Red Sox Rumors - Just Kidding

The Gray Eagle

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It's been reported that they offered more money than Anaheim for Drury but he chose to go there. So if he had signed here, he would probably be at second for most games and Story would be at SS. That fell through, so they move on. As mentioned in the article, if they trade for a CF, then probably Kike is at SS for most games and Story stays at second.
There's lots of moving pieces and it's December.
 

Alex Cole's Rec Specs

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Some would argue the Plan B you are referencing almost perfectly describes Trevor Story.
Fair enough, but in that case the message from the Front Office needs to be "Trevor Story is our shortstop." I don't know enough about Story's elbow to know whether or not his arm will be a liability, but the Red Sox Front Office should know the answer; and if their answer is, according to Chad Jennings, "we don't know," then they should have signed a premium free agent. The statement about trading for Joey Wendle as part of some rotating platoon makes it sound like they don't have a clear plan.
 

Max Power

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Fair enough, but in that case the message from the Front Office needs to be "Trevor Story is our shortstop." I don't know enough about Story's elbow to know whether or not his arm will be a liability, but the Red Sox Front Office should know the answer; and if their answer is, according to Chad Jennings, "we don't know," then they should have signed a premium free agent. The statement about trading for Joey Wendle as part of some rotating platoon makes it sound like they don't have a clear plan.
Why is that message so important to you? Because of the defensive flexibility on the roster, any one of a CF, SS, or 2B would fill the hole in the lineup.
 

chawson

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Fair enough, but in that case the message from the Front Office needs to be "Trevor Story is our shortstop." I don't know enough about Story's elbow to know whether or not his arm will be a liability, but the Red Sox Front Office should know the answer; and if their answer is, according to Chad Jennings, "we don't know," then they should have signed a premium free agent. The statement about trading for Joey Wendle as part of some rotating platoon makes it sound like they don't have a clear plan.
The contingency plan was Story, and it seems to me like a smart one.

I don't know why I'm supposed to dislike the idea adding Wendle to the infield mix. If we’ve already got Arroyo, wouldn't Wendle make more sense on the roster than Segura?

vs. RHP, 2020-22:
Segura: .272/.332/.383, 97 wRC+, 812 PA
Wendle: .279/.320/.427, 108 wRC+, 813 PA

Defense by OAA, 2020-22
Segura: +16 at 2B | DNP at SS
Wendle: +7 at 2B | +5 at SS
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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This is kinda nonsense. How many "top shelf" shortstops have the Yankees had in the ~15 years since Jeter was actually good? Like Didi Gregorious's career year in 2018 and ???

"Plan B" being a specific name that you'd immediately pivot to if you can't get Bogaerts back doesn't even make sense, given that we know they were out on everything at his price point. Plan B is exactly what we're seeing now: test the trade market, weigh the free agents and internal options, figure out what works best for the team. It doesn't need to happen fast; it's not like Segura and Andrus and Iglesias have all flown off the market and we're gonna be left fielding the bat boy.
FWIW, Jeter was a 2.6 fWAR average player in the 2010, 11 and 12 seasons. (I would have gone further back but the 6.7 fWAR in 2009 would have drastically skewed the numbers). He only played 17 games at 39 in 2013 and was terrible in those games as well as for all of the 2014 season. Jeter retired at the end of that season and the Yankees (in essence) moved Shane Greene for Didi Gregorious, as you mentioned, on December 5th, 2014. At the time Gregorious was entering his age 25 season, had less than 750 career at bats (call it less than a season and a half) and was a former top 100 prospect. He then averaged a 2.2 fWAR for the Yankees for the next 5 seasons (or he was a little bit better on average than the fulltime Montreal version of Orlando Cabrera).

Granted, the Yankees (and their fans) knew that Jeter was leaving after the 2014 season, but if Bloom's offer was 4/$90m for Bogaerts than he knew he was leaving too (or Bloom is incomprehensibly terrible at reading a market, so I'll give him credit and say it was the former). If Bloom had traded for someone like Oneil Cruz, Luis Arraez or Gavin Lux (not perfect analogies for Gregorius, but I think people understand the point) after Bogaerts signed with San Diego, I don't think there would be nearly the hand-wringing or complaints about lack of (what I, at least) consider to be a reasonable plan.

*I chose not just short stops but middle infielders as well because while I agree Trevor Story is a really freaking good option for a back up SS plan to Bogaerts leaving, that leaves the hole at second base. But honestly, for me at least, the bigger issue is that we lose the middle of the order bat, regardless of position. In other words, if we'd traded for Bryan Reynolds and move Hernandez to a MI spot and Story to the other, you certainly won't hear me complaining. I also think there is no chance Bloom does that.
 
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simplicio

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And he still might trade for any of them? Or Wendle or whomever? I'm not clear on how what they're currently doing isn't a reasonable plan. It's not like we're going to get to spring training like oops, we totally forgot to sign a shortstop.
 

cantor44

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I strongly disagree. Let’s face it - Boston sports fans these days days are a “what have you done for me lately” group. (Belichick is a bum, Sweeney/Neely incompetent, etc).

Once the Betts trade went down a great majority of Sox fans went straight negative on FSG and Bloom. JWH is cheap? Liverpool? Tampa Bay North? Uncaring, incompetent? It goes on an on.

Every Bloom decision and comment is picked apart and nothing is right. (Ex: Schwarber - Wtf is Bloom doing? they acquired a fat, injured guy who can’t play a position and we already have a DH. Wtf is Bloom doing? Schwarber is a stud, cornerstone, FSG too cheap)

It seems pretty clear to me - the the firing of Dombrowski and the hiring of Bloom was a complete change in the team building philosophy. Management want to remove the peaks (banners) and valleys (out of playoffs) from their tremendous investment.

