Let's Lay Off That Throttle

BigSoxFan

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I'm on board with Breslow's quote, and the posters who have cited the Atlanta model. That's what I want to see.

I was looking for something about Theo's "$100 million player development machine" (which I'm still eagerly awaiting) and I found this:

https://bostondirtdogs.boston.com/2003/theo_chat_2.6.03.html

Lots of familiar names there-was this a SoSh Q&A with Theo? @philly sox fan was asking the same question 20 years ago-where is my PDM?
We’d all love the Atlanta model but that model is nearly impossible to replicate. They signed Acuna for $100K and he turned into an MVP while signing one of the most team-friendly long term deals in sports history. And then Albies did the same along with Harris.

I think the Rangers model is more of our sweet spot. Some heavy FA spending combined with cheap farm talent and the occasional surprise like Adolis was.
 

SouthernBoSox

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The key to winning a World Series is to put yourself in a position to make the playoffs every year.

Punting 2 season waiting for 20 year olds isn’t a strategy.

Devers, Casas, Bello, Kutter, Duran, Abreu, Whitlock, Houck are young at the major league level NOW. Help them. Help them get to the playoffs.
 

Auger34

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I am not going to link to the X post, but @RedSoxStats posted the article with the comment "These are some sorry ass quotes".

Stats is an excellent follow year round. He is not a beat writer, radio personality, or social media bomb tosser. For Stats to read that and come away with that comment means a lot to me, anyways.
This.

RedSoxStats, who I believe is/was SoxScout on here, is a great follow. He's more on the optimistic side of the coin for a fan....and he clearly seems down on what the owners are doing with not spending money.

I apprecate the quotes and resetting the expectations for fans. I think they are pretty late in the game and pretty discouraging overall but we at least have a baseline here. This year is a "bridge year" where the expectation is to maybe compete for a wild card but not likely.

Hopefully next offseason and next year FSG decides to flex a little financial muscle
 

sezwho

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I am down on ownership, but I also understand that saying the quiet part out loud (i.e. the bolded) would result in even worse PR. Telling your fans before the season starts that you're not really in it this year is a bad look, especially after some down seasons and possibly a perceived change in ownership ethos with regards to payroll since payroll and trying hard have a direct correlation in the mind of many, especially casual Sox fans. That said, where the Sox shoot themselves in the foot are things like the full throttle comment. That frustrates me. I get that they are rebuilding. Most posters here get that they are rebuilding. Some people (including myself) are frustrated that the rebuild window keeps getting extended (the 2025 window of Bloom is turning into 2026, and that's only if the top 3 prospects are all impact big leaguers which - we have no idea, especially if there are injuries and a ton of pressure and no real pitching staff) but it is what it is. So knowing all that, for ownership to have the galaxy brain to announce that they are "going to be competitive this year" and "full throttle" (Werner's words) when that doesn't look likely really just assumes that most fans are stupid enough to believe what they are told and not what they see. And THEN to have Breslow and Werner walk those comments back muddies the water by making it seem like someone - ownership or Breslow - isn't being honest.
Kennedy and Werner talk like they live in Red Sox days of Christmas Past. They aren't stupid so I can only assume they think I am, which is a form of stupid as well I guess.

They are tarnishing the brand and persist talking as though there is something special still coming from the FO. I believe when JWH bought the Sox he needed to win like he needed to breathe (or whatever he does). Now, they just want to sit a little over 500 without needing to get financially 'uncomfortable' and wait for the dice roll.
 
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Auger34

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Perhaps because Breslow isn't insane and he also saw the writing on the wall that both guys were heartset on going to L.A.? Missing out on those two in particular had nothing to do with whether or not ownership had a redline limit on the payroll.
Didn't Werner say the exact opposite of this?

It sounds like they had plans on going over budget for Yamamoto because they thought he was worth it but since they didn't get him, it was decided that the payroll would be lower
 
Jan 26, 2014
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The key to winning a World Series is to put yourself in a position to make the playoffs every year.

Punting 2 season waiting for 20 year olds isn’t a strategy.

Devers, Casas, Bello, Kutter, Duran, Abreu, Whitlock, Houck are young at the major league level NOW. Help them. Help them get to the playoffs.
What if they believe that those players are not enough. If them plus Snell/Montgomery plus another FA or two still won't make the team competitive this year?
 

jbupstate

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Or maybe it’s the problem of a confused ownership group demanding that the team be competitive to put butts in seats while also demanding that the team (re)build to something sustainable long term.

I don’t remember talking about a full on rebuild until this offseason; any “rebuilding” in previous years was limited to the farm system.
This is a problem created by ownership. They wanted the last guy to thread the needle. Kind of looked okay in 2021 but it was a big request and it absolutely blew up in their face. The last guy had almost impossible orders, couldn’t get it done and was canned. Deservedly so but a scapegoat at the same time.

The new guy is given similar orders but YY makes a decision and the trade market hasn’t happened. The rest of the SP are risky commitments (remember Sale? Price??) and it might not come down to the most money wins.

I look at the Yankees committing to Rodon last year. They are looking for another top tier pitcher THIS offseason because they can’t count of health of Rodon… Stroman isn’t the pitcher that finished their offseason.

