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2004 - Perkins, Plouffe, Waldrop, Fox, and Rainville all first round choices. Best of the rest was Swarzak in the 2nd

2005 - Garza, Sanchez first round, Thompson, Slowey, Kelly in the 2nd round Duensing in the 3rd

2006 - Parmalee (1st), Benson (2nd), Robertson (3rd), Olson (4th)

2007 - Revere(1st), Rams (2nd) Morales (3rd)

For a four year block of high draft choices we got Perkins, Plouffe, Garza, Slowey, Duensing, and Revere.

There was no money to cover the errors made in those 4 years of poor drafting. The Twins couldn't cover that by signing FA to cover that. Small market teams live and die by the draft. FA kills them.

Tampa Bat will be having the same problem.; They have been whiffing on a lot of draft choices and are being "forced" to trade players as FA loom. See Price , Shields, and others. PIT and HOU could have the same problem. If the minor league system dries up - poof goes the winning.

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I think you missed the point... you said they have no room for error, but 4 years of poor drafting is a huge huge gap, it's not just some small error. I don't know many teams that can absorb 4 consecutive years of bad drafting, if any... it's not just a small market thing.

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Yankees, Dodgers, Red Sox, and to a certain extent the Giants could. You have no young talent coming up just sign another FA or two.

Yankees have had an organizational philosophy switch and have started avoiding trading top prospects or losing draft picks. The Red Sox signed Hanley and Pablo last year to help fill the gaps ( and have done it before Ie the Crawford years).

How many small market teams are in the running to sign Price, Cueto, and Grienke? Or even Zimmerman? Gordon may sign with KC but only IF he gives them a hometown discount. Houston has a good core of young talent. Years upon years of good drafting. When those players become FA are they going to be able to resign them? Same with PIT.

You are missing the point though. The no room for error means a small market club can not go with missing years of poor drafting. The money isn't there to either resign their own or other FA.

Part of the game

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Even with those large market teams, they built their teams by trading young talent, it wasn't just FAs. If you don't draft well you don't have the talent to trade.

4years of bad drafts it's going to hurt just about anyone.

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2004 - Perkins, Plouffe, Waldrop, Fox, and Rainville all first round choices. Best of the rest was Swarzak in the 2nd

2005 - Garza, Sanchez first round, Thompson, Slowey, Kelly in the 2nd round Duensing in the 3rd

2006 - Parmalee (1st), Benson (2nd), Robertson (3rd), Olson (4th)

2007 - Revere(1st), Rams (2nd) Morales (3rd)

For a four year block of high draft choices we got Perkins, Plouffe, Garza, Slowey, Duensing, and Revere.

There was no money to cover the errors made in those 4 years of poor drafting. The Twins couldn't cover that by signing FA to cover that. Small market teams live and die by the draft. FA kills them.

Tampa Bat will be having the same problem.; They have been whiffing on a lot of draft choices and are being "forced" to trade players as FA loom. See Price , Shields, and others. PIT and HOU could have the same problem. If the minor league system dries up - poof goes the winning.

TB has drafted poorly recently, no doubt about it.

But Perkins, Plouffe, Garza, and Revere all became quality major leaguers. I don't consider that stretch poor. If you want to hammer the twins for not properly evaluating Delmon Young who they got for Garza that's a different story.

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Sure it does. But it will hurt a small market team more.

What did the Red Sox trade again for Hanley and Sandoval? The Cubs for Lester? The Nats for Scherzer? Any team that signs a Price, Grienke, or Cueto (if they don't sign with the clubs they were on when the year ended? SEA signs Cano and Cruz? Poor drafts and a rich club gets to cover it up by FA signing.

A small market team also has a harder time trading top prospects. Ask TOR in a couple of years how it worked out IF they don't get a World Series title. They depleted their minors of top pitching prospects. They win and it was worth it. They lose and it will be years before they can make another run.

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I wish I could find that article back. The Twins drafted 6-7 pitchers in those rounds that were supposed to comprise the staff for years. The best was Perkins who failed as a starter.

As for TB I believe that part of the reason that Feldman ( the Dodger guy) and Maddon got out was what was coming up through the minors. Better to leave while on top.

But that is my prospective. I have been a Twins fan since they moved here in the early 60s. I see/saw what a small market means in competition. No complaints but it isn't a level playing field.

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I didn't say FAs don't help, but teams that spend big acquire players by trading drafted players as well, no team is solely built on FAs, and they will not compensate for a team drafting poorly for 4 consecutive years.

Yankees are proof positive how drafting poorly ruined a large market team.

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Doesn't matter the point was a small market team has a smaller margin foe error if/when things go wrong. They can't afford to try and cover it up.

