Red Sox sign Marwin Gonzalez (1 year, 3 mil)

Rich Garces Belly

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He seems like a great fit for the type of team that Chaim is building. Versatility might be even more important after a shortened season.

edit to ask: is he going to platoon at first and left? (Dalbec and Renfroe)
 
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chawson

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I like it. Curious whether one of Dalbec or Chavis are moved in a trade here next. Not sure how worth it it is to keep Dalbec around as a short-side platoon or Chavis as a 26th man. I figure the Christian Arroyo redemption experiment is fully over too.
 

dynomite

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Transition to the Rays North continues. In Monty Python voice: "Bring out your utility players!"

Anyway, his career slash and OPS+ are almost exactly league average: .261/.317/.413 (99 OPS+) with ~15 HR/season. He was a genuine utility guy for the Twins last year, with ~20 starts at 3B, ~20 at 2B, 5 at 1B, and 6 in RF. He's been a ~1.5 fWAR player in his last two full seasons. Had a down year at the plate in 2020 (.211 avg), but that was obviously a strange season for many reasons and it looks like BABIP didn't smile on him. Defensive metrics I can find seem to say he's roughly average in the field.

Solid all-around player especially for a bargain basement $3 million (if that's accurate), although like most of the 2021 moves hardly a thrilling addition.

Edit: Also wonder whether Cora had input here, given that Marwin was on that infamous 2017 Astros team.
 

BaseballJones

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They've got a roster filled with....I'm not sure what, exactly. A bunch of decent players, some wild cards, and a few otherworldly players (if healthy).

If the pitching works out, they could be kinda interesting. But they could also be....pretty bad.
 

SouthernBoSox

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The bottom line Is that Chaim has made this team significantly better, the system deeper, and lowered future payroll obligations.

Its been very intriguing to watch. This roster is flexible and every player is good at specific things that can be exploited over the course of a season.

This team is going to compete.
 

scottyno

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Can't go wrong with him at that price. If he's bad then who cares, cost you nothing, if he gets back to 2018/19 form then he's a steal at 3m and gives you a ton of options to either trade people or for lineup flexibility
 

vegassoxfan

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Can't go wrong with him at that price. If he's bad then who cares, cost you nothing, if he gets back to 2018/19 form then he's a steal at 3m and gives you a ton of options to either trade people or for lineup flexibility
you know society is beyond hope when someone suggests that 3 million dollars for a part time player is nothing, I like the move, but he is not worth what they are going to pay him
 

scottyno

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you know society is beyond hope when someone suggests that 3 million dollars for a part time player is nothing, I like the move, but he is not worth what they are going to pay him
He hasn't been a part time player in like 7 years
 

PedroKsBambino

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I'd guess part of the theory with he and Hernandez is that you both protect against COVID risk and also help to minimize the number of really crappy at-bats from replacement guys you call up. Moving from 'crappy' to 'average' for an aggregate couple of hundred plate appearances helps and that is the roster they've enabled
 

BaseballJones

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you know society is beyond hope when someone suggests that 3 million dollars for a part time player is nothing, I like the move, but he is not worth what they are going to pay him
He's been worth an average of 2 WAR per year for the last 6 years (not counting 2020 which was obviously shortened). In 2019, 1 WAR was worth about 8 million dollars. It's not linear, but clearly Gonzalez is well worth $3 million.
 

bosockboy

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Feels like Marwin and Franchy will start on strong side of platoons, Franchy in LF and Marwin in RF.

Against LHP, Kike to LF with Arroyo at 2B. Renfroe in RF.

Just a guess.
 

DJnVa

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you know society is beyond hope when someone suggests that 3 million dollars for a part time player is nothing, I like the move, but he is not worth what they are going to pay him
Tell us more about capitalism and money VEGASsoxfan.
 

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The bottom line Is that Chaim has made this team significantly better, the system deeper, and lowered future payroll obligations.

Its been very intriguing to watch. This roster is flexible and every player is good at specific things that can be exploited over the course of a season.

This team is going to compete.
I agree completely. I think it has been a great offseason.
 

ngruz25

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I know this is the Marwin Gonzalez thread, but I don't understand the rush to dispense with Chavis. He had a solid rookie season and a dreadful weird shortened pandemic season. His minor league pedigree is solid and he showed marked improvement in every second season at a level. I'd say he's a decent bet to take a step forward from his rookie season.