Of course FSG wanted it both ways. Remain competitive and feather in a rebuild. No easy way to accelerate the rebuild of a weak farm system unles. Maybe trade away your current stars? I don’t know if Bloom can make it happen but hope FSG gives him the 5-6 years required. Bloom doesn’t write the checks. I do think he signed up for an incredibly tough task. I think he deserves hazard play from FSG and admire his commitment.
The criticism of the Scwharber trade was not born from a reflexive opposition to Bloom. The criticism was that Bloom was ONLY willing to trade for an injured player - when the team had THE BEST RECORD IN THE AL at the deadline - and that is because he could get that player for cheap. Bloom didn't want to spend anything. And he did nothing else to help a winning but flawed team - a team in the last chapter of an excellent core, that had a real chance to win. He was timid at that deadline. Of course Schwarber was both appealing and effective, and it would have been nice to keep him, but Bloom was passive again in the 2021 off season. So, no, it's not hypocrisy, but looking at each decision in its context. Maybe, just maybe, some Bloom detractors have been on to something. He's done some things well. And other things really badly.
 

DeadlySplitter

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Doesn't Hernandez grade out pretty bleh at short? That's really a plan C and not a break glass in case of emergency plan?

Also I irrationally hate whenever I hear about Chaim interested in an ex-Ray, but that's just me.
 

JCizzle

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And he still might trade for any of them? Or Wendle or whomever? I'm not clear on how what they're currently doing isn't a reasonable plan. It's not like we're going to get to spring training like oops, we totally forgot to sign a shortstop.
Isn't that basically what they did with RF last year? Hope and a prayer for a JBJ turnaround?
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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And he still might trade for any of them? Or Wendle or whomever? I'm not clear on how what they're currently doing isn't a reasonable plan. It's not like we're going to get to spring training like oops, we totally forgot to sign a shortstop.
If he does, I'm more than happy to admit he had a really good plan all along and that I was wrong. Nothing in Bloom's tenure has suggested that he's going to make that kind of trade to me. If you can think of a deal where he moved prospects to acquire a core piece with multiple years of control, let me know. I honestly am just thinking off the top of my head and cannot think of one.

To be clear, I'm not in any way, shape or form saying that he doesn't have a plan. I agree with @moondog80 and others that "the plan" is not to sign any long term mega contracts, to wait on the kids to come up and try to sneak your way into the playoffs in the meantime. That's a plan. Bloom is executing his plan and I don't question that. Its why in the "front office poll" I specified that my vote 20% vote "the plan isn't working" to mean that there is a plan, I don't think it's working and I don't think the way they're going about it will work, and I have much closer to 0% confidence in Bloom to turn this around than 20%, but that wasn't an option.

Again, he absolutely has a plan. I think that "plan" will be something like getting SegurAndrus, putting Story at the other MI position and having Christian Arroyo as your back up plan. Which would actually be fine to me if we'd replaced Bogaerts bat somewhere else on the diamond AND re-signed Devers. There is no rule that says "your short stop must be a middle of the line up hitter"; heck, we won 3 of our 4 World Series titles like that. Again, "it's not even Christmas" and I get that, but we haven't replaced the middle of the order bat that Bogaerts represented AND we haven't re-signed Devers, and I don't think we will do either of those things.

Let me ask a question, those whom keep saying "it's early in the off-season", do you really believe that Bloom is going to acquire a core middle of the line up bat "later in the off-season" that we can build around to replace Bogaerts as our 2nd best offensive player? For me, the answer is a resounding no.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Joey Wendle is a good player who would really help, but is he available? What do the Sox have to deal? It’s hard to tell if these are real rumors or just the Sox spitballing on guys they’d like.
 

Ganthem

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If he does, I'm more than happy to admit he had a really good plan all along and that I was wrong. Nothing in Bloom's tenure has suggested that he's going to make that kind of trade to me. If you can think of a deal where he moved prospects to acquire a core piece with multiple years of control, let me know. I honestly am just thinking off the top of my head and cannot think of one.

To be clear, I'm not in any way, shape or form saying that he doesn't have a plan. I agree with @moondog80 and others that "the plan" is not to sign any long term mega contracts, to wait on the kids to come up and try to sneak your way into the playoffs in the meantime. That's a plan. Bloom is executing his plan and I don't question that. Its why in the "front office poll" I specified that my vote 20% vote "the plan isn't working" to mean that there is a plan, I don't think it's working and I don't think the way they're going about it will work, and I have much closer to 0% confidence in Bloom to turn this around than 20%, but that wasn't an option.

Again, he absolutely has a plan. I think that "plan" will be something like getting SegurAndrus, putting Story at the other MI position and having Christian Arroyo as your back up plan. Which would actually be fine to me if we'd replaced Bogaerts bat somewhere else on the diamond AND re-signed Devers. There is no rule that says "your short stop must be a middle of the line up hitter"; heck, we won 3 of our 4 World Series titles like that. Again, "it's not even Christmas" and I get that, but we haven't replaced the middle of the order bat that Bogaerts represented AND we haven't re-signed Devers, and I don't think we will do either of those things.