Pavano was the Twins #1 or 2 starter. With the Yankees they could afford to bury him in the minors while paying him what 25 million? Think a PIT, MN, MIL or a few others could afford to do that?

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This all makes sense if one of two things happens:

1. Dombrowski gets a couple more SP's - Buchholz was finally having a true skills breakout, but now his health is in question, and really, the 2 best SP's were rookies (E-Rodriguez) or retreads (Rich Hill, where did that come from), and a lot of guys who functioned as barely-replacement level or worse.

2. BOS decides to load up their 'pen, to go KC-style. The problem is they have 1 guy right now who is reliable, and he was hurting by the end of the year (Tazawa).

If either happens, then getting Kimbrel at that price is costly, but it's part of a real plan for change. But if this is the big move, it makes almost zero sense, because that staff as a whole is the issue, not just the back end, and the back end is irrelevant if the front end is a bottom-5 to bottom-10 pitching staff. There are FA's and guys to trade for, so hopefully for BOS fans this is step 1 of many changes in the offseason.

It's way too early to pass judgment, but by itself this is a huge overpay (two up-the-middle prospects) for a CL, if the CL isn't your only deficiency. This only makes sense if this is part of a huge overhaul of the pitching staff. Time will tell.

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Have to stop you on Buchholtz... you say NOW his health is a question? That's always been his problem his entire career... never has started 30 games and never started 20 in back to back years, and he's 31 this season.

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This all makes sense if one of two things happens:

1. Dombrowski gets a couple more SP's - Buchholz was finally having a true skills breakout, but now his health is in question, and really, the 2 best SP's were rookies (E-Rodriguez) or retreads (Rich Hill, where did that come from), and a lot of guys who functioned as barely-replacement level or worse.

2. BOS decides to load up their 'pen, to go KC-style. The problem is they have 1 guy right now who is reliable, and he was hurting by the end of the year (Tazawa).

If either happens, then getting Kimbrel at that price is costly, but it's part of a real plan for change. But if this is the big move, it makes almost zero sense, because that staff as a whole is the issue, not just the back end, and the back end is irrelevant if the front end is a bottom-5 to bottom-10 pitching staff. There are FA's and guys to trade for, so hopefully for BOS fans this is step 1 of many changes in the offseason.

It's way too early to pass judgment, but by itself this is a huge overpay (two up-the-middle prospects) for a CL, if the CL isn't your only deficiency. This only makes sense if this is part of a huge overhaul of the pitching staff. Time will tell.

Two. Koji will be a set-up guy too and is said to have been okay with his move back to that role.

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Have to stop you on Buchholtz... you say NOW his health is a question? That's always been his problem his entire career... never has started 30 games and never started 20 in back to back years, and he's 31 this season.

Very fair to point out that he's been hurt every year - but all of his injuries never involved the shoulder or elbow, so they weren't the types that make you think he's out a long time - hamstring, knee, neck, back. They don't carry the same long-term risk...until the last one this past season. It's fair to ever wonder if you can get 30 starts in a year because of all the injuries, but they've always been the type to make you just realize you can't get 30+ starts from him, but not doubt his ability to play the rest of season, or the next year. This one's the scariest, not just about missing 5-8 starts in a year - because if it's the elbow (or more precisely, the forearm), you're talking about potential TJS if it's more than just the flexor tendon.

Now, it's said to only be the flexor tendon, and not the UCL, so that's hopeful - but it's truly ironic that just as he really pitched up skill-wise to his potential - the most worrisome of injuries short of confirmed UCL/shoulder injury occurred. It's one thing to say you can't get a full season out of him ever (which I think we can all agree is fair given his history), but this takes it to another level.

This all makes sense if one of two things happens:

1. Dombrowski gets a couple more SP's - Buchholz was finally having a true skills breakout, but now his health is in question, and really, the 2 best SP's were rookies (E-Rodriguez) or retreads (Rich Hill, where did that come from), and a lot of guys who functioned as barely-replacement level or worse.

2. BOS decides to load up their 'pen, to go KC-style. The problem is they have 1 guy right now who is reliable, and he was hurting by the end of the year (Tazawa).

If either happens, then getting Kimbrel at that price is costly, but it's part of a real plan for change. But if this is the big move, it makes almost zero sense, because that staff as a whole is the issue, not just the back end, and the back end is irrelevant if the front end is a bottom-5 to bottom-10 pitching staff. There are FA's and guys to trade for, so hopefully for BOS fans this is step 1 of many changes in the offseason.

