Rafael Devers, JD Martinez and the future at the corners

InstaFace

MDLzera
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He's kind of like an opera singer with such a big vibrato it's hard to tell what pitch he's singing.
I'm not sure this analogy holds much water, but I'm sure it's hilarious and offbeat.

What we really need are more former a cappella singers who can blend with everyone else! #MookiesGotMelismas
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Bumping this up and hopefully refocusing this (veered off into JBJ stuff).
Quoting my lead post, ". I have a lot of optimism in his bat to be consistently somewhere around a .950 OPS starting towards the second half of this season and into his long term success. (A little rocky start then a kick-ass second half and landing somewhere around an .875 OPS with 35 HR's). "
He's, at this point still.... better than even I hoped for..... and really looks locked in. I've only seen a few games this season but his swing is really looking absolutely beautiful. His defense at 3rd is looking.... good. He's no Brooks Robinson, but he's not the butcher he appeared to be his first full season. This kid is still only 22 years old. I'm absolutely amazed at how good of a hitter he has become- that Green Monster HR last night was textbook perfection for a powerful lefty with a pitch moving to the outside. I'm in full sploogefest mood!

*Not sure if he'll hit my prediction of 35HR's. 30 is more likely given his HR drought to start the season, but the .875 OPS at the full season looks likely- and would require a big slump (please no!!!!) to drop to that now.
 

Over Guapo Grande

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I continue to be impressed by his (Devers) oppo power. He looks so comfortable going to left, especially at home. I am trying to think of a comp... maybe Mo Vaughn?
 

sean1562

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honestly, kind of hoping JDM opts out after this year. this team is an offensive force with the emergence of devers and vaz, his money might be best spent on pitching/mookie
 

BoSox Rule

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If the Red Sox are hoping JD it’s out it has nothing to do with Christian Vazquez.
 

Boggs26

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If the Red Sox are hoping JD it’s out it has nothing to do with Christian Vazquez.
Not directly, but if they think the newfound ability to hit is real then it does make it more feasible to shift JDM's money toward fixing pitching or extending Betts. This is even more true if they believe Devers is hitting his stride. If those two are really .800 and .900 (or better) OPS guys, they you can probably get away with either signing a DH/1B type who isn't too expensive or a 2B who is more D than O to replace JD.
 

In my lifetime

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Before the RS spend money, I am sure they are looking at luxury tax and Betts 2021 contract. It is possible they try to reset the tax for next year instead of paying the 50% tax next year (as 3 years in a row offenders) and in the future.

Just very rough calculus, assuming JD stays. The following are the big salary changes

208M is level in 2020

Compared to this year:
Extra salary room
2M (increase in Luxury tax)
21M Porcello
2M Pedroia salary decrease
13M Moreland/Pearce
13M Panda savings
2M Thornburg
5M Nunez

58M total of savings




Lost salary room
1M Price increase
6M Betts arb est increase
15M Sale increase
8M Xander increase
9M Cashner option (assuming opt picked up)
2M Bradley arb est increase
2M ERod arb est increase
1M Holt arb est increase
1.5 M Vazquez increase
2M Bullpen arb est increases
3M Benintendi arb 1 incr

50M lost room.

These numbers are all just rough estimates, but .....


So without replacements at 1B, and Cashner as the Porcello replacement . The RS would have gained only 8 M, while they sit 34M over the threshold this year.
So it looks like without a fire sale, the RS will be over by 34M - 8M (of difference above) + whatever it cost to bring in a 2B or 1B depending on Chavis's position. 2020 50% tax looks highly likely and they will be very close to the next threshold level once again.

So with weak farm system assets, the RS are in a difficult position in the free agent market.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Before the RS spend money, I am sure they are looking at luxury tax and Betts 2021 contract. It is possible they try to reset the tax for next year instead of paying the 50% tax next year (as 3 years in a row offenders) and in the future.

