What does 2023 look like?

Rovin Romine

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I'm not so sure. This cast has a lack of power. Raffy had 27 bombs last year. Our next 3 in the lineup hit 36...combined. Turner 13, Verdugo 11, Duval 12.

Teams are going to pitch around Devers this season.
An equally insightful analysis would be to point out that Yoshida and Casas combined for just 5 homers last year. Now that I've done the analytical work, you can do the hand-wringing part.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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I'm not so sure. This cast has a lack of power. Raffy had 27 bombs last year. Our next 3 in the lineup hit 36...combined. Turner 13, Verdugo 11, Duval 12.

Teams are going to pitch around Devers this season.
Just taking a quick glance at last year's lineups, it looks like Devers hit his 27 HRs while most frequently being followed in the lineup by Bogaerts (15 HR) or Martinez (16 HR). I suspect as long as he's healthy, Devers is probably going to put up 25+ HR again in 2023.
 

Bread of Yaz

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Sin Duda

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As we get ready for the 2023 season, guess how many players from the 2021 ALCS roster vs Houston remain with the team? I won't bother making it a poll since this one is just a test of your knowledge of how extensive the roster turnover been in the past 15 months.

10 of 26, 13 of 26, or 16 of 26?

Remaining: Dalbec 1B, Arroyo 2B, Devers 3B, Verdugo LF, Kike CF, Sale SP, Pivetta SP, Whitlock RP, Houck RP, Brasier RP + 6 call-ups/trades.

Gone: Vazquez C, Plawecki C, Schwarber DH, Bogaerts SS, Renfroe RF Martinez DH, Santana Util, Eovaldi SP, ERod SP, Robles RP.

So 16 of 26 are no longer Red Sox. Phew, that seems like a lot of turnover.
 
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Philip Jeff Frye

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As we get ready for the 2023 season, guess how many players from the 2021 ALCS roster vs Houston remain with the team? I won't bother making it a poll since this one is just a test of your knowledge of how extensive the roster turnover been in the past 15 months.

10 of 26, 13 of 26, or 16 of 26?

Remaining: Dalbec 1B, Arroyo 2B, Devers 3B, Verdugo LF, Kike CF, Sale SP, Pivetta SP, Whitlock RP, Houck RP, Brasier RP + 6 call-ups/trades.

Gone: Vazquez C, Plawecki C, Schwarber DH, Bogaerts SS, Renfroe RF Martinez DH, Santana Util, Eovaldi SP, ERod SP, Robles RP.

So 16 of 26 are no longer Red Sox. Phew, that seems like a lot of turnover.
That's the Bloom Red Sox. Lots of turnover, lots of players on short-term deals. Sixteen players are already gone from the 2022 opening day roster.

Eovaldi
Wacha
Hill
Barnes
Robles
Sawamura
Diekman
Davis
Strahm
Valdez
Martinez
Vazquez
Plawecki
Shaw
JBJ
Arauz

Has this kind of roster turnover become commonplace in baseball? Obviously, most teams seem to churn through relievers a lot more than they did 30 years ago. Is it true for other positions as well?
 

Rice4HOF

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I feel like peope generally underestimate turnover. All teams are similar.
Since we're comparing the 2021 ALCS team, I took a look at that year's Champions, the Atlanta NL franchise.
Gone from the guys who were on their postseason roster are:

Hitters:
Freeman, Swanson, Soler, Duvall, Pederson, Contreras, Gore, Heredia, Pache
Pitchers:
Smyly, Will Smith, Luke Jackson, Chris Martin, Tucker Davidson, Jacob Webb

That's 15 guys. From a team that won the World Series in 2021, and 100+games and the NL East in 2022.

I took a look at the Blue Jays from 2021 who missed the playoffs ending up just a single game behind us:
From their regular lineup gone are:
C - McGuire
2B - Semien
OF - ALL of them - Gurriel, Grichuk, Hernandez
Bench:
Rowdy Tellez, Joe Panik,Corey Dickerson
Starting Ptichers:
Robbie Ray, Steve Matz, Ross Stripling
Bullpen:
Anthony Kay, Ryan Borocki, Rafael Dolis
That's 15 guys as well, and they were in the playoffs last season, and have had major turnover again this season.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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That's the Bloom Red Sox. Lots of turnover, lots of players on short-term deals. Sixteen players are already gone from the 2022 opening day roster.

