Let’s sign a starting pitcher!

Beomoose

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I wanted to sell, so I agree, but just think what this board would be like right now if they’d sold two games out of a wild card spot.
Some would be furious, some would be confused, some would defend it to the hilt, some would be looking for silver linings. So, exactly what we have now. Only with better picks.
 

NomahNotRamon

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Details on Nathan Eovaldi’s deal with Texas, per source:

Base: two years at $34M

Bonuses: up to $3M a year if he reaches 160 IP, which he did in 2021

Player option: If he throws 300 innings from 2023-24, $20M option in 2025 with another $3M in bonuses

Max: three years, $63M
View: https://twitter.com/JeffPassan/status/1607902268099121153
Essentially got the QO money for two years instead of one. Personally don’t think he’ll be raking in a ton of bonus cash over the course of it. Wonder if the Sox even offered again.
 

bstoker7

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Criminal management. The ‘22 deadline was just a complete shit show. No two ways about it
It really is starting to look like that. Good points.
According to this article:

https://www.cbssports.com/mlb/news/2022-mlb-trade-deadline-how-competitive-balance-tax-could-impact-big-spenders-including-yankees-and-padres/amp/

the Red Sox would have had to trade Martinez and Eovaldi (or Bogaerts) to get under the tax threshold plus replace them with league minimum players. That would remove either Eovaldi or Bogaerts from the comp picks/allocation money (the article technically said they would have also had to trade Wacha, but they shed that same amount of salary with Vasquez).

Maybe the FO figured what they were being offered in trades wasn’t worth more than what they could potentially draft and decided to roll the dice on the outside chance of making the playoffs?
 

Yelling At Clouds

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I figure the plan with or without Eovaldi was to sign 1-2 SPs from the Bundy/Pineda tier, and I’d expect a move like that to happen within the next couple weeks. Just based on what’s happened in these last few years, it seems like they would rather spend less on SPs who might be good and take their chances instead of spending a lot of money on someone who might be great or might be a disappointment. Not the way I’d go, but whatever.
 
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jon abbey

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According to this article:

https://www.cbssports.com/mlb/news/2022-mlb-trade-deadline-how-competitive-balance-tax-could-impact-big-spenders-including-yankees-and-padres/amp/

the Red Sox would have had to trade Martinez and Eovaldi (or Bogaerts) to get under the tax threshold plus replace them with league minimum players. That would remove either Eovaldi or Bogaerts from the comp picks/allocation money (the article technically said they would have also had to trade Wacha, but they shed that same amount of salary with Vasquez).

Maybe the FO figured what they were being offered in trades wasn’t worth more than what they could potentially draft and decided to roll the dice on the outside chance of making the playoffs?
Not sure how you’re reading that but to me it looks clear that just moving JDM would have done it (in addition to Vazquez). Unfortunately for BOS, JDM was in a huge slump then and the Mets were reluctant to give up prospects fir rentals after getting burned doing that in 2021 for Javy Baez.
 

bstoker7

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Not sure how you’re reading that but to me it looks clear that just moving JDM would have done it (in addition to Vazquez). Unfortunately for BOS, JDM was in a huge slump then and the Mets were reluctant to give up prospects fir rentals after getting burned doing that in 2021 for Javy Baez.
I was reading this quote specifically:

“These guys would all have to be replaced on the roster and a league minimum player will cost about $260,000 against the CBT payroll the rest of the season, which has to factored into the payroll equation. But yeah, the Red Sox can get under the $230 million threshold. Trading Martinez, Eovaldi, and Wacha would get Boston under $230 million with room to spare.“

Perhaps there was an update to the overall payroll number in the article after all the trades were completed, but I didn’t see anything noted.
 

nvalvo

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According to this article:

https://www.cbssports.com/mlb/news/2022-mlb-trade-deadline-how-competitive-balance-tax-could-impact-big-spenders-including-yankees-and-padres/amp/

the Red Sox would have had to trade Martinez and Eovaldi (or Bogaerts) to get under the tax threshold plus replace them with league minimum players. That would remove either Eovaldi or Bogaerts from the comp picks/allocation money (the article technically said they would have also had to trade Wacha, but they shed that same amount of salary with Vasquez).

Maybe the FO figured what they were being offered in trades wasn’t worth more than what they could potentially draft and decided to roll the dice on the outside chance of making the playoffs?
This is why I’m not wielding torches and pitchforks about the deadline. I wanted to sell on the basis of my own expectations about what would be possible.

In particular, I wanted to make four Vazquez-type deals with Vaz, Diekman, Strahm, JDM, Wacha, Eovaldi, collecting a pile of decent prospects, and then trying to flip half of the haul/some of our prospects for the best available major leaguer with 3+ years of control available.

Basically, I wanted to trade more departing FA for more Enmanuel Valdez types, and then turn a few of those into Reese McGuire types to get a jump on the off-season. They basically did that with Vaz and Diekman. But it doesn’t seem like slumping JD, injured Wacha, and injured Eovaldi had much of a market.

