In Chaim Do You Trust?

Do you trust Chaim Bloom to help bring the Sox back to contention?


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Shaky Walton

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Nov 20, 2019
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The World Series is going to end soon, which means that the Red Sox and Chaim Bloom are going to have to make a lot of decisions that will substantially impact the future of the franchise.

Alex Speier outlines many of them here: https://www.bostonglobe.com/2022/11/03/sports/red-sox-have-some-key-offseason-decisions-due-soon-here-is-what-expect/

I want to believe in Chaim Bloom's ability to make the right decisions. He seems earnest and bright. And even likable.

But I do not. I know that the sample size is small and that Chaim was arguably hired to be the Anti-Dombrowski...to build the system and collect prospects, while still being competitive year to year. And I also know that John Henry, if he has any sense of fairness at all, is unlikely to fire Bloom any time soon. The latter is seemingly doing the former's bidding. And yes, under Chaim Bloom's watch, the Sox were very close to making the World Series just last season

But I am not all confident that Bloom is going to make the right decisions in order to get the Sox back to the playoffs any time soon.

My reasons are all factors that are well known, and include:

- That he hasn't locked up either Devers or Bogaerts yet. Never mind both.

- The Renfroe-JBJ/prospects trade.

- Not signing Schwarber and getting someone like Jose Inglesias to play 2B or Iglesias himself if he was willing, and instead using his wallet on Trevor Story, who had a down year in 2021 and put up all of his numbers while a member of the Rockies.

- His penchant for picking up mediocre, at best, cast off from other teams.

- The trade of Christian Vazquez as the one "sell now" move when he kept everyone else in order to contend.

I am well aware that there are arguments for each of the moves he made, and that there are mitigating factors. And that he made smart moves like signing Michael Wacha. I also know that the individual decisions I have pointed to have been discussed many times on SoSH, and that prospects like David Hamilton are intriuging.

But for me, the sum total speaks volumes, and things like hating the Renfroe trade, being pissed off that they didn't sign Schwarber and get Iglesias, and being equally pissed that they did sign Story, were all first guesses, with the results being very close to what I expected.

So I don't trust Chaim Bloom to fix my team. To the contrary, I think he will fail miserably.

I would like to be very freaking wrong about that.

Do you think I will be? Do you think Bloom will, in fact, put together a winning team next season or soon thereafter? And if so, why do you think that?

And do you agree that John Henry is going to give Master Bloom lots of leeway?

EDIT: I just remembered that we already have a thread on Chaim Bloom. This new thread may be duplicative and there may not be any need for another thread on essentially the same topic. My apologies, if that's the case! Lock the thread as necessary!

EDIT 2: Changed Julio to Jose Iglesias. Thank you for the assist, @Joe Nation
 
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tims4wins

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Jul 15, 2005
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I’m a no, dawg

Too much focus on value and flexibility and not enough on high end talent. It works when you are the Patriots and have an all world coach and QB (who also takes a discounted salary). It works when you are in a small market like Oakland or Tampa where if you win 95 games it is great but if you lose 95 no biggie we’ll get a good draft pick and eventually rebound. It doesn’t work in Boston if you finish last multiple times over the course of several years.

And this is coming from someone who still doesn’t care that they traded Mookie.
 

brandonchristensen

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Feb 4, 2012
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It seems like he is into analytics to the point where he forgets that you still have to build a “team”. Yes player X does so and so and is cheaper than player Y who does a little less - but Y has a positive impact on the team and by getting rid of him you lose that.

There’s so much more to building a team than following whatever the computer says.

I’d like them to lock down Devers but that’s just one move which is a total no brainer, and he still has to make a ton of other decisions.

Wacha was great. I am a big pivetta fan, and I’m also really into Verdugo. But it’s hard to care about this team when you don’t know what players are going to stick. when we do get players that the fans like (Schwarber/Renfroe) they’re discarded for no real reason (Schwarber left as FA but it wasn’t a crazy deal).
 

moondog80

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Sep 20, 2005
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Yes.

