How interested are you in the Red Sox at this point?

How interested are you in the Red Sox right now?

  • All time high ... this team could win next year (Willing to pay for season tickets/watch 100+ games)

    Votes: 11 2.3%
  • Pretty Interested, not as much as 2004 but I still going watch a majority of games

    Votes: 187 39.5%
  • Eh, the least interested I have been since FSG took over but still watch a game a week (Fire Chaim)

    Votes: 152 32.1%
  • Not even sure why I am here, couldn't care less, might catch some games this season out of habit

    Votes: 89 18.8%
  • I actively dislike the team and FSG at this point.

    Votes: 30 6.3%
  • Not a Red Sox fan, just here for the hawt MS Paint action

    Votes: 5 1.1%

  • Total voters
    474

Don Buddin's GS

Member
SoSH Member
If you want to get a taste of Calcaterra's book "Rethinking Fandom" here is an excerpt from it published by Columbus Monthly on his obsession with the Buckeyes:

https://www.columbusmonthly.com/story/lifestyle/features/2022/05/09/rethinking-sports-fandom-buckeyes/9627954002/

Late that afternoon, I was playing with my 3-year-old son and found myself still distracted by college football stuff. For whatever reason, I realized that day, in a way that I had not realized it before, that my obsession with Buckeyes football was unhealthy for me. That it was consuming too much of my time and my emotional energy and interfering with other far more important parts of my life. I didn’t make any grand declarations to myself or to anyone else, but I decided that afternoon that it’d be better for me if I backed away a bit and got a little more balance when it came to college football. I had no plans to cease being a fan, but I did decide to limit Ohio State football intake to the games themselves. I attempted to view them as defined, three-hour TV shows that I watched for the purpose of entertainment, cut out most of the hype and things that surrounded them, and do what I could to put the games out of my mind once they were over. In short, I decided to become a casual fan.
 

Rasputin

Will outlive SeanBerry
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Oct 4, 2001
29,561
Not here
I watched all the games in 2020 and I'm supposed to ditch them now? Fuck no.

This team is going to be good, not great, and fun to watch. We'll see the development of Bello and Casas. We'll probably see some interesting young pitchers get a chance to do something. And hey, maybe we get lucky.
 

donutogre

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
3,270
Philadelphia
This has been a pretty excellent thread, with lots of people giving good reasons for how they're feeling and not a lot of shit-talking. Nice to see.

I'm an amalgamation of the negative thoughts. I'm in my early 40s, and got into baseball relatively late. I wasn't much for sports when I was a kid, and growing up in the Hartford area there wasn't a lot of local baseball enthusiasm for me to glom on to. That changed when I went to college in Boston and lived there from 1999 through 2013. A great time to be there and to fall in love with baseball.

As I've aged my life has changed where I don't watch terribly often anymore. I haven't lived in the Boston area for almost 10 years (!) and it's just harder to maintain that level of enthusiasm. But I still check this site every day, and I keep an eye on everything going on with the team. Since the highs of 2018, though, it's been a little rough. 2021 was a nice surprise, but 2020 and 2022 were so horrid that they definitely tainted that playoff run.

As many have said, it's more about fielding a competitive team and feeling like the organization has a plan. Those things are not true right now. In addition to being awful, there were very few players that I really connected with or cared about on the last few teams. That makes it hard for me to stay interested. I largely agree with the people who've said that this team can do better; I'm also pretty closely aligned with what Craig Calcaterra wrote in today's newsletter. I don't think that the Sox should have signed Xander to an 11-year contract, but there's no doubt in my mind that he's the latest homegrown star player they've completely blown negotiations with. It's disheartening, and I agree with the people who have little faith that a deal with Devers gets done. I see no situation in which they spend $200M+ to get anyone, and it seems pretty obvious that's what it will take.

Between losing guys like Xander and Betts and getting scrap heap returns, it's just hard to care much right now. I'm grateful for what the ownership group has done the last 20-ish years, bringing in four championships. That remains a remarkable achievement. But right now, the team feels more rudderless than it has at any point during the last 20 years, with the possible exception of 2012. But even that team had some talent, even if it wasn't performing well. The current iteration of the Sox is just baffling... and as a few have said, it's not the kind of product that really deserves our time and attention.
 

Max Power

thai good. you like shirt?
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
8,159
Boston, MA
Does Calcaterra get paid by the comma?

No, it's obviously not healthy to let the fortunes of a sports team send you into a deep depression, but that would be true even if the team were expertly run and winning 95 games a year with all the most popular players. If you can keep perspective, there's nothing wrong with spending time watching the sport you love even if your favorite team doesn't love you back.
 

