Remaining Free Agent Speculation and Signings (Trades, too)

Yaz4Ever

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Pivetta isn't moving to the pen, Montgomery or not. He's got his issues, but he can give you innings, and is a strong contender to make a leap to next tier starter.
Exactly. I don't see them signing Monty without moving Jansen (if the need to shed salary to sign him is true), so that moves Houck to the closer role and Pivetta stays in the rotation. IF they had signed both Snell and Monty (pillow deals), I would imagine that Pivetta might be moved to the pen as the long guy.
 

bernie carb 33

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What are the chances that Boston does not address other pitching moves until the trade deadline? By that time Breslow will have explored all the analytical "internal stats" and things "lining up" , of what we now have, and can make a more educated choice for 2024/2025. Surely we will know by then if the team is a contender or an also-ran.
 

Max Power

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Fangraphs has the two of them projected at 260 total (out of ~750 from the rotation). The big problem with this "plan" is that there aren't enough innings coming from the rotation.

Really from the projections there aren't enough innings, period: FG has 1256 total innings projected, so with the current staff we're around 160 - 200 (?) short. That's a lot to pull from the minor leagues or random acquisitions, and I don't think we can expect them to be good innings.

The bottom line is that the budget limitations stand in direct opposition to Ownership's stated goal of being competitive.
If the Fangraphs projections are the innings limit that you'll get out of everyone, why play the season at all? Hand the projection World Series to the Braves and save everyone a lot of time.

Breslow and Bailey think they'll get full starter workloads out of these guys. Call them liars if you want, but they've seen them all up close for the last month+ and they've been sticking with that story the whole time.
 

nvalvo

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Planning to add a starter at the deadline isn’t crazy. We do have a deep farm system.

But I worry that with the new playoff rules, there are fewer and fewer sellers at the deadline, so inventory may be limited, and the timeline of need and availability might not match. It seems like a risky approach, compared to, you know, signing Montgomery for what looks likely to be a modest contract.
 

Al Zarilla

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If the Fangraphs projections are the innings limit that you'll get out of everyone, why play the season at all? Hand the projection World Series to the Braves and save everyone a lot of time.

Breslow and Bailey think they'll get full starter workloads out of these guys. Call them liars if you want, but they've seen them all up close for the last month+ and they've been sticking with that story the whole time.
So, B&B have some magic pitching elixir or throwing techniques that haven't been previously discovered in the century and a half the game has been played? OK, some of those years the pitchers threw underhand. Can't wait to see the results, but we won't know until the guys have their 150 or whatever innings in without injury.
 

CR67dream

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What are the chances that Boston does not address other pitching moves until the trade deadline? By that time Breslow will have explored all the analytical "internal stats" and things "lining up" , of what we now have, and can make a more educated choice for 2024/2025. Surely we will know by then if the team is a contender or an also-ran.

I think, and Cotillo alluded to it as well, that the Sox will look at what's available after the opt out period and see what depth might be there. And Monty's still out there with few suitors, and I still have a pipe dream.... :)


If the Fangraphs projections are the innings limit that you'll get out of everyone, why play the season at all? Hand the projection World Series to the Braves and save everyone a lot of time.

Breslow and Bailey think they'll get full starter workloads out of these guys. Call them liars if you want, but they've seen them all up close for the last month+ and they've been sticking with that story the whole time.

This is where I am. The Sox got caught with their pants down last year, I can't see this group allowing things to get nearly that out of hand. Others disagree and that's fine, but with all that's on the line, at the very least these guys have balls of steel and the courage of their convictions. I kind of like that, especially with the all-time level of unpredictability pertaining to starting pitching.
 

YTF

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Exactly. I don't see them signing Monty without moving Jansen (if the need to shed salary to sign him is true), so that moves Houck to the closer role and Pivetta stays in the rotation. IF they had signed both Snell and Monty (pillow deals), I would imagine that Pivetta might be moved to the pen as the long guy.
Yep, this seems to have been the messaging from the team and even then I think the scope of the contract that the Sox would be willing to do would be pretty narrow. I also think that it might start the path toward one of Houck or Whitlock shifting to the back end of the pen.
 
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Max Power

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So, B&B have some magic pitching elixir or throwing techniques that haven't been previously discovered in the century and a half the game has been played? OK, some of those years the pitchers threw underhand. Can't wait to see the results, but we won't know until the guys have their 150 or whatever innings in without injury.
No, they're still frail modem pitchers and a couple will get injured. But that's no different from any other team's rotation these days.
 