The farm system went a long ass time with producing little to no cost controlled talent. While that was the case, they spent as much as the could without taking on much long term risk. As the farm situation changes, I expect the spending pattern to change as well, starting very soon.
 

A Bad Man

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Dec 12, 2016
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Love Chaim. Looking forward to seeing what he cooks up this offseason. Farm is SO much better. Gonna be exciting times in RSN these next few years.
 

Hank Scorpio

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I am not a fan. His trades have yielded relatively little. I don’t think he got enough for Mookie. The Renfroe trade was bad. The pitching sucked this year. I give him zero credit for drafting Mayer, because that pick is simply a product of a terrible 2020, and any other GM would have made that pick in that situation. Two of his three teams have been terrible, and 2021 has always felt flukey to me.
A team with the resources of the Boston Red Sox should be competitive every year, not frequent cellar dwellers.
 

Rasputin

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Yes.

The farm system went a long ass time with producing little to no cost controlled talent. While that was the case, they spent as much as the could without taking on much long term risk. As the farm situation changes, I expect the spending pattern to change as well, starting very soon.
This is pretty much where I'm at. They brought in Dombrowski to win soon and we did. They brought in Bloom to recover from that and we're getting there. There's a ton of decisions this offseason that will have lasting repercussions for good or ill, and I reserve the right to change my mind by the time pitchers and catchers report.
 

The Filthy One

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If the ownership group hired Bloom for a 3-year rebuild, I think they made a big mistake. That timeline doesn't match the reality of how long it takes to make a dormant farm system produce talent, which is the key to being consistently competitive. If the Sox are still floundering in 2024, we can start to talk, but prior to that seems really premature.

As an aside, I know Kyle Schwarber is playing the World Series and is an easy guy to root for, but he put up 2.2 WAR in 500+ at-bats this year, while Story put up 2.5 in 350 at-bats. Why would signing Schwarber have been the better move (Other than that he's a fan favorite)?
 

Rasputin

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Yes.

The farm system went a long ass time with producing little to no cost controlled talent. While that was the case, they spent as much as the could without taking on much long term risk. As the farm situation changes, I expect the spending pattern to change as well, starting very soon.
This is pretty much where I'm at. They brought in Dombrowski to win soon and we did. They brought in Bloom to recover from that and we're getting there. There's a ton of decisions this offseason that will have lasting repercussions for good or ill, and I reserve the right to change my mind by the time pitchers and catchers report.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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If the ownership group hired Bloom for a 3-year rebuild, I think they made a big mistake. That timeline doesn't match the reality of how long it takes to make a dormant farm system produce talent, which is the key to being consistently competitive. If the Sox are still floundering in 2024, we can start to talk, but prior to that seems really premature.

As an aside, I know Kyle Schwarber is playing the World Series and is an easy guy to root for, but he put up 2.2 WAR in 500+ at-bats this year, while Story put up 2.5 in 350 at-bats. Why would signing Schwarber have been the better move (Other than that he's a fan favorite)?
This is the best and correct post
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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This is pretty much where I'm at. They brought in Dombrowski to win soon and we did. They brought in Bloom to recover from that and we're getting there. There's a ton of decisions this offseason that will have lasting repercussions for good or ill, and I reserve the right to change my mind by the time pitchers and catchers report.
Are you okay?
 

nattysez

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Sep 30, 2010
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I lean "no," but I think it's too early to tell definitively. That said, the opening litany (which is otherwise excellent) leaves out two big misses:

The decision to remain over the tax number this season seemed based mainly on the hope that a team that hadn't played very well all season was going to magically turn it around after the trade deadline. I'd love to know what evidence convinced them that that was a risk worth taking. That could turn out to be a massively impactful mistake.

I don't want to re-litigate the Betts trade, but I think it's fair to say that Verdugo being the centerpiece of that deal increasingly appears to have been a mistake.
 

