October 2011

Off Season Ideas: Youk to A’s?

The Red Sox trade Kevin Youkilis and Andrew Miller to the A’s for Gio Gonzalez and a prospect.

Why it Would Work: It’s no secret the Sox need pitching and Youk can be used as trade bait. Gonzalez is a great , young lefty who could turn out to be a superstar. He was an All-Star this year and looks like he will be for years to come. The Sox only have one lefty starter in the rotation so adding another wouldn’t hurt. Another reason would be that an unhealthy Youk can be more harm than help so trading him now while he still has a high value might be the best idea for the Sox. Billy Beane loves Youk, so the second his name is mentioned he’ll listen to anything. Also dumping Andrew Miller wouldn’t be a bad thing, plus he helps fill the spot left be Gonzalez so the A’s still have a serviceable lefty to start aside from Brett Anderson. Also the prospect would  just be a throw in hit or miss guy.

Why it Wouldn’t Work: The A’s are struggling to get a winning team in Oakland. Their pitching is what has been carrying them. Would the A’s be willing to give up their best pitcher for some offence? They’ve been hurting at the corner infield spots by a series of failed prospects and bad trades. Youk could fill that spot, but are the A’s willing to sacrifice that much for an injury prone, early thirty’s corner infielder?

If you want your idea featured here comment below or on any article, e-mail me at tricher00@gmail.com, or send me a tweet @thebestsoxblog.

John Lackey Out for 2012

During his press conference, Ben Cherington dropped a bombshell. He announced that John Lackey will have Tommy John Surgery and miss the 2012 season. Now this isn’t a terrible thing for the Sox, because they were ready to just cut costs and get rid of him.  Now he’ll come back stronger in 2013 and actually help out the team. Hopefully the surgery will help him get back on track and back to the way he pitched for the Angles.

Cherrington Announced as GM

Today the Red Sox announced that Ben Cherrington would become the team’s new GM. Cherrington has held nearly every scouting job of the Red Sox proving his strong background. Based on his press conference he appears to be a well-rounded GM. He identified all the Sox weaknesses and his plans to fix them. I think he’l be very successful in Boston.

Epstein Deal Done (For Real This Time)

The Red Sox and Cubs have finally agreed on compensation for Theo Epstein. An announcement is coming soon.

Curt Young Back in Oakland

After a tumultuous season for Red Sox pitching, pitching coach Curt Young has left the Sox to return to the A’s as their pitching coach. Young had done a fantastic job with the young arms in Oakland, but when faced with the ch allege of coaching aging veterans, he flopped. Without John Farrell there the pitching for Boston was in disarray. I don’t want to say that the pitching was solely his fault, but he did play a major role. He couldn’t motivate his pitchers who lost focus and let everything slip away. I think Young is better suited in Oakland where all of his success (as a player and coach) came from. He knows the pitchers well, and I think he’ll do a much better job next year than he did this year, but that’s not too hard.

Why Theo Leaving is a Good Thing

Most Red Sox fans, myself included, are saddened by Theo Epstein‘s looming departure, but it does have some positives. Theo has made some great moves throughout his career. He made fantastic trades and found some great under valued players. But in recent years he’s slipped up on one thing. He has read the free agent market terribly. He has also taken advantage of John Henry’s wallet by overspending on just about everyone of the free agents he’s picked up. He just struggles with making an adequate contract offer that meets both sides needs. He’s always gone way over the top for veterans services. He should know that their near decline, and if they want more years than their bodies are going to give them than just stay away. Theo was never able to stay away. He was so overly aggressive that it hurt the Sox rather than helped them. The only time he’s backed off a contract for health is with Jason Bay, and it proved to be an excellent idea. Didn’t anybody learn from that, or is everyone still upset we lost a guy whose hit .251 the past two years? The Mets are just as upset as we are with the contracts of Carl Crawford, John Lackey, J.D. Drew, and Mike Cameron. If Theo takes this approach in Chicago, the Cubs will be buried in debt due to terrible contracts. Another problem I’ve had with Theo is his protection of the farm system. Guys like Lars Anderson whose value was sky high a few years ago and the Sox had no use for him, but Theo had some sort of plan for him. Now he’s not even worth an unhealthy Rich Harden. Years ago he could of been used as guy in a Adrian Gonzalez type trade, but now that will never happen, except as a throw in. I’m not saying toss away all homegrown guys, because that would be insanity, but guys who aren’t going to serve a purpose when their value is at his highest needs to be moved if the right deal is made. Another good example is Josh Reddick. Right now, other teams are admiring the fantastic job he’s done this year, but he still wasn’t the most consistent guy. The Sox can sell high with him, because they have a plethora of internal and external options in the outfield. Hopefully, Cherrington will realize everything Theo did wrong and do them right.