8slim

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This is where I am. The Sox got caught with their pants down last year, I can't see this group allowing things to get nearly that out of hand. Others disagree and that's fine, but with all that's on the line, at the very least these guys have balls of steel and the courage of their convictions. I kind of like that, especially with the all-time level of unpredictability pertaining to starting pitching.
I don't know. Breslow's constant talk of "limitations" (which apparently aren't just financial now, whatever that means) suggests that his "courage" is born out of necessity, not necessarily a path he's chosen purposefully.

I'm not the expert that many are on this forum, but it strikes me that we're somehow less prepared for rotation injuries than we were last season.

But I'll cop to not buying into the concept that this is the season we need to give guys a chance. I thought that was done last season, and we learned a lot. Hopefully last season was not predictive.
 

CR67dream

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No, they're still frail modem pitchers and a couple will get injured. But that's no different from any other team's rotation these days.
Yep. And there's no way Breslow and Bailey are not all over figuring out how to augment that. Will they do it well? We'll see.

I keep thinking how psyched I'd be if on top of everything we've seen from our pitchers, we had a healthy and even mediocre Giolito right now.

We've been over it ad nauseam, but none of these pitchers are immune to injury and any move can blow up in a team's face in the time it takes to throw one pitch.
 

OCD SS

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If the Fangraphs projections are the innings limit that you'll get out of everyone, why play the season at all? Hand the projection World Series to the Braves and save everyone a lot of time.

Breslow and Bailey think they'll get full starter workloads out of these guys. Call them liars if you want, but they've seen them all up close for the last month+ and they've been sticking with that story the whole time.
I'm just using the innings as a reasonable (and regressed) proxy for estimating the innings in their given roles (as a comparison BRef hash Houk and Whitlock at 182 IP, but are obviously basing that on last year's time in the 'pen). Asking those 2 to jump into a "full starters workload" (150 IP each?) after last year when they were at ~ 200 including the minors seems like a much larger jump than we'd expect, unless the plan is to play them through the season and then shut them down when they reach their innings limit and the Sox are out of it anyways, and then add some cast offs to pitch in September garbage time.

Adding Montgomery and shifting H&W to a tandem starting pair keeps everyone in a SP role and adds a lot of quality innings if the team is trying to be competitive. The only obstacle is $.
 

CR67dream

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Adding Montgomery and shifting H&W to a tandem starting pair keeps everyone in a SP role and adds a lot of quality innings if the team is trying to be competitive. The only obstacle is $.
Your first sentence I'm on board with, but the second is just pure speculation, unless you mean they should pay any premium to get him. I don't see him as that kind of pitcher, and apparently neither do they, or so far, any other team. Cool if you disagree, no snark.

In any case, with it down to pillow deals, even if the Sox are willing, chances are so will others that may be more attractive to him. And again, what premium would it take, and opt-outs when?

We also don't have any idea how Breslow and Bailey feel about Monty as a pitcher, and how he fits into the plan on the terms he's willing to accept. With everyone seemingly focusing on the budget, we've done little talking about that. It matters. Especially if they are looking at all kinds of ways to improve the pitching now and in the future, which I'm 100% sure they are. They can't afford not to be. Their legacy and reputation is on the line.

Of course money matters, and it matters a lot. There's just a lot more to consider, including years beyond this one, as well. And I'm someone who would be personally thrilled if Monty signed with the Sox on a 4 year deal with an opt out after 2, but I don't have the information B&B do and have no idea if me being thrilled would actually be good for the team.

I also have little doubt that if Monty gets a one year opt-out offer somewhere else, matching it won't be enough, though I've come around to not hating the idea of him here on that kind of deal. That's largely because of what I've seen this spring, which is this Sox team looking like anything but a door mat. Monty or not, this team is going to be interesting and a lot of fun to watch.
 

Cassvt2023

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Your first sentence I'm on board with, but the second is just pure speculation, unless you mean they should pay any premium to get him. I don't see him as that kind of pitcher, and apparently neither do they, or so far, any other team. Cool if you disagree, no snark.

In any case, with it down to pillow deals, even if the Sox are willing, chances are so will others that may be more attractive to him. And again, what premium would it take, and opt-outs when?

