Red Sox in season discussion

BaseballJones

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The Sox were finding ways to lose. Now they're finding ways to win. Somehow, I figure things might turn out okay today even with Devers and Bogey out.
 

OCD SS

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By the way.... how are the Red Sox averaging more runs scored per game than Toronto (4.74 to 4.62)? Look at these lineups:

Boston (min 50 PA):
Vaz 99 ops+
Dalbec 71 ops+
Story 100 ops+
Bogaerts 144 ops+
Devers 168 ops+
Verdugo 78 ops+
Kiké 69 ops+
JBJ 65 ops+
JDM 156 ops+
Franchy 88 ops+
Arroyo 50 ops+
Plawecki 29 ops+

Toronto (min 50 PA):
Kirk 147 ops+
Vlad 144 ops+
Espinal 106 ops+
Bichette 104 ops+
Chapman 94 ops+
Gurriel 108 ops+
Springer 132 ops+
Hernandez 106 ops+
Collins 108 ops+
Tapia 87 ops+
Biggio 97 ops+
Zimmer 24 ops+
Jansen 152 ops+


I mean... Toronto's regular starting lineup has ONE guy with a sub-100 ops+, and that's Chapman at 94. They have three guys at 132 or higher. And their subs - besides Zimmer - are all at 87 or higher.

Meanwhile, Boston has just four starters that are 100 or higher. They have three guys at 144 or higher. They've got 6 guys who get somewhat regular playing time that have ops+ numbers below 80.

It just doesn't seem possible that Boston is scoring more runs than Toronto this year.
Actual runs aren't park adjusted?

Also, luck.
 

pokey_reese

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Just half a game behind Toronto now, but the cupcake portion of the schedule ended tonight. The dreaded three and a half weeks is upon us, where the Sox will have only a single series against a sub-.500 team (Cubs), and seven of the 23 games are against the juggernaut Yanks. For everyone who has suggested that the recent winning has been a mirage based on the schedule, we are about to find out. Given the number of games against the Rays and Jays, even .500 over this stretch wouldn't really harm them much in the wildcard standings, so they just need to not get wrecked before the ASB. Should be getting healthier, which will help.
 

YTF

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Just half a game behind Toronto now, but the cupcake portion of the schedule ended tonight. The dreaded three and a half weeks is upon us, where the Sox will have only a single series against a sub-.500 team (Cubs), and seven of the 23 games are against the juggernaut Yanks. For everyone who has suggested that the recent winning has been a mirage based on the schedule, we are about to find out. Given the number of games against the Rays and Jays, even .500 over this stretch wouldn't really harm them much in the wildcard standings, so they just need to not get wrecked before the ASB. Should be getting healthier, which will help.
I'm not discounting Tampa, but they are not as scary as they have been in recent years and with 16 games left between the two I see it as an opportunity if they can in some way keep Franco in check. There's a series with the Cubbies, one with Pittsburgh, two with KC another with Texas and if they can beat up on Baltimore like they should there is still plenty of reason for optimism.
 

John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Just half a game behind Toronto now, but the cupcake portion of the schedule ended tonight. The dreaded three and a half weeks is upon us, where the Sox will have only a single series against a sub-.500 team (Cubs), and seven of the 23 games are against the juggernaut Yanks. For everyone who has suggested that the recent winning has been a mirage based on the schedule, we are about to find out. Given the number of games against the Rays and Jays, even .500 over this stretch wouldn't really harm them much in the wildcard standings, so they just need to not get wrecked before the ASB. Should be getting healthier, which will help.
Three and a half weeks? From now until August 14, the Red Sox have two series (Cubs and Royals plus one game against the O's) against teams that currently sit above .500.

This is where we find out whether the early season Red Sox were the real Sox or the current Red Sox are for real. If they can play close to even over these 14 series (plus a game), I think that they'll be okay. Anything lower than that and you have to start thinking about next year.
 

grimshaw

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It's not even just their schedule of which they have 20 series against over .500 teams and 9 vs under .500 the rest of the way.

Compare that to the Twins (12 and 17), Guardians (11 and 17), Jays (16 and 13) and Rays (18 and 11 but have already played the Yanks 9 times). The Rangers and White Sox aren't dead yet either.

They'll have to earn it big time and still have 16 vs the Yankees.
 
