The Red Sox continue to baffle me with their off-season moves. I keep assuming that they’ll make a move that makes sense of all their crappy moves. Something like, “Oh, they saved money on a first baseman so they could sign Josh Hamilton.” Or, “Oh, they saved money in the outfield because they traded for Giancarlo Stanton.” But, they keep filling up their roster, without adding any talent. So far, they’ve done nothing with that fantastic financial flexibility but save money.
They traded away Adrian Gonzalez, and replaced him with Mike Napoli. Anyone think Mike Napoli has more talent than AGone? Didn’t think so. In fact, Napoli is coming off a terrible year. We’ve been told that that was a fluke. We just need to assume that he’ll return to the numbers he put up during his career year a couple seasons ago. If we’re allowed to do that for Napoli, why doesn’t Gonzalez get the same option? Wouldn’t it be more likely that Gonzalez returns to the numbers he put up for an entire career as opposed to the ones Napoli did once?
They traded away Carl Crawford, and brought in Shane Victorino. Again, Victorino had a terrible year last year. But, we’re supposed to hope that he can return to the numbers he put up a couple years ago. Sound familiar? So, we can assume that Victorino will put up numbers like he used to, but we can’t assume that Crawford will return to form? Even though Crawford’s numbers were much better than Victorino ever had, and he did it for a lot longer than Victorino did? What am I missing here?
You want to tell me that Beckett and Dempster are a wash? Fine. You’d be wrong…but at least you can make an argument that it was worth saving the money. I’d still rather have Beckett who has shown that he can pitch in the AL, as opposed to Dempster who has shown he can’t.
But, that’s not even the real issue. Like I said, if you want to sign lesser players to save money, that’s fine…as long as you use the money for something. The Sox saved, what, $25 million by making those three changes? But, they filled up all their roster spots in the process. If they had used that $25 million on Josh Hamilton, for instance, that would have been one thing. But, they didn’t. They’re just making the team worse, and pocketing the money?
And, you can’t even say they Sox are bridging to the kids. They’ve clogged up all their spots with mediocre talent. The Sox have two shortstop prospects. They can only use one of them. The Sox have Ryan Lavarnway, a top catching prospect…who’s probably more of a first baseman. Too bad. They’ve got Naploi clogging first base for at least the next two years. What about Kalish and Bradley? They’re stars in the wings. Well, they have Victorino now for three years. Does this mean Ellsbury is definitely gone next year? Or, are they going to use the $25 million they saved on him? If they do, they don’t have a spot left for two kids. What about those pitchers they got from LA? Sorry, the rotation is set for the next two years.
Maybe they can use the kids as trade chips? That’s the whole point of having prospects in the first place. So you can trade them away before they become busts. So, you package Lavarnway, Bradley, and Bogaerts together and shop them around. What are you trading for? A first baseman? Then what do you do with Napoli? Can’t trade him. A second baseman? Nope. Shortstop? Not if Iglesias is the real deal. Third baseman? Nope. Clogged up, hopefully. Pitchers? Then you have to move one of the ones you have.
So, I don’t get it at all.
What was the point of making us watch a less talented team?