Let’s sign a starting pitcher!

Red(s)HawksFan

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 23, 2009
17,921
Maine
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
Do you have a link or two to that reporting? Not that I think you're making it up, but I don't remember reports that teams were willing to take his salary and give a prospect. I don't really remember anything other than idle speculation from reporters and pundits as far as what a JDM salary dump might look like. That's quite different from teams actually making offers that Bloom turned down.
 

walt in maryland

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 16, 2005
165
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?
Agree, but I think the place to get that starter is via trade. They don't need to acquire an ace, just some stability.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 13, 2021
7,265
Several reports that they were asking for a lot (of course that’s subjective and part of negotiating); Mets and Dodgers mentioned as teams with interest. The idea that no one wanted him or that he was a salary dump seems inaccurate. Prior deadline deals for Cruz and Schwarber mentioned as comps.

https://www.si.com/mlb/mets/news/new-york-price-tags-jd-martinez-willson-contreras-remain-high-mets-mlb-trade-deadline-rumors

https://bosoxinjection.com/2022/08/01/red-sox-rumors-price-jd-martinez-might-scare-mets-mark-vientos/
 

Petagine in a Bottle

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 13, 2021
7,265
Agree, but I think the place to get that starter is via trade. They don't need to acquire an ace, just some stability.
By trading, what, though? If the Sox don’t want to move their top prospects then they are looking at moving the Houck’s and Verdugo’s of the world; filling one hole while creating another. The guys that they’d really like to move (Duran, Dalbec, Seabold) seem unlikely to have much value .
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 7, 2022
234
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.
FWIW, Schwarber was injured when we traded for him in 2021, that worked out well (relative to Hill and Wacha). I agree that their being hurt would have lessened their return; I don't think that guarantees that there were no teams out there whom would have given us "cash considerations or a PTBNL" to acquire them and pay their salaries. Though I admit I don't have knowledge as to what Bloom was offered / turned down - but I assume people arguing Bloom made the right choice in keeping them don't have that knowledge either.

Relative to JD Martinez, here are reports from last July at least speculating that several teams were in fact interested in Martinez. Could they all be wrong and you are right that Martinez couldn't have been moved for a return of nothing to get out from under the Tax Threshold? Of course that is possible.

Is it also possible that Alex Speier (https://www.bostonglobe.com/2022/07/29/sports/last-days-jd-martinez-with-red-sox/;https://www.nbcsports.com/boston/red-sox/mlb-rumors-red-sox-trading-jd-martinez-good-likelihood ), Ken Rosenthal (Tweet from Rosenthal embedded in the Herald article https://www.bostonherald.com/2022/07/30/mlb-trade-deadline-red-sox-j-d-martinez-reportedly-receiving-interest-from-dodgers-mets/), and Jen McCaffrey from The Athletic (mentioned in this article from NBC SportsBoston https://www.nbcsports.com/boston/red-sox/mlb-rumors-dodgers-showing-interest-red-sox-jd-martinez?b) have more MLB sources than even the most tenured and best posters on SoSH and a deal could have been made for JD Martinez (and others, not counting Bogaerts or even Eovaldi that could have gotten the Sox under the tax)? I think that is also possible.

I for one don't think Speier is a reporter who talks out of his rear end, and reading his article linked above from the Globe, that doesn't sound like a piece published by a respected writer if the Sox were to have to attach prospects to get someone to take Martinez off their hands. If you disagree about Speier's credibility or the tenor of his article, that's fair to question all media, but I do happen to trust Speier.


Relative to the question of "more valuable in terms of playoff equity" part, the Red Sox odds of making the playoffs as of the deadline were 33% (others have noted this from FanGraphs, and I'm taking that at face value, I haven't looked that up personally, but I believe them) which means there was also a 67% chance they DIDN'T make the playoffs. I think the getting under the tax threshold to garner picks in the 2nd round (as opposed to the 4th) and the extra $1m for signings SHOULD have meant more to them than the 33% chance to make the playoffs based on a) their 0-11-1 record against the AL East prior to the deadline and b) the fact that they would have needed to have over taken 4 teams to make the last wild card (as opposed to one or some such), including the teams from their own division, whom they had shown literally no ability to beat consistently up to that point in time, regardless of the month in question.