So it just seems more likely to me that I, a moderately well informed internet baseball fan, was wrong about what was possible at the deadline than that the FO is stupid or rudderless.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Reports at the time were that the Sox were asking for a lot for JD. A top prospect and a major leaguer, IIRC. I think part of the problem with trading their established expiring contracts was that they really had nobody ready to play in the minors- which necessitated acquiring guys like Pham, Hosmer, etc. I think there was some value in fielding a major league caliber team the final few months, especially from a PR perspective.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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I figure the plan with or without Eovaldi was to sign 1-2 SPs from the Bundy/Pineda tier, and I’d expect a move like that to happen within the next couple weeks. Just based on what’s happened in these last few years, it seems like they would rather spend less on SPs who might be good and take their chances instead of spending a lot of money on someone who might be great or might be a disappointment. Not the way I’d go, but whatever.
I think that’s probably right- but then why not go into the off-season and say something like “we are comfortable with the pitchers we have, and will be exploring the market to see if and how we can improve our team for next year and beyond” or whatever, and then you are kind of covered either way. The whole “we plan to acquire x # of players, including x # of starting pitchers, etc” seemed way more detailed than necessary and also set expectations that an evolving market may make it difficult to deliver on.
 

jon abbey

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I was reading this quote specifically:

“These guys would all have to be replaced on the roster and a league minimum player will cost about $260,000 against the CBT payroll the rest of the season, which has to factored into the payroll equation. But yeah, the Red Sox can get under the $230 million threshold. Trading Martinez, Eovaldi, and Wacha would get Boston under $230 million with room to spare.“

Perhaps there was an update to the overall payroll number in the article after all the trades were completed, but I didn’t see anything noted.
Yeah, that quote is confusing so let me clear it up. They were at $238.1 and needed to get under $230, this is how much each player would have saved:

  • DH JD Martinez: $8.1 million
  • SS Xander Bogaerts: $7.4 million (can opt out of contract after this season)
  • RHP Nathan Eovaldi: $6.3 million
  • UTIL Enrique Hernández: $2.6 million
  • RHP Michael Wacha: $2.6 million
  • C Christian Vázquez: $2.6 million
  • LHP Rich Hill: $1.85 million
They did move Vazquez so moving JDM in addition would have put them under $230M, ignore the unnecessarily confusing quote by the writer.
 

moondog80

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Criminal management. The ‘22 deadline was just a complete shit show. No two ways about it
Look up the success rate of 2nd round picks and get back to me.


Why didn't they sell at the deadline? For one thing, they were trying to get to the playoffs. They were 2 games out of the last WC at the trade deadline, and at the time there was a decent chance that Chris Sale would be coming back. That said, I do think there is a world where they would have become sellers, but the market just wasn't there. The Cubs were 41-60 and did not trade Willson Contreras, despite putting him on the market. The Giants were 51-52 and did not trade Carlos Rodon, despite putting him on the market. What does that tell you? Rentals of FA-to-be simply weren't brining back much value. The Red Sox decided, correctly so IMO, that keeping their guys and going for the postseason was a better play than the middling return they would have gotten for JD Martinez and Nate Eovaldi. Once that decision was made, they made low-cost deals for Hosmer and Pham.

But then why did they trade Christian Vazquez? Because they thought well enough of Reese McGuire that they did not think trading Vazquez would hurt the team's playoff chances. And whether is was lightning-in-a-bottle-luck or solid scouting, they were right -- McGuire hit 337/377/500 in 108 PA with very good defense. They improved the team in the short term, got 3.5 years of an interesting player at small money, and a couple of lottery ticket prospects from Houston. That's why they traded Christian Vazquez (and Jake Dikeman, a reliever who everyone hated).

So why didn't they go all in as buyers and try for Juan Soto? Because while they had a decent shot at the postseason, the shot at not being in the postseason was still considerably higher, even if they added Soto and Hader like the Padres did. The situation called for modest aggression, not all-out.

And the cap? Why didn't they get under that? Because again, they had a shot at the postseason, and that was worth more than the marginal impact of being above the cap. And it's not even clear how easy it would have been to do that. Would someone have taken all of JDM's deal? I'm not sure.
 

Ganthem

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Look up the success rate of 2nd round picks and get back to me.


Why didn't they sell at the deadline? For one thing, they were trying to get to the playoffs. They were 2 games out of the last WC at the trade deadline, and at the time there was a decent chance that Chris Sale would be coming back. That said, I do think there is a world where they would have become sellers, but the market just wasn't there. The Cubs were 41-60 and did not trade Willson Contreras, despite putting him on the market. The Giants were 51-52 and did not trade Carlos Rodon, despite putting him on the market. What does that tell you? Rentals of FA-to-be simply weren't brining back much value. The Red Sox decided, correctly so IMO, that keeping their guys and going for the postseason was a better play than the middling return they would have gotten for JD Martinez and Nate Eovaldi. Once that decision was made, they made low-cost deals for Hosmer and Pham.