We also don't have any idea how Breslow and Bailey feel about Monty as a pitcher, and how he fits into the plan on the terms he's willing to accept. With everyone seemingly focusing on the budget, we've done little talking about that. It matters. Especially if they are looking at all kinds of ways to improve the pitching now and in the future, which I'm 100% sure they are. They can't afford not to be. Their legacy and reputation is on the line.

Of course money matters, and it matters a lot. There's just a lot more to consider, including years beyond this one, as well. And I'm someone who would be personally thrilled if Monty signed with the Sox on a 4 year deal with an opt out after 2, but I don't have the information B&B do and have no idea if me being thrilled would actually be good for the team.

I also have little doubt that if Monty gets a one year opt-out offer somewhere else, matching it won't be enough, though I've come around to not hating the idea of him here on that kind of deal. That's largely because of what I've seen this spring, which is this Sox team looking like anything but a door mat. Monty or not, this team is going to be interesting and a lot of fun to watch.
I agree with so much of this, and was actually thinking about it earlier when I was reading posts about guys still holding out hope for Montgomery. If it was going to happen, it likely would've long before now. I'm guessing they were comfortable with him at 3 yrs w/ an option at an AAV of over 15m but under 20m, no opt outs. Boras thought he could do much, much better elsewhere. It is quite possible that Breslow and Bailey don't value him beyond that, think they have guys in house with higher ceilings at a steep fraction of the cost, and Breslow did not want his first multi year, big money signing to be for a flawed pitcher on the wrong side of 30.
 

HfxBob

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So, B&B have some magic pitching elixir or throwing techniques that haven't been previously discovered in the century and a half the game has been played? OK, some of those years the pitchers threw underhand.
Yes, I'd say there have been some significant changes in how the baseball is thrown over that time frame.

For the visible impact of coaching and changes in technique, just look at last year and how Brasier did after the Dodgers had him throw a cutter, and how Pivetta did after he started throwing a sweeper.
 

HfxBob

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I agree with so much of this, and was actually thinking about it earlier when I was reading posts about guys still holding out hope for Montgomery. If it was going to happen, it likely would've long before now. I'm guessing they were comfortable with him at 3 yrs w/ an option at an AAV of over 15m but under 20m, no opt outs. Boras thought he could do much, much better elsewhere. It is quite possible that Breslow and Bailey don't value him beyond that, think they have guys in house with higher ceilings at a steep fraction of the cost, and Breslow did not want his first multi year, big money signing to be for a flawed pitcher on the wrong side of 30.
You're really putting a lot of words in their mouths there.
 

Coachster

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I'n aware that I often look at this time of year as an advanced roto-league, and this combined with my intense dislike of Bobby Dalbec forces me to ask you guys one big question: Would we be better off with a semi-cooked Eduardo Escobar instead of Dalbec? He can play the corners and a year ago he had an OPS+ of 106. He's available. I don't know, am I that crazy thinking about this?

Of course, this'll never happen because we're giving the 29 year old young guy a chance, and we'd have to spend money.
 

simplicio

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I agree about not wanting Dalbec, but does Escobar represent an upgrade over Cron? He didn't look like it last year and he hasn't looked like it this spring.
 

Max Power

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I'm just using the innings as a reasonable (and regressed) proxy for estimating the innings in their given roles (as a comparison BRef hash Houk and Whitlock at 182 IP, but are obviously basing that on last year's time in the 'pen). Asking those 2 to jump into a "full starters workload" (150 IP each?) after last year when they were at ~ 200 including the minors seems like a much larger jump than we'd expect, unless the plan is to play them through the season and then shut them down when they reach their innings limit and the Sox are out of it anyways, and then add some cast offs to pitch in September garbage time.

Adding Montgomery and shifting H&W to a tandem starting pair keeps everyone in a SP role and adds a lot of quality innings if the team is trying to be competitive. The only obstacle is $.
Everyone who has looked into it has found that innings limits are completely ineffective in managing injuries.

Inning limits don't prevent MLB pitching injuries | ScienceDaily

I don't know how they relate to effectiveness. But there's no reason why a couple of 27 year olds can't throw 180+ innings, regardless of how many they pitched last year or are projected to this year. They'll go as long as they're able to and effective.
 

HfxBob

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Everyone who has looked into it has found that innings limits are completely ineffective in managing injuries.