AlNipper49

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I don't mind a cycle of rebuilding. With that said, the biggest need the Sox have - bigger than Devers or X - is the organizational depth with regard to their starting pitching.

The Renfroe trade was hot garbage (with the outside, outside chance Binelas eventually makes up for it, but JBJ was fucking horrible). I'm willing to give mulligans on a trade or two. Not addressing starting pitching in the last few drafts is my biggest concern.
 

Seels

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No. I think the FO has been better at evaluating minor league talent, and worse, maybe even significantly worse, at evaluating big league talent. There's nothing about the FO or the major or minor league squads that make me think they can contend in the next 3-4 years.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Too soon to tell, will learn a lot more this off-season. How does Bloom handle the Bogaerts and Devers situations? Is he willing to sign some long term deals that he might regret? Willing to deal from the prospect depth we’ve supposedly created? Willing to make moves that help more now than in the future? I think it’s completely TBD and should be a fascinating off-season. Lots of work to do.
 

Toe Nash

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I think Chaim could do it but I don't know that I trust the ownership group to be patient and leave him alone long enough to build a contending core. They have not exactly shown that patience in the past when TV and concession numbers drop.
 

teddywingman

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Jul 31, 2009
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As an aside, I know Kyle Schwarber is playing the World Series and is an easy guy to root for, but he put up 2.2 WAR in 500+ at-bats this year, while Story put up 2.5 in 350 at-bats. Why would signing Schwarber have been the better move (Other than that he's a fan favorite)?
Dude hit 46 homers with a 130 OPS+

That would have made a difference on last years team.

I voted neutral because it's early, but I haven't been impressed. Watching this post season and seeing all these incredible relievers, I'm scratching my head thinking some of these guys had to have been available. This year's bullpen was circus ass.
 

daltonsoxfan

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Jul 31, 2006
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Seems as though this thread has been as much about Dombrowski as it has about Bloom. I'm in the camp that says I want to see what happens this winter. I will say that although I was never a Dombrowski fan it's difficult to argue with his career success as he has taken a few teams to the highest level competition. I am also concerned about Devers - his dropoff in the second half specifically and his overall health.
 

Mugsy's Jock

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I haven’t seen the moves yet that feel like they’re advancing the team to a pennant in the next few years, but I do respect his track record in building a farm system and I believe in Bloom’s smarts. So I voted no opinion, but if he doesn’t have a good 2023 it’ll become a no.
 

soxhop411

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WRT schwarber, we are looking at it with hindsight...

Did anyone really think that going into this season that JDM would have one of the worst offensive seasons of his career?

and again our 1B problems were supposed to be solved by Triston Casas, but he had a freak ankle injury that derailed his season....

if we signed schwarber for 1B, and Casas was tearing the cover off the ball in the minors, and JDM was having even an average offensive season, where would he have played?
 

WheresDewey

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Nov 18, 2007
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I voted yes, though it's not a strong yes. Chaim has shown great ability to find cheap and under utilized talent, such as Whitlock, Pivetta, Kike. He's also made some mistakes.

If he can hold on to Devers and have more hits than misses, I'll feel justified in my optimism. If the Sox lose both Xander and Devers and keep running out a terrible OF and bullpen, I'll change my opinion.
 

Daniel_Son

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Yes. He clearly has a long-term vision beyond "win now" that he's sticking to. He's got an impeccable pedigree.

The Sox have had some great years in the JHW era, but they've also had some really shitty years. I want them to stop with the boom-or-bust nonsense and start building a franchise that can contend every year. I think Bloom is the best guy to get us there.

And worst case scenario, he's building a really solid farm system. That gives us an advantage we haven't had in several years.
 

CoffeeNerdness

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WRT schwarber, we are looking at it with hindsight...

Did anyone really think that going into this season that JDM would have one of the worst offensive seasons of his career?

and again our 1B problems were supposed to be solved by Triston Casas, but he had a freak ankle injury that derailed his season....

if we signed schwarber for 1B, and Casas was tearing the cover off the ball in the minors, and JDM was having even an average offensive season, where would he have played?
Left field where he played 139 games this year and 15 games for the Sox in 2021. Mix in some games at 1B/DH. Trade Verdugo.
 

mikcou

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May 13, 2007
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Schwarber was a horrendous defender (-14 DRS) and Story was very good (+6).

https://fieldingbible.com/DRSLeaderboard
Its probably a scenario where WAR should be taken with an enormous grain of salt as to his value with respect to his contract. He should be DHing mostly (and would pick up value doing that rather than play LF that terribly). The fact that he was forced to play the OF because Harper, who should be playing, cannot due to health, while models dont like it.. That is something that can't really be picked up by statistical models.

Playing DH instead doesnt make him a 5 win player, but is probably consistent with the 2.75-3 win level he put up in 2021.
 

Mueller's Twin Grannies

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Dec 19, 2009
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So far, no. And I don't really think that it's likely to change over the course of an off-season. I've had this nagging feeling for a long time they the Sox FO is looking at 2024 or 2025 as the true start of their next great window and the time in between is all about creating the illusion of trying while really biding their time until it's "their" time. Do I have anything to base this on? No, just a weird feeling that '23 and, maybe, '24 are going to be "bridge" years without the public assertion.

Like the OP, I would like to be very wrong about that. I just don't see it happening. Bloom is making moves for the future, for the long haul, and I think he may be willing to sacrifice a couple of the best years some of the guys currently on the team have left to get there, for whatever reason.

So I'm a no, but it's got a parenthetical "...?" after.
 

JM3

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Just for fun...

- That he hasn't locked up either Devers or Bogaerts yet. Never mind both.
Do you know what they are asking for? What if it's more than... [consults max offer thread]

Nvm you do not have a stated cap on what you would pay.

- The Renfroe-JBJ/prospects trade.
The funny thing about the Renfroe trade is that most of the people who bash Bloom the most for it are the same people who were so mad that Bloom let JBJ walk the year before & signed Renfroe off the scrap heap.

Those people (not saying at all that you're one of them) would have paid far more for an extra terrible year of JBJ & never made space for Renfroe & not received those 2 prospects.

That trade was the worst thing I think Bloom has done, though. Not so much for the trade itself which obviously has not worked out so far, but because another shoe didn't drop to actually fill that new hole. I expected JBJ to be the 4th outfielder & not an actual ever day player.

Without that trade they're probably about 3 wins better (Renfroe's 2.7 WAR, JBJ -0.5), so not really the reason they weren't so good this year on its own.

- Not signing Schwarber and getting someone like Julio Inglesias to play 2B or Iglesias himself if he was willing, and instead using his wallet on Trevor Story, who had a down year in 2021 and put up all of his numbers while a member of the Rockies.
Even in hindsight I think this is pretty clearly the correct choice? Defense matters & will start mattering more. Baserunning is going to start mattering more.

& no one would even care we didn't sign Schwarber if Bloom hadn't traded basically nothing to get him to begin with.

- His penchant for picking up mediocre, at best, cast off from other teams.
They're obviously not all going to work out, but he's had a pretty good list of hits (Wacha, Schreiber, Kiké, Renfroe, Whitlock, Refsnyder, Strahm, etc.).

- The trade of Christian Vazquez as the one "sell now" move when he kept everyone else in order to contend.
Yeah...I have no issue. The return on Vazquez was really nice for an impending free agent & they were able to replace what he was providing by unloading Diekman & getting back a cost-controlled, better defensive catcher who has 3 more arb years. Seems like a win/win.

Bloom is tasked with walking that tightrope & trying to compete while building something sustainable. They were mathematically alive (15-25% depending on which model you believe) & expecting Sale/Eovaldi/Devers back.

He got a good return on Vaz, so he made that trade. He got Pham, McGuire & Hosmer for basically nothing so he made those trades.

What selling did you want him to do? Take whatever mediocre flyer prospect someone would have traded for JD? Trade a questionably healthed Eovaldi for nothing great & lose the chance to QO? Trade someone under contract for next year who might be part of the future core?

If you get real value, sure, you can blow it up a bit, but it didn't seem like real value was really on the table too much (see e.g. Cubs not trading Contreras), so why not just give it a shot & hope for the best? I doubt they turned down real future equity to preserve their 2022 equity.

Do you think Bloom will, in fact, put together a winning team next season or soon thereafter?
Yes.

And if so, why do you think that?
Because they're a smart modern franchise with deep pockets doing smart modern franchise stuff that will eventually pay off with sustainable success.

And do you agree that John Henry is going to give Master Bloom lots of leeway?
Doubt he'll need much more, but sure.
 

lexrageorge

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Bloom was brought in specifically to rebuild the farm via the draft, a strategy that takes a 4-5 years to start showing dividends. So, I vote yes, but the check is going to come due over the course of the next year or so.
 

nvalvo

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I am currently a "yes." And I basically want to see where we stand on Opening Day 2024 before I really sway from that.

In trying to build the farm (which he's done quite meaningfully surprisingly quickly) while also seeking to contend, he's made some high-risk, high-reward moves that I think have rubbed some people the wrong way. I don't think we can extrapolate from risky moves like the Renfroe-JBJ+ trade that he will operate like that all the way around the success cycle. When the time comes to buy unambiguously, he will buy unambiguously, and I expect that process begins this off season, and we have a pretty substantially different looking club, and a much younger one, by 2024.
 

Joe Nation

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Jul 30, 2005
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Wow I did not know Chaim signed Julio Iglesias! I trust him to lead the Sox moving forward by this acquisition alone!

"To all the GMs I've loved before...."

- Not signing Schwarber and getting someone like Julio Inglesias to play 2B or Iglesias himself if he was willing, and instead using his wallet on Trevor Story, who had a down year in 2021 and put up all of his numbers while a member of the Rockies.
 

Tony Pena's Gas Cloud

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Just for fun...



Do you know what they are asking for? What if it's more than... [consults max offer thread]

Nvm you do not have a stated cap on what you would pay.



The funny thing about the Renfroe trade is that most of the people who bash Bloom the most for it are the same people who were so mad that Bloom let JBJ walk the year before & signed Renfroe off the scrap heap.

Those people (not saying at all that you're one of them) would have paid far more for an extra terrible year of JBJ & never made space for Renfroe & not received those 2 prospects.

That trade was the worst thing I think Bloom has done, though. Not so much for the trade itself which obviously has not worked out so far, but because another shoe didn't drop to actually fill that new hole. I expected JBJ to be the 4th outfielder & not an actual ever day player.

Without that trade they're probably about 3 wins better (Renfroe's 2.7 WAR, JBJ -0.5), so not really the reason they weren't so good this year on its own.



Even in hindsight I think this is pretty clearly the correct choice? Defense matters & will start mattering more. Baserunning is going to start mattering more.

& no one would even care we didn't sign Schwarber if Bloom hadn't traded basically nothing to get him to begin with.



They're obviously not all going to work out, but he's had a pretty good list of hits (Wacha, Schreiber, Kiké, Renfroe, Whitlock, Refsnyder, Strahm, etc.).



Yeah...I have no issue. The return on Vazquez was really nice for an impending free agent & they were able to replace what he was providing by unloading Diekman & getting back a cost-controlled, better defensive catcher who has 3 more arb years. Seems like a win/win.

Bloom is tasked with walking that tightrope & trying to compete while building something sustainable. They were mathematically alive (15-25% depending on which model you believe) & expecting Sale/Eovaldi/Devers back.

He got a good return on Vaz, so he made that trade. He got Pham, McGuire & Hosmer for basically nothing so he made those trades.