But then why did they trade Christian Vazquez? Because they thought well enough of Reese McGuire that they did not think trading Vazquez would hurt the team's playoff chances. And whether is was lightning-in-a-bottle-luck or solid scouting, they were right -- McGuire hit 337/377/500 in 108 PA with very good defense. They improved the team in the short term, got 3.5 years of an interesting player at small money, and a couple of lottery ticket prospects from Houston. That's why they traded Christian Vazquez (and Jake Dikeman, a reliever who everyone hated).

So why didn't they go all in as buyers and try for Juan Soto? Because while they had a decent shot at the postseason, the shot at not being in the postseason was still considerably higher, even if they added Soto and Hader like the Padres did. The situation called for modest aggression, not all-out.

And the cap? Why didn't they get under that? Because again, they had a shot at the postseason, and that was worth more than the marginal impact of being above the cap. And it's not even clear how easy it would have been to do that. Would someone have taken all of JDM's deal? I'm not sure.
I tried the common sense approach and it didn't work.
 

TimScribble

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I think we all understand they were two games out of the wildcard. But that was on the back of a red-hot June which saw Pivetta pitch above career norms. In the month prior to the deadline, the Red Sox were 10-19 and Pivetta hadn’t won a game since 6/24. And it wasn’t just that they were losing but it was how they were losing. In the month prior to the trading deadline, they allowed on average 8 runs a game in their losses.
 

JM3

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So the argument is that teams were willing to trade either a good prospect or a Major League player for JD Martinez but not both & such offers were scuttled by that greedy Chaim guy? Like that reporting is so bad on so many levels.

JD Martinez hit .232 with 3 homers in June and followed that up by hitting .210 with 1 homer in July. Do you think anyone is going to pay him $8.1m for his August and September, let alone give you something for the privilege of letting a guy who just did that be their DH?

If a prospect & ML player was the ask, then the Red Sox were probably eating all of JD's salary in that world.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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So the argument is that teams were willing to trade either a good prospect or a Major League player for JD Martinez but not both & such offers were scuttled by that greedy Chaim guy? Like that reporting is so bad on so many levels.

JD Martinez hit .232 with 3 homers in June and followed that up by hitting .210 with 1 homer in July. Do you think anyone is going to pay him $8.1m for his August and September, let alone give you something for the privilege of letting a guy who just did that be their DH?

If a prospect & ML player was the ask, then the Red Sox were probably eating all of JD's salary in that world.
By all accounts and reports, the asking price was high. Who knows the validity of these reports, as we all know the Red Sox front office is like Depends, they don’t leak.

https://risingapple.com/posts/ny-mets-rumors-jd-martinez-trade-asking-price

In the end, they didn’t get under the cap or prospects for JD, but they did go for it, I guess.
 

JM3

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So the argument is that teams were willing to trade either a good prospect or a Major League player for JD Martinez but not both & such offers were scuttled by that greedy Chaim guy? Like that reporting is so bad on so many levels.

JD Martinez hit .232 with 3 homers in June and followed that up by hitting .210 with 1 homer in July. Do you think anyone is going to pay him $8.1m for his August and September, let alone give you something for the privilege of letting a guy who just did that be their DH?

If a prospect & ML player was the ask, then the Red Sox were probably eating all of JD's salary in that world.
The July wRC+ was 62 btw. JD also had a crappy August - .214 with 2 homers (67 wRC+, before having a bounce back 147 in September). Even after that bounce back, the Dodgers just gave up NOTHING to pay JD Martinez $10m for AN ENTIRE SEASON.
 

JM3

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By all accounts and reports, the asking price was high. Who knows the validity of these reports, as we all know the Red Sox front office is like Depends, they don’t leak.

https://risingapple.com/posts/ny-mets-rumors-jd-martinez-trade-asking-price

In the end, they didn’t get under the cap or prospects for JD, but they did go for it, I guess.
Yeah...I mean Dom smith put up a -0.1 fWAR last year (after -1.0 fWAR the year before...in fact in 1373 career PAs he has a -0.2 fWAR) & was making $4m. So it's not like he's a positive value add to a package - he is the equivalent of eating some of JD's salary.
 

LogansDad

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The July wRC+ was 62 btw. JD also had a crappy August - .214 with 2 homers (67 wRC+, before having a bounce back 147 in September). Even after that bounce back, the Dodgers just gave up NOTHING to pay JD Martinez $10m for AN ENTIRE SEASON.
Yeah, I really don't think anyone wanted JD at the deadline, let alone for the package the Sox wanted.

I do think that the failure to get under the threshold in 2022 is going to make staying under it a priority in 2023, though. Two rounds of draft capital (the picks and the bonus pool money) is a not insignificant penalty for a team that is trying to get to a Dodger-like model.
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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I’m perfectly fine giving real opportunities to young pitchers with upside in lieu of signing old guys like Hill.
Exactly this. I wanted us to sign a couple of guys in the 3-5 year range, but we didn’t. Once that was the case, the options got so diminished, just give Whitlock, Bello, Houck, Mata and even Walter and Murphy as many innings in the rotation as possible (also why I hope they’ll actively listen on Sale IF we can get “Bello level” prospects in return for paying his full salary).