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BravesField

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I'm not discounting Tampa, but they are not as scary as they have been in recent years and with 16 games left between the two I see it as an opportunity if they can in some way keep Franco in check. There's a series with the Cubbies, one with Pittsburgh, two with KC another with Texas and if they can beat up on Baltimore like they should there is still plenty of reason for optimism.
I wish I could share your optimism....Tampa has what, 8 pitchers on the 60 day IL and 2 on the 15 day IL. All but 1 or 2 will probably be active this year. And they have 5 position players on the IL and 4 will probably be back this year. How they are able to stay so close to the WC is amazing. I'll be shocked if they are not one of the WC teams.

As for Baltimore, I think the days of beating up on them are over. Sox are certainly the better team, but neither the Sox, Jays or Rays this year have been able to beat up on them. But, there is a lot of baseball to be played....I hope I'm wrong.
 

jon abbey

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BAL is 26-26 in their last 52, definitely a tougher team than they’ve been in recent years.
 

amfox1

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AL East
70 game mark for BOS (2022 vs. 2021, diff)

BOS 39-31 vs 42-28 (-3.0)
MFY 52-18 vs. 36-33 (+15.5)
TOR 39-30 vs. 33-35 (+5.5)
TBR 37-32 vs. 43-28 (-5.0)
BAL 32-39 vs. 23-46 (+8.0)
 

jon abbey

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AL East
70 game mark for BOS (2022 vs. 2021, diff)

BOS 39-31 vs 42-28 (-3.0)
MFY 52-18 vs. 36-33 (+15.5)
TOR 39-30 vs. 33-35 (+5.5)
TBR 37-32 vs. 43-28 (-5.0)
BAL 32-39 vs. 23-46 (+8.0)
Collectively 49 games over .500 this year, 7 games over last year.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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AL East
70 game mark for BOS (2022 vs. 2021, diff)

BOS 39-31 vs 42-28 (-3.0)
MFY 52-18 vs. 36-33 (+15.5)
TOR 39-30 vs. 33-35 (+5.5)
TBR 37-32 vs. 43-28 (-5.0)
BAL 32-39 vs. 23-46 (+8.0)
Thanks for putting this together. Really demonstrates that despite the Sox' rough start, the biggest difference between last year and this year is how much better the Yankees are playing.
 

TapeAndPosts

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Thanks for putting this together. Really demonstrates that despite the Sox' rough start, the biggest difference between last year and this year is how much better the Yankees are playing.
If the Sox were in the AL Central or NL Central as of today they'd be in first place. Instead they are 13 games back. Kinda nuts.
 

Apisith

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With Hill starting today, might we get Seabold and Bello for Games 1 and 2 against Toronto? Pivetta on normal rest will start Game 3. Winckowski just pitched, Crawford can’t go because he’s unvaccinated. Whitlock and Eovaldi are still injured.
 

Coachster

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With Hill starting today, might we get Seabold and Bello for Games 1 and 2 against Toronto? Pivetta on normal rest will start Game 3. Winckowski just pitched, Crawford can’t go because he’s unvaccinated. Whitlock and Eovaldi are still injured.
Bello went 7 last Tuesday. If he's pitching today, he won't be making his MLB debut in Canada.

Seabold went 1 inning on Thursday. Did something happen to him?

I'm afraid we're going to have a Big Fudge bullpen game up there.
 

grimshaw

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A stat the Sox as a team are leaving the other 29 teams in the dust in is Total Zone Fielding Runs Above Average. It's the net amount players above or below average runs saved as a team is worth.

The Sox are at +37. Only one other team is 30 (Guardians) or better. The White Sox are a league worst -38. As a result, the team defensive efficiency has improved from 2021's dumpster fire of 65.9% to this season's 71.4%. This is also with a k% going down 3% as a team from last season to this one, so more balls are being put in play.

For a team largely bringing it's positional players back and adding the best defensive 2b in the majors in, this is a huge organizational win and a good example of how much Cora is following Bloom's lead in fixing a major flaw.
 
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jon abbey

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A stat the Sox as a team are leaving the other 29 teams in the dust in is Total Zone Fielding Runs Above Average. It's the net amount players above or below average runs saved as a team is worth.