Still a lot of time left…. Fingers crossed
 

greenmountains

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When I read Breslow’s comments, my first reaction was that he was talking to Boras as much as he was talking to us. The two sides seem to be dancing, including using propaganda.
100%

Here's what Breslow can't say....."It doesn't matter what another team offers, we are going to outbid them. We need a starting pitcher and we will not be denied."

It's Scott F'ing Boras. He knows how much the Sox need pitching. But you at least have to keep him from putting his hand directly in your pocket.

Maybe it's not in free agency, but the Sox will acquire a starter in the (2/3 range). There is simply too much redundancy on the 40 man roster with middle infielders and outfielders. I personally think Duran needs to go (trade high) as I don't think he's the real deal. But it might be Rafaela (which I would hate to see....as I think he's a game changer defensively in CF even if he only hits like JBJ). Duran/Rafaela, York, and Houck gets you some real talent. The key is finding that number 2 with 3 years of control left.

Perfect world....sign Montgomery and trade of another 2/3 type. And this is team in the playoff picture.
 

RS2004foreever

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A core part of Breslow's quote is focusing on Mayer/Anthony/Teel.
I am sure others have done this but I went back and looked at the top 20 fangraphs prospect in 2021 to see how they faired.
Average Cumulative War - All 3.63, 2.23 in 2023
Average Cumulative War pitchers, 1.5, .475 in 2023.
Of the 5 pitchers, Pearson, Gore, Patino, Anderson and Manning only Manning (2.5) and Gore (2.2) had a War in 2023 higher than 2. One, Anderson, had TJ surgery. Bello's season last year looks really good in this context.
Of 15 position guys, 7 posted a War higher than 3 in 2023: Franco (4.6, likely out of baseball), Rutschman (5.1), Arosnerana (3.3), Hayes (3.2), Marsh (3.7), Witt (5.7) and Rodriguez (5.4). Some others guys were young and it may be too early to tell (Abrams 1.8, 20 in '21), but for the most part, the other guys look like busts.

The hit rate for the top 20 prospects is higher than I thought. Nearly half of the positional players are REALLY good, and 4 look like all-stars/MVP candidates.
I am going to do the top 100 for 20, 21 and '22 and see what the data says. Man though it pitching hard.
 

chawson

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Didn't Werner say the exact opposite of this?

It sounds like they had plans on going over budget for Yamamoto because they thought he was worth it but since they didn't get him, it was decided that the payroll would be lower
No, he's saying that there's not a hardline budget, and its up to the GM/CBO to determine how to use resources to build the team.

It's not like the Sox are just going to pivot and offer the contract they would have given Yamamoto to Snell or Montgomery, because they're not comparable players.
 

CR67dream

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Didn't Werner say the exact opposite of this?

It sounds like they had plans on going over budget for Yamamoto because they thought he was worth it but since they didn't get him, it was decided that the payroll would be lower
Not so much that payroll would be lower, more that whatever the baseline they have for spending is flexible, but only for players that are elite or bordering on it.

In other words, they were willing to invest in what they saw as elite talent, even though he's never thrown a pitch in MLB. Unfortunately, it turned out the number that would have taken to pry him from LA (and I'm not convinced there is one, really) was beyond ridiculous and would not have been good for the future of the franchise. We can argue for weeks (and have) about how serious the Sox were, but at the end of the day, it was always out of reach.

None of us knows knows for sure what's going on over on Jersey Street, but I really don't take yesterday's comments as convincing evidence that they are necessarily going to stand pat. As others have said, it seems there was a lot of posturing for Boras's (and others) benefit, and I think that the lowering of expectations was a great move, because "full throttle" was never even close to accurate. At least now we have the chance to be pleasantly surprised rather than bitterly disappointed.

It ain't much, but to me it ain't nothin'.... ;)
 
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RedOctober3829

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This is a silly point to make. Are you saying you know the nature of the Yamamoto negotiations? Do you think it's more accurate that the Sox were never seriously interested because a formal offer wasn't made? Would they be more serious in your mind if they had continuously made formal offers every time the bidding went up?

The reporting around Yamamoto was that there was a protracted courtship and discussion period while the player determined where he wanted to play. After that — quote — "the money would follow." That seems to be exactly what happened. I don't know why we need to conspiratorially believe that that is an outright lie, and that instead the truth is that the Red Sox orchestrated several months of public pursuit as some kind of charade to conceal the super secret new spending cap set by ownership.
It's not silly at all actually. I've said this from the beginning: the Red Sox were very interested in Yamamoto as was the rest of the league because why wouldn't you be? When it got down to the money part, their version of a competitive offer did not match what YY was looking for so YY eliminated them from consideration. The teams that warranted further consideration from YY's camp(SF, LAD, NYY, NYM) got 2nd visits. It's not some "conspiracy" as much as you want to characterize people who want to be critical of what the front office/ownership has been doing.

In fact, their pursuit of YY is very similar to those of a lot of their free agent targets the past couple of offseasons. Red Sox are interested in so-and-so, but the player eventually goes to another team for more money. At some point, they're going to have to overextend their comfort zone to secure the target and make this team better. It's been 4 years and you can argue they are no closer to being a consistent contender than they were then. Putting all your eggs in all of the prospects coming up and hitting is a very dangerous game to play.
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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In fact, their pursuit of YY is very similar to those of a lot of their free agent targets the past couple of offseasons. Red Sox are interested in so-and-so, but the player eventually goes to another team for more money. At some point, they're going to have to overextend their comfort zone to secure the target and make this team better. It's been 4 years and you can argue they are no closer to being a consistent contender than they were then. Putting all your eggs in all of the prospects coming up and hitting is a very dangerous game to play.
While I agree with this totally, it's not like Breslow can "fire" the roster or the minor leagues and start from scratch.