Just very rough calculus, assuming JD stays. The following are the big salary changes

208M is level in 2020

Compared to this year:
Extra salary room
2M (increase in Luxury tax)
21M Porcello
2M Pedroia salary decrease
13M Moreland/Pearce
13M Panda savings
2M Thornburg
5M Nunez

58M total of savings




Lost salary room
1M Price increase
6M Betts arb est increase
15M Sale increase
8M Xander increase
9M Cashner option (assuming opt picked up)
2M Bradley arb est increase
2M ERod arb est increase
1M Holt arb est increase
1.5 M Vazquez increase
2M Bullpen arb est increases
3M Benintendi arb 1 incr

50M lost room.

These numbers are all just rough estimates, but .....


So without replacements at 1B, and Cashner as the Porcello replacement . The RS would have gained only 8 M, while they sit 34M over the threshold this year.
So it looks like without a fire sale, the RS will be over by 34M - 8M (of difference above) + whatever it cost to bring in a 2B or 1B depending on Chavis's position. 2020 50% tax looks highly likely and they will be very close to the next threshold level once again.

So with weak farm system assets, the RS are in a difficult position in the free agent market.
I actually thought Bradley and Holt were both a FA after '19. Thanks for this post..... would anyone be up for the 1B combo of Travis/Chavis, 2B combo of Chavis/Marco with Holt as utility guy? Only remaining salary hopefully can go to a BP arm.
And I'm assuming JDM will actually pick up his options
 

DanoooME

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Before the RS spend money, I am sure they are looking at luxury tax and Betts 2021 contract. It is possible they try to reset the tax for next year instead of paying the 50% tax next year (as 3 years in a row offenders) and in the future.

Just very rough calculus, assuming JD stays. The following are the big salary changes

208M is level in 2020

Compared to this year:
Extra salary room
2M Pedroia salary decrease
13M Panda savings


Lost salary room
9M Cashner option (assuming opt picked up)


These numbers are all just rough estimates, but .....
Pedroia's salary from a tax perspective doesn't change, it's based on AAV, so no gains there
Evidently Panda's buyout doesn't count on next year's tax, per posts elsewhere
Cashner's option is for 10M

I also think your arb estimates are low, but I'm not going to quibble about those.
 

shaggydog2000

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I actually thought Bradley and Holt were both a FA after '19. Thanks for this post..... would anyone be up for the 1B combo of Travis/Chavis, 2B combo of Chavis/Marco with Holt as utility guy? Only remaining salary hopefully can go to a BP arm.
And I'm assuming JDM will actually pick up his options
I don't think Travis is going to be in their plans. Over his MLB career he is a league average bat against lefties, and terrible against righties. A guy who can only really play 1st, is average as the weak side of a platoon, doesn't show much power, and hasn't improved at all across 4 seasons in AAA is not someone you dedicate a roster spot to. He's a depth guy at best.
 

BaseballJones

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Eh...you need inexpensive depth guys too.

The offensive core of this team is still young:

Vazquez: 28, .809 ops
Chavis: 23, .794 ops
Bogaerts: 26, .950 ops
Devers: 22, .938 ops
Benintendi: 24, .830 ops
Betts: 26, .881 ops

That's six homegrown players, all very good, all young. Vazquez maybe isn't "young" officially anymore but he's still on the younger side.
 

kelpapa

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Pedroia's salary from a tax perspective doesn't change, it's based on AAV, so no gains there
Evidently Panda's buyout doesn't count on next year's tax, per posts elsewhere
Cashner's option is for 10M

I also think your arb estimates are low, but I'm not going to quibble about those.
Vazquez and price are in the same boat as Pedroia, so those figures should be a wash.
 

In my lifetime

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Pedroia's salary from a tax perspective doesn't change, it's based on AAV, so no gains there
Evidently Panda's buyout doesn't count on next year's tax, per posts elsewhere
Cashner's option is for 10M

I also think your arb estimates are low, but I'm not going to quibble about those.
You are correct. Thanks for checking my work.