Let me ask a question, those whom keep saying "it's early in the off-season", do you really believe that Bloom is going to acquire a core middle of the line up bat "later in the off-season" that we can build around to replace Bogaerts as our 2nd best offensive player? For me, the answer is a resounding no.
Bloom would be foolish to try to replace Bogey with another player that provides his offensive upside. What Bloom needs to do now is to collect a bunch of players that can replace what Bogey has provided. I would argue that he has upgraded the bullpen and I am bullish on the rotation with Bello and Whitlock in there.While Crawford, Winchowski and Seabold struggled last year, they have not played in the majors enough to determine if they can be useful or not. Add to that Mata and Walter as depth and potentially a signing like Evoldi or Pivetta to further stretch the rotation and I fill good about where it is heading. There are also options for right field. Conforto to who knows what trade. So yeah it is only December and there is still time to make moves that shore up the team. Losing Bogey sucks, but it is not the end of the world and losing his defense might be a blessing.
 

simplicio

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Again, he absolutely has a plan. I think that "plan" will be something like getting SegurAndrus, putting Story at the other MI position and having Christian Arroyo as your back up plan. Which would actually be fine to me if we'd replaced Bogaerts bat somewhere else on the diamond AND re-signed Devers. Again, "it's not even Christmas" and I get that, but we haven't done either of those things, and I don't think based on Bloom's track record he will do either of those things.
I agree that we most likely end up in the Segura/Andrus/Wendle bracket. I'm fine with that. I think we have significantly upgraded our offense over last year elsewhere, with Yoshida/Casas, to help offset the loss of Bogaerts (and yes, of course that's a big loss). Obviously the full picture hinges on Devers, but I don't see Betts/X as being particularly predictive to his situation.
 

jteders1

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I agree that we most likely end up in the Segura/Andrus/Wendle bracket. I'm fine with that. I think we have significantly upgraded our offense over last year elsewhere, with Yoshida/Casas, to help offset the loss of Bogaerts (and yes, of course that's a big loss). Obviously the full picture hinges on Devers, but I don't see Betts/X as being particularly predictive to his situation.
You're putting a ton of eggs in the basket of a rookie, and a guy who's never played in the bigs before. Those guys could perform decently well and not hit Xander's 5.8 WAR combined. I remain unconvinced that this offense will be better than last year. The only real upgrade I've seen on the roster is the bullpen, everything else is a bit of a crapshoot.
 

jbupstate

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The criticism of the Scwharber trade was not born from a reflexive opposition to Bloom. The criticism was that Bloom was ONLY willing to trade for an injured player - when the team had THE BEST RECORD IN THE AL at the deadline - and that is because he could get that player for cheap. Bloom didn't want to spend anything. And he did nothing else to help a winning but flawed team - a team in the last chapter of an excellent core, that had a real chance to win. He was timid at that deadline. Of course Schwarber was both appealing and effective, and it would have been nice to keep him, but Bloom was passive again in the 2021 off season. So, no, it's not hypocrisy, but looking at each decision in its context. Maybe, just maybe, some Bloom detractors have been on to something. He's done some things well. And other things really badly.
Bloom wasn’t brought in to GFIN in 2021. He was hired to reset the finances, rebuild the minors and position the team to spend once the first two tasks were accomplished. Bloom was timid? Come on.

He traded for a cheap Schwarber. Didn’t give up much. Isn’t that what we want? Acquisitions that look awkward that turn out great. The team was a wreck in 2020. And he didn’t do enough to put them over the top in 2021. What could he have done without mortgaging the future? Trade Casas probably. But how do you fill 1B for the next 5 years?

Bloom had Schwarber playing 1B. That’s not timid.
 

Rovin Romine

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*I chose not just short stops but middle infielders as well because while I agree Trevor Story is a really freaking good option for a back up SS plan to Bogaerts leaving, that leaves the hole at second base.
A Christian Arroyo sized hole. With Enrique Hernandez on the ML club and Enmanuel Valdez as a bat-first guy in AAA.

Could they use more depth at SS/2B? Absolutely.

Have they been trying to address that? (If you believe the Drury rumors, Yes.)

Do they need to immediately panic-trade/sign to plug a hole? Absolutely not.
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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A Christian Arroyo sized hole. With Enrique Hernandez on the ML club and Enmanuel Valdez as a bat-first guy in AAA.

Could they use more depth at SS/2B? Absolutely.

Have they been trying to address that? (If you believe the Drury rumors, Yes.)

Do they need to immediately panic-trade/sign to plug a hole? Absolutely not.
Fine, what do you want to do at 2b for the other 105 games? *That is admittedly just snark on my part, since Arroyo has once in his career been healthy enough to even play 80 games, it doesn't need to be answered.*

I'd actually be more than fine with a line up that looks like: Yoshida - LF, Story - SS, EXTENDED Devers - 3b, Turner - DH, Casas - 1b, Valdez - 2b, Verdugo - RF; Hernandez - CF; McGuire - C; Rotation of Whitlock, Bello, Houck, Mata and Pivetta. Literally no problem with playing the kids and seeing what you have. I'm concerned about Casas never being able to hit LHP (since he couldn't in the upper minors) and there are a ton of question marks, but those are all players whom could be a possible core (or suck). I'd rather that than watch a Christian Arroyo / Joey Wendel platoon at 2b or see guys like Kluber, "Andrew Heaney"; "Zach Eflin" types in the rotation.

You're putting a ton of eggs in the basket of a rookie, and a guy who's never played in the bigs before. Those guys could perform decently well and not hit Xander's 5.8 WAR combined. I remain unconvinced that this offense will be better than last year. The only real upgrade I've seen on the roster is the bullpen, everything else is a bit of a crapshoot.
This is where I'm at also. Too many *obvious* question-marks and too much dependent on "two players to produce like one" style platoons, in my opinion. Which, I get is "the plan." Doesn't mean I have to agree with it because I think that style of plan is unlikely to produce a world series winner (not just this year, in general). Kansas City kind of did it in 2014, I guess. I haven't looked into that team a great deal, admittedly. FWIW, I think the offense is going to be a little worse than it was last year. We ended up 9th in runs scored, and I see much more of a 15th type of offense this year. This assumes we add in "Joey SeugrAndrus" type pieces.
 