Based on his earlier comments in the year (saying they were going to try and trade prospects for starting pitching) and the comments made in that Globe story, he probably doesn't have a lot of a choice in that regard. MAT likely have a lot of trade value. Everyone else in the system likely does not.

If one believes there is a budget (I do) and that it's probably $LTT(.97) on an annual basis AND teams aren't interested in the other pieces in the system, he kind of has very little choice BUT to bank on the prospects. Especially if he doesn't think the roster is good enough to warrant blowing through the Luxury Tax this year.

I've been saying for a long time that Breslow is in a really tough spot. The roster he took over isn't good (especially pitching) and has a lot of redundant pieces. The farm system has three really nice pieces but nothing else that is terribly valuable on the trade market, nor expected to really provide much any time soon (2024 almost assuredly, decent bet not until mid 2025 at the earliest).

It's certainly not ideal, but if teams don't want Duran, Bleis, Yorke, Perales, Abreu, Gonzalez or Cespedes, it's not like he can force them to make a trade.

It's why I think he has (and hopefully will continue to) sell off pieces that won't be here in 2025 and beyond for more kicks at the proverbial prospect can, similar to Grissom and Fitts.
 

Rovin Romine

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That’s what ownership wants us to believe, sure, and many do. But we don’t know, obviously. There’s been zero concrete reporting about an actual Sox offer to YY or Imanaga, is there? And even then, who knows what’s what.
Well they never even got a second meeting so how competitive were they really? I mean for all we know they completely misread the market and came in $50m under. That doesn’t mean anything Werner said is a lie.
That Warner et al felt very strongly about being competitive? Quite possibly--people are capable of all manner of astonishing feelings, grounded in reality or not.

That they were actually competitive? That's, at best, a lot murkier. There were a couple of reports in December they'd offered around $300 million that were contradicted the next day. I don't believe we heard anything from the team period. We know that YY never visited Boston and that the Red Sox were not mentioned as one of his final suitors. It certainly seems like final no offers regardless of budget were made.

Signs point to YY intending to go the Dodgers all along. Breslow and company might have realized that in the mid- to late-stages and bailed. The Red Sox don't seem to have been particularly competitive, though, unless we count being among the initial teams to meet with YY as competitive. And Warner's feelings regarding them being competitive or in the mix are meaningless. It's also meaningless as proof of their full-throttleness, which is ostensibly why he shared his feelings so expansively.
This is not a particularly hard circle to square.

1) the market predictions for YY were for X dollars at Y years.​
2) the Sox wanted him and were prepared to go X+1 and Y+3M (to use a random number.)​

And, Hey Presto! - that's thinking you're going to be competitive, wanting the player, and making a competitive offer. No conspiracy theory required.
 

6-5 Sadler

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The hit rate for the top 20 prospects is higher than I thought. Nearly half of the positional players are REALLY good, and 4 look like all-stars/MVP candidates.
I am going to do the top 100 for 20, 21 and '22 and see what the data says. Man though it pitching hard.
Nice work here! Not sure if you saw but I did something similar a day or two ago but just looking at how likely a top prospect (I defined as 55 FV / top 50ish) was to make the majors. But yeah similar conclusion, position player prospects tend to be safer than I had generally assumed. I’m interested to see the success rates looking back further.
 

SouthernBoSox

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What if they believe that those players are not enough. If them plus Snell/Montgomery plus another FA or two still won't make the team competitive this year?
Then they’ll have to acquire even more next year? This is a perpetual thought when you just never add to your team at the major league level.

Right now, the Red Sox are staring at a scenario where they have 2 starters going into 2025 and no high minor starters in the pipeline outside of maybe Fitts.

Montgomery wouldn’t just be a 2024 acquisition. You want them going into 2025 needing to get 3 starters via FA?
 
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chawson

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It's not silly at all actually. I've said this from the beginning: the Red Sox were very interested in Yamamoto as was the rest of the league because why wouldn't you be? When it got down to the money part, their version of a competitive offer did not match what YY was looking for so YY eliminated them from consideration. The teams that warranted further consideration from YY's camp(SF, LAD, NYY, NYM) got 2nd visits. It's not some "conspiracy" as much as you want to characterize people who want to be critical of what the front office/ownership has been doing.

In fact, their pursuit of YY is very similar to those of a lot of their free agent targets the past couple of offseasons. Red Sox are interested in so-and-so, but the player eventually goes to another team for more money. At some point, they're going to have to overextend their comfort zone to secure the target and make this team better. It's been 4 years and you can argue they are no closer to being a consistent contender than they were then. Putting all your eggs in all of the prospects coming up and hitting is a very dangerous game to play.
You seem to be doggedly clinging to this narrative that money is the only determining factor in any of these negotiations, in all situations, for any player, and that it's the Red Sox inability to pay more than anyone else. Maybe that's your worldview — in which case, good for you — but it certainly doesn't seem like the case with Yamamoto, to give one example.