The Sox are at +37. Only one other team is 30 (Guardians) or better. The White Sox are a league worst -38. As a result, the team defensive efficiency has improved from 2021's dumpster fire of 65.9% to this season's 71.4%. This is also with a k% going down 3% as a team from last season to this one, so more balls are being put in play.
FWIW, The Fielding Bible overall defensive stat, Defensive Runs Saved, has NY way ahead of everyone in baseball currently at +51, CLE in 2nd at +39, BOS in 7th at +31:

http://www.fieldingbible.com/TeamDefensiveRunsSaved

Not that total unearned runs allowed are a great judge of anything, but NY has allowed just one (!!) in the last 50 games, and even that one was a Manfred Man in extra innings. All season long they have allowed just 8 unearned runs as a team, and 3 of those are Manfred Men in extra innings.

DRS has BOS 7th in MLB currently, still a major jump from 18th last year, but NY has gone from 29th (-41 for all of 2021) to 1st (+51 currently). We (Yankee fans) all loved Gio Urshela but the numbers did not, huge jumps for NY at 3B (they love Donaldson there and DJ is much improved, by the eye test too) and C and P this season, an impressive rapid makeover by Cashman.
 

Sin Duda

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FWIW, The Fielding Bible overall defensive stat, Defensive Runs Saved, has NY way ahead of everyone in baseball currently at +51, CLE in 2nd at +39, BOS in 7th at +31:

http://www.fieldingbible.com/TeamDefensiveRunsSaved

Not that total unearned runs allowed are a great judge of anything, but NY has allowed just one (!!) in the last 50 games, and even that one was a Manfred Man in extra innings. All season long they have allowed just 8 unearned runs as a team, and 3 of those are Manfred Men in extra innings.
Blinded by the light?
 

jon abbey

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It was all there in the song decades earlier: "revved up like a deuce, another runner in the night."
 

grimshaw

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FWIW, The Fielding Bible overall defensive stat, Defensive Runs Saved, has NY way ahead of everyone in baseball currently at +51, CLE in 2nd at +39, BOS in 7th at +31:
B-Ref has the Yanks as #1 in defensive efficiency too. They were 12th last season.
 

BaseballJones

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It's really, really hard to believe that this team, who was at 10-19 and looking absolutely lifeless, is suddenly 11 games over .500, with the third best record in the AL, and sixth best record in all of baseball.

FWIW, here are some "on pace for" numbers...

Story: 111 rbi, 24 homers, 22 stolen bases
Devers: 213 hits, 386 total bases, 55 doubles, 122 runs
Pivetta: 18 wins
 

Ganthem

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It's really, really hard to believe that this team, who was at 10-19 and looking absolutely lifeless, is suddenly 11 games over .500, with the third best record in the AL, and sixth best record in all of baseball.

FWIW, here are some "on pace for" numbers...

Story: 111 rbi, 24 homers, 22 stolen bases
Devers: 213 hits, 386 total bases, 55 doubles, 122 runs
Pivetta: 18 wins
Enough can't be said about guys like Pivetta, Franchy and Schrieber to name a few. Those are guys that were on nobodies radar and yet they have been integral to the Sox turn around.
 

joe dokes

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Enough can't be said about guys like Pivetta, Franchy and Schrieber to name a few. Those are guys that were on nobodies radar and yet they have been integral to the Sox turn around.
Chaim Bloom's radar says "hello."
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Current bWAR leaders on the Sox

Devers 4.0
Bogaerts 2.9
Pivetta 2.4
Wacha 2.2
Story 2.0
JD 1.7
Eovaldi 1.3
Schreiber 1.3
Vaz 1.0
Houck 0.9

Seems like the stars of the season so far are really the three pitchers that Bloom acquired (Pivetta, Wacha, and Schreiber) who have been much better than anyone could have expected and have complemented the high paid stars who are supposed to and have been really good.
 

Daniel_Son

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Current bWAR leaders on the Sox

Devers 4.0
Bogaerts 2.9
Pivetta 2.4
Wacha 2.2
Story 2.0
JD 1.7
Eovaldi 1.3
Schreiber 1.3
Vaz 1.0
Houck 0.9

Seems like the stars of the season so far are really the three pitchers that Bloom acquired (Pivetta, Wacha, and Schreiber) who have been much better than anyone could have expected and have complemented the high paid stars who are supposed to and have been really good.
I think one of the other notable names on that list is Vazquez. He seems to have rebounded nicely from last year.
 

scottyno

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Bloom spent a total of 12m on 2 pitchers everyone trashed, and so far one has pitched like an ace and the other has pitched like a solid 3/4. Almost like the dude is good at this or something.