So the adjustments would be:

Compared to this year:
Extra salary room
2M (increase in Luxury tax)
21M Porcello
13M Moreland/Pearce
18.5M Panda savings
2M Thornburg
5M Nunez

61.5M total of savings




Lost salary room
6M Betts arb est increase
10.5 M Sale increase
8M Xander increase
10M Cashner option (assuming opt picked up)
2M Bradley arb est increase
2M ERod arb est increase
1M Holt FA est increase
3M Bullpen arb est increases
3M Benintendi arb 1 incr

45.5M lost room


So very roughly 16M of savings
Still 20M over Luxury tax threshold to reset.
Missing 1 player on the right side of the IF unless they go with Shaw/Hernandez/Holt and using Cashner as Porcello replacement and Johnson/other as 5th starter.
So resetting luxury tax number and staying competitive would be extremely difficult without many assets in the minors that could fill in or be traded for inexpensive pitching or 1B/2B options. The best path to that is not signing Cashner and Holt and then trading Bradley for cost effective ways to fill those holes. Alternatively, a JD opt-out would get them there as well, but would leave a significant hole in the lineup. And of course the problem with resetting is that next year is in the prime window of this core. So I think they bite the bullet, pay the tax and push off any LT reset.

In that case they would have ~16M to spend on another starting P, 1B/2B and relief help while staying under the 2nd threshold. And we can hope that they feel that next year is a good year to say the heck with any threshold and try to win another WS before the window closes.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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You are correct. Thanks for checking my work.

So the adjustments would be:

Compared to this year:
Extra salary room
2M (increase in Luxury tax)
21M Porcello
13M Moreland/Pearce
18.5M Panda savings
2M Thornburg
5M Nunez

61.5M total of savings




Lost salary room
6M Betts arb est increase
10.5 M Sale increase
8M Xander increase
10M Cashner option (assuming opt picked up)
2M Bradley arb est increase
2M ERod arb est increase
1M Holt FA est increase
3M Bullpen arb est increases
3M Benintendi arb 1 incr

45.5M lost room


So very roughly 16M of savings
Still 20M over Luxury tax threshold to reset.
Missing 1 player on the right side of the IF unless they go with Shaw/Hernandez/Holt and using Cashner as Porcello replacement and Johnson/other as 5th starter.
So resetting luxury tax number and staying competitive would be extremely difficult without many assets in the minors that could fill in or be traded for inexpensive pitching or 1B/2B options. The best path to that is not signing Cashner and Holt and then trading Bradley for cost effective ways to fill those holes. Alternatively, a JD opt-out would get them there as well, but would leave a significant hole in the lineup. And of course the problem with resetting is that next year is in the prime window of this core. So I think they bite the bullet, pay the tax and push off any LT reset.

In that case they would have ~16M to spend on another starting P, 1B/2B and relief help while staying under the 2nd threshold. And we can hope that they feel that next year is a good year to say the heck with any threshold and try to win another WS before the window closes.
I'm assuming you mean Sam Travis..... not Travis Shaw, yeah?
To me, it's looking likely that JDM will pick up his option years.
Cashner as Porcello replacement- assuming Eovaldi goes back to the rotation- would fill out the starting 5 (Johnson and Wright filling in the long man/6th-7th starter scenario that screwed us this season and would be unlikely to happen again in '20)
 

joe dokes

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I'm assuming you mean Sam Travis..... not Travis Shaw, yeah?
To me, it's looking likely that JDM will pick up his option years.
Cashner as Porcello replacement- assuming Eovaldi goes back to the rotation- would fill out the starting 5 (Johnson and Wright filling in the long man/6th-7th starter scenario that screwed us this season and would be unlikely to happen again in '20)
Its a fungible (but important) role, but there's no way I would pencil Wright into any sort of plan for next week, next month or next year (unless you're using some sort of pencil that's graded beyond 9H).
 

Danny_Darwin

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In that case they would have ~16M to spend on another starting P, 1B/2B and relief help while staying under the 2nd threshold. And we can hope that they feel that next year is a good year to say the heck with any threshold and try to win another WS before the window closes.
I've expressed skepticism about this in the past, but it's hard for me to read this and not think that the front office will seriously consider trading Betts.
(Sorry that this doesn't really fit the thread - would it make sense to move the payroll discussion elsewhere?)
 

