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Showing posts from 2015

2016 Sox Coming Along but Still Some Questions

The Red Sox have clearly made great progress this off-season.  By acquiring ace David Price, relievers Craig Kimbrel and Carson Smith, and outfielder Chris Young, they have effectively filled their three biggest holes - and added a young future closer in Smith.

The Sox' biggest problems looking ahead to 2016 are mostly not fixable at any reasonable price.  They are also not insurmountable.  Their top issue is infield defense, followed by outfield offense, and rotation depth.  Minor league depth is also an issue but that will likely be - and already has begun to be - solved through non-roster invitees and minor league free agents

Infield Defense
Going into 2015, I was dead-on convinced that the Sox would have a excellent infield defense with only one question mark: Xander Bogaerts.  I was perfect in this prediction in that everything I thought was wrong.  The Panda looked less Kung Fu and more pick up sticks. Mike Napoli was gone by mid-August.  Pedrioa missed much of the season a…

Pitcher Contracts

Red Sox President and CEO Larry Lucchino told WEEI that, when you analyze the merits of the team's signing of Rick Porcello to a 4-year, $82.5 million extention, "you might have to step back a little bit and look at the entire portfolio of contracts that we have."  Let's do that.

When we look at the contractual makeup of the Red Sox, you see that they are both preparing for the future and positioned to be very flexible.  With the Porcello signing, they essentially have three of their five starters under contract and only one, Wade Miley, with a financial commitment of any real significance (Joe Kelly is the other but he's still a year a way from his first year of arbitration eligibility).  Clay Buchholz has a club option for each of the next two years for $13 million each, so it's really anyone's guess right now if they keep him or not.  Justin Masterson is a free agent again after this year.
Thus, the Sox are the most committed to the two starters on the…

Five Sox Players Who Matter More Than You Thought

Rumor has it that Pablo Sandoval might have an impact on the Red Sox this year.  Likewise, Koji Uehara would probably help the Sox chances of being good if he's a lights-out closer again and it'd be helpful if Justin Masterson is more 2013 Masterson than 2014.  That all being said, there are other story lines that might have a significant impact on the season but are far from the spotlight shone Xander Bogaerts development or if Christian Vazquez can be better than a liability at bat.  Here are a few of those key players:
Allen Craig - I don't think he will nor should he be traded any time soon.  If you trade him now, you are selling low.  Meanwhile, there is every reason to believe he'll bounce back.  With Papi in the last year or two of his career, Napoli on the last year of his contract, and Hanley Ramirez a strong candidate to move to DH if Papi isn't there, Craig is a uniquely valuable investment in the future.  In addition, I expect him to play at least 120 ga…