Smiling Joe Hesketh

Throw Momma From the Train
Moderator
SoSH Member
May 20, 2003
36,192
Deep inside Muppet Labs
Does Calcaterra get paid by the comma?

No, it's obviously not healthy to let the fortunes of a sports team send you into a deep depression, but that would be true even if the team were expertly run and winning 95 games a year with all the most popular players. If you can keep perspective, there's nothing wrong with spending time watching the sport you love even if your favorite team doesn't love you back.
What he writes there is the way I felt about the Sox through the 2003-2004 seasons. Absolutely all-consuming. Thankfully it paid off emotionally, but certainly it wasn't healthy.

I also think back to Nick Hornby's "Fever Pitch," which of course was written about his obsession with Arsenal and then was adapted as an obsession with the Red Sox (and the story transferred over very well). Hornby wrote about really how unhealthy his obsession with Arsenal really was, and in the many years that have passed he has said that in retrospect the one thing that stands out to him about his book is its total lack of perspective.

Just another interesting take on sports fandom.
 

jon abbey

Shanghai Warrior
Moderator
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
72,181
What he writes there is the way I felt about the Sox through the 2003-2004 seasons. Absolutely all-consuming. Thankfully it paid off emotionally, but certainly it wasn't healthy.

I also think back to Nick Hornby's "Fever Pitch," which of course was written about his obsession with Arsenal and then was adapted as an obsession with the Red Sox (and the story transferred over very well). Hornby wrote about really how unhealthy his obsession with Arsenal really was, and in the many years that have passed he has said that in retrospect the one thing that stands out to him about his book is its total lack of perspective.

Just another interesting take on sports fandom.
Along these lines (and somewhat off topic), Bill Buford's Among The Thugs is one of the best books I've ever read of any kind, not just sports fandom, much better than the Hornby book (which I did like).

View: https://www.amazon.com/Among-Thugs-Bill-Buford/dp/0679745351/
 

Delicious Sponge

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Dec 23, 2003
1,397
Boston
I love baseball and will watch it any time I can.

Brands get into big trouble when their customers don’t trust them anymore.

This ownership group told us they needed to trade Mookie so they could afford to pay the rest of the crew when they became free agents.

It feels like that was a lie.

I don’t know what they’re doing. This is an incredibly competent and accomplished group, so I can’t believe they’re suddenly incompetent, which means they must have some strategy. But I wonder if the truth back in 2020 was whatever the hell it is they’re doing now and they couldn’t handle the expected blowback so they decided instead to hide behind a lie.

Brands get into big trouble when their customers don’t trust them anymore. The Red Sox brand is in trouble.
 

Dogman

Yukon Cornelius
Moderator
SoSH Member
Mar 19, 2004
15,238
Missoula, MT
Ranked:

1. Patriots and watching pro football in general including Thursday, Sunday and Monday nights.
2. Bruins and Celtics are both here. If both are playing at the same time, Bruins first. I watch almost every game for both teams. I watch a few other hockey games here and there but not Basketball.
3. Golf. PGA, DP World, minor tours are generally on in the mornings in the background. Major tourneys are always watched live.
4. Soccer. I've watched almost all of the World Cup this year and have the Premier League on a fair amount.
5. Red Sox. I watched maybe 5 games last year. The Betts trade killed me. I was expecting X to leave so it didn't phase me. If Devers leaves, it will take a playoff run to pull me back in.

My interest is largely gone. Hell, I can't recall the last time I posted on the mainboard.
 

mauidano

Mai Tais for everyone!
SoSH Member
Aug 21, 2006
36,360
Maui
I'll be fired up on Opening Day. I totally get that this is just the nature of the business. There is SO MUCH money being thrown around. There is only loyalty to the almighty dollar. The players have no loyalty to an organization. Very few players stay with one team now. Players are bandied about as pawns by the organizations.

It sucks to some degree but if you're a fan of the game; you see how the rosters change by the day. Cheer for the laundry. Ortiz, Pedro, Pedroia and Mookie are not walking through that door.
 

Philip Jeff Frye

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 23, 2001
10,392
They had to drop payroll to get under the luxury tax.
And this happened when, exactly?

One of the most frustrating aspects of all of this is that we fans have been told over and over again that "we need to do this to get under the tax/create flexibility/etc..." And "once we're not paying Sandoval/Price/Pedroia/etc... we'll free up money to spend." Numerous posters on this board assured us that the Sox would have plenty of money to spend once this season was over.