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John Marzano Olympic Hero

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Bloom wasn’t brought in to GFIN in 2021. He was hired to reset the finances, rebuild the minors and position the team to spend once the first two tasks were accomplished. Bloom was timid? Come on.

He traded for a cheap Schwarber. Didn’t give up much. Isn’t that what we want? Acquisitions that look awkward that turn out great. The team was a wreck in 2020. And he didn’t do enough to put them over the top in 2021. What could he have done without mortgaging the future? Trade Casas probably. But how do you fill 1B for the next 5 years?

Bloom had Schwarber playing 1B. That’s not timid.
What’s timid was the mechanics of the Schwarber trade. Bloom got a really good deal, but it came at a price—a price that almost cost the team a postseason shot.

If you recall Schwarber was injured when Bloom acquired him and didn’t make his debut for the Sox for two plus weeks. It was around this time that the Sox were in a major nosedive, first they lost the AL East lead and now teams were gaining on them in the Wild Card.

After those two plus weeks Schwarber came in and mashed and essentially saved the season. BUT being assured of a postseason birth came down to the last day where the Sox were in an almost de facto tie with three other teams. Two would move on, two would go home.

Thankfully the Sox won outright, but this transaction almost blew up in Bloom’s face. I’m not going to use it as a black mark against him because they made the playoffs, but they came really close to blowing it and that would have been Bloom’s fault.
 

E5 Yaz

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I got a text from a friend today while I was driving. He was all pissed off that Bloom signed another Island of Misfit Toys type that would wind up being traded at the deadline and that all he remembers about Myers was the disastrous play in RF in Fenway ... blah blah blah. When I got out of the car, I looked it up and saw that it was the Reds, and texted my friend back. "We could have gotten him at that price," he texted back.
 

jon abbey

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I got a text from a friend today while I was driving. He was all pissed off that Bloom signed another Island of Misfit Toys type that would wind up being traded at the deadline and that all he remembers about Myers was the disastrous play in RF in Fenway ... blah blah blah. When I got out of the car, I looked it up and saw that it was the Reds, and texted my friend back. "We could have gotten him at that price," he texted back.
Hahaha, I think that sums up the state of current sports fandom very nicely, not just Sox fans.
 

Benj4ever

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Fine, what do you want to do at 2b for the other 105 games? *That is admittedly just snark on my part, since Arroyo has once in his career been healthy enough to even play 80 games, it doesn't need to be answered.*

I'd actually be more than fine with a line up that looks like: Yoshida - LF, Story - SS, EXTENDED Devers - 3b, Turner - DH, Casas - 1b, Valdez - 2b, Verdugo - RF; Hernandez - CF; McGuire - C; Rotation of Whitlock, Bello, Houck, Mata and Pivetta. Literally no problem with playing the kids and seeing what you have. I'm concerned about Casas never being able to hit LHP (since he couldn't in the upper minors) and there are a ton of question marks, but those are all players whom could be a possible core (or suck). I'd rather that than watch a Christian Arroyo / Joey Wendel platoon at 2b or see guys like Kluber, "Andrew Heaney"; "Zach Eflin" types in the rotation.



This is where I'm at also. Too many *obvious* question-marks and too much dependent on "two players to produce like one" style platoons, in my opinion. Which, I get is "the plan." Doesn't mean I have to agree with it because I think that style of plan is unlikely to produce a world series winner (not just this year, in general). Kansas City kind of did it in 2014, I guess. I haven't looked into that team a great deal, admittedly. FWIW, I think the offense is going to be a little worse than it was last year. We ended up 9th in runs scored, and I see much more of a 15th type of offense this year. This assumes we add in "Joey SeugrAndrus" type pieces.
And if you refuse to put a lot of eggs in a rookie's basket, you miss out on the Roger Clemens, Fred Lynns, Jim Rices, Carl Yastrzemskis, Mike Greenwells, and Dustin Pedrois of the world (ad nauseum). Accepting risk is something that everyone does every day, not just baseball management. Don't forget, too, that teams can make an in-season trade if a rookie doesn't work out, and that there's risk in giving any player a starting job. They might get hurt, or they might underperform. There is no such thing as a "riskless" baseball team.
 

snowmanny

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I got a text from a friend today while I was driving. He was all pissed off that Bloom signed another Island of Misfit Toys type that would wind up being traded at the deadline and that all he remembers about Myers was the disastrous play in RF in Fenway ... blah blah blah. When I got out of the car, I looked it up and saw that it was the Reds, and texted my friend back. "We could have gotten him at that price," he texted back.
Why isn’t he a member here?
 

chawson

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I'd actually be more than fine with a line up that looks like: Yoshida - LF, Story - SS, EXTENDED Devers - 3b, Turner - DH, Casas - 1b, Valdez - 2b, Verdugo - RF; Hernandez - CF; McGuire - C; Rotation of Whitlock, Bello, Houck, Mata and Pivetta. Literally no problem with playing the kids and seeing what you have. I'm concerned about Casas never being able to hit LHP (since he couldn't in the upper minors) and there are a ton of question marks, but those are all players whom could be a possible core (or suck). I'd rather that than watch a Christian Arroyo / Joey Wendel platoon at 2b or see guys like Kluber, "Andrew Heaney"; "Zach Eflin" types in the rotation.
What's so bad about these types? Kluber, Eflin and Heaney were the 48th, 71st and 85th best starting pitchers in baseball by FIP. If they were on the Sox last year, they'd have ranked 2nd, 3rd and 5th in that category among our starters if you count Bello, who only threw 52 innings as a starter.
 