Why else was there a protracted weeks-long process of courting the player? Why wouldn't teams just talk money at the exclusion of all other factors?

I've been on record for years saying that I want the Red Sox to spend pretty mightily. But we can't force players to sign, and it's absurd to think that there aren't other factors involved.
 

RedOctober3829

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Then they’ll he’ll to acquire even more next year? This is a perpetual thought when you just never add to your team at the major league level.

Right now, the Red Sox are staring at a scenario where they have 2 starters going into 2025 and no high minor starters in the pipeline outside of maybe Fitts.

Montgomery wouldn’t just be a 2024 acquisition. You want them going into 2025 needing to get 3 starters via FA?
You're spot on here. They can't wait to see if the top prospects hit before starting to commit more money to the major league team. Montgomery would be a nice long-term building block for the rotation and strengthen a big area of weakness without dipping into the prospect pool.
 

RedOctober3829

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You seem to be doggedly clinging to this narrative that money is the only determining factor in any of these negotiations, in all situations, for any player, and that it's the Red Sox inability to pay more than anyone else. Maybe that's your worldview — in which case, good for you — but it certainly doesn't seem like the case with Yamamoto, to give one example.

Why else was there a protracted weeks-long process of courting the player? Why wouldn't teams just talk money at the exclusion of all other factors?

I've been on record for years saying that I want the Red Sox to spend pretty mightily. But we can't force players to sign, and it's absurd to think that there aren't other factors involved.
I never said that money was the only determining factor in where a player goes. But it is one of the biggest factors and even you can't deny that. The Red Sox are no longer a team that a player is willing to take comparable or less money because of a chance to win. Therefore, you are going to have to overpay for a player to come here. In the YY situation, it is a very unique situation because the player has never lived in this country before and wanted to learn and get to know the organizations involved. That is not the norm. When a player hits free agency, money and comfortability with the organization(chances at winning, direction of the team, and a bunch of other things) are usually the two biggest factors.
 

Philip Jeff Frye

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Then they’ll have to acquire even more next year? This is a perpetual thought when you just never add to your team at the major league level.

Right now, the Red Sox are staring at a scenario where they have 2 starters going into 2025 and no high minor starters in the pipeline outside of maybe Fitts.

Montgomery wouldn’t just be a 2024 acquisition. You want them going into 2025 needing to get 3 starters via FA?
It's crazy to me that they seem to be saying (and posters here are argeeing) that they can't really compete until the youngsters are ready to contribute, so there's no point in committing to players for more than a year or two in the meantime. Are Giolito and O'Neill going to be around when Mayer and Teel come up to the majors? What's the point of acquiring them if they're not?

It seems to me that the ownership group has settled on the "let's spend enough money to have a payroll that has some chance of getting to the never-been-easier-to-qualify post-season where then-anything-can-happen" strategy. Instead of picking up guys for a year or two, they should be crafting a roster with several years in mind, but they're just not interested. The result is a volatile mix of talent and a revolving door of marginal players who are here today and gone tomorrow.

I don't know what to root for here. If Giolito is a top three Cy Young candidate and O'Neill is getting MVP votes, they're not going to be here in 2025. Do I want that outcome?
 

Max Power

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I don't know what to root for here. If Giolito is a top three Cy Young candidate and O'Neill is getting MVP votes, they're not going to be here in 2025. Do I want that outcome?
Yes. I don't know how this is even debatable. If they're both great, the team is going to win a bunch of games. Who cares if that doesn't mean they're going to repeat that performance for the Red Sox the following year? The 2018 team won 108 games and rolled to the World Series. Basically the same roster came back the next year and won 84 games. Past results are no guarantee of future performance, especially on a baseball field.
 

CR67dream

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Yes. I don't know how this is even debatable. If they're both great, the team is going to win a bunch of games. Who cares if that doesn't mean they're going to repeat that performance for the Red Sox the following year? The 2018 team won 108 games and rolled to the World Series. Basically the same roster came back the next year and won 84 games. Past results are no guarantee of future performance, especially on a baseball field.
Exactly, and if that happens they'll pay Giolito, and Breslow will get votes for executive of the year for getting him and O'Neil, and they will be set up just fine.
 

chrisfont9

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I never said that money was the only determining factor in where a player goes. But it is one of the biggest factors and even you can't deny that. The Red Sox are no longer a team that a player is willing to take comparable or less money because of a chance to win. Therefore, you are going to have to overpay for a player to come here. In the YY situation, it is a very unique situation because the player has never lived in this country before and wanted to learn and get to know the organizations involved. That is not the norm. When a player hits free agency, money and comfortability with the organization(chances at winning, direction of the team, and a bunch of other things) are usually the two biggest factors.
The alternative is to bring them in on some other pretext (e.g. trade or Giolito's pillow deal) and hope they connect with the place. Boston is an acquired taste, but for people with sophisticated palates, they will know. Then the playing field is level at worst.

I still think Cease is Breslow's white whale.
 

Rovin Romine

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Right now, the Red Sox are staring at a scenario where they have 2 starters going into 2025 and no high minor starters in the pipeline outside of maybe Fitts.
In 2025, assuming no trades are made, the Sox will control:

Bello, Crawford, Winckowski, Houck (plus Murphy/Walter.) Fitts will have finished his first year in AAA, and Wikelman would have finished his first year in AA at that point.