Eovaldi
Wacha
Hill
Barnes
Robles
Sawamura
Diekman
Davis
Strahm
Valdez
Martinez
Vazquez
Plawecki
Shaw
JBJ
Arauz

Has this kind of roster turnover become commonplace in baseball? Obviously, most teams seem to churn through relievers a lot more than they did 30 years ago. Is it true for other positions as well?
It is commonplace.

And frankly, there are maybe two names on that list (which is missing Bogaerts, BTW) that are a genuine loss. Many of those players are ones that a lot of folks were screaming to get rid of all season anyway.
 

JM3

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There will be less turnover when there are more players who come up with 5 more years of club control.

But yeah, not particularly surprising.
 

BravesField

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That's the Bloom Red Sox. Lots of turnover, lots of players on short-term deals. Sixteen players are already gone from the 2022 opening day roster.

Eovaldi
Wacha
Hill
Barnes
Robles
Sawamura
Diekman
Davis
Strahm
Valdez
Martinez
Vazquez
Plawecki
Shaw
JBJ
Arauz

Has this kind of roster turnover become commonplace in baseball? Obviously, most teams seem to churn through relievers a lot more than they did 30 years ago. Is it true for other positions as well?
If you toss in Story on the IL and Dalbec, (expected to be in Worcester), and (Xander), that's 19 guys from the 28 men on the opening day roster in '22 who are missing. A lot of new faces....

In case you were wondering, only Whitlock, Brasier and Crawford remain from the opening day bullpen in '22.
 

Philip Jeff Frye

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If you toss in Story on the IL and Dalbec, (expected to be in Worcester), and (Xander), that's 19 guys from the 28 men on the opening day roster in '22 who are missing. A lot of new faces....
Oops, yeah, how did I miss Xander? Guess I just can't believe he's gone. :(
 

JM3

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The lineup permutations are kind of fun. Basically everyone except Yoshida, Devers, Casas & McGuire can play multiple positions, & those guys could obviously all play DH as desired on any given day (except I wouldn't really want to put McGuire there).

C McGuire
1B Casas
2B Arroyo (SS, 3B, 1B, RF)
SS Hernandez (CF, 2B)
3B Devers
LF Yoshida
CF Duvall (RF, LF, 1B)
RF Verdugo (LF)
DH Turner (3B, 1B)

SS/2B/3B Mondesi
C/2B Wong
RF/LF Refsnyder
1B/3B Dalbec

Would like to swap Dalbec out & Valdez in, but we'll see what happens. & if Mondesi isn't ready to go, I almost wonder if like a Niko Goodrum is the right bench piece to replace him if Hamilton isn't ready, but who knows?
 

chrisfont9

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TheAthletic has an article about the Bleier trade and how it may be part of a strategy to emphasize throwing strikes. Does this partly explain the Barnes decision? He wasn't walking the park but his bb% is always a few ticks above MLB average. Maybe this is a clue into Chaim's approach. There's a quote from Dave Bush about how hitters are trending toward better zone discipline, so maybe the value of strike throwers is increasing.

https://theathletic.com/4147389/2023/02/03/richard-bleier-red-sox-bullpen/
 

The Gray Eagle

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The Bush quote from that Athletic article:

“I don’t know that it was as specific as, target guys who don’t walk people,” pitching coach Dave Bush said. “But the combination of stuff and command is how we’re evaluating guys. One of the things that’s changed in the last few years is that hitters have gotten a lot more disciplined around the strike zone. … We’re kind of seeing that command component come back into it a little bit more (for pitchers). That’s what we’re going for is guys that can work ahead in the count, because pitchers just perform so much better when they’re in advantage counts.”
He then later adds:
“If you’re ahead in the count there’s some room to work outside of the zone,” Bush said. “But for the most part, there’s got to be an ability to throw a quality pitch inside the strike zone. That’s just the way the game has evolved. I think that’s more what we’re targeting is guys with good stuff that can also pitch in the strike zone, because it’s a requirement right now.”
They definitely made moves to cut down on walks, especially in the bullpen. Surely they will improve from the second-worst bullpen walk rate in the league, with a lousy first-strike percentage:

Last season, the Red Sox allowed the fifth-most walks in the American League, and by far the most walks in the AL East. Their relievers were especially prone to allowing free baserunners, walking nearly 10 percent of the batters they faced, the second-highest rate in the A.L.
New reliever Chris Martin, though, had the fewest walks per nine in the major leagues least last season. Bleier had the ninth-fewest of any reliever, and Ryan Brasier — who’s survived various Red Sox roster cuts this winter — ranked 17th.
The Red Sox ranked 28th in first-pitch strike percentage out of the bullpen last year.... Martin led all major league relievers in first-pitch strike percentage last season. New closer Kenley Jansen was seventh, Brasier was 12th, Bleier was 22nd, and new lefty Joely Rodríguez was 38th.
 

TimScribble

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If the goal is to cut down on walks, throw more strikes… wouldn’t that mean they want to strengthen the defense? Is shuffling players out of normal position the best strategy with the strikes goal?
 

JM3

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If the goal is to cut down on walks, throw more strikes… wouldn’t that mean they want to strengthen the defense? Is shuffling players out of normal position the best strategy with the strikes goal?
It would probably depend on whether the shuffled players are good at their new position. Other than Bleier, they aren't really taking on super low strikeout guys or anything, though.

Martin 32.9%
Jansen 32.7%
Joely 26.4%
Mills 20.3%
Kluber 20.2%
Bleier 14.4%

Outgoing this off season...

Strahm 26.9%
Eo 22.4%
Hill 20.7%
Wacha 20.2%
Seabold 19.4%
Barnes 19.3%

As I noted somewhere else, they have gotten rid of their 10 highest walk rate players from last year.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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While true, they’ve also gotten rid of a large number of their lowest walk pitchers too. Eovaldi, Wacha, and Hill all had really low walk rates, too.
 

JM3

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While true, they’ve also gotten rid of a large number of their lowest walk pitchers too. Eovaldi, Wacha, and Hill all had really low walk rates, too.
I would argue that they let them sign elsewhere more so than actively getting rid of them, but that's true.

Walk rates...just going to overlay them...new guys in bold, leaving in italics, leftovers normal.

Martin 2.2%
Kluber 3.0%

Eo 4.3 %
Bleier 4.5%
Whitlock 4.8%
Brasier 4.9%
Sale 5.7% (career)
Wacha 6.0%
Kelly 6.8%
Hill 7.0%
Schreiber 7.4%
Paxton 7.4% (career)
Seabold 8.2%
Jansen 8.5%
Winckowski 8.5%
Crawford 8.7%
Strahm 8.8%
Houck 8.9%
Pivetta 9.4%
Bello 10.1%
Mills 10.2%
Ort 11.2%
Barnes 11.9%
Joely 12.0%
 
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chrisfont9

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I would argue that they let them sign elsewhere more so than actively getting rid of them, but that's true.

Walk rates...just going to overlay them, leaving in italics.

Martin 2.2%
Kluber 3.0%
Eo 4.3 %
Bleier 4.5%
Wacha 6.0%
Hill 7.0%
Seabold 8.2%

Jansen 8.5%
Strahm 8.8%
Mills 10.2%
Barnes 11.9%
Joely 12.0%
And supposedly they tried to keep Nate. Getting rid of all five relievers with the highest (and by any measure, too high) walk rates seems like a tell.
 

chrisfont9

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If the goal is to cut down on walks, throw more strikes… wouldn’t that mean they want to strengthen the defense? Is shuffling players out of normal position the best strategy with the strikes goal?
I'm not sure there is as much risk to changing a guy's position in the offseason -- if the organization is committed and sticks with it -- versus in-season changes and constant switching. This was what I loved about Kiké being moved to CF after years in LA of playing multiple positions. It sure seems like a lot of these guys thrive on routine.
 