He also gave up almost nothing for 2 other starters in the rotation who are pitching very well, and acquired another who was pitching well until he got hurt. The only starter he doesn't get full credit for is Eovaldi, and he has to get some credit for not dumping him at some point in 2019 or 2020.
 

RedOctober3829

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Bloom spent a total of 12m on 2 pitchers everyone trashed, and so far one has pitched like an ace and the other has pitched like a solid 3/4. Almost like the dude is good at this or something.

He also gave up almost nothing for 2 other starters in the rotation who are pitching very well, and acquired another who was pitching well until he got hurt. The only starter he doesn't get full credit for is Eovaldi, and he has to get some credit for not dumping him at some point in 2019 or 2020.
He's very good at finding surplus value on his acquisitions and his drafts are very promising so far. His scrap heap guys have been for the most part pretty good.

That is all well and good for being competitive throughout the 162 game regular season and hitting on those guys should get you in the playoffs most years especially in this era where 6 teams per league get in. You need deep depth to survive the grind of a season. But, like teams in Oakland and Tampa Bay, solely doing it this way is not a likely way to win a championship. The '13 Red Sox and '15 Royals are outliers. You need a few star players to compliment that depth. I'd be very disappointed if ownership is content with continuing to not pay guys like Betts/Bogaerts/Devers and is just happy with being merely a competitive team who gets in the playoffs and hope to get lucky one of those years. They can afford to use their financial advantages to lock in a Rafael Devers while also being a draft/develop machines plus finding some diamonds in the rough.
 

BaseballJones

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Well they have stars (X, Raffy, JD), and they have potential stars (Sale, if healthy, and Paxton - don't laugh...from 17-19 he put up a 3.54 era, 119 era+, with a 1.16 whip and 11.1 k/9...when healthy he's REALLY good). Is Story a star? Yeah probably. Anyway, the point is the Sox should always have some stars, given their payroll status.
 

RedOctober3829

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Well they have stars (X, Raffy, JD), and they have potential stars (Sale, if healthy, and Paxton - don't laugh...from 17-19 he put up a 3.54 era, 119 era+, with a 1.16 whip and 11.1 k/9...when healthy he's REALLY good). Is Story a star? Yeah probably. Anyway, the point is the Sox should always have some stars, given their payroll status.
My post was more about what Bloom's(and ownership's) philosophy is moving forward. Are they moving towards a Tampa like approach where they are constantly churning and burning players and trading them before they get expensive or is it going to be a multi-pronged Dodgers-type approach of expensive stars plus drafted/developed future stars and scrap heap guys to balance out the payroll?
 

joe dokes

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My post was more about what Bloom's(and ownership's) philosophy is moving forward. Are they moving towards a Tampa like approach where they are constantly churning and burning players and trading them before they get expensive or is it going to be a multi-pronged approach?
Devers is my bellwether for this question.
 

Van Everyman

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He's very good at finding surplus value on his acquisitions and his drafts are very promising so far. His scrap heap guys have been for the most part pretty good.

That is all well and good for being competitive throughout the 162 game regular season and hitting on those guys should get you in the playoffs most years especially in this era where 6 teams per league get in. You need deep depth to survive the grind of a season. But, like teams in Oakland and Tampa Bay, solely doing it this way is not a likely way to win a championship. The '13 Red Sox and '15 Royals are outliers. You need a few star players to compliment that depth. I'd be very disappointed if ownership is content with continuing to not pay guys like Betts/Bogaerts/Devers and is just happy with being merely a competitive team who gets in the playoffs and hope to get lucky one of those years. They can afford to use their financial advantages to lock in a Rafael Devers while also being a draft/develop machines plus finding some diamonds in the rough.
What evidence is there that Bloom is going to try to set the record for winning games with cheap, deep depth?

My post was more about what Bloom's(and ownership's) philosophy is moving forward. Are they moving towards a Tampa like approach where they are constantly churning and burning players and trading them before they get expensive?
Why would you think that, short of reading Dan Shaughnessy columns?

I get it – they let Mookie go and now have some decisions to make about Devers and Xander.

