His OPS in Pawtucket was 0.659 with 1 HR when he got hurt. Granted, it's hard to make much of 100+ plate appearances, but he wouldn't be the first player to show something in his first 300 at bats in the majors and then go nowhere. Will Middlebrooks wasn't hurt. There's probably hundreds of similar examples.I guess we'll never know whether the ankle injury derailed his abilities, or whether this was always who he would turn out to be. Probably somewhere in the middle
I think the much better comp is fellow noodle bat Garin Cecchini, and not WMB. Maybe they should have traded him but maybe there's value into holding onto your own guys to make sure you don't trade the wrong one(s) away.Will Middlebrooks needed vision correction and either couldn’t or wouldn’t wear contacts or glasses or get Lasix.
And again, it doesn’t matter. Blake Swihart was mentioned as the centerpiece of trades for Cole Hamels. He had a metic ton of value in the winter of 2015-2016.
The very moment The Red Sox demoted him to AAA because he dropped a popup in the 6th game of the season, they devalued him as an asset, and then when they moved him off of catcher — regardless of how it turned out — the Red Sox management squandered a large portion of his remaining value.
He should have been the starting catcher in 2016 for the Red Sox. Or they should have traded him to the highest bidder as soon as they decided that they wanted Vazquez instead. Those were the only two options that made any sense whatsoever. Period. End of story.
Maybe, or maybe this is another data point that hoarding prospects often backfires.I think the much better comp is fellow noodle bat Garin Cecchini, and not WMB. Maybe they should have traded him but maybe there's value into holding onto your own guys to make sure you don't trade the wrong one(s) away.
The Phillies are still talking about a Cole Hamels trade with a half-dozen teams, one of them the Red Sox. Boston and Philly have one major stumbling block they're still yet to leap in their discussions, though, and it's catching prospect Blake Swihart, according to USA Today's Bob Nightengale. The Phillies want the 23-year-old, who is regarded as the top catching prospect in the game and a future all-star, if they're to give up their ace who is signed to a highly reasonable five-year, $110 million deal. It's actually for four and $96 million, but he'd have to waive his no-trade clause to come to Boston, and that'll require preemptively picking up his option.
Asking for Swihart makes a lot of sense for the Phillies, and you can't really hold it against them. Hamels is tremendous, and precisely the ace the Red Sox don't have on their roster. Boston does have five starting pitchers, however, and while there could be holes in their rotation, there is also plenty of upside and their top pitching prospects aren't all that far off. They might want to hold on to their money to attempt to extend Rick Porcello or Justin Masterson, or to go after another productive starter on next year's free agent market, rather than trade for Hamels (or sign free agent James Shields). At least, they'd prefer to do that if the cost of acquiring Hamels is someone like Swihart, who could end up being a key piece on the Red Sox as soon as 2016, and maybe even a significant core player after that.
According to everyone except John Farrell, who made him a left-fielder after 6 games.And don't forget what the catching situation was like at the time:
1. They had started 2014 with AJ Pierzynski (and his mouth) and David Ross as their catching duo. AJ got released mid-season (good riddance) and Ross was a FA, leaving 201 underwhelming PAs by a 23 year old Christian Vazquez
2. Dan Butler was traded in January, a month before the article linked above.
3. They did trade Will Middlebrooks for Ryan Hanigan, who was 34 that season.
4. Ryan Lavarnway left in the offseason, claimed off waivers by the Dodgers (not a huge loss, but another body gone).
5. Sandy Leon hadn't been traded for yet.
So you had an old Hanigan, a young guy in Vazquez who looked like a defensive specialist and not much else. At the time, Swihart was the future at the position, so they needed to be really sure they would get enough value for him, if they did deal him, because he was pretty much the only thing at the top of the system at the time.