JM3

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Side note on Joely's walk rate - he seemed to have figured something out in the last 2 months of the season:

  • First 29.1 IP (35.0% CH Usage)
    • 5.52 ERA (146 ERA-)
    • 3.86 FIP (99 FIP-)
    • 4.22 SIERA
    • 46.6% GB%
    • 10.7% K-BB%
  • Final 21.0 IP (45.0% CH Usage)
    • 3.00 ERA (79 ERA-)
    • 2.35 FIP (61 FIP-)
    • 2.50 SIERA
    • 63.2% GB%
    • 20.0% K-BB%
https://empiresportsmedia.com/new-york-yankees/the-yankees-should-reunite-with-this-talented-bullpen-arm/

In his last 8 games of the season he pitched 9.2 innings, struck out 11 and allowed 3 hits, 0 walks, & 1 run.
 

Petagine in a Bottle

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It’s interesting and frankly refreshing, pitching to contact and throwing strikes certainly makes for a more appealing game of nothing else. Nothing worse than pitchers, especially relievers, who issue a lot of free passes. Feels like teams are perhaps moving away from that approach on both sides of the ball, partly due to the new rules I’m sure.
 

TimScribble

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I'm not sure there is as much risk to changing a guy's position in the offseason -- if the organization is committed and sticks with it -- versus in-season changes and constant switching. This was what I loved about Kiké being moved to CF after years in LA of playing multiple positions. It sure seems like a lot of these guys thrive on routine.
The only part I dislike about that is Kiké is gonna be in CF for part of the offseason at the WBC.
 

Cassvt2023

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The lineup permutations are kind of fun. Basically everyone except Yoshida, Devers, Casas & McGuire can play multiple positions, & those guys could obviously all play DH as desired on any given day (except I wouldn't really want to put McGuire there).

C McGuire
1B Casas
2B Arroyo (SS, 3B, 1B, RF)
SS Hernandez (CF, 2B)
3B Devers
LF Yoshida
CF Duvall (RF, LF, 1B)
RF Verdugo (LF)
DH Turner (3B, 1B)

SS/2B/3B Mondesi
C/2B Wong
RF/LF Refsnyder
1B/3B Dalbec

Would like to swap Dalbec out & Valdez in, but we'll see what happens. & if Mondesi isn't ready to go, I almost wonder if like a Niko Goodrum is the right bench piece to replace him if Hamilton isn't ready, but who knows?
Good post JM3. I believe that with JD gone, Cora is going to be much more creative with his lineups and where guys play in the field on any given day. Although Turner will probably get the bulk of the starts at DH, don't be surprised to see Raffy, Casas, Dalbec (if he's not in Worcester), Arroyo, Yoshida, Duvall, and Verdugo all get some starts there to keep fresh legs. I'm liking the Mondesi trade more and more. The fact that he is a good glove at short (when healthy) means Kiki can play CF more, which can push Duvall to RF and Verdugo to LF on days Yoshida DH's. Niko is good depth, as he can play virtually anywhere. It's yet another way the Sox are following in the Tampa model. Cash has guys playing all over, and a different lineup most days. Seems to be working for them.
 

chawson

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It seems like the ship has sailed with acquiring Wendle, and maybe Kim too, but I’d still be interested to see if we can get Mateo from the O’s.

Camden Yards moving the left field wall back really seems to have masked a minor breakout at the plate from him.

Home: .195/.229/.321, 7.0% HR/FB, 53 wRC+
Away: .246/.304/.435, 11.1% HR/FB, 109 wRC+

Mateo doesn't make terrific swing decisions, but an 11% home run/fly ball rate is pretty solid for a middle infielder. It's slightly higher than Bogaerts, Semien, Tim Anderson, DJ LeMahieu and J.D. Martinez had last year. He also rates every bit as highly a defensive shortstop as Kim. He led MLB in stolen bases last year and can play a little outfield. And he's got reverse splits, which could pair well in a mix with Mondesi, who has hit lefties better. Mateo also has a .311/.326/.556 career line in Fenway over 46 PAs.

We've talked about Mateo before, but it makes sense that we'd still be looking to add even though it's late in the offseason, and Cora's recent comments support that. I think Mateo could be as impactful an acquisition as Kim, and likely come at a lower cost. (Maybe a package of Cordero, Politi, Bazardo and Darwinzon Hernández gets it done?) It's debatable whether Baltimore would move him within the division, but he seems blocked there with Henderson, Urias and Frazier lined up in the infield, a pretty nice utility guy in Terrin Vavra, and solid SS prospect Joey Ortiz just about ready and on the 40-man.
 