I tried doing some research on the success of players by round in the MLB draft, which is difficult to find. I did get this (admittedly from 2012) which talks about 49% of players from the 2nd round making it to the majors as opposed to 32% from rounds 3-5 (it doesn't mention the exact percentage from the 4th round, but does talk about "an emphasis on the declining odds as the draft progresses". Baseball America gives similar numbers in a report from 2019 where they talk about 51% of players from the second round making the draft vs (I think, looking at the chart) being around 35%. (I tried linking the articles below for better formatting, but that isn't really helping, apologies, but I felt citing the articles was more important than proper formatting).

If we assume the Sox would have ONLY traded players they weren't going to make a QO for (ie holding Bogaerts and Eovalid) and factoring in two picks with about a 51% chance of making the bigs as opposed to two picks with a 35% chance AND the additional $1m in slot allocation should have been enough (in my opinion) to overweight the 33% chance of making the playoffs. This is even more true if you could have gotten a return of anything beyond a literal bag of baseballs for Martinez, Hill, Wacha and even Strahm with paying their salaries. Again, I don't know for sure that there was a single team out there whom offered to take those guys for nothing, but other people don't know there wasn't. Specifically the article I posted from Speier doesn't sound like someone who was publishing that article as if the Red Sox were being asked to attach prospects to get someone to take Martinez.

Combine that with the percentages above and the apparent plan to build through the player development machine is why I think the path of being full fledged sellers (again excepting Eovaldi and Bogaerts due to offering them a QO AND Bogaerts NTC) would have been the better play at the time.

The team felt differently.

The front office making a decision to over-weight the 1 in 3 chance you make the playoffs and do what Bloom did at the deadline may very well have been justifiable at the time. I don't think it's outlandish to say that making a decision to over-weight the 2 in 3 chance they didn't make the playoffs to become more motivated sellers would have been equally justifiable. Sure, people would have complained either way. The media is negative, across the board. It's what generates clicks. But saying that selling would have been a better choice, outlining why and discussing what could have been isn't exactly calling WEEI and saying "Blooooooom suuuuuuuucks" any more than your position is "part of the Bloominati, blaaaaah". They're both defensible and I think are fair to rationally discuss and judge based upon what transpired.

View: https://bleacherreport.com/articles/1219356-examining-the-percentage-of-mlb-draft-picks-that-reach-the-major-leagues


https://www.baseballamerica.com/stories/how-many-mlb-draftees-make-it-to-the-majors/
 
Last edited:

EricFeczko

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 26, 2014
4,564
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.
I think both Stroman and Taillon may be questionable, especially without defensive shifts; but I think both contracts are overrated (I'd prefer Taillon's to Stroman's, I guess, but its the difference between paying for stability vs. risk). Both carry tremendous Rick Porcello vibes for me; though I'm not a huge fan of the Hoyer led Cubs -- the team looks like a NL central .500 team that is probably about as bad as the Red Sox right now.

In 2022, only 85 starting pitchers managed more than 130 innings. Of these, Stroman and Taillon ranked 44th/46th/55th and 55th/56th/50th respectively in ERA/FIP/fWAR. By way of comparison, Johnny Cueto ( still in the bargain bin) performed slightly better in 2022; and frankly is ranked in the middle (68th) between Stroman (45th) and Taillon ( 72nd) when comparing fWAR over the past few seasons. Neither Stroman nor Taillon are strikeout pitchers, which makes me concerned about future production.

That being said, I don't like Cueto or Greinke due to the restrictions with defensive shifts next year either -- both have declining fastballs and neither really strikes anyone out anymore.

Marcus Stroman is getting paid as a top-ten by AAV, as noted on sportrac ( https://www.spotrac.com/mlb/rankings/salary/starting-pitcher/ ). I think their estimation is higher than his actual AAV (23.3). Taillon is getting paid closer to his value, as he's closer to 40th. Either way, that's 37 million in AAV snapped up for two #2s/#3s on the wrong side of 30, who are poorly adjusted for the 2023 rule changes.
 

tbb345

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2010
4,559
Do you have a link or two to that reporting? Not that I think you're making it up, but I don't remember reports that teams were willing to take his salary and give a prospect. I don't really remember anything other than idle speculation from reporters and pundits as far as what a JDM salary dump might look like. That's quite different from teams actually making offers that Bloom turned down.
There was an article today by Chad Jennings in The Athletic where it says that teams wanted Martinez but the Sox FO thought it was better to play out the string and attempt for a playoff spot instead of trading players to save money/get under the tax.