Plympton91

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I've expressed skepticism about this in the past, but it's hard for me to read this and not think that the front office will seriously consider trading Betts.
(Sorry that this doesn't really fit the thread - would it make sense to move the payroll discussion elsewhere?)
An they trade Price for salary relief and just eat up to half the remaining deal, if necessary? That would free up at least $15 million a year? If Price were a free agent, would he even get a 3 year, $45 million contract? Probably not.

This is what Dombrowski does to teams. He builds them for one run, at the cost of the entire farm system and all their payroll flexibility. This should have been the 3rd year of that run, and in 2020 the rebuild should have happened around Mookie, not Price and Sale.
 

sean1562

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That does seem to be his MO. How long do you think he stays here? Maybe we could poach somebody from the Astros in a few years?
 

Danny_Darwin

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In that case they would have ~16M to spend on another starting P, 1B/2B and relief help while staying under the 2nd threshold. And we can hope that they feel that next year is a good year to say the heck with any threshold and try to win another WS before the window closes.
Actually, looking at this again: is enough money coming off the books between now and the end of 2020 that they can afford to bring Betts back as a free agent at all? The only other expiring contract that year is Bradley's, so they'd basically have to add his money to Betts's money and hope that's enough and that I guess Duran (or... someone else? Marcus Wilson?) can be an acceptable centerfielder for the minimum.
 

Plympton91

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Actually, looking at this again: is enough money coming off the books between now and the end of 2020 that they can afford to bring Betts back as a free agent at all? The only other expiring contract that year is Bradley's, so they'd basically have to add his money to Betts's money and hope that's enough and that I guess Duran (or... someone else? Marcus Wilson?) can be an acceptable centerfielder for the minimum.
The veteran free agent market is getting so cheap that it should be easy not to spend $20 million on a 5th starter, $13 million on 1B ,and $9 million on CF.

But, they’re stuck with $75 million for Price, Sale, and Eovaldi right off the bat until 2022 when Price and Eovaldi come off the books

One thing no one has mentioned is the possibility that they can work out something with Pedroia to retire and get his money off the cap the way the Yankees worked something with ARod. That would clear $13 million.
 

Pandarama

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One thing no one has mentioned is the possibility that they can work out something with Pedroia to retire and get his money off the cap the way the Yankees worked something with ARod. That would clear $13 million.
It was discussed months ago in the Pedroia thread.

Post #343 cited language in the CBA to assert that the money’s not coming off the books.
 

Lowrielicious

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One thing no one has mentioned is the possibility that they can work out something with Pedroia to retire and get his money off the cap the way the Yankees worked something with ARod. That would clear $13 million.
Its been mentioned and discussed a bunch of times.
It won’t clear the money from the cap the same way that Arods didn’t come off the cap.


Edit: beaten
 

Tyrone Biggums

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What’s Devers ceiling? He’s getting scary good.
Well considering if the Sox were in contention he'd be in the MVP talk its probably that. Which is very very good. Might end up being the best guy out of the Sox system in the last couple decades when all is said and done.
 

Koji’s Slider

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Well considering if the Sox were in contention he'd be in the MVP talk its probably that. Which is very very good. Might end up being the best guy out of the Sox system in the last couple decades when all is said and done.
I don’t know how popular an opinion this will be, but I think you build around Devers and not Mookie.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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What’s Devers ceiling? He’s getting scary good.
Not suggesting it will happen, but I found this comp pretty good.

Age 22 season
Devers: .325/.373/.574/.947, 24 HR, 43 2B, 97 R, 93 RBI, 119 G (so far)
Miguel Cabrera: .323/.385/.561/.947, 33 HR, 43 2B, 106 R, 116 RBI, 158 G
 

mfried

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I actually thought Bradley and Holt were both a FA after '19. Thanks for this post..... would anyone be up for the 1B combo of Travis/Chavis, 2B combo of Chavis/Marco with Holt as utility guy? Only remaining salary hopefully can go to a BP arm.
And I'm assuming JDM will actually pick up his options
 

mfried

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Before the RS spend money, I am sure they are looking at luxury tax and Betts 2021 contract. It is possible they try to reset the tax for next year instead of paying the 50% tax next year (as 3 years in a row offenders) and in the future.

