Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Winter Meetings - Day Two Wrap Up

CHB was right, nothing really happens at the winter meetings.

Red Sox sign JD Drew - 5 years $70MM
Red Sox sign Lugo - 4 yeats $36MM
Manny is still a Red Sox, please come soon opening day.
Lester speaks up and all appears even better than reported yesterday.

SD signs Maddux

Texas signs Padilla

And more rumors than you can possibly even begin to report on, although ESPN has tried.

One note on Lugo, for all the attention that JD Drew is getting as a bad makeup guy, it will be interesting to see if the papers even mention that he was involved in a spousal abuse, restraining order situation with a wife or girlfriend.


  1. So if I have your scoring system right. JD and Julio are both 9 points pending on the current order in the line up?

  2. Holy crap! It looks like Manny is staying...If the Sox sign Matsuzaka they would be in good shape...except that they have no bullpen...

    Starting Lineup to Enter in the Contest


    There's a lot of speed in this lineup all of the sudden. I like it.


    I have to think Papelbon is the number 5. This will get him less starts in his first full year as a starter.

    Other Japanese dude...

    At this point I have no idea who closes...I'll go out on a limb and say Foulke comes back...I wish some site would post where the Sox stand in terms of the cap if they keep Manny...I can't imagine, though, the FO spending this kind of money on Drew and Lugo and not having a top closer. That makes no sense whatsoever. Something else must be brewing. Wily Mo or Crisp might be out the door soon. My guess is that it would be Wily Mo.

  3. I think the Sox are being smart about the closer situation. Theo said in his conference call the other day “something will develop by opening day.” Sure it was a tongue in cheek comment, but closers are overvalued to a point. As I noted in an earlier post, only 3 closers have had their jobs for 3 years (injury free, same team). Sure it would be nice to “know” that you have a Rivera, Nathan or Hoffman, but in today’s game closers performance (actually all bullpen pitching) is highly variable from year to year. Two more data points – you know how many teams changed closers at some point during the season last year? By my count 19 teams used different players to close than what their play was during spring training. Secondly, of the last 6 world champions, only one (the 2004 Sox) had a single closer through the regular season and playoffs. And as we have seen, closers have a way of materializing and/or coming out of nowhere – Papelbon as one example, but also guys like Jenks (released), Street (blossomed beyond expectations), Putz (never projected as a closer). And the Sox have options – they could make a deal for Lidge, or Francisco Cordero, they could take a flyer on Borowski.

    As for the other question concerning where the Sox stand relative to the cap, I assume you mean the luxury tax threshold of $148MM. I have not seen any data, but I think they are probably just under it.

    I would break it down as follows (with a number of estimates – i.e., players who have not signed for 06, some open positions and a few of the deals I’m not sure what the exact AAV is for tax purposes, like Ortiz for example):

    Tek $10
    Youk $0.7
    Pedroia $0.4
    Cora $2.0
    Lugo $9.0
    Lowell $9.0
    Manny $20.0
    Coco $5.2
    Drew $14
    Ortiz $11
    WMP $2.5
    Hinske $3

    Slot $2MM for a back up catcher

    That brings us to about $88.7 – call it $90MM for position players.


    Schilling $14.5
    Beckett $10
    D-Mat – lets use $10
    Wake $4
    Papelbon $0.5

    Tavarez $3.3
    Clement $8
    Delcarmen $0.6
    DiNardo $0.6
    Breslow $0.6
    Gabbard $0.6
    Hansen $1.0
    Lester $0.6
    Lopez $1.0
    Okajimi $2,0
    Timlin $2.8

    Let’s say they make one more acquisition or a series of them in the $5MM range

    Total for pitchers $65MM

    I think I have included everyone.

    That puts them at around $155 or $7MM over the threshold. That would cost the Sox about $2.5MM in “tax.” But, who really knows what moves are left. The good news is that they are not way over the threshold.

    And the team can certainly afford that payroll. Estimated revenue for the team in 2005 was $206 MM (from Forbes). That number is only going to go up – the new national TV contracts for next year and beyond are about 50% higher and the Sox radio contract just doubled to $12MM, and who really knows how much money NESN has. I like what Dino has been saying – the Manny stuff is a smkescreen.

  4. Wow...Clement...forgot about him. My guess is that the Sox would trade him and pick up most of his salary if they had to, as opposed to having him sit down in Pawtucket all year (if he would do that), or sitting out altogether.

    And I love that team at 90MM...all those guys I am comfortable with. We already head into the season with a nice bench, and lots of players that can move to a lot of different positions.

  5. Clement had surgery and isn't even going to be ready until June or July. So either one of two things happens - they hold onto him as insurance (the $9MM is gone) or they get someone to take him and then even thought the Sox pay the $9MM, it does not count toward the tax threshold - effectively pushing them under the $148 - of course this is only necessary if they retain Manny.