I also remember articles at the time saying close to that (Petagine in a Bottle posted some)
 
May 18, 2021
5
Curious if you have insight into why Ward was a piece they really needed to keep, or if you're just reacting to him going first in the rule 5 draft/something inflammatory written in the media about that. Cause the guy was reported as having dimished stuff coming back from TJ, and was mid-teens on the soxprospects list I believe?


Me too.
I’m not sure they needed to keep him. He just seems more interesting/eventually useful than the Orts and Darwinzons they’ve clung to. The argument that he’s more likely to return as a Rule 5 temp than as an outright waive does make sense, but it‘s a gamble nonetheless. I hadn’t read about the diminished stuff — everything looked to be coming back from the reports.
 

JM3

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 14, 2019
2,452
FWIW, Schwarber was injured when we traded for him in 2021, that worked out well (relative to Hill and Wacha).
Yeah, & we gave up only Aldo Ramirez to make that trade.

I agree that their being hurt would have lessened their return; I don't think that guarantees that there were no teams out there whom would have given us "cash considerations or a PTBNL" to acquire them and pay their salaries. Though I admit I don't have knowledge as to what Bloom was offered / turned down - but I assume people arguing Bloom made the right choice in keeping them have that knowledge either.
I'm sure teams would have taken Hill or Wacha for nothing - but not really sure where that gets us as a team. To me the playoff equity was worth more than a straight salary dump.

Relative to JD Martinez, here are reports from last July at least speculating that several teams were in fact interested in Martinez. Could they all be wrong and you are right that Martinez couldn't have been moved for a return of nothing to get out from under the Tax Threshold? Of course that is possible.

Is it also possible that Alex Speier (https://www.bostonglobe.com/2022/07/29/sports/last-days-jd-martinez-with-red-sox/;https://www.nbcsports.com/boston/red-sox/mlb-rumors-red-sox-trading-jd-martinez-good-likelihood ), Ken Rosenthal (Tweet from Rosenthal embedded in the Herald article https://www.bostonherald.com/2022/07/30/mlb-trade-deadline-red-sox-j-d-martinez-reportedly-receiving-interest-from-dodgers-mets/), and Jen McCaffrey from The Athletic (mentioned in this article from NBC SportsBoston https://www.nbcsports.com/boston/red-sox/mlb-rumors-dodgers-showing-interest-red-sox-jd-martinez?b) have more MLB sources than even the most tenured and best posters on SoSH and a deal could have been made for JD Martinez (and others, not counting Bogaerts or even Eovaldi that could have gotten the Sox under the tax)? I think that is also possible.

I for one don't think Speier is one to talk out of his rear end, and reading his article linked above from the Globe, that doesn't sound like a piece published by a respected writer if the Sox were to have to attach prospects to get someone to take Martinez off their hands. If you disagree about Speier's credibility or the tenor of his article, that's fair to question all media, but I do happen to trust Speier.
I don't think it's wrong that teams were interested - I just would be shocked if that is the complete picture. A team acquiring JD Martinez would have to take on an aging DH who had been in a terrible slump for more than 6 weeks & pay him $8.1m for 2 months of work.

JD had a good last month of the season...& still only got $10m for a full season from a team that had to give up literally nothing to acquire him. If a full season of somewhat rehabilitated value JD is worth $10m...how is 2 months of death spiral JD worth $8.1m + an asset? Or even $8.1m without an asset?

Relative to the question of "more valuable in terms of playoff equity" part, the Red Sox odds of making the playoffs as of the deadline were 33% (others have noted this from FanGraphs, and I'm taking that at face value, I haven't looked that up personally, but I believe them) which means there was also a 67% chance they DIDN'T make the playoffs. I think the getting under the tax threshold to garner picks in the 2nd round (as opposed to the 4th) and the extra $1m for signings SHOULD have meant more to them than the 33% chance to make the playoffs based on a) their 0-11-1 record against the AL East prior to the deadline and b) the fact that they would have needed to have over taken 4 teams to make the last wild card (as opposed to one or some such), including the teams from their own division.

The team felt differently.
The Red Sox would have gotten very little, if any, asset value for dumping the remaining pieces necessary to get under the threshhold. So the balancing then basically becomes is the chance of playoffing worth more than the potentially higher comp picks, international bonus pool $, and being in straight salary dump mode & angering the vast majority of the fan base who would insist this shows just how cheap the Red Sox are & unwilling to spend $$$ & not committed to winning. It would have caused a massive revolt.

You cite that 0-11-1 record against the AL East almost constantly, but is there that much predictive value to that? The playoff odds factor in the strength of schedule & the # of teams in contention for the spots. You may disagree with the models, but taking the models & then discounting from their baseline for things that are already factored in is a bit reductive.