Just very rough calculus, assuming JD stays. The following are the big salary changes

208M is level in 2020

Compared to this year:
Extra salary room
2M (increase in Luxury tax)
21M Porcello
2M Pedroia salary decrease
13M Moreland/Pearce
13M Panda savings
2M Thornburg
5M Nunez

58M total of savings




Lost salary room
1M Price increase
6M Betts arb est increase
15M Sale increase
8M Xander increase
9M Cashner option (assuming opt picked up)
2M Bradley arb est increase
2M ERod arb est increase
1M Holt arb est increase
1.5 M Vazquez increase
2M Bullpen arb est increases
3M Benintendi arb 1 incr

50M lost room.

These numbers are all just rough estimates, but .....


So without replacements at 1B, and Cashner as the Porcello replacement . The RS would have gained only 8 M, while they sit 34M over the threshold this year.
So it looks like without a fire sale, the RS will be over by 34M - 8M (of difference above) + whatever it cost to bring in a 2B or 1B depending on Chavis's position. 2020 50% tax looks highly likely and they will be very close to the next threshold level once again.

So with weak farm system assets, the RS are in a difficult position in the free agent market.
Where does Moreland figure?
 

shaggydog2000

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Not suggesting it will happen, but I found this comp pretty good.

Age 22 season
Devers: .325/.373/.574/.947, 24 HR, 43 2B, 97 R, 93 RBI, 119 G (so far)
Miguel Cabrera: .323/.385/.561/.947, 33 HR, 43 2B, 106 R, 116 RBI, 158 G
There was a different environment for power hitters then though. So even though the numbers look pretty similar (even HR if you pro-rate what Devers has done), Cabrera was 27th in ISO that season, and 18th in HR. Currently Devers is 35th in ISO, and 41st in HR.

But I agree that the ceiling for him is a high batting average power hitter. I even think the walks will come once pitchers figure out how much power he really has. Cabrera is a good comp. For his ceiling, not his current ability.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
Not suggesting it will happen, but I found this comp pretty good.

Age 22 season
Devers: .325/.373/.574/.947, 24 HR, 43 2B, 97 R, 93 RBI, 119 G (so far)
Miguel Cabrera: .323/.385/.561/.947, 33 HR, 43 2B, 106 R, 116 RBI, 158 G
That is a good comp. Looking deep into their age 22 lines, even their batted ball numbers are fairly similar, though Cabrera hit it in the air a bit more. Cabrera was also a bit more of a true-outcomes hitter: more walks (9.3% to 6.8%) but also more strikeouts (18.2% to 16.3%, and Raffy's hitting in a significantly higher-K environment).

I think it's fair to say that Cabrera is Raffy's ceiling as a hitter, and maybe even an inch or two beyond his ceiling. But that's a helluva ceiling. And Devers is (or at least has the potential to be, I think) a better defender.
 

BaseballJones

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He doesn't have the overall game Bonds did. Only Trout/ARod come close to Bonds.
The tragedy of Bonds is that, as far as we know, he didn't do steroids until like 2000. Before then, he was an absolute MONSTER. After then, of course, he was not even human. But before then, his numbers were still sick, the kind of career that was already on the inner circle HOF level.

Through 1999 season...
- 3 MVP awards
- 9 top 15 in the MVP voting
- 445 homers, 1455 runs, 1299 rbi, 460 sb, .288/.409/.559/.968, 163 ops+
- Through age 32, 33, and 34, his comps were: Duke Snider, Frank Robinson, and Ken Griffey Jr. All elite level HOFers.
- From age 27-34, his ops+ numbers were: 204, 206, 183, 170, 188, 170, 178, 156
- From age 27-34, his other numbers were: 303 hr, .303/.441/.618/1.059, 183 ops+

So without the PEDs, Barry Bonds was truly one of the greatest players ever to play.