In fact, Chavis's career at the plate in the minors and majors has basically been a better version of Franchy Cordero. Middling OBP, lots of strikeouts, and a bunch of homers. He's definitely got his defensive limitations, but his bat should be useful.
 

Coachster

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I know this is the Marwin Gonzalez thread, but I don't understand the rush to dispense with Chavis. He had a solid rookie season and a dreadful weird shortened pandemic season. His minor league pedigree is solid and he showed marked improvement in every second season at a level. I'd say he's a decent bet to take a step forward from his rookie season.

In fact, Chavis's career at the plate in the minors and majors has basically been a better version of Franchy Cordero. Middling OBP, lots of strikeouts, and a bunch of homers. He's definitely got his defensive limitations, but his bat should be useful.
What position can he play in the field at the major league level?

Cordero is a plus outfielder. Cordero has terrific speed. All things being equal, there's no comparison.
 

ngruz25

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What position can he play in the field at the major league level?

Cordero is a plus outfielder. Cordero has terrific speed. All things being equal, there's no comparison.
I think Chavis is a perfectly competent, if not excellent, first baseman. Which is a good fit for the Sox as that's not exactly a position of strength.

As far as Cordero goes, I was comparing their hitting strictly. I've read plenty about Cordero's tremendous power, so I figured it was worth mentioning that Michael Chavis has been a better power hitter.

(Also I've found no evidence of Cordero being a plus outfielder statistically, but I'll concede that he's basically a giant ball of projection at this point. Which is fine.)
 

jon abbey

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Cordero is a plus outfielder.
We all know that defensive metrics are full of noise, but your post made me share this. Usually when guys who I don't know well move to AL East teams, I look them up in my BP Annual books, which I did for Franchy yesterday. The 2019 book (admittedly 2 years old now) has this pretty funny description in his capsule writeup:

"To call Cordero a shaky defender is to say Ignatius Reilly was a lousy frankfurter salesman; it's true, but also blandly understated. Last year, Cordero slipped and fell on his butt trying to field a single, clanged a flyball off his knee and somehow parlayed 70 speed into a 40 glove."
 

scottyno

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I think Chavis is a perfectly competent, if not excellent, first baseman. Which is a good fit for the Sox as that's not exactly a position of strength.

As far as Cordero goes, I was comparing their hitting strictly. I've read plenty about Cordero's tremendous power, so I figured it was worth mentioning that Michael Chavis has been a better power hitter.

(Also I've found no evidence of Cordero being a plus outfielder statistically, but I'll concede that he's basically a giant ball of projection at this point. Which is fine.)
If Chavis is already possibly being relegated to 1st base he needs to hit a hell of a lot better than he has so far in the majors to be worth anything at all.
 

YTF

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Lets look at the money in the last two deals. Sox move 3.8 million in salary in the Benintendi deal (6.6 million contract minus the 2.8 they are shipping to the Mets). Cordero is due $800,00 this season and Gonzales signed for $3,000,000. From a payroll standpoint they got Cordero and Gonzales for Benintendi.
 

ngruz25

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If Chavis is already possibly being relegated to 1st base he needs to hit a hell of a lot better than he has so far in the majors to be worth anything at all.
I don't really care about Chavis's worth on the trade market, I'm really more interested in him possibly contributing to the Red Sox in 2021. Currently, Bobby Dalbec is slated to start at 1B. Here's a fun comparison:

Bobby Dalbec's 94 plate appearances in 2020: .263/.359/.600 slash line, 8 homers, and 10 walks to 39 strikeouts.

Michael Chavis's first 96 plate appearances in 2019: .296/.406/.580 slash, 7 homers, and 14 walks to 25 strikeouts.

Might also be worth noting that Dalbec is older than Chavis. Point being that Chavis may very well have a role on this team. I'd rather not deal him for a bullpen arm.
 
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scottyno

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I don't really care about Chavis's worth on the trade market, I'm really more interested in him possibly contributing to the Red Sox in 2021. Currently, Bobby Dalbec is slated to start at 1B. Here's a fun comparison:

Bobby Dalbec's 94 plate appearances in 2020: .263/.359/.600 slash line, 8 homers, and 10 walks to 39 strikeouts.