I think if one thing defines this ownership group across the last two decades it’s that they don’t fall in love with their guys every time and sign them to big flabby market-rate (or above-market) deals like the Yankees did with their core in the 2000s. As much as everyone dwells on the guys that got away (like Lester), they also extended Papi and Pedey to perpetuity. And most people here are pissed DD extended Sale but would’ve been equally crabby if he had a bounce back 2019 and left in FA.

On balance, I think this is the right approach. Would I have preferred Lester to Price? Probably – but I’m not sure the result would’ve been that much different (big contract, a ring).

Whether or not they sign Raffy and Xander or not, this team is going to be the multi-prong approach you mention. Why do I know that? Because they have been for 20 years.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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My post was more about what Bloom's(and ownership's) philosophy is moving forward. Are they moving towards a Tampa like approach where they are constantly churning and burning players and trading them before they get expensive or is it going to be a multi-pronged approach of expensive stars plus drafted/developed future stars and scrap heap guys to balance out the payroll?
Bloom's only been here 2.5 years, but I see no reason to think it won't be a multi-pronged approach. If they were aiming for the Tampa approach, Trevor Story would be elsewhere, just for one example.
 

BaseballJones

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My post was more about what Bloom's(and ownership's) philosophy is moving forward. Are they moving towards a Tampa like approach where they are constantly churning and burning players and trading them before they get expensive or is it going to be a multi-pronged Dodgers-type approach of expensive stars plus drafted/developed future stars and scrap heap guys to balance out the payroll?
What I can envision is the Sox implementing a Tampa system that does churn the roster over. You have young guys and they become stars. When they get to the point where they're demanding a 10/400 contract, Chaim trades them for top prospects. But every year this happens so there's constant stars being developed - and they are, in fact, stars for Boston - so there's always some stars on the team. It's just DIFFERENT stars all the time. But because this is Boston, they supplement these guys with some expensive additions, unlike what limited him in Tampa. Because one benefit to this system is that payroll is small, so they can afford to supplement them with some major contracts.
 

chawson

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My post was more about what Bloom's(and ownership's) philosophy is moving forward. Are they moving towards a Tampa like approach where they are constantly churning and burning players and trading them before they get expensive or is it going to be a multi-pronged Dodgers-type approach of expensive stars plus drafted/developed future stars and scrap heap guys to balance out the payroll?
There’s an extra variable here that overlaps with Bloom’s tenure. The pandemic threw a wrench into prospect development and service time, and among other GMs I think Bloom has done a good job identifying talent that was squeezed off other team’s rosters. In other words, the pandemic created a situation where there were more good players or guys with fixable mechanics, particularly relievers, among the typical pool of fungible AAAA-types. That and the use of pitch tracking technology that previous Sox FOs just didn’t have.

Those opportunities might not be as available once we “return to normal,” but, I think some kind of reliever and 6th-starter churn (Wacha, Pérez, Hill, Pivetta, Godley) will remain part of the plan moving forward. I think that strategy is probably harder to deploy with hitters though.
 

RedOctober3829

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What evidence is there that Bloom is going to try to set the record for winning games with cheap, deep depth?


Why would you think that, short of reading Dan Shaughnessy columns?

I get it – they let Mookie go and now have some decisions to make about Devers and Xander.

I think if one thing defines this ownership group across the last two decades it’s that they don’t fall in love with their guys every time and sign them to big flabby market-rate (or above-market) deals like the Yankees did with their core in the 2000s. As much as everyone dwells on the guys that got away (like Lester), they also extended Papi and Pedey to perpetuity. And most people here are pissed DD extended Sale but would’ve been equally crabby if he had a bounce back 2019 and left in FA.

On balance, I think this is the right approach. Would I have preferred Lester to Price? Probably – but I’m not sure the result would’ve been that much different (big contract, a ring).

Whether or not they sign Raffy and Xander or not, this team is going to be the multi-prong approach you mention. Why do I know that? Because they have been for 20 years.
Before Story, the biggest FA contract he gave out was Hernandez so it's not like he's been that aggressive in adding payroll. Now, mind you he inherited a big payroll so he hasn't really had to add many big pieces. This trade deadline and subsequent offseason will tell us how aggressive ownership will let Bloom be. It's just interesting to see if ownership's stance has changed.