I think Wacha is still young enough and showed enough in the AL East last year that I’d have nothing against giving him a deal in the 3/$30m range (and don’t really care if we don’t, either) but beyond that I’d rather see what the kids have than sign any of the Heaney, Eflin, Hill, Cueto, Alexander, etc, etc group. I would have been fine giving Eovaldi another deal and wouldn’t have complained, but I greatly prefer replacing short term / certainly won’t be key contributors in 2025+ options with young players whom at least have a chance to be here in 2/3 years. Hope that is the way the staff ends up, either as is or ideally with some trades to acquire guys younger than 30 with multiple seasons of control.

Spend 2023 and 2024 figuring out whom those “next core” players are at this point.

I’d actually be really excited to watch a rotation of Whitlock, Bello, Houck, Mata and Pivetta as opposed to Eovaldi, Hill, Kluber, Smyly and Pivetta (or anyone similar) for instance.

On Eovaldi, I’m perfectly happy to say “thanks for the memories Nate, good luck in Texas” and am overall pleased we did not pay another $16m for two years to another pitcher on the other side of 30 with a history of injury problems. Based on what’s left, I would have understood signing him, but I‘m happier Bloom chose this path.
 
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MtPleasant Paul

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Exactly this. I wanted us to sign a couple of guys in the 3-5 year range, but we didn’t. Once that was the case, the options got so diminished, just give Whitlock, Bello, Houck, Mata and even Walter and Murphy as many innings in the rotation as possible (also why I hope they’ll actively listen on Sale IF we can get “Bello level” prospects in return for paying his full salary).

I think Wacha is still young enough and showed enough in the AL East last year that I’d have nothing against giving him a deal in the 3/$30m range (and don’t really care if we don’t, either) but beyond that I’d rather see what the kids have than sign any of the Heaney, Eflin, Hill, Cueto, Alexander, etc, etc group. I would have been fine giving Eovaldi another deal, but prefer the youth movement.

The more short term / certainly won’t be key contributors in 2025+ options we can replace with young players whom at least have a chance to be here in 2/3 years, the better. Spend 2023 and 2024 figuring out whom those players are at this point.

I’d actually be really excited to watch a rotation of Whitlock, Bello, Houck, Mata and Pivetta as opposed to Eovaldi, Hill, Kluber, Smyly and Pivetta (or anyone similar) for instance.
That sounds to me like a very thin rotation, especially given Whitlock's, Houck's and Mata's recent injury histories. And Houck belongs in the bullpen given the thinness there. Even with Sale and the remoter possibility of Paxton they need another starter. After a string on one year deals Wacha surely wants a longer contract. Maybe we get him for two years at 22 mill?
 

JM3

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Yeah, that quote is confusing so let me clear it up. They were at $238.1 and needed to get under $230, this is how much each player would have saved:

  • DH JD Martinez: $8.1 million
  • SS Xander Bogaerts: $7.4 million (can opt out of contract after this season)
  • RHP Nathan Eovaldi: $6.3 million
  • UTIL Enrique Hernández: $2.6 million
  • RHP Michael Wacha: $2.6 million
  • C Christian Vázquez: $2.6 million
  • LHP Rich Hill: $1.85 million
They did move Vazquez so moving JDM in addition would have put them under $230M, ignore the unnecessarily confusing quote by the writer.
I had an analysis of the end of the year tax stuff, but I'm seeing different #s & what the Red Sox had to do to get under the tax, including in the same supposed link. Bottom line, though is that at a minimum, they would have had to move all of JD's remaining $8.1m to get under (& it looks like they might have ended up at $245m & needed to not do other trades like Pham/Hosmer, too).

The problem is, that JD had a heavily negative value contract. So are you attaching a prospect to JD to trade him for a bag of balls & sneak under the tax? That's a pretty big PR disaster if the Red Sox do that while 2 games out.

X couldn't really be traded due to No Trade Clause (& trading him would lose you the chance at that 2nd round comp pick anyway).

Eovaldi pitched 11 innings in June & 13 innings in July, & was only available for 28 innings after the trade deadline. Not really getting much there (& trading him would lose you the chance at that 2nd round comp pick anyway).

& without trading one of those big 3 contracts, trading Hernandez/Wacha/Hill doesn't really accomplish anything (plus Hill was injured & only pitched 4.2 innings in July, Hernandez was injured & only had 18 ABs in June, none in July & 48 in August, & Wacha didn't pitch between June 28th & mid-August).

So when those are your options...why not just get the most value out of each trade you can get & only make moves if they make sense short & long term?
 
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Petagine in a Bottle

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The big problem last year was obviously the JBJ contract, would have been under the threshold were it not for assuming that disaster of a deal. Oh well.
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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That sounds to me like a very thin rotation, especially given Whitlock's, Houck's and Mata's recent injury histories. And Houck belongs in the bullpen given the thinness there. Even with Sale and the remoter possibility of Paxton they need another starter. After a string on one year deals Wacha surely wants a longer contract. Maybe we get him for two years at 22 mill?
It is thin, no question (and I agree on Wacha, though I advocated 3/$30m since that would only be his age 31, 32 and 33 seasons).

