Friday, December 15, 2017

POLL: J.D. Martinez Still Seen As Top Bat Choice For Sox

Continued voting in our latest FenwayNation Poll shows that a plurality of readers (down from an earlier majority) prefer J.D. Martinez as the top choice to fill the Red Sox offensive void. As the chart shows, 46% now choose Martinez, followed by 22% who pick Manny Machado. Picking up the most ground from our last check is Eric Hosmer—who now garners fully 20% of the total vote. Former Red Sox IF Eduardo Nunez checks in next at 7%, followed Christian Yelich at 3% and Kyle Schwarber at 2%. No one has yet voted for Mark Reynolds. We should note that a few voters mentioned their preference for Jose Abreu—who was inadvertently left off the initial poll. You can still vote HERE.

Jacoby Ellsbury's Post-Boston Performance Evaluation

Multiple rumors are floating around that former Red Sox OF Jacoby Ellsbury may be on the move out of the Bronx. The Pinstriped Posers seem to have a bit of a log-jam in their outfield—and a pretty expensive one at that. Unless Ellsbury is moved, he will become a $21,142,857 million bench-warmer in 2018. He might be hard to deal, though, since he's got the potential of $63 million or so more owed to him after 2018. Nonetheless, he's been mentioned in various deals—including one to the Diamondbacks that would net The Evil Ones IF Brandon Drury and SP Patrick Corbin. So, it's interesting to see how things compare on Ellsbury—between his seven years in Boston and his four years as a Bronx Embalmer. As the chart shows, Ellsbury performed better in Carmine Hose is every key category—average, on-base percentage, slugging and OPS. But, all things considered (like advancing age and injury), he performed pretty closely to his Boston stats. Was it worth it to The Steinbrenner Brood to ink him to that seven-year, $153 million contract? Not bloody likely. So far, zero division titles and zero world championships during Jacoby's stay. Oh, well.

Phillies Snare One Red Sox 1B Option In Carlos Santana

Take one more free-agent option off the table. The Phillies signed first-baseman Carlos Santana to a three-year, $60 million contract. If Santana is getting that much, you can rest assured that 'uber-agent' Scott Boras is asking way north of those figures for Eric Hosmer. This fake Dave Dombroski bravado (staring down Boras in a "who-flinches-first" contest) has the real danger of resulting in a totally empty Christmas stocking for Red Sox fans. Stay tuned!

Empire Looks To Bury Red Sox With Acquisition Of Cole

(Getty Images)
The only edge the Red Sox have on The Bronx Embalmers—and we mean the only edge—is in the starting rotation. And, frankly, the edge is not all that profound. The one area that Brian Cashman did not smoke Dave Dombrowski this off-season is in upgrading his rotation. Now, it appears that Cashman may be putting the final piece of his 2018 team in place—with the acquisition of SP Gerrit Cole. While Dombrowski makes excuses, Cashman acts. Reportedly, the 27-year-old Cole (12-2 in 2017) would be swapped for excess OF prospect Clint Frazier. Again, the Yankees deal from strength to make their overall team better. Quite a concept—you might want to try it, Dave!

All Of Boston's First Base Options Are "Can't Misses"

2015-2017 Stats (Courtesy:
Despite the curious geek-inspired hatred of Eric Hosmer, all three of Boston's potential first-base replacements for Mitch Moreland (who wasn't half-bad himself) are solid. No matter how you slice it, Hosmer, Carlos Santana or Jose Abreu would be a major plus for the lineup and the defense. Please, don't even talk to us about bottom-feeder candidates like Mark Reynolds. The roto-heads point to Hosmer's "every-other-year" offensive slippage—but (as usual) the numbers don't tell the whole story. Don't forget, legendary manager Jim Leyland started Hosmer over Paul Goldschmidt in the recent World Baseball Classic—and Hosmer raked and the US won. Over the last three seasons (see chart), the numbers for all three are virtually identical—with Abreu the clear class of the group. But Abreu would cost prospects—Hosmer or Santana would only put a slight dent in John Henry's wallet (don't worry, he'll survive).

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Ex-Red Sox 1B Bill Buckner Turns 68 Years Old Today

Bill Buckner turns 68 years old today. If there was any justice in the world, he should be able to calmly reflect today on a tremendous, 22-year MLB career with the Dodgers, Cubs, Red Sox, Royals and Angels. He put together a stellar .289 career batting average and drove in over 1,200 runs. He won a National League batting title in 1980 (.324), and led the Senior Circuit in doubles twice. He was an All-Star in 1981 and finished in the Top Ten of MVP voting twice. Famously, he was also the Dodger left-fielder who frantically climbed the fence to try and rob Hank Aaron of his record-setting 715th HR. That's the kind of player Buckner was—gritty, take-no-prisoners. And yet, some people will only remember him for one play. All we have to say is: The game was already tied! Happy birthday, Billy Buck!