What selling did you want him to do? Take whatever mediocre flyer prospect someone would have traded for JD? Trade a questionably healthed Eovaldi for nothing great & lose the chance to QO? Trade someone under contract for next year who might be part of the future core?

If you get real value, sure, you can blow it up a bit, but it didn't seem like real value was really on the table too much (see e.g. Cubs not trading Contreras), so why not just give it a shot & hope for the best? I doubt they turned down real future equity to preserve their 2022 equity.



Yes.



Because they're a smart modern franchise with deep pockets doing smart modern franchise stuff that will eventually pay off with sustainable success.



Doubt he'll need much more, but sure.
Thank you for being a voice of reason. I was going to pick apart the complaints but you beat me to it. You're 100% on every point.
 

OCD SS

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WRT schwarber, we are looking at it with hindsight...

Did anyone really think that going into this season that JDM would have one of the worst offensive seasons of his career?

and again our 1B problems were supposed to be solved by Triston Casas, but he had a freak ankle injury that derailed his season....

if we signed schwarber for 1B, and Casas was tearing the cover off the ball in the minors, and JDM was having even an average offensive season, where would he have played?
I thought JD has been in steady decline since 2020. The only hope was that he solved the problem himself by opting out. Any trade just to clear his salary and make room for Schwarber was a long shot, and the end result was dictated by payroll and JD being a sunk cost/ roster spot.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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I can't believe how many people think that JBJ was acquired to play every day and that injuries didn't wreck their plan.
I feel like this has been discussed a billion times, but read the quotes from when Bloom acquired him - it was all about the importance of having a “second CF” in right and how he thought JBJ would bounce back (He also has the worst substitute / PH stats of all time). . Hell, they broke camp with Arroyo as the backup OF. If Jackie was acquired as a backup, who exactly was supposed to be the starter?

And it was actually a worthwhile gamble- JBJ was still a really goofs player at Fenway. He was just miserable everywhere else, which really makes little sense.
 
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Red(s)HawksFan

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I feel like this has been discussed a billion times, but read the quotes from when Bloom acquired him - it was all about the importance of having a “second CF” in right and how he thought JBJ would bounce back. Hell, they broke camp with Arroyo as the backup OF. If Jackie was acquired as a backup, who exactly was supposed to be the starter?
So are we just ignoring that the lockout took away 3 months of the off-season where those things could have been better addressed? I feel like that is a part of the story that no one talks about. The last three months of the off-season got compressed into a week and a half and that's going to cause things to slip through the cracks. A target signs somewhere else because they're in a rush to get any job and the Sox front office was looking the other way for ten seconds. The sort of thing that's unlikely to happen if the conversations are taking place in December or January rather than three days before camp opens. I'm sure every other team ran into similar issues so it's not just a Sox problem. I just think there's a possibility that there was a (better?) plan in place for the outfield that was disrupted by the way the off-season was interrupted and then concluded in a mad rush game of musical chairs.

I voted yes. I think things are moving in the right direction despite the disappointing results of this season. I suspect most of the voting is recency bias and that if this poll was put up 12 months ago, the responses would nearly all be positive (and vice versa 24 months ago).
 

sezwho

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I voted yes, though it's not a strong yes. Chaim has shown great ability to find cheap and under utilized talent, such as Whitlock, Pivetta, Kike. He's also made some mistakes.

If he can hold on to Devers and have more hits than misses, I'll feel justified in my optimism. If the Sox lose both Xander and Devers and keep running out a terrible OF and bullpen, I'll change my opinion.
I want to vote yes, as I too am a numbers nerd, but the last couple years aren’t inspiring and last years on field oft inspired a goat rodeo.

For those that saw hope in their playoff run, I’m happy for you but it seemed like empty calories.

I’m still waiting to hear how long Chaim said it would really take to build that machine. Three years in and the mid minors are looking healthy but that’s a long way from juggernaut.

one more year for Chaim to show it