Michael Chavis's first 96 plate appearances in 2019: .296/.406/.580 slash, 7 homers, and 14 walks to 25 strikeouts.

Might also be worth noting that Dalbec is older than Chavis. Point being that Chavis may very well have a role on this team. I'd rather not deal him for a bullpen arm.
To be worth anything to the Sox as a 1st baseman he also has to hit a lot better. If Chavis role on the Sox is an average hitting 1b that's really easy to find for cheap (see Moreland still being unsigned)

Obviously, projections aren't perfect, but the various projections on fangraphs have Dalbec being worth about twice as much WAR this year as Chavis in similar playing time
 

Rich Garces Belly

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Feels like Marwin and Franchy will start on strong side of platoons, Franchy in LF and Marwin in RF.

Against LHP, Kike to LF with Arroyo at 2B. Renfroe in RF.

Just a guess.
Tomase thinks that Gonzalez will be part of 2 platoons- one with Renfroe and one with Dalbec. Gonzalez is consistent from both sides of the plate with a .261 lifetime average as both a lefty and a righty. Not sure how that split would work as both are righty batters.

edit: thanks JA

https://www.nbcsports.com/boston/red-sox/red-sox-reportedly-interested-switch-hitting-veteran-marwin-gonzalez
 
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jon abbey

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Tomase thinks that Hernandez will be part of 2 platoons- one with Renfroe and one with Dalbec. Hernandez is consistent from both sides of the plate with a .261 lifetime average as both a lefty and a righty. Not sure how that split would work as both are righty batters.
Gonzalez is the switch-hitter who hits lefties and righties equally mediocrely (.732/.724 OPS splits), Hernandez is a RHH with much better numbers against LHP than RHP (.820/.673 OPS splits).
 

mauf

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I know this is the Marwin Gonzalez thread, but I don't understand the rush to dispense with Chavis. He had a solid rookie season and a dreadful weird shortened pandemic season. His minor league pedigree is solid and he showed marked improvement in every second season at a level. I'd say he's a decent bet to take a step forward from his rookie season.

In fact, Chavis's career at the plate in the minors and majors has basically been a better version of Franchy Cordero. Middling OBP, lots of strikeouts, and a bunch of homers. He's definitely got his defensive limitations, but his bat should be useful.
Agree that Cordero has been as useless at the dish to date as Chavis, who at least brings some positional flexibility (but you still need to carry a utility infielder, as Chavis isn’t even close to passable at shortstop, so that flexibility has limited value).

Chaim is betting that Cordero figured out something last season. Cordero’s swing-and-miss numbers were down markedly in his 42 PAs before he got hurt. That’s too small a sample to draw conclusions; I can only assume that our scouts saw something different too.

Cordero definitely has more upside than Chavis — he’s a better athlete, plus Chavis has never done anything remotely as impressive as Cordero’s 2017 season (326/369/603 in 93 games at AAA). Put another way, there’s a non-zero chance that Cordero will be a material contributor to the next good Red Sox team; I wouldn’t say the same for Chavis.
 

Tuff Ghost

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Agree that Cordero has been as useless at the dish to date as Chavis, who at least brings some positional flexibility (but you still need to carry a utility infielder, as Chavis isn’t even close to passable at shortstop, so that flexibility has limited value).

Chaim is betting that Cordero figured out something last season. Cordero’s swing-and-miss numbers were down markedly in his 42 PAs before he got hurt. That’s too small a sample to draw conclusions; I can only assume that our scouts saw something different too.

Cordero definitely has more upside than Chavis — he’s a better athlete, plus Chavis has never done anything remotely as impressive as Cordero’s 2017 season (326/369/603 in 93 games at AAA). Put another way, there’s a non-zero chance that Cordero will be a material contributor to the next good Red Sox team; I wouldn’t say the same for Chavis.
Chavis also does not have the same underlying Statcast numbers that Cordero does. I just posted his numbers in the Cordero trade thread comparing Cordero to Brandon Lowe (2019) and Miguel Sano (2017). After all of the Chavis discussion, I figured it was worth showing a comparison of Chavis and Cordero, too, because, in the undeniably small sample size, Cordero has well above average xwOBA and exit velocity, while Chavis has well below average xwOBA and about average exit velocity.