So they've spent some money, but it's all on Bloom specials - short term deals for pitchers whose age keeps the length down (and increases the odds of somebody falling off a cliff), plus an expensive Japanese Mystery Man. Last year we spent money on JBJ, Paxton, Wacha and Story, none of whom get the heart racing and none of whom produced 162 games of value.

When does the benefit of the financial flexibility that dumping Mookie and now Xander is supposed to provide arrive? When do we get to enjoy the flexibility of refusing to sign long term contracts?
 
Last edited:

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
25,258
And this happened when, exactly?

One of the most frustrating aspects of all of this is that we fans have been told over and over again that "we need to do this to get under the tax/create flexibility/etc..." And "once we're not paying Sandoval/Price/Pedroia/etc... we'll free up money to spend." Numerous posters on this board assured us that the Sox would have plenty of money to spend once this season was over.

So they've spent some money, but it's all on Bloom specials - short term deals for pitchers whose age keeps the length down (and increases the odds of somebody falling off a cliff), plus an expensive Japanese Mystery Man. Last year we spent money on JBJ, Paxton, Wacha and Story, none of whom get the heart racing and none of whom produced 162 games of value.

When does the benefit of the financial flexibility that dumping Mookie and now Xander is supposed to provide arrive? When do we get to enjoy the flexibility of refusing to sign long term contracts?
Right. They should have money to spend now that they've done their luxury tax reset. But I still want Bloom to spend SMART, not just MORE. Ya know?
 

Philip Jeff Frye

Member
SoSH Member
Oct 23, 2001
10,392
Right. They should have money to spend now that they've done their luxury tax reset. But I still want Bloom to spend SMART, not just MORE. Ya know?
Sorry to ask again - when was the luxury tax reset? Didn't the failure to move JDM and/or others at the trade deadline mean that the Sox are not below the threshold?
 

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
25,258
Sorry to ask again - when was the luxury tax reset? Didn't the failure to move JDM and/or others at the trade deadline mean that the Sox are not below the threshold?
2020 or 2021, I believe.

They went over in 2022, and the more years in a row you go over, the stiffer the penalties are.
 

sezwho

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
2,081
Isle of Plum
2020 or 2021, I believe.

They went over in 2022, and the more years in a row you go over, the stiffer the penalties are.
I just reviewed this and the penalties are really limp and should be no problem to surpass while the prospect magic 8 ball does it’s work: a max year max amount repeater is still less than 100% mark up.

Im more ready than I’ve ever been to set some of Henry’s money on fire.
 

JMDurron

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
5,135
I'm mostly thankful that I have raised a passionate 11-year-old son who helps keep me more engaged with the team/season than I would be otherwise.

I'm not in my 20s anymore. Sports is just a less important emotional part of my life than it used to be. The Red Sox (and Patriots, lately) are pretty consistently driving right into the gap between my heart and my mind. Rationally, taking a steady approach to resource allocation that avoids over-emphasis on just a couple of starts with an otherwise empty shell of a roster is, intellectually, absolutely the optimal approach to team-building.

Emotionally, stars that I am connected to drive my level of interest in the team, almost as much as the team's competitiveness. I couldn't tell you what is age-related vs what is talent-related, but I watched bad teams with Ortiz and Pedroia more than I watched bad teams without them. I watched bad teams with Mookie and X more than I care about watching bad teams without them. I will probably feel more interested in and therefore watch more of a good team than a bad team, regardless of the roster. But, all else being equal, a good team or a bad team with a Mookie/X/Ortiz/Pedroia is more compelling than one without them. Devers is now literally the only compelling player left on the roster from an emotional standpoint, at least for me. Maybe age just makes me more resistant to forming emotional attachments to players, and all the rest is a facile rationalization where my brain is desperately trying to explain away my altered level of fandom as being roster-based, when really it's all about me being middle aged now.

I'm still very interested in the Red Sox. It's the deep, beating core of my identify and sports fandom. I just don't actually care that much anymore, and I'm not sure where the line is between quality of team/roster construction and the life stage that I happen to be in today.
 