Ideally I wanted a guy or two like Bassitt or Tallion. They’re gone. I’d prefer a trade for a young starter with multiple seasons of control (who wouldn’t). I’m just saying I’d prefer to give the kids every shot to see whom sticks (in what I think is a wasted year anyway) as opposed to never seeing if Houck could learn to get through 6ip to sign “Corey Kluber.”

(To be clear, I WANTED something like Bassitt, Whitlock, Tallion, Bello, Pivetta, where you have three pretty certain bets as to what you’ll get, but obviously those type of pitchers were not the plan. So see what the kids can do…)
 
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geoflin

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Don't think it's been mentioned here but if they traded JDM but picked up his salary it wouldn't have helped get under the salary cap. It only made sense to trade him if they also shed his contract and no other team was going to take it.
 

jon abbey

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Don't think it's been mentioned here but if they traded JDM but picked up his salary it wouldn't have helped get under the salary cap. It only made sense to trade him if they also shed his contract and no other team was going to take it.
The Mets probably would have but wouldn't have given much in return and I think that was the sticking point. Also if I remember the chronology correctly, JDM started slumping badly during the period those two teams would have been discussing things, so that probably messed up things too (maybe the Mets offered a prospect, then pulled him back as JDM slumped?).
 

JM3

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The big problem last year was obviously the JBJ contract, would have been under the threshold were it not for assuming that disaster of a deal. Oh well.
I mean sure, that trade obviously has not worked out well so far - but you could just as easily say the problem last year was the Price contract, or the Sale contract, or any of a whole bunch of other things.

& it doesn't really change the deadline calculus in terms of what they would have to do to get under the tax.

Don't think it's been mentioned here but if they traded JDM but picked up his salary it wouldn't have helped get under the salary cap. It only made sense to trade him if they also shed his contract and no other team was going to take it.
Yeah, sorry. I think I was implying this in my posts, but did not straight out say it.
 

Apisith

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I think we ended up only slightly above the threshold because Paxton picked up his option. I think that lowered the AAV by $4m, right? Because he counted as $10m but because he picked up the option, last year’s AAV hit was lowered to $6m.

I think trading away Wacha or Hill would have been enough to get us under.
 

curly2

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Look up the success rate of 2nd round picks and get back to me.
Most times second-round picks do nothing. Sometimes they're Jon Lester or Dustin Pedroia. There is also the difference of $1 million in slot money. That could have been used for a "tough sign."
 

grimshaw

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According to this article:

https://www.cbssports.com/mlb/news/2022-mlb-trade-deadline-how-competitive-balance-tax-could-impact-big-spenders-including-yankees-and-padres/amp/

the Red Sox would have had to trade Martinez and Eovaldi (or Bogaerts) to get under the tax threshold plus replace them with league minimum players. That would remove either Eovaldi or Bogaerts from the comp picks/allocation money (the article technically said they would have also had to trade Wacha, but they shed that same amount of salary with Vasquez).

Maybe the FO figured what they were being offered in trades wasn’t worth more than what they could potentially draft and decided to roll the dice on the outside chance of making the playoffs?
I agree with this assessment. And I thought I recalled something that Xander would refuse a trade anyhow.
 

The Gray Eagle

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Dick Mountain and Big Nate have moved on.
Still available in the bargain bin:
Cueto, Kluber, Wacha, Grienke.
To a lesser degree, Wade Miley and Dylan Bundy. And bunch of even worse guys.

I didn't do a profile of Grienke in this thread because I thought he would either retire or stay in KC, but he hasn't retired yet, and other teams appear to be interested in signing him.
Here's an Orioles blog from a few weeks ago that talks about him as a potential signing for them, and includes some great stories about him.
https://www.camdenchat.com/2022/12/5/23491281/orioles-free-agent-target-zack-greinke

"Perhaps the most compelling reason to sign Greinke is that he seems to be just a delightfully quirky human being. The Athletic has published not one, not two, not three, but four oral histories of Greinke’s career, comprised of his current and former teammates telling their most memorable Greinke stories."
He should be getting a one-year deal for not that much money:
His 2022 deal with the Royals was for one year and $13 million. If he’s interested in shopping around his services this winter, a similar deal would likely suffice.
Whether Greinke is interested in signing with the Orioles, or anywhere, is a real question. The conventional wisdom is that he’ll either re-sign with the Royals, where he’s most comfortable, or retire. And the Orioles, with all due respect to Greinke, may be seeking a hurler with more upside and better swing-and-miss stuff.
Cueto or Grienke would be entertaining crafty vets to watch at least, and both were pretty good last year, but judging by how this offseason has gone, I suppose we shouldn't expect either to sign here.
 

cantor44

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Look up the success rate of 2nd round picks and get back to me.