Rovin Romine

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Fine, what do you want to do at 2b for the other 105 games? *That is admittedly just snark on my part, since Arroyo has once in his career been healthy enough to even play 80 games, it doesn't need to be answered.*
I 100% share this concern.

But I think starting Arroyo and signing/trading for a solid backup IF is fine. I do not think that Bloom has, as of yet, missed the boat on acquiring that kind of complimentary piece.

I also think getting a primo-to-solid SS/2B type is fine, with Arroyo then backing-up and depth in Hernandez and Valdez. Bloom certainly kicked the tires on huge upgrades such as trying to land FA Xander and all the other rumored stuff. But it's a mistake to confuse exploring several options with an absolute need for "option 2 to have been exercised at any possible cost otherwise sunk-season."
 

HangingW/ScottCooper

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The criticism of the Scwharber trade was not born from a reflexive opposition to Bloom. The criticism was that Bloom was ONLY willing to trade for an injured player - when the team had THE BEST RECORD IN THE AL at the deadline - and that is because he could get that player for cheap. Bloom didn't want to spend anything. And he did nothing else to help a winning but flawed team - a team in the last chapter of an excellent core, that had a real chance to win. He was timid at that deadline. Of course Schwarber was both appealing and effective, and it would have been nice to keep him, but Bloom was passive again in the 2021 off season. So, no, it's not hypocrisy, but looking at each decision in its context. Maybe, just maybe, some Bloom detractors have been on to something. He's done some things well. And other things really badly.
Kudos to Bloom for acquiring the best bat that changed teams in 2021. He should be credited for that. That being said, the team needed a first baseman as well and Schwarber didn't really satisfy that. The bats went cold in the ALCS and perhaps had he also added Rizzo that would have been enough to make it to the World Series.

It seems to me that more than having a definitive plan for roster building, Bloom has a set of rules that are either self imposed or imposed upon by above. Those rules dictate decision making regardless of whether or not all of the needs of the team are satisfied. This would also apply to the breaking down of a team as they should have done last July. They had a set of expectations for each trade candidate and only moved the one player whose return satisfied that expectation.
 

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I got a text from a friend today while I was driving. He was all pissed off that Bloom signed another Island of Misfit Toys type that would wind up being traded at the deadline and that all he remembers about Myers was the disastrous play in RF in Fenway ... blah blah blah. When I got out of the car, I looked it up and saw that it was the Reds, and texted my friend back. "We could have gotten him at that price," he texted back.
Since when do you know how to text?
 

JM3

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Kudos to Bloom for acquiring the best bat that changed teams in 2021. He should be credited for that. That being said, the team needed a first baseman as well and Schwarber didn't really satisfy that. The bats went cold in the ALCS and perhaps had he also added Rizzo that would have been enough to make it to the World Series.

It seems to me that more than having a definitive plan for roster building, Bloom has a set of rules that are either self imposed or imposed upon by above. Those rules dictate decision making regardless of whether or not all of the needs of the team are satisfied. This would also apply to the breaking down of a team as they should have done last July. They had a set of expectations for each trade candidate and only moved the one player whose return satisfied that expectation.
The Cubs got their 3rd-ranked prospect in that deal, Kevin Alcántara (MLB #86 overall), & also got a high upside, albeit older, arm in Alexander Vizcaíno...whose career appears to be stalled after not showing up for Spring Training this year.

The Red Sox couldn't really compete with that package without killing their functional Minor League depth unfortunately.
 

jon abbey

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The Cubs got their 3rd-ranked prospect in that deal, Kevin Alcántara (MLB #86 overall), & also got a high upside, albeit older, arm in Alexander Vizcaíno...whose career appears to be stalled after not showing up for Spring Training this year.

The Red Sox couldn't really compete with that package without killing their functional Minor League depth unfortunately.
Vizcaino looked very promising, his changeup was supposedly already as good as almost any in MLB, but he had some shoulder issues and then seems to have just quit baseball, the Cubs non-tendered him in November. Alcantara has a very high ceiling, as you said.
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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And if you refuse to put a lot of eggs in a rookie's basket, you miss out on the Roger Clemens, Fred Lynns, Jim Rices, Carl Yastrzemskis, Mike Greenwells, and Dustin Pedrois of the world (ad nauseum). Accepting risk is something that everyone does every day, not just baseball management. Don't forget, too, that teams can make an in-season trade if a rookie doesn't work out, and that there's risk in giving any player a starting job. They might get hurt, or they might underperform. There is no such thing as a "riskless" baseball team.
I think we agree. Risk is a necessary part of (life) building a baseball team. I WANT us to take that risk on prospects / rookies. I want us to have more rookies on this team than we do. That's why I mentioned Valdez starting and going with all the kids on the big league pitching staff.

In a season where I don't think we're a serious ALCS contender, I'd rather take that risk on youth. For example, I have concerns about Casas ability to handle LHP (because he had a .591OPS against LHP in AA, and a .617OPS against LHP last year in AAA, followed up by a .611OPS against LHP in the majors). However, in no way, shape or form do I criticize Bloom if the plan is for him to be the every day 1b for the next two years to give him the chance to overcome that. So I'd far rather he be at 1b than signing Brandon Belt, or whomever.