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dynomite

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It seems like the ship has sailed with acquiring Wendle, and maybe Kim too, but I’d still be interested to see if we can get Mateo from the O’s.
...
Mateo doesn't make terrific swing decisions, but an 11% home run/fly ball rate is pretty solid for a middle infielder. It's slightly higher than Bogaerts, Semien, Tim Anderson, DJ LeMahieu and J.D. Martinez had last year. He also rates every bit as highly a defensive shortstop as Kim. He led MLB in stolen bases last year and can play a little outfield. ...
... It's debatable whether Baltimore would move him within the division, but he seems blocked there with Henderson, Urias and Frazier lined up in the infield, and a pretty nice utility guy in Terrin Vavra.
I do like Mateo, but don't you think he's fairly redundant with Mondesi? They're both good defensive infielders and speedsters with bat-to-ball issues. I guess Mateo has played more positions recently and doesn't have as extensive of an injury history?

Anyway, there's been some speculation about him on MLBTR (Sox were one of the speculative destinations). From December:

There’s logic for general manager Mike Elias and his staff to entertain trade offers, though, particularly if they’re wary of Mateo’s ability to maintain his 2022 pace with the glove. The lack of other options for teams desperate for shortstop help could increase their sense of urgency to pursue him, while Baltimore has a number of prospects they hope will eventually unseat him as the franchise shortstop.

Gunnar Henderson debuted at the end of the season, primarily working at third base in deference to Mateo. The O’s could roll with a left side infield of Mateo and Henderson while having Ramón Urías and the recently-signed Adam Frazier share reps at second base. Baltimore has highly-regarded prospects Jordan Westburg and Joey Ortiz just behind that group, with both players coming off quality seasons for Triple-A Norfolk. Westburg and Ortiz — the latter of whom is already on the 40-man roster — could each find themselves in the majors fairly early in the 2023 campaign, and both are regarded by various prospect evaluators as potential everyday shortstops.
 

simplicio

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I think Mateo could be as impactful an acquisition as Kim, and likely come at a lower cost. (Maybe a package of Cordero, Politi, Bazardo and Darwinzon Hernández gets it done?)
This would be a surprising trade, given that Cordero and Hernandez are currently employed by Baltimore.
 

The Gray Eagle

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It seems like the ship has sailed with acquiring Wendle, and maybe Kim too, but I’d still be interested to see if we can get Mateo from the O’s.

Camden Yards moving the left field wall back really seems to have masked a minor breakout at the plate from him.

Home: .195/.229/.321, 7.0% HR/FB, 53 wRC+
Away: .246/.304/.435, 11.1% HR/FB, 109 wRC+

Mateo doesn't make terrific swing decisions, but an 11% home run/fly ball rate is pretty solid for a middle infielder. It's slightly higher than Bogaerts, Semien, Tim Anderson, DJ LeMahieu and J.D. Martinez had last year. He also rates every bit as highly a defensive shortstop as Kim. He led MLB in stolen bases last year and can play a little outfield. And he's got reverse splits, which could pair well in a mix with Mondesi, who has hit lefties better. Mateo also has a .311/.326/.556 career line in Fenway over 46 PAs.

We've talked about Mateo before, but it makes sense that we'd still be looking to add even though it's late in the offseason, and Cora's recent comments support that. I think Mateo could be as impactful an acquisition as Kim, and likely come at a lower cost. (Maybe a package of Cordero, Politi, Bazardo and Darwinzon Hernández gets it done?) It's debatable whether Baltimore would move him within the division, but he seems blocked there with Henderson, Urias and Frazier lined up in the infield, and a pretty nice utility guy in Terrin Vavra.
This is a joke, right? Isn't this just a list of former Sox players that the Orioles already have?
 

chawson

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This would be a surprising trade, given that Cordero and Hernandez are currently employed by Baltimore.
This is a joke, right? Isn't this just a list of former Sox players that the Orioles already have?
Yes it's a joke.

I do like Mateo, but don't you think he's fairly redundant with Mondesi? They're both good defensive infielders and speedsters with bat-to-ball issues. I guess Mateo has played more positions recently and doesn't have as extensive of an injury history?

