Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Outfield Competition?

So far this spring, the Sox have shown that they've got some young kids that are probably only a year or so away from breaking into the bigs. Unfortunately, for most of them, there will be no place to play.

Unless the Sox can find a huge infield bat next off-season, Manny Ramirez will more than likely be back in LF. Lowell will be vacating third base (most likely), so you can get a 3b or 1b guy with a big bat. But you can't lose that power in the middle of the lineup.

So, what about the young guys? Moss, Murphy, and Ellsbury are having solid springs. Now, that doesn't translate all the time, but they are making contact and running the bases well. Ellsbury looks like one of the faster guys I've seen lately. And let's not forget about Wily Mo. Also having a great spring, and the power the Sox would need in the OF.

But with four talented players vying for a position that may or may not be there, it will probably mean trades for most of them.

From the looks of it, so far, the pen is looking "not good". Piniero was apparently pretty good yesterday, although I didn't see the game. My guess is that he is the closer when camp breaks. Timlin? Muscle spasms in spring training...Hansen (who was a question marks to make the team to start the season)? Nursing an injury. Delcarmen? Well, you can't tell from spring training pitching all the time (as guys will throw the same pitch 10 times in a row trying to fine tune location), but he hasn't looked good. Tavarez also hasn't looked that sharp, at least early on...

To recap the pen...Donnelly has been decent to good (not worried about him). Piniero I think will continue to improve (not worried about him). Okajim has been impressive. That's three guys out of a lot. They need depth in their pen if they want to win this year.

So, some of these guys will be dangled for trades. My question is, though...would it be Wily Mo to the Nationals with a Hansen or Delcarmen and another one of these outfield prospects for Cordero? That is a good off-season move, because there is time to look for another guy off the bench with power...Not now, though.

And, getting back to the earlier question...How do they make room for these guys over the next two years?


  1. I would guess there would be a trade or two. I would not rule out that they trade Crisp. He seems like the type of player that the Braves and/or the A's would love. If the Braves lose Jones, next year it would be a perfect match.

    And with Lowell gone, Youk can move back to 3rd for a couple years until he becomes too expensive. And maybe when Manny's contract is up, they make a run at Cabrera - a FA in 08 (although I still think Manny's options get exercised - something I have been predicting for almost two years and everyone thought I was crazy).

    With Youk at 3rd, maybe a guy like Moss, Murphy or Ellsbury could learn to play 1B. I guess it is a good problem to have. And if the bullpen does not sort itself out, they have the chips. Apparently there were a number of teams interested in Murphy this offseason.

    And we have not even mentioned Wily Mo. I'm not saying he will be the next Ortiz, but when Ortiz was 24, he had a grand total of about 300 Abs and only 10HRs.

  2. Wily Mo is interesting. Plus, the Nats love him...and the Sox would love Cordero.

    I could see a deal happening.

    They have so much young talent is great.

    I hadn't thought about them moving Crisp, but he is so cheap...I know replacing him with a rookie would also be cheap...He might be a trading chip at the All-Star break if he isn't cutting it.

    I could see them picking up Manny's options, but I could also see them going the other way. They've been trying to unload him each off-season.

    I still say that with Lowell going bye-bye that they will be looking for a big IF bat...Let's face it...Youk, Lugo, and Pedroia are not going to combine for 50 HRs...They will definitely go for a huge hitting first baseman or third baseman (with Youk able to play either one).

    At this point, once again, you've got to wonder why they gave all those years to Drew with all the young guys just about ready.

  3. It will all come down to who is available and at what price. both at the deadline this year and in each of the next two winters.

    And I imagine, every scenario is an option - trade Crisp or Manny or any one or combination of the young guys. Hell, they would consider trading Youk if they could get that big corner bat. Or they could exercise the Manny options, tyr to keep Lowell for a one year deal. Who knows.

    It probably all comes down to the bullpen. Pean to Washington - had not thought of that one. Bowden did trade for him before. although I did read today that Cordero is not as nasty so far this year as he has been in the past - who knows, its early.

  4. "They need depth in their pen if they want to win this year."

    Grieve, I love ya, but boy, you're optimistic about our '07 'pen, as it stands now. I am not......they need pitchers, not a depth of mediocrity. Right there, the bullpen....that's the difference between first place and third for us......take's been a while for me since I left a comment. Still the best, right here!