The Story acquisition is interesting too. Do they see Story's contract as better value than re-upping Bogaerts going forward? Devers should be a different story though.

I haven't read a Dan S column in many years, so I don't know what he's saying and I could care less.
 

Ganthem

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I think this off season is going to give us a really good idea of what a Bloom constructed team looks like. For the first time he is going to have a ton of money freed up, a ton of decent to awesome prospects and a bunch of holes to fill in. Guys like Durran help fill in those holes, but Bloom is going to have his work cut out for him this off season. By the start of spring training in 2023, I think we will have a better idea of what direction Bloom wants to take the Sox in.
 

Van Everyman

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Before Story, the biggest FA contract he gave out was Hernandez so it's not like he's been that aggressive in adding payroll. Now, mind you he inherited a big payroll so he hasn't really had to add many big pieces. This trade deadline and subsequent offseason will tell us how aggressive ownership will let Bloom be. It's just interesting to see if ownership's stance has changed.

The Story acquisition is interesting too. Do they see Story's contract as better value than re-upping Bogaerts going forward? Devers should be a different story though.

I haven't read a Dan S column in many years, so I don't know what he's saying and I could care less.
Shank has been calling us “Tampa Bay North” for about a year, possibly longer. Even if you haven’t read him, you’ve heard the criticism that the Sox hired Bloom to find cheap depth while the charge record prices for tickets.

Story was probably a both/and – you get him for a song, and he can either slide in for Bogey (until Mayer is ready) or stays at 2B if Bogey stays.

I guess the point I’m making is that Sox ownership has frequently leaned toward letting most guys looking for huge paydays go with the belief that they can sign a JD Martinez-type to fill the void. While I think they probably underestimated how many people would rue the day they traded Mookie, I have never once thought it was about “being cheap” as much as it is flexibility from one year to the next. Whether it’s players or executives, Henry doesn’t like to lock himself into any one thing too long, I’m assuming it’s the hedge fund guy in him.

Whuch is a long way of saying that if they lose Xander and maybe even Raffy, I completely expect they will sign or trade for guys who give us most of what they provide – without a $300-400 million price tag.
 

sean1562

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I would like to see them be more aggressive with offering long contract extensions to premium prospects early on in their careers. Deals like the Acuna/Franco contracts. If it looks like Mayer is going to be a stud in two years, give him a long term contract after his rookie season or two months into it.
 

effectivelywild

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I would like to see them be more aggressive with offering long contract extensions to premium prospects early on in their careers. Deals like the Acuna/Franco contracts. If it looks like Mayer is going to be a stud in two years, give him a long term contract after his rookie season or two months into it.
The difficulty with that, of course, is having those obvious "can't miss" guys debuting. Whether its been due to draft position, trades or development, we haven't had a whole lot of obvious studs come out of the farm system lately. I mean...maybe Devers? But he was far from a sure thing when he came up. Using Acuna as a comparison (almost every player is going to look bad doing that, but I digress), his age 20 season he put up a 4.1 WAR compared to Dever's 0.7 (admittedly, Ocuna had 2x as many ABs). Comparing age 21 seasons, it was 5.6 War to 1.0 (albeit with a still significant playing time advantage). My point isn't that Devers sucked when he came up, but that in his debut season, he was more of a "promising hitter that may not be long for 3B, hurting his value) rather than an Acuna or Franco-level talent.
I also would like the Sox to offer long contract extensions to premium prospects early in their careers, if nothing else because it would mean that they had those premium prospects on the team already. Here's hoping.
 

joe dokes

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Whuch is a long way of saying that if they lose Xander and maybe even Raffy, I completely expect they will sign or trade for guys who give us most of what they provide – without a $300-400 million price tag.
I am confident of that as well. But I have to admit that, given his age and timing of his control, Raffy is sui generis to me; failing to keep him would leave me with regret that neither of Lester nor Mookie did, or Bogaerts would.
 

Cesar Crespo

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He's very good at finding surplus value on his acquisitions and his drafts are very promising so far. His scrap heap guys have been for the most part pretty good.