Anyway, there's been some speculation about him on MLBTR (Sox were one of the speculative destinations). From December:
Could be redundant, yeah. I'm optimistic about Mondesi but his injury concerns are pretty loud, and so are Arroyo's. Mateo would give us more security in the middle infield mix, or some more lumber to build the bridge to the Mayer era. (I'm of the opinion that Kiké should stay in CF.)

Now that the Dodgers have extended Rojas, there are very few shortstop options in next year's FA market: Amed Rosario, Joey Wendle, Nick Ahmed, Brandon Crawford and Isiah Kiner-Falefa. I like Rosario alright but he's not good in the field. Wendle may be a possibility, but I'd first like to see if he can handle a bigger workload at short, and he'll be 34 in 2024.
 
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Sandy Leon Trotsky

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I’m beginning to think that Bloom is playing the waiting game with Boras and Andrus. Whatever BS Boras was peddling to overvalue Andrus has about a month left in the tank before he’ll be signing something closer to his actual value, IMO a one year $7.5M with a team option for second year at $10M or $2M buyout.
I think Bloom wants Kiké in CF 50% of the time, Mondesi is still injured/injury prone, as is Arroyo.
I’m still predicting Andrus will be starting SS
 

chrisfont9

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I’m beginning to think that Bloom is playing the waiting game with Boras and Andrus. Whatever BS Boras was peddling to overvalue Andrus has about a month left in the tank before he’ll be signing something closer to his actual value, IMO a one year $7.5M with a team option for second year at $10M or $2M buyout.
I think Bloom wants Kiké in CF 50% of the time, Mondesi is still injured/injury prone, as is Arroyo.
I’m still predicting Andrus will be starting SS
Do you sign guys on the assumption that an injury will happen? I can see Iglesias for depth, but even there, who drops off the 40-man to make room for another IF?
 

Niastri

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Do you sign guys on the assumption that an injury will happen? I can see Iglesias for depth, but even there, who drops off the 40-man to make room for another IF?
Story, at least, will definitely be on the 60 day injury list to start the season. Mondesi isn't a sure thing, either. If they aren't able to make it, we have our center fielder and utility man as starters in the center, and a guy who should still be in the minor leagues as our utility guy, with deep depth being minor leaguers far away from major league ready.

We should end the season with good depth, but another quality player for the middle infield seems essential to start the season.
 
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chrisfont9

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Story, at least, will definitely be on the 60 day injury list to start the season. Mondesi isn't a sure thing, either. If they aren't able to make it, we have our center fielder and utility man as starters in the center, and a guy who should still be in the minor leagues as our utility guy, with deep depth being minor leaguers far away from major league ready.

We should end the season with good depth, but another quality player for the middle infield seems essential to start the season.
Yeah, but to me that says Iglesias, not Andrus. Mondesi's oblique was two years ago and his ACL is not going to be an issue, so while he has had his share of injuries, once he is done building up his knee he'll be fully ready to play, and I don't think they traded for him as depth. I think they think they can carry his bat and maybe coax some slight improvement there while he stabilizes the D. If you sign Andrus to start over Mondesi, then he's just on the bench and why did they bother trading for him?
 

Niastri

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Yeah, but to me that says Iglesias, not Andrus. Mondesi's oblique was two years ago and his ACL is not going to be an issue, so while he has had his share of injuries, once he is done building up his knee he'll be fully ready to play, and I don't think they traded for him as depth. I think they think they can carry his bat and maybe coax some slight improvement there while he stabilizes the D. If you sign Andrus to start over Mondesi, then he's just on the bench and why did they bother trading for him?
Andrus would send Kike back to center field, and Arroyo to the utility infield role. Whoever Cora likes better at short would play there, and the other would play second. Several guys would stay in the minors instead of being handed undeserved jobs with the Sox.

When Story comes back, well, these things work themselves out... But having a rotation of Story, Mondesi and Andrus in the middle infield gives us a better crack at keeping them all healthy and productive, which appears to be unlikely otherwise. Considering that his former teams dream for Mondesi was for him to play 75% of games, and Story would be coming back from a severe injury, it doesn't seem like a bad idea to have redundancy of actual major league players.