Why didn't they sell at the deadline? For one thing, they were trying to get to the playoffs. They were 2 games out of the last WC at the trade deadline, and at the time there was a decent chance that Chris Sale would be coming back. That said, I do think there is a world where they would have become sellers, but the market just wasn't there. The Cubs were 41-60 and did not trade Willson Contreras, despite putting him on the market. The Giants were 51-52 and did not trade Carlos Rodon, despite putting him on the market. What does that tell you? Rentals of FA-to-be simply weren't brining back much value. The Red Sox decided, correctly so IMO, that keeping their guys and going for the postseason was a better play than the middling return they would have gotten for JD Martinez and Nate Eovaldi. Once that decision was made, they made low-cost deals for Hosmer and Pham.

But then why did they trade Christian Vazquez? Because they thought well enough of Reese McGuire that they did not think trading Vazquez would hurt the team's playoff chances. And whether is was lightning-in-a-bottle-luck or solid scouting, they were right -- McGuire hit 337/377/500 in 108 PA with very good defense. They improved the team in the short term, got 3.5 years of an interesting player at small money, and a couple of lottery ticket prospects from Houston. That's why they traded Christian Vazquez (and Jake Dikeman, a reliever who everyone hated).

So why didn't they go all in as buyers and try for Juan Soto? Because while they had a decent shot at the postseason, the shot at not being in the postseason was still considerably higher, even if they added Soto and Hader like the Padres did. The situation called for modest aggression, not all-out.

And the cap? Why didn't they get under that? Because again, they had a shot at the postseason, and that was worth more than the marginal impact of being above the cap. And it's not even clear how easy it would have been to do that. Would someone have taken all of JDM's deal? I'm not sure.
I think this is very deft hindsight thinking. Bloom admitted himself, at the time of the deadline, that we was expecting a different outcome:

From Speier, BG: “'If you had asked me [Monday] night I would’ve thought we would’ve made more moves than we did [Tuesday],' said chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom." He was surprised by the outcome then, just as, it was reported, he was surprised when Xander signed with SD. I think he's often a step behind, not a step ahead.

The end result of the 2022 deadline was not the execution of a master plan based on an uber-specific analysis, but, seemingly, a misfire or at least an incomplete, by Bloom's own admission.

Meanwhile, if he thought they had a shot at the postseason last year then he should have gotten actual players to help the cause, not Pham and Hosmer (yes, I was okay with Hosmer deal, since we got him for nothing, but no really believed he would make enough of a difference, did they?).
 

gehrig

lurker
Apr 18, 2008
19
The end result of the 2022 deadline was not the execution of a master plan based on an uber-specific analysis, but, seemingly, a misfire or at least an incomplete, by Bloom's own admission.
What, you think he wasn't able to figure out how to fax in the paperwork to complete a trade?

They were stuck in no-man's land and so they were open to both selling and not selling. The returns they were offered were underwhelming so they didn't sell.
 

scottyno

late Bloomer
SoSH Member
Dec 7, 2008
10,627
I think we all understand they were two games out of the wildcard. But that was on the back of a red-hot June which saw Pivetta pitch above career norms. In the month prior to the deadline, the Red Sox were 10-19 and Pivetta hadn’t won a game since 6/24. And it wasn’t just that they were losing but it was how they were losing. In the month prior to the trading deadline, they allowed on average 8 runs a game in their losses.
They also thought they were about to get Story, Kike, Sale, and Paxton back. If they knew Story would miss another month, Kike would be mediocre, and Sale and Paxton would never make it to Boston then maybe they think differently about being 2 back.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Jan 23, 2009
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They also thought they were about to get Story, Kike, Sale, and Paxton back. If they knew Story would miss another month, Kike would be mediocre, and Sale and Paxton would never make it to Boston then maybe they think differently about being 2 back.
Small nit, but they weren't about to get Sale back (the others, yes, but not him). Sale had already returned from the rib injury and been hit by the line drive. He had surgery on the finger on July 18 and the prognosis was minimum 4-6 weeks of recovery before he could pick up a baseball. Basically, there was an outside chance that he could come back and maybe relieve in late September. Then the wrist injury on August 6 guaranteed he wouldn't be back at all.

But still, 2 games out with those other guys on the horizon, it's not difficult to understand why Bloom took the path of improving around the margins (though that is a weak description of acquiring three players to shore up three different weak spots in the lineup). People can disagree or dislike who he acquired, but it was all justifiable at the time.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Mar 11, 2007
4,882
I think this is very deft hindsight thinking. Bloom admitted himself, at the time of the deadline, that we was expecting a different outcome:

From Speier, BG: “'If you had asked me [Monday] night I would’ve thought we would’ve made more moves than we did [Tuesday],' said chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom." He was surprised by the outcome then, just as, it was reported, he was surprised when Xander signed with SD. I think he's often a step behind, not a step ahead.

The end result of the 2022 deadline was not the execution of a master plan based on an uber-specific analysis, but, seemingly, a misfire or at least an incomplete, by Bloom's own admission.

Meanwhile, if he thought they had a shot at the postseason last year then he should have gotten actual players to help the cause, not Pham and Hosmer (yes, I was okay with Hosmer deal, since we got him for nothing, but no really believed he would make enough of a difference, did they?).
What farm depth could have brought in a Schwarber and a good relief arm?
 

moondog80

heart is two sizes two small
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Sep 20, 2005
6,902
I think this is very deft hindsight thinking. Bloom admitted himself, at the time of the deadline, that we was expecting a different outcome:

From Speier, BG: “'If you had asked me [Monday] night I would’ve thought we would’ve made more moves than we did [Tuesday],' said chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom." He was surprised by the outcome then, just as, it was reported, he was surprised when Xander signed with SD. I think he's often a step behind, not a step ahead.