Papi Wins Roberto Clemente Award

Today David Ortiz was selected as this years winner of the Roberto Clemente Award. The award recognizes players who best represent the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement. This is the second year in a row in which a Red Sox player won the award. Last year Tim Wakefield took home the honors. This is only second time a Red Sox player has won the award. The award will be presented to him tonight before the start of game 2 of the World Series. This may be Big Papi’s last big moment with the Sox.

Done Deal

Apparently the deal is done. The Red Sox and Cubs have agreed to compensation for Theo Epstein. They aren’t allowed to announce the deal due to interference with the World Series, so it will be done tomorrow during a travel day. It has also been reported that Jed Hoyer, the San Diego Padres GM and former assistant of Theo’s, will be the Cubs new GM starting today. Josh Byrnes is already the acting GM in San Diego so that’s officially a done deal. Now that might sound a bit strange, but yes it’s true Theo won’t be the Cubs GM. He’s becoming the president of baseball operations. He hired Hoyer, because they know each other quite well, and they know how to win. I can’t wait until tomorrow to find out what the Sox get in return for Theo.

UPDATE 9:04: It’s now being reported that the deal isn’t close, and they’ve agreed to nothing.

“Beer-Gate” Blown Way Out of Proportion

People keep burying the Red Sox deeper, and deeper, and deeper, and deeper… It’s getting a little ridiculous. Everyday there’s another story bashing them. The worst thing is the “Beer-Gate Scandal”. They admitted they drank beer in the clubhouse, but that didn’t satisfy the media. After that they all of a sudden discovered that they drank in the dugout. Really? Is that the best story they can write? You’d think that someone would catch them considering there’s cameras on them. Maybe the cameramen turned off their cameras when they drinking? With what their trying to say it wouldn’t surprise me if they blamed anyone for this. I even read somewhere that Demarlo Hale was to blame for this. It’s gotten ridiculous. They made a mistake, no need to start making a whole story off one silly little thing. It just shows how shallow today’s media is.

Compensation For Theo

Theo Epstein is still the GM of the Boston Red Sox, because the Sox and the Chicago Cubs can’t agree on the compensation for Theo leaving his contract. Originally, the Sox wanted Matt Garza, but the Cubs refused to part with their ace. Then the Cubs were only willing to give up cash, but the Sox made it clear they wanted prospects.

Here’s the list of the Cub’s top prospects according to Baseball America:

1.	Chris Archer, rhp*
2.	Brett Jackson, of
3.	Trey McNutt, rhp
4.	Hak-Ju Lee, ss*
5.	Josh Vitters, 3b
6.	Chris Carpenter, rhp
7.	Matt Szczur, of
8.	Hayden Simpson, rhp
9.	Rafael Dolis, rhp
10.	Brandon Guyer, of*
*denotes a player who is no longer on the Cubs

Brett Jackson, Trey McNutt, Chris Carpenter, and Matt Szczur seem to be the top choices by the Sox, but the Cubs don’t want to part with anyone of them. Personally I’d like them to get a top level pitcher and a lesser hitter. I really like McNutt, Carpenter, and Dolis (just based off stats) and would love to see the Sox pick up one of them. Then they could also take a young low risk high reward hitter and they’d have fitting compensation. This process has been like pulling teeth, so I doubt the Cubs want to give anyone from the list above up, but soon they may compromise.