Inning limits don't prevent MLB pitching injuries | ScienceDaily

I don't know how they relate to effectiveness. But there's no reason why a couple of 27 year olds can't throw 180+ innings, regardless of how many they pitched last year or are projected to this year. They'll go as long as they're able to and effective.
That's a 2015 study from the University of Waterloo, Ontario. I think this would take a deeper dive than that.
 

Fishy1

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I'n aware that I often look at this time of year as an advanced roto-league, and this combined with my intense dislike of Bobby Dalbec forces me to ask you guys one big question: Would we be better off with a semi-cooked Eduardo Escobar instead of Dalbec? He can play the corners and a year ago he had an OPS+ of 106. He's available. I don't know, am I that crazy thinking about this?

Of course, this'll never happen because we're giving the 29 year old young guy a chance, and we'd have to spend money.
CJ Cron says hello. I think he's probably more likely to take that roster spot.
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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That's a 2015 study from the University of Waterloo, Ontario. I think this would take a deeper dive than that.
I don’t know…. But intuitively it doesn’t make any sense. Other sports that have exertion of a particular kind can go out once per week or more after a few days of rest. It’s going from a 10k run to a marathon over a week that destroys people. But once you get there people go and run 25 miles once a week and are okay.
Has there been any really conclusive study that shows pitchers all start being less effective after the ASB? I suspected it was more of a drop in defense because the regular guys start to get gassed but all speculation
 

HfxBob

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To me fatigue is a pretty big issue with the innings increases. Did Bello wear down physically last year? Can't be sure but the numbers suggest it:

First 14 starts 3.04 ERA .668 OPSa
Last 14 starts 5.49 ERA .887 OPSa
 

simplicio

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Injuries aren't the primary concern anyway, effectiveness is. We need our starters to be good for the full 6 months, not just the first 4.
 

8slim

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Injuries aren't the primary concern anyway, effectiveness is. We need our starters to be good for the full 6 months, not just the first 4.
I’d take the first 4 if they were actually good. For example, last year Houck had a 4.50 ERA at the end of April, and 5.30 at the end of May.

Forget injuries, some of these guys can’t ring up a lot of innings because they’re not good enough to get through 5 most starts.
 

OCD SS

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Your first sentence I'm on board with, but the second is just pure speculation, unless you mean they should pay any premium to get him. I don't see him as that kind of pitcher, and apparently neither do they, or so far, any other team. Cool if you disagree, no snark.

In any case, with it down to pillow deals, even if the Sox are willing, chances are so will others that may be more attractive to him. And again, what premium would it take, and opt-outs when?

We also don't have any idea how Breslow and Bailey feel about Monty as a pitcher, and how he fits into the plan on the terms he's willing to accept. With everyone seemingly focusing on the budget, we've done little talking about that. It matters. Especially if they are looking at all kinds of ways to improve the pitching now and in the future, which I'm 100% sure they are. They can't afford not to be. Their legacy and reputation is on the line.

Of course money matters, and it matters a lot. There's just a lot more to consider, including years beyond this one, as well. And I'm someone who would be personally thrilled if Monty signed with the Sox on a 4 year deal with an opt out after 2, but I don't have the information B&B do and have no idea if me being thrilled would actually be good for the team.

I also have little doubt that if Monty gets a one year opt-out offer somewhere else, matching it won't be enough, though I've come around to not hating the idea of him here on that kind of deal. That's largely because of what I've seen this spring, which is this Sox team looking like anything but a door mat. Monty or not, this team is going to be interesting and a lot of fun to watch.
I guess I should be clear that I don't think that the Sox should just give Monty whatever he wants (otherwise they'd have signed him already), but at the same time Sox Ownership's plan is pretty terrible if they're actually planning to be competitive. They knew they needed pitching at the end of 2023, and they ultimately haven't increased the innings they need (even with Giolitto being out they were looking for 2 pitchers at the start of the offseason and only swapped Sale for Giolitto, so they knew they needed to do more). There's probably a middle ground where they can sign Monty at what we think is a reasonable rate (based on the fact that he hasn't signed yet for an unreasonable rate), but as you said, we'll see what he signs for; I'm willing to wait to see how it turns out.

I think the team will be fun to watch, at least at the beginning, but if they're playing poorly the pitching is going to be the likely culprit.
 

OCD SS

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Everyone who has looked into it has found that innings limits are completely ineffective in managing injuries.