If the team is terrible, having Andrus as a trade piece at the deadline nets us another low minors wildcard... If the team is good, we roll with the three man rotation, or trade Andrus for upgrades somewhere else in need.
 

chrisfont9

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Andrus would send Kike back to center field, and Arroyo to the utility infield role. Whoever Cora likes better at short would play there, and the other would play second. Several guys would stay in the minors instead of being handed undeserved jobs with the Sox.

When Story comes back, well, these things work themselves out... But having a rotation of Story, Mondesi and Andrus in the middle infield gives us a better crack at keeping them all healthy and productive, which appears to be unlikely otherwise. Considering that his former teams dream for Mondesi was for him to play 75% of games, and Story would be coming back from a severe injury, it doesn't seem like a bad idea to have redundancy of actual major league players.

If the team is terrible, having Andrus as a trade piece at the deadline nets us another low minors wildcard... If the team is good, we roll with the three man rotation, or trade Andrus for upgrades somewhere else in need.
Andrus has never played 2b in the majors and Mondesi hasn't played there since before the pandemic. I guess guys can move? Even Iglesias was good at 2b after not really having played there before. You may be right, but my guess is that they see Story as the long term 2b and fingers crossed he plays a fair amount this season too, and they got Mondesi to be the regular SS. At most, they need a bit more depth , although even there, if they get another guy, now Kiké rejoins the outfield and they have five starters for three OF spots and DH. I don't think they add anyone.
 

BravesField

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Andrus has never played 2b in the majors and Mondesi hasn't played there since before the pandemic. I guess guys can move? Even Iglesias was good at 2b after not really having played there before. You may be right, but my guess is that they see Story as the long term 2b and fingers crossed he plays a fair amount this season too, and they got Mondesi to be the regular SS. At most, they need a bit more depth , although even there, if they get another guy, now Kiké rejoins the outfield and they have five starters for three OF spots and DH. I don't think they add anyone.
Completely agree. I don't see them adding anyone also. Trading for Mondesi indicated they are done adding players. Mondesi should be ready to go early in the season. Why trade for him if this was not the case.? If the Sox add Elvis, then we'll have 6 players (Kike, Yoshida, Duvall, Verdugo, Mondesi and Elvis) for 5 spots (3 OF, 2B and SS). Yoshida, Duvall and Verdugo have to be the outfielders. Mondesi and Kike will have to handle SS and 2B. Adding more players means bouncing them around the field. Wouldn't we be better off sticking these guys in a single position?
 

Sandy Leon Trotsky

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Completely agree. I don't see them adding anyone also. Trading for Mondesi indicated they are done adding players. Mondesi should be ready to go early in the season. Why trade for him if this was not the case.? If the Sox add Elvis, then we'll have 6 players (Kike, Yoshida, Duvall, Verdugo, Mondesi and Elvis) for 5 spots (3 OF, 2B and SS). Yoshida, Duvall and Verdugo have to be the outfielders. Mondesi and Kike will have to handle SS and 2B. Adding more players means bouncing them around the field. Wouldn't we be better off sticking these guys in a single position?
Well Cora has already talked about rotating players and lots of days off throughout the season
 

JM3

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6 players for 5 spots seems like the bare minimum & not a problem. Of course, it's 8 players once you add Arroyo & Refsnyder, & 9 once Story is back but that's all ok.

Flexibility is super important with short benches due to expanded pitching staffs.

If Mondesi isn't ready to go from the jump, adding an Andrus on short $ on a 1-year deal makes sense. If he's ready or Valdez/Hamilton show enough in ST it's not something that would add a lot of value.
 

chawson

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The strongest argument against signing Andrus or Iglesias at this point has to do with roster flexibility. And it's got more to do with the 26-man roster than the 40-man.

Signing one of those guys would mean we’d not only have to boot another guy from the 40-man (likeliest candidates being Ort, Brasier, Kelly, Dalbec, Duran), but it would further squeeze the roster by adding another guy to the 26 that you can’t send down.

Here’s another way of looking at it.