The end result of the 2022 deadline was not the execution of a master plan based on an uber-specific analysis, but, seemingly, a misfire or at least an incomplete, by Bloom's own admission.

Meanwhile, if he thought they had a shot at the postseason last year then he should have gotten actual players to help the cause, not Pham and Hosmer (yes, I was okay with Hosmer deal, since we got him for nothing, but no really believed he would make enough of a difference, did they?).
I don't think I suggested this was the plan all along. I'd guess Bloom was surprised because he thought market for sellers would have been stronger, as did just about everyone. Do you think holding on to Willson Contreras was the plan for the 41-60 Cubs? The market didn't develop and Bloom made a decision in real time to raise the dial to 6 in terms of going for it. We will improve where we can, but not at any meaningful cost to the farm system.
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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Dec 7, 2022
234
Small nit, but they weren't about to get Sale back (the others, yes, but not him). Sale had already returned from the rib injury and been hit by the line drive. He had surgery on the finger on July 18 and the prognosis was minimum 4-6 weeks of recovery before he could pick up a baseball. Basically, there was an outside chance that he could come back and maybe relieve in late September. Then the wrist injury on August 6 guaranteed he wouldn't be back at all.

But still, 2 games out with those other guys on the horizon, it's not difficult to understand why Bloom took the path of improving around the margins (though that is a weak description of acquiring three players to shore up three different weak spots in the lineup). People can disagree or dislike who he acquired, but it was all justifiable at the time.
While I get your point (bolded) and I think the idea is not to have reactionary hot take posts but more in-depth discussion, if one assumes Bloom (or any GM) is a rational actor and if your average SoSH poster is also a rational actor, both with the ability to think critically wouldn't something like 99% of moves made by GMs (at least in the FSG era) be "justifiable at the time", regardless of if one agrees or not.

I mean, I don't think any of us are pleased with the way the Sale extension has worked it, but it was certainly "justifiable at the time", even though it certainly hasn't worked out to this point in time. Of course, electing NOT to sign him to an extension would have been perfectly justifiable at the time as well.

For example - just so we're not using hindsight - I happen to really like the Yoshida signing. I'm fine with even a "market overpay" because I think Yoshida's skills should translate well (ie his ridiculously good k/bb ratios), I think he's been healthier than someone like Haniger or Nimmo, and I think there is a good deal of upside there. I think signing him to a 5/$90m contract was smart and totally justified. HOWEVER, someone taking the stance of "we should have signed Haniger - he is more capable of playing RF which is a bigger spot of need, he has proven skills at the MLB level and comes with roughly half the commitment" would also be fully justified.

Same thing with discussing ideas that haven't happened yet. One could look at the pitching staff and come to the conclusion that signing Michael Wacha to something like a 3yr / $30m deal would be totally justified (I'd like to see this happen personally). He has shown an ability to pitch in Boston, he would still be right around his prime for the entirety of that deal. He would provide some depth to the rotation and that would be a relatively small cost in the free agent market. It looks like he figured something out in Tampa closing the 2021 season and carried that over to Boston for 2022, sign me up.

On the other hand, someone saying: He's only been able to start around 24 games per year his entire career. He followed that trend last year only making 23 starts. Most of his statcast marks were in the bottom quartile and that leads me to believe he is due for serious regression; steer clear. Give more Corey Kluber instead. That would be equally justifiable.

Also saying: That Rodon contract wasn't too bad. We need a top of the rotation starter, and Rodon's statcast data are (by and large) very good. He's been healthier than Nate Eovaldi, Michael Wacha, Jacob deGrom and Chris Sale over the past two years, I'd have beaten that deal is likewise "justifiable". Deciding that it doesn't match with your window, that long term bets on pitchers the wrong side of 30, especially those with injury histories and betting on a translation from the parks in the NL West to those in the AL East is also justifiable (I'm personally glad Bloom didn't beat that offer.)

I can find plenty of examples of moves that Bloom has made (or has not made) that I disagree with strongly - but I'm not saying they're unjustified or irrational - just that I think there were different choices that could have been made that I would have preferred because I think they'll work better. It's a different argument and should be fair to discuss and ultimately judge a decision maker for the outcome of the choices made, not just their defensibility at the time, no?
 
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cantor44

Member
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Dec 23, 2020
1,420
Chicago, IL
I don't think I suggested this was the plan all along. I'd guess Bloom was surprised because he thought market for sellers would have been stronger, as did just about everyone. Do you think holding on to Willson Contreras was the plan for the 41-60 Cubs? The market didn't develop and Bloom made a decision in real time to raise the dial to 6 in terms of going for it. We will improve where we can, but not at any meaningful cost to the farm system.
Maybe you didn't say, that, forgive me if I misread. It seemed that you were laying out a justification for every decision, and that they were all purposeful, complimentary and holistic given where the team was at. Yet Bloom's own description of that deadline suggests otherwise (as do they wacky results). But yes, there will always be unexpected outcomes.
 

