Strike 3 Looking

I got my K's on backward.

Archive for January, 2006

Enter shortstop, stage left.

ESPN is reporting that the Sox have signed Alex Gonzalez to a 1-year/$3 million contract. Count me among the people who were hoping that they’d take Cora to spring training and be done with it. That being said, I think we can live with him for a year. He won’t be blocking any better options (Pedroia if he shows he’s got it or a free agent next off-season) and, by all accounts, his defense should be pretty good. If he totally sucks, we can probably just cut him and eat his $3 mil. I think now we’re finally done. At least until spring training rolls around…

Coo-coo for Covelli!

After much hemming and hawing, the dust has finally settled and 6 players have swapped teams. The Sox traded third base prospect Ande Marte, reliever Guillermo Mota, and catching prospect Kelly Shoppach + some $/PTBNL to the Indians in exchange for center fielder Covelli “Coco” Crisp, relief pitcher David Riske, and catcher Josh Bard. The most talked about of the new guys is, of course, Coco. As much as I’d like to have kept Marte, I think this is a good trade. His 0-for-15 stint in the majors aside, Shoppach is a good prospect who wasn’t going anywhere soon with Varitek holdin’ down the fort. Bard, meanwhile, should be a useful backup for us. Mota has some health concerns. Riske has been a consistently good reliever for years now, and should be a nice addition to our much-improved bullpen. (Blaine Neal says “Hi.”) Marte projects to be a good to awesome 3B, but that’s just speculation and Crisp is a pretty good CF right now. All told, I think it’s been a pretty good off-season. I’m in favor of starting the season with Alex Cora at short-stop and letting the chips fall. Spring Training is on our doorstep!

G38 & The Sports Guy

Bill Simmons, one of the better writers on ESPN, has an interview with Curt Schilling up where they discuss the Sox, their fans, and their future. A pretty good read.

Theo to regain title of General Manager

Nothing to much see here folks, go on about your business…

Where da props at, yo?

Acording to ESPN, the Okland A’s have signed Frank Thomas to a one-year deal worth $500,000 to be their DH. $500,000?! This may end up being the steal of the off-season. I mean, sure, he’s old and coming off an injury, but he also hit 12 HR and drove in 26 runs in 34 games last year and all he’ll have to do is hit this year. I think that the White Sox, the only home he’s ever known is his 15 years of pro ball, should’ve kept them on as their DH. Is the difference between him and Jim Thome, who also has injury problems, all that great?

Between this and the Bagwell situation with Houston, where’s the reward for loyalty? Johnny Damon has clearly highlighted the reward for being a turncoat. ;-)

Edit:  Should’ve figured it’d be heavily incentivised (Yahoo! Sports). He can earn up to $1.4 million in roster bonuses if he stays injury-free and $1.2 million in performance bonuses based on plate appearances.  I still think it’s a good deal for the Althetics, and I guess the White Sox didn’t want to risk arbitration, but it’s still lame of them.

Episode VI: Return of the Epstein

As you know, we have spoken frequently during the last 10 weeks. We have engaged in healthy, spirited debates about what it will take over the long-term for the Red Sox to remain a great organization and, in fact, become a more effective organization in philosophy, approaches and ideals. Ironically, Theo’s departure has brought us closer together in many respects, and, thanks to these conversations, we now enjoy the bonds of a shared vision for the organization’s future that did not exist on October 31. With this vision in place, Theo will return to the Red Sox in a full-time baseball operations capacity, details of which will be announced next week.
— John W. Henry, Tom Werner, Larry Lucchino and Theo Epstein

Welcome back Theo, whatever your job title may be. Just find us a decent center fielder and don’t let Manny go anywhere. ;-) Announcement @ redsox.com.

Rumor Truthed!

The Red Sox have officially announced the three-year deal with the man Curt Schilling said had “nuts the size of Saturn.” Arroyo’s deal will be worth $11.5-$12.5 million. If he pitches like he did in ’04 (or the first half of last year), it’s a pretty good deal. If he pitches like he did at the end of last year, it’s just an okay deal. But for someone who can start or relieve, and has such substantial huevos, it’s hard to dislike too much.

As for the much ballyhooed “gentlemen’s agreement,” there seems to be no mention of it. I think we’ll have Arroyo at least until June, and longer if he pitches well. Anything else would be a little slimey on the part of the front office. Bronson acknowledged that he could’ve made more in year-to-year arbitration, and even went against the advice of his agents in signing this contract.

The reason I took a discount is because I love playing here and I want to stay here my whole career.
— Bronson Arroyo

I say, hats off to the guy for goin’ with his heart over his wallet. (Seriously, though, who needs more than $4 mil a year??) Some more quotes in the Boston Globe.

Bronson singin’ @ Fenway for a while

I guess I should actually blog about some news or, better yet, unsubstantiated rumors! The latest buzz is that the Red Sox are hammering out a deal with Bronson “Corn Rows” Arroyo that”ll keep him and his right arm in Boston for 3 more years. The deal comes with a (rumored) price-tag of $11-$12 million and a “gentlmen’s agreement” that Arroyo won’t be traded this off-season. A few things about this deal, if it holds up:

  • Bronson said a month or so ago that he’d never he could never go to the Yankees after playing in Boston so long, despite the money. While the truth of that statement remains to be seen (Johnny Damon says Hi!), he’s at least now shown that he’s willing to take less money to stick around.
  • Ironically enough, this deal would actually make him more tradable, since he could probably get at least another million or two more per year in his last two years of arbitration. Oh well.
  • On the whole, I’m okay with keeping him around at this price. He’s not a “great” pitcher, and his strikeout rate took a dive last season, but he’s a fairly consistent #5 guy, and has never been on the DL. If we’re stuck with him for a few more years, oh well. Although a center fielder would be nice. ;-)

On a related note, does anyone know how I can get “a source with direct knowledge?”

Hillenbrizzle Speaks

There’s a pretty decent interview with Shea Hillenbrand up on the redsoxnation.net message board. I haven’t seen him play much, but he seems like a decent guy. Unfortunately we’re pretty set @ 1B & 3B and it doesn’t seem like he plays much SS or CF these days. ;-)

Not another blog!

Oh yes, another one. ;-) Given that the market is saturated with blogs right now, I thought it would be a perfect time to add my own! I’ll be littering this space with sports news and happenings–mostly of the Red Sox variety–and my own musings on them.

Alas, the Patriots are out of the playoffs. :-(