Player xwOBA K% BB% Exit Velocity Batted Balls
Franchy Cordero (Career) .347 34.9% 8.9% 92.5 mph 177
Michael Chavis (Career) .292 32.8% 7.2% 88.6 mph 318
 

johnnywayback

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I don't *love* the Gonzalez signing. Obviously, he offers some value by virtue of his versatility, and $3m is fine to pay for that. But most everything he can do, Hernandez can also do, right?

Meanwhile, we still don't have a great plan for who plays 1B against RHP if Dalbec fizzles -- you really want to run a 1B out there five days a week with a 725 OPS? We still don't have a great option for CF (although, between Verdugo, Cordero, and Hernandez, we probably have three decent options). We still don't have a player on the 40-man I'd be happy slotting in at SS every day for three weeks if Bogaerts tweaks something. And I would rather have a better LHH to platoon with Renfroe.

Obviously, they could still add, but there's no room on the bench now unless they get rid of Arroyo, which I guess would be easier to do now but doesn't seem to be their desire. I guess we'll see.
 

Rich Garces Belly

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Gonzalez is the switch-hitter who hits lefties and righties equally mediocrely (.732/.724 OPS splits), Hernandez is a RHH with much better numbers against LHP than RHP (.820/.673 OPS splits).
you are 100% correct, I mixed up the 2 versatile players and edited it to reflect that. I’ll make sure not to post until I have had my coffee from now on.
 

nvalvo

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I don't *love* the Gonzalez signing. Obviously, he offers some value by virtue of his versatility, and $3m is fine to pay for that. But most everything he can do, Hernandez can also do, right?

Meanwhile, we still don't have a great plan for who plays 1B against RHP if Dalbec fizzles -- you really want to run a 1B out there five days a week with a 725 OPS? We still don't have a great option for CF (although, between Verdugo, Cordero, and Hernandez, we probably have three decent options). We still don't have a player on the 40-man I'd be happy slotting in at SS every day for three weeks if Bogaerts tweaks something. And I would rather have a better LHH to platoon with Renfroe.

Obviously, they could still add, but there's no room on the bench now unless they get rid of Arroyo, which I guess would be easier to do now but doesn't seem to be their desire. I guess we'll see.
I think this is the kind of semi-competitive season where we just need to take our lumps with Dalbec. Give him 500 PA, and see what happens. He isn't young, and we have Casas coming up behind him. We need to find out what we have.

Maybe if everything else is going amazing — the rotation is healthy and throwing well, JD Martínez rebounds, Franchy and Renfroe are raking — but Dalbec is striking out in 45% of his PA that calculus changes.
 

begranter

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This is a fine signing as long as everyone keeps their expectations in check, say a .235ish hitter. Unless Cora figures out a way to steal signs again, that is.
 

CapeCodYaz

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They've got a roster filled with....I'm not sure what, exactly. A bunch of decent players, some wild cards, and a few otherworldly players (if healthy).

If the pitching works out, they could be kinda interesting. But they could also be....pretty bad.
Agree---but it seems like they need their starting pitching to be healthy all year to have a chance (like any team) but they seem to be accumulating a lot of cheap decent bench/platoon players which maybe can be used later in the year for trades? I'd rather they actually go after good starting pitching than another bench player
 

scottyno

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Agree---but it seems like they need their starting pitching to be healthy all year to have a chance (like any team) but they seem to be accumulating a lot of cheap decent bench/platoon players which maybe can be used later in the year for trades? I'd rather they actually go after good starting pitching than another bench player
There's no good starting pitching available for anywhere near what they got Gonzalez for. Richards got 3 times more and he's potentially good, but far from a sure thing.
 

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There's no good starting pitching available for anywhere near what they got Gonzalez for. Richards got 3 times more and he's potentially good, but far from a sure thing.
Worth noting that of this winter's free agent class of starting pitchers, Richards is going to be paid the 5th highest AAV of the group. The only pitchers getting more than him this year are Bauer ($34M), Morton ($15M), Kluber ($11M), and Smyly ($11M). It speaks to how thin the market was.
 

jon abbey

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Worth noting that of this winter's free agent class of starting pitchers, Richards is going to be paid the 5th highest AAV of the group. The only pitchers getting more than him this year are Bauer ($34M), Morton ($15M), Kluber ($11M), and Smyly ($11M). It speaks to how thin the market was.
Also Odorizzi once he signs somewhere, presumably.