What's so bad about these types? Kluber, Eflin and Heaney were the 48th, 71st and 85th best starting pitchers in baseball by FIP. If they were on the Sox last year, they'd have ranked 2nd, 3rd and 5th in that category among our starters if you count Bello, who only threw 52 innings as a starter.
Mostly, see above. I don't think we're going to be good next year, and I don't think adding all the "Andrew Heaneys" you possibly can fit on your 25 man roster makes you any more serious an ALCS contender than seeing what "Tanner Houck" can do instead.

On Heaney specifically, not only does he have a career track record of under-performing (in some cases massively) his FIP on basically an annual basis, but he looks like a guy whom will get shelled in the AL East (the way he did in NY to the tune of a 7.32ERA and that was WITHOUT having to face the Yankees. So I'd rather see what the kids have than be tied in to Heaney for a $12.5m luxury tax hit the next two years.

On Eflin, over the course of his career he's averaged 18 starts (17.5, but I'll be generous) per year in 6 seasons - I discount 2020 across the board - and just signed for $13.3m AAV for the next three years. I want to stay as far away as possible from spending $25m combined on two guys like that so you can sign elite level talent. I think all those "small deals" to guys whom are bad bets add up quicker than a lot of people might consider.

Plus, if you chose to that type of route, I'd rather spend it on Eovaldi or Wacha (whom carry the same "games missed" concern - though not quite as bad since they're both good for about 23/24 starts on average) and have at least shown an ability to pitch in the AL East and in Boston, specifically.
 
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Minneapolis Millers

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Jul 15, 2005
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You're putting a ton of eggs in the basket of a rookie, and a guy who's never played in the bigs before. Those guys could perform decently well and not hit Xander's 5.8 WAR combined. I remain unconvinced that this offense will be better than last year. The only real upgrade I've seen on the roster is the bullpen, everything else is a bit of a crapshoot.
Well, Cordero/JBJ/Dalbec gave us 900 ABs of negative value, each of them and collectively having a minus WAR. It’s not hard to see Yoshida and Casas having solid, non-All Star years and still improving two roster spots by 4-5 wins. Turner hit as well as JD but did so while also playing D, so overall that switch could easily be a slight upgrade. If they can find another SS/IF who can provide 2 WAR (Andrus was surprisingly worth 3 last year, Wendle 2.4 in 101 Gs), the offense could certainly be better.
 

jteders1

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Dec 5, 2022
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Well, Cordero/JBJ/Dalbec gave us 900 ABs of negative value, each of them and collectively having a minus WAR. It’s not hard to see Yoshida and Casas having solid, non-All Star years and still improving two roster spots by 4-5 wins. Turner hit as well as JD but did so while also playing D, so overall that switch could easily be a slight upgrade. If they can find another SS/IF who can provide 2 WAR (Andrus was surprisingly worth 3 last year, Wendle 2.4 in 101 Gs), the offense could certainly be better.
It could get better, but as we sit right now, it's not. I think there's also a real possibility of Yoshida being mediocre and Cassas not performing as we all hope. If that happens, we could be a bottom half offense in MLB. I'm fine with these risks, if we had more than one guy in the lineup who puts fear into the opposing pitching staff. Outside of Devers who is likely to put up a monster year to keep this offense afloat? Story...maybe, then........
 

jbupstate

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What’s timid was the mechanics of the Schwarber trade. Bloom got a really good deal, but it came at a price—a price that almost cost the team a postseason shot.

If you recall Schwarber was injured when Bloom acquired him and didn’t make his debut for the Sox for two plus weeks. It was around this time that the Sox were in a major nosedive, first they lost the AL East lead and now teams were gaining on them in the Wild Card.

After those two plus weeks Schwarber came in and mashed and essentially saved the season. BUT being assured of a postseason birth came down to the last day where the Sox were in an almost de facto tie with three other teams. Two would move on, two would go home.

Thankfully the Sox won outright, but this transaction almost blew up in Bloom’s face. I’m not going to use it as a black mark against him because they made the playoffs, but they came really close to blowing it and that would have been Bloom’s fault.
But it didn’t blow up in his face. It was a gamble that paid off handsomely. The Sox were in the hunt because of what Bloom did right. Added Renfroe, Kike, Pivetta and Whitlock. The bullpen with familiar names (that sucked in 2022) was great. Some moves definitely did not work Marwin, Cordero, Santana.

The mix worked in 2021 but exploded spectacularly in 2022 due to injury timing and luck. Bloom put together a team without Betts, an injured Sale and the great Vazquez sucking royally that eliminated the Yankees and came within two games of the WS and people find faults. At the same time adding lottery tickets to lower system and clearing payroll.

The 2022 gambles - JBJ trade, Paxton signing, Franchy at 1B and Xander opt out management were not good.
 

Big Papi's Mango Salsa

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I 100% share this concern.

But I think starting Arroyo and signing/trading for a solid backup IF is fine. I do not think that Bloom has, as of yet, missed the boat on acquiring that kind of complimentary piece.

I also think getting a primo-to-solid SS/2B type is fine, with Arroyo then backing-up and depth in Hernandez and Valdez. Bloom certainly kicked the tires on huge upgrades such as trying to land FA Xander and all the other rumored stuff. But it's a mistake to confuse exploring several options with an absolute need for "option 2 to have been exercised at any possible cost otherwise sunk-season."
Fair.

I always address SS/2b as short hand, when I should better outline that my concern is losing Bogaerts the #3 hitter and not Bogaerts the SS (especially since I think he was likely to move to LF or similar in a few seasons anyway). That is the part that I think we haven't done nearly enough to address are core pieces for the 2, 3 and 4 slots in the batting order. Story fills one, and I'm very pleased with that. Losing Bogaerts is a massive hole to the offense not only for the short term, but I think for the long term as well. I think it's only going to be exacerbated when we don't extend Devers and he leaves, hopefully via trade, but I think more likely via free agency.