26-man locks (no options):
Sale, Kluber, Pivetta, Paxton, Jansen, Martin, Rodriguez, Brasier, Bleier (9)
Kiké, Devers, Turner, Duvall, Mondesi, McGuire, Refsnyder, Arroyo (8)

Virtual locks:
Yoshida, Verdugo, Whitlock, Houck, Casas, Schreiber (6)

Optionables with MLB experience:
Bello, Dalbec, Duran, Crawford, Wong, Winckowski, Mills, Ort, Kelly

60-day IL
Story

The first 23 players are locks for the active roster, if healthy. You need a second catcher, so either Wong starts in Boston or you use Alfaro in Story's spot on the 40-man — either way that's 24. You need a 13th position player, and as it stands that's likely Dalbec, Duran or Andrus/Iglesias (25). Bello is arguably our best pitcher next year, so I'd personally have him up too. If everyone else is healthy, that's 26. When Story returns, that'd be 27. (I'm aware Mondesi might not be ready for opening day, but he's reportedly only expected to miss a little time if at all).

Sign Andrus, and here's what the active roster could look like in July:
Sale, Kluber, Pivetta, Paxton, Jansen, Martin, Rodriguez, Brasier, Bleier, Kiké, Devers, Turner, Duvall, Mondesi, McGuire, Refsnyder, Arroyo, Yoshida, Verdugo, Whitlock, Houck, Casas, Schreiber, Bello, Story, plus Wong/Alfaro and Andrus/Iglesias (that's 27 players)

With Andrus or Iglesias on the 26-man roster, we can't use a roster spot for call-ups without DFA-ing or IL-ing someone. Wouldn't you need at least one or two to use as a carousel for other players on the 40-man? I'd think you'd need more than one, because of the new rule restricting guys getting sent down to five times per season. Using only one spot to churn through relievers like Mills, Ort, Crawford and Kelly uses everyone's options more quickly. Signing Andrus or Iglesias would also consign Dalbec, Duran and Valdez to Worcester for the season, at least unless/until someone else gets hurt, because you can't send any of the other regulars down.

In other words, the Sox need another middle infielder. But it seems far better to use someone already on the roster — ideally the expected 26-man roster — in a trade for that player (namely: Bleier, Brasier, Casas, Dalbec, Houck, Paxton, Pivetta, Refsnyder, Sale, Schreiber, Verdugo or Whitlock — and several of those are non-starters). Otherwise we'd seem likely to lose someone on the 26 to fit that middle infielder anyway, because there are precious few players who can be sent down.

Injuries usually settle these things in the long-term, but you can't count on an injury to fit everyone onto the roster. And if there's ever a day when everyone's healthy, then someone would have to get the boot.
 
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Petagine in a Bottle

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I think you are right- but they also have to determine what the plan is with guys like Dalbec and Duran; are these guys part of the future here or are they just keeping them around because they don’t want to lose them for nothing? It seems quite likely that someone like Andrus would be more beneficial to this years team than either player, but perhaps not, I can understand the hesitancy to cut bait on either player, at this time.
 

nvalvo

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I was working on a post that is basically mooted by Chawson's, but I suggested that the last few position player spots had to be filled by players who were either disposable or optionable, and suggested some mixture of Duran, Valdez and Goodrum make the roster until Mondesí is ready.
 

JM3

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Having too many competent healthy players sounds like a rich person problem & easily remedied via trade.

But yeah, Mondesi or someone else in the non-Story division would have to be on the 60-day for adding another guy to make a lot of sense.
 

chawson

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Having too many competent healthy players sounds like a rich person problem & easily remedied via trade.
Ideally yes. I don’t know if most of the league is also trying to surf this post-pandemic roster crunch or what, but roster spots seem very valuable right now!

When does the 60-day IL open, like mid-March? Maybe things will start moving again then.
 

jon abbey

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When does the 60-day IL open, like mid-March? Maybe things will start moving again then.
No, much sooner, I think the first full day of spring training. Somehow it is very hard to find the precise date currently but I asked Mike Axisa the other day and he thinks it is Feb 21 for the Yankees, so probably right around there for everyone.
 

jon abbey

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I am guessing Alfaro was already promised one of those spots, Tapia too maybe? We will see soon.
 

chrisfont9

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Having too many competent healthy players sounds like a rich person problem & easily remedied via trade.

But yeah, Mondesi or someone else in the non-Story division would have to be on the 60-day for adding another guy to make a lot of sense.
Yeah, although it reduces their LT space and doesn't allow players to settle into their roles. It's not like there's no downside even if the roster spot works out.