Inning limits don't prevent MLB pitching injuries | ScienceDaily

I don't know how they relate to effectiveness. But there's no reason why a couple of 27 year olds can't throw 180+ innings, regardless of how many they pitched last year or are projected to this year. They'll go as long as they're able to and effective.
If I'm reading that right, what it says is that inning limits don't correlate to pitcher health, that the real issue is the effort required, and that coaches/ teams/ etc need to look at much more granular and specific data
the quoted study said:
"If coaches are looking for ways to prevent injury, simply limiting the number of innings is not the answer. They have to look at how hard a pitcher's body is working during each inning, each pitch."
We already knew this, teams have talked for at least a decade + about monitoring and limiting high-stress pitches. It matters for pitch counts in-game as well as overall workload. But that doesn't mean that Houk and Whitlock are going to split 360 innings between them; any plan expecting that is patently ridiculous. If you want to know "why why a couple of 27 year olds can't throw 180+ innings, regardless of how many they pitched last year", the answer is very simple: there's a very high likelyhood that they'll get tired and then ineffective and shut down (if they're not hurt). Do you know off the top of your head any team that would expect any developing pitcher to throw this much more, or any itcher that's actually done it?

So while I'll conceede that FG's numbers are rough, I suspect they're much better approximations of the 360 you appear to have pulled out of your keister, and if I have to try and plan where the Sox are going to get the innings they knew they needed at the end of 2023 in 2024, the former number is going to be much closer to what is reasonable to plan for.
 
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Max Power

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If I'm reading that right, what it says is that inning limits don't correlate to pitcher health, that the real issue is the effort required, and that coaches/ teams/ etc need to look at much more granular and specific data

We already knew this, teams have talked for at least a decade + about monitoring and limiting high-stress pitches. It matters for pitch counts in-game as well as overall workload. But that doesn't mean that Houk and Whitlock are going to split 360 innings between them; any plan expecting that is patently ridiculous. If you want to know "why why a couple of 27 year olds can't throw 180+ innings, regardless of how many they pitched last year", the answer is very simple: there's a very high likelyhood that they'll get tired and then ineffective and shut down (if they're not hurt). Do you know off the top of your head any team that would expect any developing pitcher to throw this much more, or any itcher that's actually done it?

So while I'll conceede that FG's numbers are rough, I suspect they're much better approximations of the 360 you appear to have pulled out of your keister, and if I have to try and plan where the Sox are going to get the innings they knew they needed at the end of 2023 in 2024, the former number is going to be much closer to what is reasonable to plan for.
I'm not predicting anything. I'm saying they're not going to be on any kind of innings limit and that innings limits from year to year are not productive.

As for who has made big innings jumps, pretty much every pitcher in the top 10 of innings last year. Just grabbing a few off the top...

Zac Gallen
121 > 184 > 210

Logan Webb
54 > 148 > 192 > 216

Miles Mikolas
105 > 188 > 202

Framber Valdez
134 > 201
 

YTF

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I'n aware that I often look at this time of year as an advanced roto-league, and this combined with my intense dislike of Bobby Dalbec forces me to ask you guys one big question: Would we be better off with a semi-cooked Eduardo Escobar instead of Dalbec? He can play the corners and a year ago he had an OPS+ of 106. He's available. I don't know, am I that crazy thinking about this?

Of course, this'll never happen because we're giving the 29 year old young guy a chance, and we'd have to spend money.
I think that the only think keeping Dalbec around is the fact that he has options and the Sox can cobble together a short term CI replacement from the 26 man unless/until they absolutely need to bring him up.
 

snowmanny

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They want to find out what they have in Houck and Whitlock? And they are going to find that out in the next few months as opposed to the last three years?

I wonder what they will discover. I wonder if they will discover that they are both very good relievers who show flashes as starters and overall might be serviceable or even decent to pretty good starters but are a bit up and down and very much not likely #1or 2s - except for maybe a career year somewhere along the way? It’s all completely unpredictable as to what they will find out.
 

simplicio

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I'm not predicting anything. I'm saying they're not going to be on any kind of innings limit and that innings limits from year to year are not productive.

As for who has made big innings jumps, pretty much every pitcher in the top 10 of innings last year. Just grabbing a few off the top...

Zac Gallen
121 > 184 > 210

Logan Webb
54 > 148 > 192 > 216

Miles Mikolas
105 > 188 > 202

Framber Valdez
134 > 201
All of those guys had pitched more than Houck or Whitlock did last year before their jump to 180+(except Mikolas, but he was coming back from injury and had been a 200ip guy before). They'd also exhibited an ability to go deeper into games than our guys have.
 