That is all well and good for being competitive throughout the 162 game regular season and hitting on those guys should get you in the playoffs most years especially in this era where 6 teams per league get in. You need deep depth to survive the grind of a season. But, like teams in Oakland and Tampa Bay, solely doing it this way is not a likely way to win a championship. The '13 Red Sox and '15 Royals are outliers. You need a few star players to compliment that depth. I'd be very disappointed if ownership is content with continuing to not pay guys like Betts/Bogaerts/Devers and is just happy with being merely a competitive team who gets in the playoffs and hope to get lucky one of those years. They can afford to use their financial advantages to lock in a Rafael Devers while also being a draft/develop machines plus finding some diamonds in the rough.
How often does the best team actually win the WS? I still think the old adage is true. Make the playoffs as often as you can because once you are there, it's a coin flip and anyone can win.

I'd also argue pretty much every team who has ever won the WS got lucky that year. They had a lot of things break the right way. Winning a WS involves a lot of good luck.

I'd rather the team field a competitive team with payroll flexibility that makes the playoffs every year than a team that is a favorite to win the WS for a year or two than is forced to rebuild/retool because of bad contracts.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Dec 22, 2002
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What I can envision is the Sox implementing a Tampa system that does churn the roster over. You have young guys and they become stars. When they get to the point where they're demanding a 10/400 contract, Chaim trades them for top prospects. But every year this happens so there's constant stars being developed - and they are, in fact, stars for Boston - so there's always some stars on the team. It's just DIFFERENT stars all the time. But because this is Boston, they supplement these guys with some expensive additions, unlike what limited him in Tampa. Because one benefit to this system is that payroll is small, so they can afford to supplement them with some major contracts.
Yeah. Cheer for the laundry, not the players.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Dec 22, 2002
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I am confident of that as well. But I have to admit that, given his age and timing of his control, Raffy is sui generis to me; failing to keep him would leave me with regret that neither of Lester nor Mookie did, or Bogaerts would.
He'll hit FA a year younger than Mookie did. Does it really make that much of a difference? Signing a 26 year old to a 10-12 year deal doesn't seem all that different than signing a 27 year old to one. Unless you think Betts is going to age worse than Devers for some reason. There's also the chance Devers has to move to 1b.
 

RedOctober3829

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SoSH Member
Jul 19, 2005
52,490
deep inside Guido territory
How often does the best team actually win the WS? I still think the old adage is true. Make the playoffs as often as you can because once you are there, it's a coin flip and anyone can win.

I'd also argue pretty much every team who has ever won the WS got lucky that year. They had a lot of things break the right way. Winning a WS involves a lot of good luck.

I'd rather the team field a competitive team with payroll flexibility that makes the playoffs every year than a team that is a favorite to win the WS for a year or two than is forced to rebuild/retool because of bad contracts.
Can't a team with the resources the Red Sox have do both? Can't they have a couple of star players with lengthy contracts while also drafting well and have a good amount of cost-controlled young talent?

Teams like Oakland and Tampa Bay should be commended for the job they do(or in Oakland's case have done) in working within the constraints of a tight budget and getting to the playoffs often. But, they often fail because they run into teams that have more talent. The Red Sox don't have to just be a "competitive team", try to win 88-90 games, and hope things break right. The Red Sox now should never miss the playoffs with 6 teams getting in. They should be a team that can draft/bring in top international FA's, develop them into stars, and then keep said stars. Can you keep everyone? Probably not. But, they have the ability to extend themselves to keep a Rafael Devers and should flex their financial muscle to have the 1-2 difference makers that can turn a good, competitive team into a great team.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Dec 22, 2002
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Can't a team with the resources the Red Sox have do both? Can't they have a couple of star players with lengthy contracts while also drafting well and have a good amount of cost-controlled young talent?
I'd argue they already do both. They just aren't willing to go to 10 years to keep their stars or sign stars. I tend to agree with them.

What happens if Devers falls apart after 7 years and is signed for another 3? How do the Sox continue to have a few star players on lengthy contracts when they have vastly overpaid players on expensive, lengthy contracts? Should they always have a few star players on lengthy deals or should they just always have a few lengthy deals? Are you ok with resets like 2020s?

The Sox chose to pay Chris Sale. Some argue that costs them Mookie Betts. Signing Devers to 10/320 might cost the team the next Mookie Betts or Rafael Devers 6 or 7 years from now.

Payroll flexibility and 10+ year deals go together like milk and soda. This is especially true when homegrown players get paid a premium for playing in places like Boston or NY, and not a hometown discount.