JM3

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Dec 14, 2019
2,481
I think the stock market is a decent analogy for the '22 trade deadline.

An investor isn't going to be considered indecisive or wishy washy if they sell overvalued stocks while buying undervalued stocks.

If all stocks are overvalued then you're going to do a lot of selling. If all stocks are undervalued then you're going to do a lot of buying.

If you have stock that is currently very limited in value because it's injured or playing baseball poorly, there isn't much point in selling it.
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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Dec 7, 2022
234
I don't think I suggested this was the plan all along. I'd guess Bloom was surprised because he thought market for sellers would have been stronger, as did just about everyone. Do you think holding on to Willson Contreras was the plan for the 41-60 Cubs? The market didn't develop and Bloom made a decision in real time to raise the dial to 6 in terms of going for it. We will improve where we can, but not at any meaningful cost to the farm system.
Not for nothing, but I actually really like what Hoyer et al are doing out there in Chicago.

Stroman was a guy I wanted last year. Tallion was a guy I wanted this year. I happen to personally think the Swanson signing was a really good deal and I liked the aggressiveness with Suzuki (and I like our aggressiveness with Yoshida). Moving a 28 year old relief pitcher for a close to MLB ready pitching prospect (Effross for Wesneski) was a really good gamble. I also liked giving up Givens for literally any prospect based on where they were, and I get making the choice of "the pick we'll get for Contreras is better than the prospects I'm being offered". Specific to their rotation, there are a couple of guys I look at as consistent 2/3 types (Stroman, Tallion), there are a few young pieces with upside that are close to MLB ready (Steele, Wesneski, Kilian, Thompson). I think Hendricks and Smyly are still there, but you're not really dependent on either one. They've targeted and signed the type of pieces middle of the rotation consistency (Stroman and Tallion) that I really wanted to pair with OUR young guys (Whitlock, Bello, Houck, Mata).

Back to the Sox, I - for one - agree with Bloom making the calculus on Eovaldi that whatever pick we'd receive as comp was better than offers being given last July / August. Where I disagree is in not moving guys that he DIDN'T make QOs for and thus lost them for nothing (JDM, Hill, ostensibly Wacha). I'm not saying it was an unjustifiable decision, I'm saying I disagree with the conclusion he made, justifiable though it may have been. It's certainly possible no team offered to take Wacha, Hill, Strahm or JDM for literally nothing but paying their salary, and I allow for that - though I find it unlikely.

Sure thing @jon abbey - that just (I think) solidifies my point that with a GM whom isn't a moron - and though I disagree with how he's executing the plan, I certainly don't think Bloom is a moron - the vast majority of deals made are justifiable at the time. Same can be said for deals not made. All we can do is judge the (almost always justifiable at the time) decisions based on how they worked. Or agree that Bloom - or whomever - should get a lifetime appointment to head the baseball operations department of the Boston Red Sox (or Yankees in your case!) with no discussion as to how they've done in that role, so long as the majority of his decisions are justifiable at the time with no accountability on if they work or not. Though if that were the case Dombrowski would still be here. Or Cherington.
 
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JM3

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Dec 14, 2019
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JDM was a negative asset & Wacha & Hill were injured. What do you think you're getting for them that's more valuable than what they offered the Sox in terms of playoff equity?

I like Stroman, but think they'll regret Taillon pretty quick.
 

simplicio

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Apr 11, 2012
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JDM was a negative asset & Wacha & Hill were injured. What do you think you're getting for them that's more valuable than what they offered the Sox in terms of playoff equity?
Quoting this for emphasis. I keep seeing complaints about not trading JDM to get under the threshold, which in the abstract is totally valid. But it completely ignores the fact that he was a 62 wrc+ DH in July, in a slump that stretched back to mid June. What team trying to contend would want to add that to their roster at all, let alone take on his contract?
 

soxhop411

news aggravator
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Dec 4, 2009
43,132
Quoting this for emphasis. I keep seeing complaints about not trading JDM to get under the threshold, which in the abstract is totally valid. But it completely ignores the fact that he was a 62 wrc+ DH in July, in a slump that stretched back to mid June. What team trying to contend would want to add that to their roster at all, let alone take on his contract?
and I would also assume the only way someone would even take on the entire contract is if the sox attached Prospects to JDM.
 

tbb345

Member
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Apr 23, 2010
4,561
and I would also assume the only way someone would even take on the entire contract is if the sox attached Prospects to JDM.
All of the available reporting we have says that teams were willing to take on JDM’s salary and offer a middling prospect as well. Basically the equivalent of a salary dump.

The question isn’t whether teams would take on JDM, it’s whether it was worth it to Bloom and the Sox FO to trade him just to get rid of his salary. I don’t think there’s any merit to the suggestion that no one wanted Martinez at his salary or that the Sox would have to attach something to him to get a team to take him on