It's way too early to pass judgment, but by itself this is a huge overpay (two up-the-middle prospects) for a CL, if the CL isn't your only deficiency. This only makes sense if this is part of a huge overhaul of the pitching staff. Time will tell.

Two. Koji will be a set-up guy too and is said to have been okay with his move back to that role.

Yeah, Koji's back - but thing is, he'll be 41, and living off his forkball - so hard to know how he'll do. Tazawa is in his peak years, hence my original count of 1. If Koji's back and has another year left in the tank, then that's 2 in front of Kimbrel - but I don't think anyone would want that to be Plan A by itself bullpen-wise.

Ideally, BOS gets at least 2 more SP's (one frontline, if not 2), and a lot more help in the 'pen. KC didn't just roll out 2-3 shutdown arms - at their peak, they had 4-5. BOS would need something like that if their SP doesn't take a huge leap ahead of last year's baseline.

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Just throwing this out there, I wonder if they have thought about offering HanRam for Verlander, two bad contacts and Dombrowski in Boston. ...

That would be amusing but I find it far more likely that Verlander learns to pitch than Hanley learns how to play defense.

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Just throwing this out there, I wonder if they have thought about offering HanRam for Verlander, two bad contacts and Dombrowski in Boston. ...

That would be amusing but I find it far more likely that Verlander learns to pitch than Hanley learns how to play defense.

Verlander has already learned to pitch. His stats were good last year and he kept getting better as the season went along. He is a legit pitcher again. And I mean pitcher instead of thrower. And no way would Detroit want Hanley on their team. Not just the attitude at times. Also where the hell would he play? Last I heard V-Mart is still the DH and Miggy isn't turning over 1B to him.

Current Boston "starters" based on last year plus this signing:

David Price

Eduardo Rodriguez

Clay Buchholz

Rick Porcello (and his contract)

Wade Miley

Joe Kelly

Henry Owens

That's two too many. Depth is important but the farm isn't bad and one of the starters may well re-join it out of spring training barring trades.

That guy is Henry Owens, who came up too soon, and would either start in the minors and be used as a taxi squad pitcher or be used in a prospects for someone trade. He still doesn't have command enough of his curve, which is his next best pitch after his change-up. So he needs more seasoning wherever he ends up.

It's clear the Sox want to move Buchholz but who would want his usual half a year for a one year contract? But if they want anything for him he has to get moved sooner than later since this is the last year of his contract.

Joe Kelly, after coming back from his last demotion, pitched well in his last few games. You could finally see what all the talk was about once he stopped throwing and tried to learn to pitch. Still rough at times but maybe a diamoind in the rough showed a facet or two those last few games. Those games changed my opinion of him. He really does have some for real potential. I would hate to see him traded away though several clubs are reportedly after him. And for good reason as a lot of teams see that potential too.

Dombronski got rid of Porcello once in Detroit but now the guy is in his hair again but this time with a mega-silly contract no one wants to touch. Though, he too, pitched better down the stretch.

Wade Miley is the innings eater and a lefty. Given bullpens coming in earlier and earlier these days a innings eater has grown more important.

Eduardo Rodriguez is the home grown ace in the making and is untouchable. In just a couple of years it is possible that he could eclipse Price on the staff. (Well semi-home grown with a big time shout out to the Orioles who traded away their best pitching prospect for an Andrew Miller rental).

The starters I think they are willing to trade if the payoff is big enough would be all of them but Price of course and E-Rod. But Joe Kelly's asking price went up big time after his September turnaround. And he is the guy most asked for by other clubs. Maybe the only one asked for period. Miley's contract is decent enough for clubs and he is steady like a C+ student at least. Maybe he could bring some bullpen help. Porcello and his horrible contract ... well enough said. Buchholz has decreasing value by the minute and only one year left on his contract anyway. Some teams might take Owens as a prospect.

With the Sox at or a little over the luxury tax limit they aren't going after any more free agent starters that I can see. And to trade for one could mess up their farm system which is looking good. They already overpaid SD some with four good to decent prospects to get Kimbrel so don't sell off the farm for another pitcher when one really isn't needed. If they have troubles with pitching maybe a trade at the trade deadline but no sense getting carried away right now.

It's more important to pick up better bullpen help. Kimbrel with Koji and Tazawa are fine at the end of the bullpen but the beginning/middle still sucks big time.

If Hanley and/or Panda could get moved then that would free up more money even if they have to eat part of their contracts. But that is unlikely given you have to find someone who wants these guys first.

There seems to be a vibe here where people are kind of holding their breath hoping Dombronski doesn't get too carried away and trades off any more young players or prospects. At least not the ones the fans want to see remain like all the ones on the current roster plus guys like Devers and Monacado.

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