It's thin (and Fitts needs a third pitch), but hardly only 2 pitchers who are capable of being starters for 2025.

Instead of picking up guys for a year or two, they should be crafting a roster with several years in mind, but they're just not interested. The result is a volatile mix of talent and a revolving door of marginal players who are here today and gone tomorrow.
Traded Luis Urías to the Seattle Mariners. Received Isaiah Campbell.
Traded Alex Verdugo to the New York Yankees. Received Richard Fitts (minors), Nicholas Judice (minors) and Greg Weissert.
Traded Ryan Ammons (minors) to the New York Mets. Received Justin Slaten (minors).
Traded Chris Sale and cash to the Atlanta Braves. Received Vaughn Grissom.
 

SouthernBoSox

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In 2025, assuming no trades are made, the Sox will control:

Bello, Crawford, Winckowski, Houck (plus Murphy/Walter.) Fitts will have finished his first year in AAA, and Wikelman would have finished his first year in AA at that point.

It's thin (and Fitts needs a third pitch), but hardly only 2 pitchers who are capable of being starters for 2025.



Traded Luis Urías to the Seattle Mariners. Received Isaiah Campbell.
Traded Alex Verdugo to the New York Yankees. Received Richard Fitts (minors), Nicholas Judice (minors) and Greg Weissert.
Traded Ryan Ammons (minors) to the New York Mets. Received Justin Slaten (minors).
Traded Chris Sale and cash to the Atlanta Braves. Received Vaughn Grissom.
I’m not sure how you can type that list out and come to any conclusion other than the Red Sox are in a dire straight starting pitching wise. I mean, Brandon Walter? Stop.

They need a controlled starter maybe as much as any organization in baseball. It’s really bad. They don’t have one single sure fire starting prospect. None. All of them look like maybe back end starters but more likely relievers.
 

curly2

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It also sounds like what the last guy they fired was trying to do?

I was absolutely not a Chaim guy but I don't really get canning him if you're just going to continue the same approach.
But part of Bloom's approach was to not give high draft picks or big international bonuses to pitchers. He got Whitlock in a great rule 5 pick, and Winckowski in a trade, but has added little if any starting pitching to the minor league system with four drafts* and four international signing periods. The highest-ranked pitching prospect on Sox Prospects who entered the system on Bloom's watch is No. 20, is Yordany Monegro, who Sox Prospects describes as "Potential up-and-down, multi-inning relief arm. Ceiling of a back-end starter."

Breslow, I would think, would spend more draft capital and international-signing cash on pitching, so that's where the approach will change.

* The 2020 draft was only five rounds and they had only four picks.
 
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BigSoxFan

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I’m not sure how you can type that list out and come to any conclusion other than the Red Sox are in a dire straight starting pitching wise. I mean, Brandon Walter? Stop.

They need a controlled starter maybe as much as any organization in baseball. It’s really bad. They don’t have one single sure fire starting prospect. None. All of them look like maybe back end starters but more likely relievers.
The other problem I see is that even if they did, young pitchers tend to have their innings capped. How many guys do we have controlled for 2025 who we can pencil in for 150+ IP, health permitting? Doesn’t seem like a lot of guys.
 

TomRicardo

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In 2025, assuming no trades are made, the Sox will control:

Bello, Crawford, Winckowski, Houck (plus Murphy/Walter.) Fitts will have finished his first year in AAA, and Wikelman would have finished his first year in AA at that point.

It's thin (and Fitts needs a third pitch), but hardly only 2 pitchers who are capable of being starters for 2025.



Traded Luis Urías to the Seattle Mariners. Received Isaiah Campbell.
Traded Alex Verdugo to the New York Yankees. Received Richard Fitts (minors), Nicholas Judice (minors) and Greg Weissert.
Traded Ryan Ammons (minors) to the New York Mets. Received Justin Slaten (minors).
Traded Chris Sale and cash to the Atlanta Braves. Received Vaughn Grissom.
I don't get what you are saying here. Fitts doesn't project to be a major league starter right now. Wikelman have a small chance to become a back end starter. Winckowski isn't looking like he would break into a competitive rotation. Having piles of back of the end rotation talent and middle relievers isn't going get this team out of the pit they are in. These guys also wouldn't amount to much as trading chips.

Do you realize how much better Bello is than Fitts, Wikelman, and Winckowski? Bello isn't even an ace. Hell do you realize how much better Giolito is than those guys and he was waived last year?

Perales needs to make a huge unlikely leap to be as good as Houck or Crawford and he is the best guy in the system. There isn't talent in the system on the pitching side. Not even close or comparable to the hitting side. Teel, Mayer, and Anthony are ridiculously better than Perales, Wikelman, and Fitts and they aren't locks to be major league players.

Having a top ranked system doesn't make the players in the system somehow better.
 

6-5 Sadler

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Bello, Crawford, Winckowski, Houck (plus Murphy/Walter.) Fitts will have finished his first year in AAA, and Wikelman would have finished his first year in AA at that point.
Outside of Bello, this list comes with a ton of risk. Young pitchers inherently carry more injury risk and Crawford and Houck have never started a full season at the major league level. Wink is essentially a full time reliever at this point. Wikelman and Fitts are decent enough prospects but neither one have even made it out of AA. I’m as hopeful in that group as anyone but I don’t think hope is an acceptable plan.
 