Some models did have them as low as around 15%, & some as high as around 40%. I think that's probably a fair range.

The front office making a decision to over-weight the 1 in 3 chance you make the playoffs and do what Bloom did at the deadline may very well have been justifiable at the time. I don't think it's outlandish to say that making a decision to over-weight the 2 in 3 chance they didn't make the playoffs to become more motivated sellers would have been at worst equally justifiable. Sure, people would have complained either way. The media is negative, across the board. It's what generates clicks.
I mean, if you've already decided their playoff odds are significantly lower than what the models say, if the Red Sox really thought they had a 33% chance of making the playoffs, then obviously to you they are overly optimistic.

The problem is, without being able to bring back anything of value, just hopping below the tax line is pretty horrible optics because the "2 games out" is the easiest casual fan guidepost. & if you're not getting prospects back, how much are you really setting your franchise back by staying over the tax this year?

The things you lose:

1) Like $15m of John Henry's $$$ - No one GAF.

2) Picks in the 130s instead of the 70s - What's that worth? Idk, I haven't done the work. But neither have the people complaining about how tragic this is. I'll post a quickie something on this at the end.

3) Extra draft slot $$$ - Back of the napkin math, I think they would get about $1.7m for the 2 picks in the 70s & about $900k for the 2 picks in the 130s, so that would be an extra $800k to spend on draft picks. It's not nothing...but it's also not like, super-duper valuable.

4) $1m international bonus pool $$$ (???) - My understanding with the international bonus pool $$$ is that every team gets $4.75m & teams with competitive balance picks get extra $$$ ($1m for A, $500k for B). Those competitive balance picks are entirely separate from the issue of comp picks for losing QO free agents. So unless my understanding is wrong, this doesn't change their international pool $$$.

Here's the support:

As per the existing rules established in the 2017-21 Collective Bargaining Agreement, clubs are each subject to a spending cap for amateur international free agents. Each club will have at least a $4.75 million bonus pool to spend, with those that have a pick in Competitive Balance Round A receiving $5.25 million and those with a pick in Competitive Balance Round B receiving $5.75 million.
https://www.mlb.com/glossary/transactions/international-amateur-free-agency-bonus-pool-money

Since 2017, Major League Baseball has used a formula that combines revenue, winning percentage and market score to award Draft picks to teams that fall in the bottom 10 in revenue or market size. The Competitive Balance Draft picks can be traded. In 2022, there were 15 teams awarded picks in the two rounds, seven in Round A and eight in Round B. This year, there will be eight in Round A and six in Round B, with the Padres dropping out.
https://www.mlb.com/news/mlb-draft-competitive-balance-rounds-set-2023

So yeah, the Red Sox can't get the extra International $$$ unless they stop making $$$. Being over the tax doesn't impact that.

But saying that selling would have been a better choice, outlining why and discussing what could have been isn't exactly calling WEEI and saying "Blooooooom suuuuuuuucks" any more than your position is "part of the Bloominati, blaaaaah". They're both defensible and I think are fair to rationally discuss and judge based upon what transpired.
I disagree with your opinion on Bloom, but I have no issue with your posting on the subject. The bad posts are the constant driveby hate posts that are negative about literally everything.

Here's a quickie unscientific thing on the draft picks. Just going to eyeball the drafts from 2000 to 2014 to see the best players drafted in the 70s & the best player drafted in the 130s:

2000 - Grady Sizemore, Garrett Atkins
2001 - Dan Haren, Kyle Davies (Ryan Howard went 140)
2002 - Elijah Dukes, Donnie Murphy
2003 - Chris Ray, Craig Stansberry
2004 - Wade Davis, Jake McGee
2005 - Yunel Escobar, Brian Matusz
2006 - Justin Masterson, Total Crap (although Chris Davis & Samardzija were in the 140s)
2007 - Freddie Freeman, Corey Kluber
2008 - Charlie Blackmon, Jason Kipnis
2009 - DJ LaMehieu, Adam Warren
2010 - Andrelton Simmons, James Paxton
2011 - James McCann, Mike Clevinger
2012 - J.T. Chargois, Christian Walker
2013 - Chad Pinder, Nick Pivetta
2014 - Brian Anderson, Austin Gomber

Results: Draft is a crapshoot, but yeah, you're slightly more likely to get a really good player in the 70s than the 130s...
 
Last edited: