Camp is starting, and there are a ton of actual baseball topics for us to sink our teeth into. While many of us are not sure how likely this season is to actually happen (I'm a skeptic), what with the sunbelt spiraling into COVID madness, for the purposes of this thread let's assume that a baseball season is able to happen without too much disruption.
A few topics to get us started:
A few topics to get us started:
- The roster situation is complicated. We break camp with 30, which after two weeks drops to 28, which after two more weeks drops to 26. I imagine that most of the extra players will be pitchers, and maybe a third catcher.
- Right now we have 48 players on our 60-man roster.
- What should the team's approach be for the taxi squad in Pawtucket?
- How should Bloom strike the balance between MLB-ready depth guys and development for top prospects who need at bats and plate appearances?
- The health of Collin McHugh seems very important to me for the pitching staff as a whole.
- As I wrote in another thread, a rotation (either as starters or "bulk guys") of Rodriguez, Eovaldi, McHugh, Perez, Weber looks like an actual rotation. Not a great one, but Sale got hurt. A rotation of Rodriguez, Eovaldi, Perez, Weber, Bullpen Game looks like a disaster.
- The offense looks likely to be excellent on both sides of the ball, with Verdugo, Pillar, Peraza, and Lucroy looking like the key additions.
- Our OF has three starting LHH OF in Benintendi, Bradley, and Verdugo, but Pillar and JDM are RHH.
- Jose Peraza has pretty good career numbers against LHP: .297/.333/.406.
- Verdugo has no split: .783 against RHP and .785 against LHP.
- Three catchers? Vazquez, Plawecki, and Lucroy look pretty interesting to me as a group, but do we have the roster spot?
- There's a rumor (via Heyman via SoxScout) that Boston is talking to Puig. On paper, we don't seem to need an outfielder, but JBJ (love him though I do) seems like a potential candidate to be traded this year as part of the team's ongoing don't-call-it-a-rebuild. Trade coming?
- Before everything happened, their was an interesting rumor about a potential trade with San Diego, that would have seen Boston assume the balance of Wil Myers' backloaded deal in order to get a piece of that sweet, sweet San Diego farm system. Because of the structure of the deal, Myers' CBT number is considerably lower than his actual salary. But San Diego is saying dire things about their actual cash flow, and sounds even more motivated to move salary after the COVID intermission. Assuming that the Boston ownership group's finances aren't totally shredded, this seems like an opportunity to spend some money to supplement the farm, whether we keep Myers as a 1B/OF/DH bat or DFA him. The appeal of such a trade is obvious: basically anyone in their top 10 prospects would be in our top 3.
- The schedule isn't out yet, but based on what we know, it looks stiff. Based on last year's records and eyeballing the rosters, it looks like there are three rough tiers in the East. Because our natural rival in even years is the Atlanta Braves, we will play about half our games against very good teams.
- 10 against NYY, 10 against TBR, 6 against ATL, and either 3 or 4 against WAS.
- BOS is in a middle tier with PHL and NYM, against whom we'll play 6-8 games.
- And we will see the teams of the lower tier (BAL, MIA, and probably TOR) 23 or 24 times.
- Anyone want to run the Manilla Metric against that?
- I predict a 32-28 record for Boston, and no playoffs.
- The playoffs haven't been expanded yet.