Rovin Romine

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I’m not sure how you can type that list out and come to any conclusion other than the Red Sox are in a dire straight starting pitching wise. I mean, Brandon Walter? Stop.

They need a controlled starter maybe as much as any organization in baseball. It’s really bad. They don’t have one single sure fire starting prospect. None. All of them look like maybe back end starters but more likely relievers.
There's this thing called the motte and bailey fallacy. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motte-and-bailey_fallacy

You say: "In 2025, the Sox only have two starters!" That's the not-easily-defended "bailey," because. . .

I say: "These are the starters they actually control and it seems like there's more than two." Then you switch to the more easily defended motte with. . .

You say: "But. . .blah, blah, blah" which ignores the fact that they have more than two pitchers who are capable of starting under control for 2025.

How about you don't do that?

I'm not saying your points about Brandon Walter are wrong, or anything. But it's not a very good way to have a conversation.

edited to correct a reversal
 
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ehaz

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I see a number 3 starter with upside (Bello), a #4/5 pitcher in Crawford, two swing/bulk guys in Houck and Winckowski, and a AAA arm in Fitts that by 2025 might be another back end starter or more likely another bulk guy.

Walter and Murphy are organizational depth/insurance arms the average franchise keeps in AAA for break glass type starts.

The median percentile outcomes for Perales and Wikelman are probably somewhere between never making a big league staff and middle relief. They just spent half the year in A ball walking 6 batters per nine. Henry Owens was universally regarded as a better prospect than each of them and even Owens had better control at that age and against similar competition.
 

RedOctober3829

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In 2025, assuming no trades are made, the Sox will control:

Bello, Crawford, Winckowski, Houck (plus Murphy/Walter.) Fitts will have finished his first year in AAA, and Wikelman would have finished his first year in AA at that point.

It's thin (and Fitts needs a third pitch), but hardly only 2 pitchers who are capable of being starters for 2025.



Traded Luis Urías to the Seattle Mariners. Received Isaiah Campbell.
Traded Alex Verdugo to the New York Yankees. Received Richard Fitts (minors), Nicholas Judice (minors) and Greg Weissert.
Traded Ryan Ammons (minors) to the New York Mets. Received Justin Slaten (minors).
Traded Chris Sale and cash to the Atlanta Braves. Received Vaughn Grissom.
Your list of pitchers outside of Bello are a bunch of back end of the rotation guys at best. In the short term, they need to sign or trade for somebody who can slot in above Bello and Giolito to have a chance to be competitive now and also use Breslow's strengths to identify, draft, and develop pitchers at a much better rate than they have been so they can have a better chance of having a homegrown ace or two.

I do agree with you with your trades you listed that Breslow has shot for some lottery ticket guys and also some guys like Weissert and Grissom that can help the team now. But, the top end talent on the pitching side has to come from somewhere to help the team be a playoff contender in the shorter term.
 

Rovin Romine

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I don't get what you are saying here. Fitts doesn't project to be a major league starter right now. Wikelman have a small chance to become a back end starter. Winckowski isn't looking like he would break into a competitive rotation. Having piles of back of the end rotation talent and middle relievers isn't going get this team out of the pit they are in. These guys also wouldn't amount to much as trading chips.

Do you realize how much better Bello is than Fitts, Wikelman, and Winckowski? Bello isn't even an ace. Hell do you realize how much better Giolito is than those guys and he was waived last year?

Perales needs to make a huge unlikely leap to be as good as Houck or Crawford and he is the best guy in the system. There isn't talent in the system on the pitching side. Not even close or comparable to the hitting side. Teel, Mayer, and Anthony are ridiculously better than Perales, Wikelman, and Fitts and they aren't locks to be major league players.

Having a top ranked system doesn't make the players in the system somehow better.
See above.

I'm not going to bother breaking down the players under control. We disagree on Bello, Winckowski, and Crawford.

That does not mean I think the rotation is "just fine" going forward, without ever signing a FA, but resigning a Pivetta or Giolito type in 2025 goes a long way toward stabilizing that kind of rotation.
 
Jan 26, 2014
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Then they’ll have to acquire even more next year? This is a perpetual thought when you just never add to your team at the major league level.

Right now, the Red Sox are staring at a scenario where they have 2 starters going into 2025 and no high minor starters in the pipeline outside of maybe Fitts.

Montgomery wouldn’t just be a 2024 acquisition. You want them going into 2025 needing to get 3 starters via FA?
No the hope is over the course of the 2025 season they are able to trade parts they don't see part of the team going forward for ML or ML ready starters to pop into the rotation and once you have a firm idea of what couple free agent pieces would put us over the top in being competitive.

My guess, with the lack of depth on the roster, I don't see them being that competitive this year even if they sign Snell/Montgomery, and I feel it would be a waste of resources and a roster spot trying to bring in free agents that may just be flotsam by the time the roster is ready for them to perform.

I expect this year at the trade deadline they will jettison anybody not in the future plan, re-establish some depth on the major league roster and in the high minors and then spend in FA next season as long as nothing catastrophic happens. Its what I thought Bloom was going for last year but it seems he couldn't pull the trigger (from everything that has been written (grain of salt for sure) the deals were there to be made) and why I think he is no longer working at Fenway now.