THEN....this happened. 2000-2007 (age 35-42): 317 hr, .322/.517/.724/1.241, 221 ops+

With a four year peak (2001-2004) of: .349/.559/.809/1.368, 256 ops+

Numbers that are just not fathomable.
 

shaggydog2000

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Very different players. Bonds was always a high-BB guy, and also, in his youth, a speed guy as well as an excellent defensive outfielder--more like Mookie than Devers. Devers is a (relatively) low-BB, low-speed, pure hard contact machine.
He's not a huge base stealer, but he's not slow either. He's above average as a base runner according to the Fangraphs stats, and 5th out of 18 3B in range according to UZR, and average in sprint speed according to Baseball Savant. Now, none of those are definitive, but in total they don't show a guy that is slow. The babyfat he still has in his face is probably influencing what you think of him. Now, expecting him to slow as he ages is pretty normal. If he's average at 22, the odds are he isn't going to be a burner, or even average, at 28.
 

BoSox Rule

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Bonds was doing 1.100 OPS seasons at Candlestick and Three Rivers. He is not Devers’ or anybody’s ceiling.
 

BaseballJones

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Not even close. And I'm an enormous believer in Mookie. Go to my post above (#141) and look at Bonds' numbers, then look at Mookie's. I love me lots and lots of Mookie but he isn't in the same universe as even a pre-roids Bonds.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
Not even close. And I'm an enormous believer in Mookie. Go to my post above (#141) and look at Bonds' numbers, then look at Mookie's. I love me lots and lots of Mookie but he isn't in the same universe as even a pre-roids Bonds.
This is an exaggeration, at best. The first five years of Bonds' career were uncannily similar to the first five years of Mookie's -- and it's a fair comparison, because they started playing at the same age, 21. Here's their wOBA comparison:

25621

Here's how they look in terms of cumulative fWAR through their first five seasons:

25622


If that's not the same universe, it sure as hell looks like parallel universes.
 

BaseballJones

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This is an exaggeration, at best. The first five years of Bonds' career were uncannily similar to the first five years of Mookie's -- and it's a fair comparison, because they started playing at the same age, 21. Here's their wOBA comparison:

View attachment 25621

Here's how they look in terms of cumulative fWAR through their first five seasons:

View attachment 25622


If that's not the same universe, it sure as hell looks like parallel universes.
That's fine, for the first few years... We'd need to see Mookie suddenly hit the friggin' stratosphere and stay there for a long time in order to get into Bonds territory. This isn't a knock on Mookie. It's just that Bonds was THAT good. Even pre-roids Bonds.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
He's not a huge base stealer, but he's not slow either. He's above average as a base runner according to the Fangraphs stats, and 5th out of 18 3B in range according to UZR, and average in sprint speed according to Baseball Savant. Now, none of those are definitive, but in total they don't show a guy that is slow. The babyfat he still has in his face is probably influencing what you think of him. Now, expecting him to slow as he ages is pretty normal. If he's average at 22, the odds are he isn't going to be a burner, or even average, at 28.
Sorry, shouldn't have said "low-speed" -- he's not a piano-on-the-back slugger by any means, and I agree that he's a decent baserunner, but speed is not an asset for him. He's an average runner now because he's young and at his athletic peak, but average, in those terms, is his ceiling.
 

Savin Hillbilly

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The wrong side of the bridge....
That's fine, for the first few years... We'd need to see Mookie suddenly hit the friggin' stratosphere and stay there for a long time in order to get into Bonds territory. This isn't a knock on Mookie. It's just that Bonds was THAT good. Even pre-roids Bonds.
Pre-roids Bonds only had one season as good as Mookie's 2018. You're right, though, that what distinguished him from most players was that he hit a high peak and for the most part stayed there.
 

tims4wins

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For Mookie to replicate Bonds from age 27-34 he would basically have to average putting up his 2018 stat line. That doesn't seem very likely. At all.