astrozombie

New Member
Sep 12, 2022
487
I said this in the other thread but if management didn't care, the easier path (and a path some franchises take) is to spend the money to keep fan favorites at home and not worry about the results. (Or, as Jerry Reinsdorf allgedly said, "Finish in second place every single year because your fans will say 'Wow, we got a shot. We're in it!' But there's always the carrot left.")
To me, it's telling that management is so inept that they can't handle this. There is nothing in the pipeline or the Sox performance in free agency that suggests they are even trying to be competitive. Why not sign X (at an overpay and then continue to cheap out on the rest of the roster, like they are doing) to signal to fans that at least the FO kind of gets it. The Lakers did that with Kobe at the end - they knew damn well they were not competing and that last contract was a thank you for years of service and a way to keep butts in seats until management could figure out a new plan.
The thing that gets me too is that there was a pretty severe reaction to Lester and Betts being traded for purely financial reasons. Betts is *supposed* to be the player you break the bank for and the Sox were unwilling to do it. I am not saying that losing X is the same as Betts, but the line at the time with Betts was "this will give us the financial flexibility to thrive in the future". So, X was not that reason? Okay, sure, fine, I guess... but now they are going to spend that money pursuing Correa? Re-signing Devers to a monster contract? No and no. I can't speak for others, but this is my frustration with X specifically - its okay to let him go if you think he's going to get too much on the market (of course, I think if the Sox had given him a legitimate offer last year they could have gotten him for something more reasonable, but they lowballed him and FAFO) but there has to be something else that those resources are going to. A 35 year old Jansen and possibly overpaying for Yoshida are not it.
 

chawson

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
4,683
I just reviewed this and the penalties are really limp and should be no problem to surpass while the prospect magic 8 ball does it’s work: a max year max amount repeater is still less than 100% mark up.

Im more ready than I’ve ever been to set some of Henry’s money on fire.
Exactly. We should be routinely spending up to $40MM over the first luxury tax threshold two out of every three years — so that's $273M in 2023.

The most significant losses are the second and the fifth-round picks. This loss is not nothing, but the setup favors perennial contenders whose second-round picks are more in the 60-75 range, which is where we should be if we're spending that kind of money.

Here's the full sum of second-rounders we've selected this century: Manny Delcarmen, Matt Chico, Jon Lester (57th overall), Abe Alvarez, Dustin Pedroia (65th), Jon Egan, Justin Masterson, Hunter Morris, Derrik Gibson, Alex Wilson, Brandon Workman, Williams Jerez, Jamie Callahan, Teddy Stankiewicz, Sam Travis, C.J. Chatham, Cole Brannen, Nick Decker, Matthew Lugo, Jud Fabian and Cutter Coffey.

So that's two stars, one decent starting pitcher (Masterson) a handful of relievers that were useful for 5-6 years (Delcarmen, Wilson, Workman), a few guys who had a cup of coffee (Alvarez, Jerez, Callahan, Travis), and a few other we don't know about yet (Lugo, Fabian* and Coffey).
 

OurF'ingCity

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 22, 2016
8,469
New York City
When does the benefit of the financial flexibility that dumping Mookie and now Xander is supposed to provide arrive? When do we get to enjoy the flexibility of refusing to sign long term contracts?
There are two potential issues here. The first potential issue is that Sox ownership has decided they no longer want to shell out as much money as they used to, and so the Sox will now be only a top-10 payroll team instead of top-5 or top-3. That remains to be seen - they were #6 last year, but they’ve been top 3 every single other year dating back to 2014.

The second potential issue is not an ownership issue but a GM issue, which is - how do you allocate the money you have? If you have, say, a $200 million budget, you could pay every player on the roster $8 million, or you could pay three players $40 million each and the rest an average of $3-4 million. Same budget, but those would be two very different teams. Those are broad examples, but Bloom seems to fall more towards the “spread the wealth” camp than the “stars and scrubs” camp. I tend to agree that (a) I’m not really sure that strategy works all that well in practice and (b) it’s frustrating as a fan because even if in theory a bunch of average, interchangeable players can be the equivalent of a smaller number of true stars, it’s just kind of boring to root for a bunch of semi-anonymous, solid-but-unspectacular types.

But again, that’s a GM problem, not an ownership problem. If there are issues with this team (and there are), I’m looking at the GM, not ownership (at least, not primarily).
 

Martin and Woods

New Member
Dec 8, 2017
83
To answer the thread title:

Very. Always am. Most likely always will be.

I don't think things are nearly as dire as many here are saying. Will I miss X, and did Bloom misplay it at the beginning of the year, and was Preller drunk when he made that ridiculous offer? Yes. But I suspect the rotation will be healthier, and we may yet be getting another starter. The bullpen already looks much better. We have players on the roster who can play SS, but I would prefer to see a sign or trade for someone to play there until Mayer is ready. I have plenty to occupy me right now with Patriots/Celtics/Bruins, World Cup, Holidays, but come mid-January, I will definitely be in "can't wait for pitchers and catchers!" mode. Cheers.
 

brandonchristensen

Loves Aaron Judge
SoSH Member
Feb 4, 2012
38,782
The Red Sox won 119 games in 2018.

Remarkably, they are down to just 4 players from that roster still on the team- Devers, Sale, Barnes, and Brasier.

And has been pointed out, blowing up that team has basically brought in three guys who have a chance to make the 23 team- Verdugo, Pivetta, and Wong. Yuck.
That’s such a devastating way to look at it.
 

Rovin Romine

Johnny Rico
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
25,697
Miami (oh, Miami!)
If you want to get a taste of Calcaterra's book "Rethinking Fandom" here is an excerpt from it published by Columbus Monthly on his obsession with the Buckeyes:

https://www.columbusmonthly.com/story/lifestyle/features/2022/05/09/rethinking-sports-fandom-buckeyes/9627954002/

Late that afternoon, I was playing with my 3-year-old son and found myself still distracted by college football stuff. For whatever reason, I realized that day, in a way that I had not realized it before, that my obsession with Buckeyes football was unhealthy for me. That it was consuming too much of my time and my emotional energy and interfering with other far more important parts of my life. I didn’t make any grand declarations to myself or to anyone else, but I decided that afternoon that it’d be better for me if I backed away a bit and got a little more balance when it came to college football. I had no plans to cease being a fan, but I did decide to limit Ohio State football intake to the games themselves. I attempted to view them as defined, three-hour TV shows that I watched for the purpose of entertainment, cut out most of the hype and things that surrounded them, and do what I could to put the games out of my mind once they were over. In short, I decided to become a casual fan.
I pretty much take the opposite approach. The only sports team I follow is the Sox, and I've got some fairly practical limits on what I'll pay attention to, mostly governed by a wait-and-see philosophy. Some things are fun to game out in advance, but building vast narratives about ownership's collective moral character as intuited from Tweeted rumors on contract negotiations? You just have to shrug your shoulders and move on.
 

simplicio

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 11, 2012
5,884
Is it? The 2022 Astros had 5 guys left from 2017, and that's only cause 2 of them were 38 and 39 (and in the last years of their contracts) which is pretty unusual. Baseball is a young person's sport and turnover is high unless you're Atlanta.
That’s such a devastating way to look at it.
 

brandonchristensen

Loves Aaron Judge
SoSH Member
Feb 4, 2012
38,782
Is it? The 2022 Astros had 5 guys left from 2017, and that's only cause 2 of them were 38 and 39 (and in the last years of their contracts) which is pretty unusual. Baseball is a young person's sport and turnover is high unless you're Atlanta.
That was an entire YEAR before 2018.
 

YTF

Member
SoSH Member
The Red Sox won 119 games in 2018.

Remarkably, they are down to just 4 players from that roster still on the team- Devers, Sale, Barnes, and Brasier.

And has been pointed out, blowing up that team has basically brought in three guys who have a chance to make the 23 team- Verdugo, Pivetta, and Wong. Yuck.
Other than the obvious (Betts and Bogaerts), which players from that "blown up" team would you like to have on the current roster?
 

Petagine in a Bottle

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 13, 2021
12,927
Other than the obvious (Betts and Bogaerts), which players from that "blown up" team would you like to have on the current roster?
“Other than the obvious” is kind of a big caveat, but It’s more the fact that they turned those players into almost nothing that is concerning. I get that in each individual case there are reasonable explanations, but in totality, it seems like the org should have done better. But, maybe not, I dunno.
 

sean1562

Member
SoSH Member
Sep 17, 2011
3,673
I am pretty excited to see if Casas can be the next middle of the order hitter for the next core Red Sox team. He has a similar prospect pedigree to Devers, is 22 years old, and from all reports has a great work ethic/clubhouse presence.

I'm not too upset that Bloom didn't beat the Padres offer for X and I don't really think Devers is worth a big 10 year deal if he isn't going to stick at 3B. I would like to see Bloom be aggressive with signing the next wave of prospects to long term deals(Casas, Bello, Mayer, Cedanne) if they have success early. I am pretty excited to see how those guys look next year. I don't really expect this team to be super competitive next season but it will be fun to watch the young guys cut their teeth in the majors. If Yoshida pans out 2024 could be a really solid year for the Sox. I don't expect us to be at the top of the AL East every season, this division has a lot of teams with great FOs and lots of cash. Last year was rough, next year will probably be mediocre but I am optimistic about 2024.
 

Max Power

thai good. you like shirt?
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
8,159
Boston, MA
“Other than the obvious” is kind of a big caveat, but It’s more the fact that they turned those players into almost nothing that is concerning. I get that in each individual case there are reasonable explanations, but in totality, it seems like the org should have done better. But, maybe not, I dunno.
How is it concerning that the team gets almost nothing for their departing free agents? You pay them for their contribution when they're on your team, and then they leave. The issue is not acquiring better players in other ways to step in and replace them.
 

YTF

Member
SoSH Member
“Other than the obvious” is kind of a big caveat, but It’s more the fact that they turned those players into almost nothing that is concerning. I get that in each individual case there are reasonable explanations, but in totality, it seems like the org should have done better. But, maybe not, I dunno.
Caveat aside, you mentioned blowing the team up. Betts and Bogaerts are losses from that team, and Bogaerts JUST left. I was curious if there was anyone else from the 2018 who's departure that you disagree with.
 

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
25,258
Regarding Xander...

He played 10 years for the Red Sox.

1,264 games
5,389 PA
752 R (1 R every 7.2 PA)
1,410 H (1 H every 3.8 PA)
308 2b (1 2b every 17.5 PA)
156 HR (1 HR every 34.5 PA
683 RBI (1 RBI every 7.9 PA)
.292/.356/.458/.814, 117 ops+
34.9 bWAR (nearly 3.5 bWAR per year; 1 bWAR every 36.2 games)
Cost to Sox: $73.2 million ($2.1 million per bWAR)

Next 11 years, he's scheduled to play for San Diego. What are the odds that he accumulates 34.9 bWAR? What are the odds that he has a 117 ops+ for them? What are the odds he stays healthy enough to play this 1,200+ games? What are the odds that he hits 156 homers?

Cost to San Diego: $280 million

If he puts up 30 bWAR over these next 11 seasons, San Diego will end up paying $9.3 million per bWAR. That's four and a half times what Boston has paid per bWAR. And I think it's not good odds that Xander puts up 30 bWAR over the next 11 years. I can see about 4-5 bWAR on average for the next 3, then dipping down into the 3s or 2s for a few, and then into the 1s for the last 4-5 years, meaning I think he'll end up putting up about 25 bWAR over the next 11 years, which would mean SD is going to pay about $11.2 million per bWAR.

Of course I'm guessing and don't know for sure, but I don't think these are unreasonable guesses based on what we know about Xander and his stats.

So aside from our love for Xander, which is substantial, and actually means the Sox have a huge hole at SS now, isn't this EXACTLY what teams ought to be doing? Paying less for the first ten years of a guy's career, when he puts up MORE bWAR for a LOT less money, and then when he gets uber expensive as his career reaches the back nine, letting him go to sign somewhere else for ridiculous dollars?

I know that feels and sounds like fantasy baseball - that we don't have emotional (for good reasons, mind you - the guy is a Sox legend and hero) affinity for, but from a cold, hard business standpoint, don't we WANT our team to pay less for more production, and then when the guy gets hugely expensive and will be less effective, let someone else pay for those (much) more expensive, less effective years?

Isn't that just smart business, if you repeat that over and over?
 

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
25,258
Caveat aside, you mentioned blowing the team up. Betts and Bogaerts are losses from that team, and Bogaerts JUST left. I was curious if there was anyone else from the 2018 who's departure that you disagree with.
Benintendi is gone too. He was a key guy for that 2018 team.
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
47,675
Regarding Xander...

He played 10 years for the Red Sox.

1,264 games
5,389 PA
752 R (1 R every 7.2 PA)
1,410 H (1 H every 3.8 PA)
308 2b (1 2b every 17.5 PA)
156 HR (1 HR every 34.5 PA
683 RBI (1 RBI every 7.9 PA)
.292/.356/.458/.814, 117 ops+
34.9 bWAR (nearly 3.5 bWAR per year; 1 bWAR every 36.2 games)
Cost to Sox: $73.2 million ($2.1 million per bWAR)

Next 11 years, he's scheduled to play for San Diego. What are the odds that he accumulates 34.9 bWAR? What are the odds that he has a 117 ops+ for them? What are the odds he stays healthy enough to play this 1,200+ games? What are the odds that he hits 156 homers?

Cost to San Diego: $280 million

If he puts up 30 bWAR over these next 11 seasons, San Diego will end up paying $9.3 million per bWAR. That's four and a half times what Boston has paid per bWAR. And I think it's not good odds that Xander puts up 30 bWAR over the next 11 years. I can see about 4-5 bWAR on average for the next 3, then dipping down into the 3s or 2s for a few, and then into the 1s for the last 4-5 years, meaning I think he'll end up putting up about 25 bWAR over the next 11 years, which would mean SD is going to pay about $11.2 million per bWAR.

Of course I'm guessing and don't know for sure, but I don't think these are unreasonable guesses based on what we know about Xander and his stats.

So aside from our love for Xander, which is substantial, and actually means the Sox have a huge hole at SS now, isn't this EXACTLY what teams ought to be doing? Paying less for the first ten years of a guy's career, when he puts up MORE bWAR for a LOT less money, and then when he gets uber expensive as his career reaches the back nine, letting him go to sign somewhere else for ridiculous dollars?

I know that feels and sounds like fantasy baseball - that we don't have emotional (for good reasons, mind you - the guy is a Sox legend and hero) affinity for, but from a cold, hard business standpoint, don't we WANT our team to pay less for more production, and then when the guy gets hugely expensive and will be less effective, let someone else pay for those (much) more expensive, less effective years?

Isn't that just smart business, if you repeat that over and over?
What about a guy like Devers who’s younger? How would you approach his situation? His next contract clearly won’t be great value. Do you let him go too?
 

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
25,258
What about a guy like Devers who’s younger? How would you approach his situation? His next contract clearly won’t be great value. Do you let him go too?
No. He's significantly younger and plays 3b instead of SS, so his WAR should be more steady than Xander's, who we all presume will be moved off SS in a few years probably, and that decreases his value even more.

I definitely want them to extend Devers.
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
47,675
No. He's significantly younger and plays 3b instead of SS, so his WAR should be more steady than Xander's, who we all presume will be moved off SS in a few years probably, and that decreases his value even more.

I definitely want them to extend Devers.
We all surely do. Do you let them get to market rates (like $325-350M+) to do so though?
 

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
25,258
We all surely do. Do you let them get to market rates (like $325-350M+) to do so though?
In Devers’ case yes I do. I think he has many many more premium years left, due to his much younger get age. I’ve said all along if I could only keep Xander or Raffy, it’s Devers in a no brainer.

Let me be clear - I pay him huge huge money instead of letting him get to free agency. They really need to not screw this one up. But it’s different with Xander.
 

Yelling At Clouds

Post-darwinian
SoSH Member
Jul 19, 2005
3,527
I wonder what the reaction would have been if they did an Astros/Cubs/Orioles-style teardown back when they made the M****e trade where they traded away Beni, Xander, Barnes, etc. Maybe I’m naive, but I think fans would be more receptive than popular opinion suggests. Or maybe not.
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
47,675
In Devers’ case yes I do. I think he has many many more premium years left, due to his much younger get age. I’ve said all along if I could only keep Xander or Raffy, it’s Devers in a no brainer.

Let me be clear - I pay him huge huge money instead of letting him get to free agency. They really need to not screw this one up. But it’s different with Xander.
Got it. Ok, we’re definitely on the same page then. I was prepared for Bogaerts’ departures this year. It doesn’t sting. But not retaining Devers would be tough, as the “development machine” may be on its way…but it’s not there yet.
 

jon abbey

Shanghai Warrior
Moderator
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
72,181
I wonder what the reaction would have been if they did an Astros/Cubs/Orioles-style teardown back when they made the M****e trade where they traded away Beni, Xander, Barnes, etc. Maybe I’m naive, but I think fans would be more receptive than popular opinion suggests. Or maybe not.
I think fans would have collectively gone ballistic, but increasingly looking like it’s what they should have done. Even I didn’t consider that as a possibility at the time though.
 

Toe Nash

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 28, 2005
5,716
02130
Benintendi is currently a free agent and we had plenty of frustrations with his contributions while he was here. He was a key guy in 2018 but was below average after that for us. We probably traded him at the nadir of his value and didn't get much for him, so plenty of criticism for that deal but he'd probably be leaving the team now or would have been dealt at the deadline along with Vazquez if we had kept him around. Not sure we would have gotten that much more for him if we had held on given his impending free agency and what the Royals got for him.

Better question is probably why he took such a step back after 2018 and if that says anything about the Red Sox coaching.
 

Minneapolis Millers

Wants you to please think of the Twins fans!
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
4,753
Twin Cities
Regarding Xander...

He played 10 years for the Red Sox.

1,264 games
5,389 PA
752 R (1 R every 7.2 PA)
1,410 H (1 H every 3.8 PA)
308 2b (1 2b every 17.5 PA)
156 HR (1 HR every 34.5 PA
683 RBI (1 RBI every 7.9 PA)
.292/.356/.458/.814, 117 ops+
34.9 bWAR (nearly 3.5 bWAR per year; 1 bWAR every 36.2 games)
Cost to Sox: $73.2 million ($2.1 million per bWAR)

Next 11 years, he's scheduled to play for San Diego. What are the odds that he accumulates 34.9 bWAR? What are the odds that he has a 117 ops+ for them? What are the odds he stays healthy enough to play this 1,200+ games? What are the odds that he hits 156 homers?

Cost to San Diego: $280 million

If he puts up 30 bWAR over these next 11 seasons, San Diego will end up paying $9.3 million per bWAR. That's four and a half times what Boston has paid per bWAR. And I think it's not good odds that Xander puts up 30 bWAR over the next 11 years. I can see about 4-5 bWAR on average for the next 3, then dipping down into the 3s or 2s for a few, and then into the 1s for the last 4-5 years, meaning I think he'll end up putting up about 25 bWAR over the next 11 years, which would mean SD is going to pay about $11.2 million per bWAR.

Of course I'm guessing and don't know for sure, but I don't think these are unreasonable guesses based on what we know about Xander and his stats.

So aside from our love for Xander, which is substantial, and actually means the Sox have a huge hole at SS now, isn't this EXACTLY what teams ought to be doing? Paying less for the first ten years of a guy's career, when he puts up MORE bWAR for a LOT less money, and then when he gets uber expensive as his career reaches the back nine, letting him go to sign somewhere else for ridiculous dollars?

I know that feels and sounds like fantasy baseball - that we don't have emotional (for good reasons, mind you - the guy is a Sox legend and hero) affinity for, but from a cold, hard business standpoint, don't we WANT our team to pay less for more production, and then when the guy gets hugely expensive and will be less effective, let someone else pay for those (much) more expensive, less effective years?

Isn't that just smart business, if you repeat that over and over?
Just because it modifies your math a bit, X played 9 years with us, unless you want to count his 50ABs in 2013 as a year. And really, it’s 8.4 years, with the shortened 2020 season. So 34.9 bWAR/8.4=4.15 WAR per season.

To your broader point, yes, given that binary choice, I and I think most on the board would agree that the San Diego kind of deal is the type well run teams should avoid. There are some of us who believe that X - despite Boras - might/could/should have been extended again with a more aggressive offer last spring. Say, 5/$150 added to his remaining 3/$60, for a total of 8/$210, which would have been a more palatable $8.4M/WAR. (This offer is on the high end of whatI think most of us would have asked for or expected in an extension for X a year ago, but therefore more likely to have been accepted.). Anyway, dirty water under the bridge…
 
Last edited:

YTF

Member
SoSH Member
Benintendi is currently a free agent and we had plenty of frustrations with his contributions while he was here. He was a key guy in 2018 but was below average after that for us. We probably traded him at the nadir of his value and didn't get much for him, so plenty of criticism for that deal but he'd probably be leaving the team now or would have been dealt at the deadline along with Vazquez if we had kept him around. Not sure we would have gotten that much more for him if we had held on given his impending free agency and what the Royals got for him.

Better question is probably why he took such a step back after 2018 and if that says anything about the Red Sox coaching.
Also, FWIW The Sox still have Winckowski. He didn't look very good last season and with no prior MLB experience he might have been pressed into duty sooner than expected due to injuries. He only threw 70.1 innings and at 24 years old I'm hoping there there's still room for growth. I'll add that I also wonder about the coaching philosophy when it comes to hitting. Even in 2021 there seemed to be a lot of bad ball chasing and it was Schwarber rather than coaches who seemed to be credited with the team taking a more patient approach to hitting as the team made it's post season push.
 

tbrown_01923

Member
SoSH Member
Sep 29, 2006
796
I bailed in 2017 because of the racism associated with the fans, and not wanting to support that. Came back spring of 2018 excited about the team... covid, rehiring Cora (cheater). I just faded back away. It's not bloom - I blame DD for some crappy signings. this team was destined for a shifty three year run.

Show me a compelling group of players and an organization that has high integrity and zero tolerance and active monitoring of racism - then I will come running back
 

Benj4ever

New Member
Nov 21, 2022
388
I watched all the games in 2020 and I'm supposed to ditch them now? Fuck no.

This team is going to be good, not great, and fun to watch. We'll see the development of Bello and Casas. We'll probably see some interesting young pitchers get a chance to do something. And hey, maybe we get lucky.
This is definitely a year upon which to build. I look for Bello, Casas, and Mata to be the bellweathers, with Rafaela not far behind.