There are some on here whom have mentioned (or at least implied) that they're not concerned with replacing Bogaerts bat, I for one think that is a massive mistake. Locking up Devers would go a LONG way toward addressing that, but I admit that I think getting him on board became much more unlikely the moment Bogaerts left the Red Sox. Of course, there are other (better) core line up pieces than Xander Bogaerts in the game of major league baseball, but we've done nothing to add them and I honestly don't think Bloom is going to pony up the money (market rate) or the prospects necessary to do as such. I hope to be very wrong about that.
 

Rovin Romine

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Fair.

I always address SS/2b as short hand, when I should better outline that my concern is losing Bogaerts the #3 hitter and not Bogaerts the SS (especially since I think he was likely to move to LF or similar in a few seasons anyway). That is the part that I think we haven't done nearly enough to address are core pieces for the 2, 3 and 4 slots in the batting order. Story fills one, and I'm very pleased with that. Losing Bogaerts is a massive hole to the offense not only for the short term, but I think for the long term as well. I think it's only going to be exacerbated when we don't extend Devers and he leaves, hopefully via trade, but I think more likely via free agency.

There are some on here whom have mentioned (or at least implied) that they're not concerned with replacing Bogaerts bat, I for one think that is a massive mistake. Locking up Devers would go a LONG way toward addressing that, but I admit that I think getting him on board became much more unlikely the moment Bogaerts left the Red Sox. Of course, there are other (better) core line up pieces than Xander Bogaerts in the game of major league baseball, but we've done nothing to add them and I honestly don't think Bloom is going to pony up the money (market rate) or the prospects necessary to do as such. I hope to be very wrong about that.
Yoshida could be a roughly comparable Bogaerts bat, with Turner being a roughly comparable JD bat.

The Sox were the #4 AL offense last year, in terms of runs scored. Significant holes were: 1B, CF, RF. Right now, we've got a viable option at 1B (Casas) and health should boost CF and give us a boost to 2B. Those gains might offset the difference between Xander and Yoshida.

There's certainly some volatility there, but as the club stands they could actually produce more in 2022 - if key contributors are healthy.

As for Devers - I'll worry about that when it happens, if they don't start whatever season that may be with a replacement of some kind.
 

jbupstate

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Yoshida could be a roughly comparable Bogaerts bat, with Turner being a roughly comparable JD bat.

The Sox were the #4 AL offense last year, in terms of runs scored. Significant holes were: 1B, CF, RF. Right now, we've got a viable option at 1B (Casas) and health should boost CF and give us a boost to 2B. Those gains might offset the difference between Xander and Yoshida.

There's certainly some volatility there, but as the club stands they could actually produce more in 2022 - if key contributors are healthy.

As for Devers - I'll worry about that when it happens, if they don't start whatever season that may be with a replacement of some kind.
And will not have 1,000 shared at bats for Franchy, Dalbec, JBJ and Plawecki.
 

JM3

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True - but I suspect Dalbec against lefties will be a feature unless something else changes. I'd be OK with that.
Yeah, the problem wasn't the 112 plate appearances against lefties at a 115 wRC+...it was the 241 plate appearances against righties at 64.

Although upon further review, it looks like his niche should basically only be to face lefties at home...

Lefties at home 144 wRC+
Lefties on road 86 wRC+
Righties on road 77 wRC+
Righties at home 49 wRC+

That really looks like a huge approach issue against righties with the monstahhh...
 

Rovin Romine

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Although upon further review, it looks like his niche should basically only be to face lefties at home...

That really looks like a huge approach issue against righties with the monstahhh...
Excellent catch - and yes, without more info my guess it you're right and it's some variety of wall-fixation.
 

BaseballJones

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Oct 1, 2015
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2022 vs 2023

2022
C - Vazquez - 109 ops+
1b - Dalbec - 80 ops+
2b - Story - 102 ops+
3b - Devers - 141 ops+
SS - Bogaerts - 131 ops+
LF - Verdugo - 102 ops+
CF - Hernandez - 75 ops+
RF - Bradley - 60 ops+
DH - Martinez - 117 ops+

SP - Wacha - 127 era+
SP - Pivetta - 92 era+
SP - Hill - 98 era+
SP - Eovaldi - 109 era+
SP - Crawford - 77 era+
SP - Winckowski - 72 era+
SP - Bello - 90 era+

RP - Schreiber - 190 era+
RP - Whitlock - 122 era+
RP - Houck - 134 era+
RP - Brasier - 73 era+
RP - Barnes - 98 era+
RP - Davis - 77 era+
RP - Sawamura - 113 era+
RP - Strahm - 110 era+
RP - Diekman - 100 era+
RP - Danish - 82 era+
RP - Robles - 73 era+
RP - Ort - 67 era+

Good god look at those numbers. No wonder the Red Sox sucked last year. Holy crap.