OCD SS

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I'm not predicting anything. I'm saying they're not going to be on any kind of innings limit and that innings limits from year to year are not productive.
Then we're not even discussing the same thing. I didn't say that the Sox would have them on innings limits, I'm looking for a way to assess how many innings the Sox need vs what they have (or had, I guess we can tack on some innings from Anderson now).
As for who has made big innings jumps, pretty much every pitcher in the top 10 of innings last year. Just grabbing a few off the top...

Zac Gallen
121 > 184 > 210

Logan Webb
54 > 148 > 192 > 216

Miles Mikolas
105 > 188 > 202

Framber Valdez
134 > 201
I'm actually bit surprised there are this many, although that isn't a progression I'm recognizing for Mikolas in MLB (for Yomimuri?), but it's also self selecting for some of the top pitchers in the game. Again I'm not sure I'd put H&W in with this group (per the reasons @simplicio states), but maybe the Sox get lucky and it works out.
 

jon abbey

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When front offices started talking about trying to limit innings jumps from year to year, it was only for pitchers under 25. Obviously none of this is an exact science, but all four guys Max Power listed above are above 25.
 

Fishy1

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Cron opted out yesterday, I think Breslow has until sometime tomorrow to decide whether or not to add him to the 26 man.
Yes, that's my understanding as well.

I think he gets the spot since Dalbec still has options, and it'd be better to have that depth at AAA then forego Cron (who's got a career ops+ of 111) and posted one around 129 as recently as 2021. He might be cooked, but if so, he's just there to backup, anyways. Cron has major upside, too, if he can get right.
 

HfxBob

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When front offices started talking about trying to limit innings jumps from year to year, it was only for pitchers under 25. Obviously none of this is an exact science, but all four guys Max Power listed above are above 25.
Yeah, it does seem like the age is a big factor.

I've just become so conditioned to so many pitchers getting hurt that it almost seemed counter-intuitive to have guys make major leaps in innings like that.
 

YTF

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Yes, that's my understanding as well.

I think he gets the spot since Dalbec still has options, and it'd be better to have that depth at AAA then forego Cron (who's got a career ops+ of 111) and posted one around 129 as recently as 2021. He might be cooked, but if so, he's just there to backup, anyways. Cron has major upside, too, if he can get right.
So a bench of Cron, Abreau, McGuire and one of Reyes/Valdez/Gonzalez?
 

Cassvt2023

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Yes, that's my understanding as well.

I think he gets the spot since Dalbec still has options, and it'd be better to have that depth at AAA then forego Cron (who's got a career ops+ of 111) and posted one around 129 as recently as 2021. He might be cooked, but if so, he's just there to backup, anyways. Cron has major upside, too, if he can get right.
they have Cron starting at 1B and hitting in the 4 spot with all the other projected starters in tonight’s split squad game, while Casas (1B) and Dalbec (DH) traveled to Bradenton to play earlier today. FWIW, Dalbec drew 3 walks in that game. I don’t think they’ve decided if Cron is one of the 26 yet.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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Yeah I missed that, but still figure Reyes or Valdez would get the nod over him. I only threw his name in there because he's on the 40 and carries multiple gloves.
Aren’t both these guys likely in with Grissom out? Valdez as starter at 2b, Reyes as backup infielder. Assuming an OF of Duran, Rafaela, and O’Neill; Abreu is in as the 4th OF.
 

simplicio

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SoSH Member
Apr 11, 2012
5,062
4 bench spots currently look like McGuire, Abreu, Reyes and Dalbec/Cron. Valdez gets optioned when Grissom returns.

OF when Refsnyder comes back is less clear, we'll see how people perform until then.
 

RS2004foreever

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Dec 15, 2022
552
I don't know. Breslow's constant talk of "limitations" (which apparently aren't just financial now, whatever that means) suggests that his "courage" is born out of necessity, not necessarily a path he's chosen purposefully.

I'm not the expert that many are on this forum, but it strikes me that we're somehow less prepared for rotation injuries than we were last season.

But I'll cop to not buying into the concept that this is the season we need to give guys a chance. I thought that was done last season, and we learned a lot. Hopefully last season was not predictive.
Completely agree. Going with Whitlock/Houck was a lot more defensible last year than this. I am honestly shocked this is it.
The alternative I don't like - because it suggests Breslow thinks he is smarter than everyone else.