is also key to a disagreement in the other thread. I guess I hoped you'd say more about why you see it that way.
 

cantor44

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Part of Bloom's job is to manage the media and the fans, while also hedging against the possibility that the Sox will continue to overperform. So he does what he can do to improve the team consistent with the long-term plan and his (hypothetical) suspicion that they are going to fall back to earth. If that's how he was thinking he deserves a solid A.
[/QUOTE]
So the trade for Schwarber was made for PR reasons?
 

JimD

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I think you may be right about Bogaerts and Devers; if they are adamant about remaining at SS and 3B, than the Sox may have to make the difficult decision to move on from both players (frankly, I think X is a goner after next year anyways). If there’s a team that values a Devers as an elite 3b and will trade commensurate value, it’s worth considering.
This is the second time that you've stated your belief that Devers's defense is so bad that the Red Sox should be looking to move on from him. Do you really believe that a 24-year-old offensive star like Raffy is that easily replaceable?
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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This is the second time that you've stated your belief that Devers's defense is so bad that the Red Sox should be looking to move on from him. Do you really believe that a 24-year-old offensive star like Raffy is that easily replaceable?
Do you want to give him 10 years at 25-30m per? If so, where are you going to play him? I don’t think they should necessarily be looking to move him but they have to figure out where he’s going to play and how that impacts his value. If they think he’s a 1b/dh and other teams think he’s a 3b, there could be an opportunity for a trade before he hits FA; that was what I was getting at.

Maybe I am wrong and have completely overestimated what kind of contract he will be looking for; if there’s a shorter term deal to be had, I’d be more interested but as a player who will be very young when he hits free agency it seems likely he will be looking for a massive and very lengthy deal.

It’s not something that has to be addressed immediately, but the long term future of Bogaerts and Devers is pretty clearly key to the teams future.

What kind of contract would you be comfortable giving him and where do you see him playing, positionally, over the course of that deal?
 

BaseballJones

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Since the trade deadline for Boston:

- Schwarber: .277/.411/.465/.877, 4 hr, 13 rbi (with some sketchy fielding thrown in at times)
- Robles: 5.40 era, 3.89 fip, 1.68 whip, 13.5 k/9
- Davis: 4.11 era, 3.10 fip, 1.44 whip, 9.4 k/9
- Dalbec: .312/.395/.743/1.138, 12 hr, 34 rbi

Yes I know Dalbec wasn't a trade acquisition, but most of us thought he'd be benched in favor of a player they traded for (many thought it would be Rizzo or someone else). Instead, he stayed here and has become a knockout hitter since the trade deadline.

Crazy that Robles and Davis have actually pitched fairly decently in terms of FIP - the Sox' defense has KILLED them both, especially Robles, obviously. Look at the difference between his ERA and FIP numbers - yikes. Neither is a great pitcher, but they've both been better than their ERA would suggest. I don't want either in a high leverage situation, but both are guys that can fill space and eat innings when needed.
 

chawson

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I have no idea what’s going to happen with Bogaerts and Devers, but what’s changed since last year is that keeping things intact is now seen as a radical move.

That means, in a way, that all paths forward are radical moves. Whatever he does this offseason, large swaths of the fan base will howl, “I can’t believe that Bloom…”:

“…bumped the best shortstop in baseball (by fWAR ‘19-21) off position a year before he opts out, thereby sealing the fate of my favorite player in Boston.”
“…failed to upgrade the majors’ worst infield defense.”
“…gave Devers a huge extension when he can’t play third base.”
“…spent $200+ million on Correa/Semien/Story when we already have an all-star shortstop.”
“…signed another DH like Schwarber when we need to get more athletic.”
“…signed a DH like Schwarber when we need to move Devers or Bogaerts to DH (thereby sealing the fate of one of my favorite players in Boston.)”
“…traded a young inexpensive player like Verdugo (to make room for Bogaerts, aka Hanley 2.0).”
“…moved Devers to 1B/2B, a position he’s never played before, and which is no guarantee to improve the defense.”
“…traded an improving, cost-controlled asset like Dalbec.”

Since bad defense became one of the season’s main storylines, the status quo option to build on the team’s young core has become an extreme proposition. Many on this board have batted around these scenarios with some nuance for awhile, but short of a deep postseason bid, there’s going to be nothing shielding Bloom from being ostracized for another extreme decision so soon after trading Mookie. I truly can’t see a path forward that won’t incur broad outrage and criticism in the fanbase.

Personally, I think Bogaerts to 3B, Devers to 2B is solid and maybe the least disruptive. Make each of Correa, Semien and Story grand offers and say the first one to accept it gets the primary shortstop job, with the understanding that 2B/3B/SS are all a little fluid. You gotta give Bogaerts a sense of what he’d be opting into if he decides to stay (or rework his contract).
 

chawson

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Devers to 2nd?!?!?
Sounds more radical than it is, but remember that second base is nowhere near the defensive challenge it used to be. I don’t think Devers needs to move as far down the spectrum as first base, and to me there’s no less a question he’d be good there.

Only 1.81 batted balls per game have been hit in the zone of Sox second basemen this season, which is about two-thirds of what it was 10 years ago. Thisand the Sox shift their second baseman to short right field roughly every 4 at-bats. Add a full-season of Sale’s K% and it’s even less. Third base, by comparison, is still just as active.

In the era of advanced defensive alignments and no takeout slides, I want a bat at second base. If Max Muncy and Travis Shaw could do it, I bet Devers could.