2023

C - McGuire - probably will be a downgrade from Vazquez' 2022
1b - Casas - should be an upgrade over Dalbec
2b - Story - should be better AND hopefully he gets a lot more AB than in 2022
3b - Devers - given that he had a terrible stretch in there and is getting closer to his prime, I hope his numbers go up this year
SS - ???
LF - Yoshida - Even if he doesn't duplicate his Japan numbers, he should be a pretty decent MLB hitter
CF - Hernandez - Career ops+ of 97, so if he goes back to "normal" Kiké, he should be an upgrade over the 2022 version
RF - Verdugo - Career ops+ of 107, so again, he should be a little upgrade over last year
DH - Turner - Career ops+ of 126. Not sure if he'll do that but no reason to think he won't at least be similar to JDM's 2022 numbers

SP - Paxton - Hoping for 20 starts with a mid-to-high 3's era
SP - Sale - Hoping for 20 starts with a mid-3's era
SP - Bello - Hoping for 25-30 starts with a mid-3's era...he's that good
SP - Pivetta - Career era+ of 87 so he might even go down a little from last year but be in the ballpark anyway
SP - Whitlock - Hoping for a full season from him at a mid-to-high 3's era

RP - Jansen - Not Mariano, but he's been really good for a long time and anchors the bullpen
RP - Schreiber - Will likely drop off considerably from last year but should still be a good MLB reliever
RP - Houck - Hoping for a really good year from him; he's got real ability
RP - Martin - Should be terrific
RP - Brasier - Yuck, BUT....he probably will be better this year; career era+ of 110, which is MUCH better than last year's
RP - Barnes - No clue what they'll get from him
RP - Rodriguez - Nothing great; don't expect a ton from him
RP - Taylor - Pretty solid RP, should be an improvement from some of the slop they threw out last year


Long story short....

I think the lineup can be pretty competitive with last year's lineup. I think the starting rotation has humongous question marks, especially related to health, but let's be honest; last year's rotation sucked pretty bad, so I can see 2023's rotation being better than that. And the bullpen is markedly improved over last year.

I know their record was awful last year so maybe a bunch of improvement still doesn't get them to the playoffs. But I think there's more than a fighting chance with this squad AS IS, even if they don't add other good players.
 

JM3

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Excellent catch - and yes, without more info my guess it you're right and it's some variety of wall-fixation.
It might be fixable - his career #s are less skewed - but meh.

Lefties at home 136 wRC+
Lefties on road 118 wRC+
Righties at home 94 wRC+
Righties on road 78 wRC+
 

bloodysox

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Sep 25, 2011
2,781
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2022 vs 2023

2022
C - Vazquez - 109 ops+
1b - Dalbec - 80 ops+
2b - Story - 102 ops+
3b - Devers - 141 ops+
SS - Bogaerts - 131 ops+
LF - Verdugo - 102 ops+
CF - Hernandez - 75 ops+
RF - Bradley - 60 ops+
DH - Martinez - 117 ops+

SP - Wacha - 127 era+
SP - Pivetta - 92 era+
SP - Hill - 98 era+
SP - Eovaldi - 109 era+
SP - Crawford - 77 era+
SP - Winckowski - 72 era+
SP - Bello - 90 era+

RP - Schreiber - 190 era+
RP - Whitlock - 122 era+
RP - Houck - 134 era+
RP - Brasier - 73 era+
RP - Barnes - 98 era+
RP - Davis - 77 era+
RP - Sawamura - 113 era+
RP - Strahm - 110 era+
RP - Diekman - 100 era+
RP - Danish - 82 era+
RP - Robles - 73 era+
RP - Ort - 67 era+

Good god look at those numbers. No wonder the Red Sox sucked last year. Holy crap.

2023

C - McGuire - probably will be a downgrade from Vazquez' 2022
1b - Casas - should be an upgrade over Dalbec
2b - Story - should be better AND hopefully he gets a lot more AB than in 2022
3b - Devers - given that he had a terrible stretch in there and is getting closer to his prime, I hope his numbers go up this year
SS - ???
LF - Yoshida - Even if he doesn't duplicate his Japan numbers, he should be a pretty decent MLB hitter
CF - Hernandez - Career ops+ of 97, so if he goes back to "normal" Kiké, he should be an upgrade over the 2022 version
RF - Verdugo - Career ops+ of 107, so again, he should be a little upgrade over last year
DH - Turner - Career ops+ of 126. Not sure if he'll do that but no reason to think he won't at least be similar to JDM's 2022 numbers

SP - Paxton - Hoping for 20 starts with a mid-to-high 3's era
SP - Sale - Hoping for 20 starts with a mid-3's era
SP - Bello - Hoping for 25-30 starts with a mid-3's era...he's that good
SP - Pivetta - Career era+ of 87 so he might even go down a little from last year but be in the ballpark anyway
SP - Whitlock - Hoping for a full season from him at a mid-to-high 3's era

RP - Jansen - Not Mariano, but he's been really good for a long time and anchors the bullpen
RP - Schreiber - Will likely drop off considerably from last year but should still be a good MLB reliever
RP - Houck - Hoping for a really good year from him; he's got real ability
RP - Martin - Should be terrific
RP - Brasier - Yuck, BUT....he probably will be better this year; career era+ of 110, which is MUCH better than last year's
RP - Barnes - No clue what they'll get from him
RP - Rodriguez - Nothing great; don't expect a ton from him
RP - Taylor - Pretty solid RP, should be an improvement from some of the slop they threw out last year


Long story short....

I think the lineup can be pretty competitive with last year's lineup. I think the starting rotation has humongous question marks, especially related to health, but let's be honest; last year's rotation sucked pretty bad, so I can see 2023's rotation being better than that. And the bullpen is markedly improved over last year.

I know their record was awful last year so maybe a bunch of improvement still doesn't get them to the playoffs. But I think there's more than a fighting chance with this squad AS IS, even if they don't add other good players.
If the rotation is that good next year they’re pretty much guaranteed to be a playoff team but I don’t share your optimism. Relying on Sale and Paxton to not only stay healthy but also perform at a high level is tough. I’d honestly be thrilled if both were able to pitch 20 games and put up an ERA around 4.

Agreed on Bello though, I couldn’t be higher on him. Dude was electric at the end of the season and even with his really rough start he put up a FIP below 3. I think it’s very possible he ends up being our best starter next season.