My though (this is pure speculation) is the fear with Montgomery is that there is a good chance he'll be on the down side by year 3 of the deal and that is when they expect the window to really open. They don't want that contract to prevent them from signing whom they need because the money and roster spot is already committed to Montgomery.
 

TomRicardo

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See above.

I'm not going to bother breaking down the players under control. We disagree on Bello, Winckowski, and Crawford.

That does not mean I think the rotation is "just fine" going forward, without ever signing a FA, but resigning a Pivetta or Giolito type in 2025 goes a long way toward stabilizing that kind of rotation.
To quote you, do you have anything that proves that?

Edit - Wait you don't think Crawford is a solid rotation starter?
 
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Jan 26, 2014
31
Taunton, MA
It's crazy to me that they seem to be saying (and posters here are agreeing) that they can't really compete until the youngsters are ready to contribute, so there's no point in committing to players for more than a year or two in the meantime. Are Giolito and O'Neill going to be around when Mayer and Teel come up to the majors? What's the point of acquiring them if they're not?
I think part of it with Giolito is it gives Breslow and Miller a chance to prove their plan. If whey can revamp Giolito into a Cy Young candidate there is a very good chance other free agents will see this as a great system to work in. With O'Neill he is a placeholder and if things work out he can be traded at the deadline for controllable assets or extended if that's the direction they want to go.

And if by chance they are top of the league come the deadline they could be buyers... my biggest problem with last season is they did nothing at the deadline.
 

SouthernBoSox

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There's this thing called the motte and bailey fallacy. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motte-and-bailey_fallacy

You say: "In 2025, the Sox only have two starters!" That's the not-easily-defended "motte," because. . .

I say: "These are the starters they actually control and it seems like there's more than two." Then you switch to the more easily defended bailey with. . .

You say: "But. . .blah, blah, blah" which ignores the fact that they have more than two pitchers who are capable of starting under control for 2025.

How about you don't do that?

I'm not saying your points about Brandon Walter are wrong, or anything. But it's not a very good way to have a conversation.
You did not list more than two starters.
 

Rovin Romine

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To quote you, do you have anything that proves that?
Yes.* Myself and others have had those discussions elsewhere before on the site. We have a dedicated pitching thread you're welcome to contribute to, particularly if you want to opine on the upside/ability/reasonable projections for the pitchers we have on staff.


*No projection is really "proveable" until the player takes the field and does something. But projections are subject to a reasonableness analysis.
 

jbupstate

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See above.

I'm not going to bother breaking down the players under control. We disagree on Bello, Winckowski, and Crawford.

That does not mean I think the rotation is "just fine" going forward, without ever signing a FA, but resigning a Pivetta or Giolito type in 2025 goes a long way toward stabilizing that kind of rotation.
RR responded to a post with transactions showing they were attempting to add pitchers. It was a good response. It wasn’t a judgement or opinion that all way grand.

Why does he have to prove anything?
 

SouthernBoSox

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You have entirely missed the point.
Nope. I said that there is a real fear of going into 2025 with 2 starters. You listed two starters and a bunch of swing men/relievers as a rebuttal and then said I was changing my argument. The Red Sox system is completely devoid of starters. They do not need to be in a position where they need to acquire 3 starters going into the 2025 season.

You have failed to make any point that counters that thought.
 
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Rovin Romine

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RR responded to a post with transactions showing they were attempting to add pitchers. It was a good response. It wasn’t a judgement or opinion that all way grand.

Why does he have to prove anything?
Apparently because people are pushing an argument, which is that they want the Sox to sign a high quality starting pitcher via free agency. Which is not a bad idea, depending on the details. . .(which could make it a very bad idea indeed.)

But not all the things people are saying to push that argument make sense. And Lord Forbid we actually just look at what's there and consider it. Because that's. . .I don't know, condescending or hostile or emasculating or something.
 

TomRicardo

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Yes.* Myself and others have had those discussions elsewhere before on the site. We have a dedicated pitching thread you're welcome to contribute to, particularly if you want to opine on the upside/ability/reasonable projections for the pitchers we have on staff.


*No projection is really "proveable" until the player takes the field and does something. But projections are subject to a reasonableness analysis.
So nothing. You are literally pegging a guy who didn't even start in college and has no third pitch as a future middle of the rotation starter, and your proof is you discussed it somewhere else? If you don't care about projections, what are you using to evaluate prospects? Rankings are just a collection of projections. If you are using stats, we can show their MLB projections from the numbers.

Nothing you have said is close to reasonable or is backed by anything yet you expect people disagreeing with to provide proof.
 

Rovin Romine

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So nothing. You are literally pegging a guy who didn't even start in college and has no third pitch as a future middle of the rotation starter, and your proof is you discussed it somewhere else? If you don't care about projections, what are you using to evaluate prospects? Rankings are just a collection of projections. If you are using stats, we can show their MLB projections from the numbers.

Nothing you have said is close to reasonable or is backed by anything yet you expect people disagreeing with to provide proof.
Believe what you want Tom. I can't make you read the discussions people have already had about the starting pitching.

Did you think I would retype them for you here or something?
 

jbupstate

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Nope. I said that their is a real fear of going into 2025 with 2 starters. You listed two starters and a bunch of swing men/relievers as a rebuttal and then said I was changing my argument. The Red Sox system is completely devoid of starters. They do not need to be in a position where they need to acquire 3 starters going into the 2025 season.