REPORT: Sox Look To Sign BOTH Martinez And Hosmer

If Michael Silverman's report in The Boston Herald is correct—all is forgiven, Mr. David Dombrowski, sir. According to Silverman, the Red Sox are currently in negotiations with free agents J.D. Martinez and Eric Hosmer—with the intent of signing both. While netting the two most-prized free agents on the market would require a big financial outlay—it would also allow Boston to keep its current major league roster intact and horde their dwindling number of top prospects. There is one issue that would need to be resolved, though—Hanley Ramirez. Signing the Dynamic Duo means Ramirez would have no spot on the team to justify his $22 million 2018 salary. Moreover, the same price-tag would hold for 2019 if Hanley hit easy incentives as a starter. So, they would probably need to unload him somewhere at a discount—and soon. Stay tuned, this could move fast!

POLL: Most Readers Want Red Sox To Land J.D. Martinez

Early voting in our latest FenwayNation Poll shows that a majority of readers (57%) most prefer J.D. Martinez (a free agent) as the player they would like the Red Sox to acquire. As the chart shows, just under one-third (31%) would rather The Carmine Hose land Manny Machado (who would require a trade). Trailing far behind in third place is Miami OF Christian Yelich, who would also require a trade, at 6%. Three percent each would opt for either Eric Hosmer or Eduardo Nunez, while no votes have yet been cast for either Kyle Schwarber or Mark Reynolds. You can still vote in the poll HERE.

POLL: Which ONE Player Do You MOST Want to Land?

Of all the players the Red Sox have (supposedly) been mentioned with—which ONE would you MOST like them to land? free polls

Red Sox Among Ten Clubs Inquiring On Christian Yelich

Yelich (Getty Images)
Don't get too excited, but multiple sources indicate that the Red Sox are among ten teams that have contacted the Miami Marlins about left-hand hitting OF Christian Yelich. The 26-year-old is reportedly upset that Derek Jeter has traded away the core of the team (including a few of his close friends). So, now, he wants out of MarlinVille as well. Over his five-year career, Yelich is a .290 hitter, with 59 HRs and an OPS of .800. Thanks to the depletion of the Red Sox farm system over the last two years (which has, in fairness, netted us Craig Kimbrel and Chris Sale), we may not have the talent to being back a Yelich. Stay tuned.

Sox Transact! Unfortunately, Just In The Rule Five Draft

Luke Tendler
The Red Sox made a move at The Winter Meetings! Alert the media—Dave has awoken! No, they didn't land J.D. Martinez, Eric Hosmer, or Jose Abreu—hell, not even Eduardo Nunez! In the AAA Phase of today Rule 5 Draft, the Red Sox selected OF Luke Tendler from the Texas Rangers organization. The 26-year-old Tendler (who turns 27 in August) is an athletic right-fielder, who has hit .277 with 62 HRs over four minor-league seasons. He capped out last season with the AA Frisco RoughRiders. CORRECTION: By rule of the AAA Phase of the Rule 5 draft, the Red Sox do not have to keep Tendler on the major-league's 25-man roster, but his contract is irrevocably assigned to the drafting team and the drafting fee ($12,000 for Triple-A) is paid. Probably just organizational depth.

The 2017 Winter (Meetings) Of Our Red Sox Discontent

Dealin' Dave has morphed into Reelin' Dave. This off-season, it's all about how Red Sox President of Baseball Operations Dave Dombrowski has been psychologically sand-bagged by his counterpart in Baghdad-By-The-Hudson. As an example, Dombrowski actually said this last night, "I think we're closer. But I don't know if we're closer to getting something done or being eliminated from doing things. I think we're closer to getting answers on some things." Is this the same guy who used to deal from the hip—beating rivals to the punch? As we write this on Thursday morning (the last day of The Winter Meetings), only one report has Boston even close to a deal with either of two players—and one of those (free-agent Eric Hosmer) is much more likely to land in San Diego. The Padres are going to skunk us! All of a sudden, it appears that Dombrowski has become the Bobby Valentine of the Red Sox front office—completely ineffectual. This is beyond whiny fans complaining, this is downright embarrassing.