You have made failed to make any point that counters that thought.
This is what RR posted. He also followed it up by saying it wasn’t great.

WTF is the argument against “capable of being starters?”

The Sox need starter period. If they can find one or two from below that’s a huge win.

It's thin (and Fitts needs a third pitch), but hardly only 2 pitchers who are capable of being starters for 2025.
 

Max Power

thai good. you like shirt?
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Nope. I said that there is a real fear of going into 2025 with 2 starters. You listed two starters and a bunch of swing men/relievers as a rebuttal and then said I was changing my argument. The Red Sox system is completely devoid of starters. They do not need to be in a position where they need to acquire 3 starters going into the 2025 season.

You have made failed to make any point that counters that thought.
There's not enough angst about the pitching staff in 2024 that we now have to preemptively worry about the rotation in 2025? There are going to be dozens of transactions between now and then. Let's see where they are after the QO decisions following the World Series before even penciling in a rotation then.
 

Auger34

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There's this thing called the motte and bailey fallacy. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motte-and-bailey_fallacy

You say: "In 2025, the Sox only have two starters!" That's the not-easily-defended "motte," because. . .

I say: "These are the starters they actually control and it seems like there's more than two." Then you switch to the more easily defended bailey with. . .

You say: "But. . .blah, blah, blah" which ignores the fact that they have more than two pitchers who are capable of starting under control for 2025.

How about you don't do that?

I'm not saying your points about Brandon Walter are wrong, or anything. But it's not a very good way to have a conversation.
My lord.

@SouthernBoSox doesn’t think the pitchers you listed are starter quality, apparently you do. Somehow that simple disagreement became this

The things you did in this post are also not great ways to have conversations or engagement of any kind
 

jbupstate

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So nothing. You are literally pegging a guy who didn't even start in college and has no third pitch as a future middle of the rotation starter, and your proof is you discussed it somewhere else? If you don't care about projections, what are you using to evaluate prospects? Rankings are just a collection of projections. If you are using stats, we can show their MLB projections from the numbers.

Nothing you have said is close to reasonable or is backed by anything yet you expect people disagreeing with to provide proof.
The state of SP in the farm system isn’t good but Fitts is now highly ranked in it. He “might” have figured something out and maybe Breslow can add to it.

—————————————
From Over the Monster.
After making some adjustments to his delivery towards the end of 2022, Fitts began 2023 at AA, and once again struggled out of the gate. But then, for exactly three months from May 24 to August 24 of last season, he went completely nuts. Fitts threw 97.2 innings over 16 starts during that stretch, struck out 103 batters while walking just 24 and allowing only 72 hits, and held opposing batters to just a .591 OPS while he maintained an ERA of 2.12. He finished the year as the Eastern League’s leader in strikeouts, WHIP, wins, innings pitched, and quality starts, while finishing second in K/BB ratio and BB/9, and sixth in K/9. Again: most prospects don’t really want to lead their league in anything, because it means they’re not moving up the ladder, but it’s better than the alternative.

So. . . is he any good? It’s hard to say for sure. He’s now one of the Red Sox’ best pitching prospects in the upper minors, but that says more about the poor state of the organization’s pitching than it does about Fitts. Ultimately, he’s someone who could end up anywhere from the middle of the bullpen to the middle of a big league rotation. It’s up to Craig Breslow’s revamped pitching program to steer him toward the latter.
 

RedOctober3829

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No the hope is over the course of the 2025 season they are able to trade parts they don't see part of the team going forward for ML or ML ready starters to pop into the rotation and once you have a firm idea of what couple free agent pieces would put us over the top in being competitive.

My guess, with the lack of depth on the roster, I don't see them being that competitive this year even if they sign Snell/Montgomery, and I feel it would be a waste of resources and a roster spot trying to bring in free agents that may just be flotsam by the time the roster is ready for them to perform.

I expect this year at the trade deadline they will jettison anybody not in the future plan, re-establish some depth on the major league roster and in the high minors and then spend in FA next season as long as nothing catastrophic happens. Its what I thought Bloom was going for last year but it seems he couldn't pull the trigger (from everything that has been written (grain of salt for sure) the deals were there to be made) and why I think he is no longer working at Fenway now.

My though (this is pure speculation) is the fear with Montgomery is that there is a good chance he'll be on the down side by year 3 of the deal and that is when they expect the window to really open. They don't want that contract to prevent them from signing whom they need because the money and roster spot is already committed to Montgomery.
The Red Sox are currently(according to Cots) $46.5 million below the first luxury tax threshold. In 2025, they have $124.4 million before that mark and in 2026 they have $146.9 million to play with. Signing Montgomery is in no way going to prevent them signing whoever they want to in the next 2 years.
 

RS2004foreever

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The following seems clear to me (though I get others won't see it this way)
1. The starting pitching is weak.
2. Attempts to acquire pitchers via trade are at impasse because the other teams want too much and some of our non-big 3 assets aren't worth a lot.
3. It is getting late in the FA market.
If we do nothing we are punting on '24 with no real direction for '25 given the state of the pitching on the farm other than signing free agents, which gets us right back to where we are right now.
I don't see how anyone can discern a plan at all here.