Red Sox Acquire Andrew Bailey

New Red Sox general manager Ben Cherrington has made his first big move today in acquiring Oakland Athletics closer Andrew Bailey and outfielder Ryan Sweeney for outfielder Josh Reddick and prospects Miles Head and Raul Alcantara. The Sox needed a closer. Now they have one. I’ve been hoping the Sox would go after Bailey for a while and am very excited with this deal.

Admittedly, I don’t know too much about Head and Alcantara. Both seem to be top-level prospects, though neither is near major league ready. Head hit 22 home runs and drove in 82 runs for Class-A Greenville and Salem last year. Alcantara started the year with the Gulf Coast League Red Sox, posting a 0.75 ERA and 0.60 WHIP in 48 innings. He was promoted to Lowell where he struggled in his 17 1/3 innings there, giving up 25 hits and 12 earned runs, but still striking out 14. The upper-level of the Sox farm system was depleted by the trade for Adrian Gonzalez last year and the Sox organization has been looking to rebuild it since. This trade certainly doesn’t help that, but neither Head nor Alcantara will be ready for the majors (if they continue improving) for a few years and the Red Sox have greater depth in lower-level prospects.

Josh Reddick is a solid outfielder who started extremely hot for Boston last Summer, but faded badly down the stretch. While many analysts love Reddick’s swing, I’ve always had my doubts and have seen him as great trade bait. He has terrible plate discipline and I’ve always expected him to be a step faster. Nevertheless, he’s young and has potential but I’m still extremely happy with this trade.  Continue reading “Red Sox Acquire Andrew Bailey”

Red Sox Update 12/18

It’s been a while since the Red Sox season ended in utter embarrassment. So now it’s time to look to 2012 and how to build a roster that can make it a full season without imploding:

Manager

Bobby Valentine is the new manager of the Boston Red Sox after a two month search. It seemed that new General Manager Ben Cherington had favored Dale Sveum to take over as manager from Terry Francona, but management were not sold on Sveum and new Cubs General Manager Theo Epstein swooped and nabbed Sveum.

Many baseball analysts have been clamoring for Valentine to rein in the Sox clubhouse and I agree. Francona has always been and will always be a player’s manager, but the current roster of players do not have the personalities that mesh well with a player’s manager. Players like Josh Beckett and John Lackey, amongst many others, took advantage of the leeway Francona gave them. It’s time for a hard-nosed, disciplined manager to set some ground rules. The players are certainly embarrassed by the September collapse, but I want to make sure that the antics in the clubhouse will stop and Valentine will certainly do that. Continue reading “Red Sox Update 12/18”

Jonathan Broxton Signs with Royals

Just a short post today:

The Kansas City Royals made a strong signing today in agreeing to a deal worth $4 million guaranteed with Jonathan Broxton. Broxton spent much of last year injured, making just 14 appearances for the Los Angeles Dodgers. Before his injury, Broxton was a very good closer with a career ERA of 3.19. He’s just 27 years old still and agreed to become a setup man for the Royals.

As a Red Sox fan, this is the exact signing I was hoping they’d make. Broxton could compete with Bard for the closer’s role and if he had lost it, he would have become the setup man. Not just that, but he’s okay being a setup man – something many of the other elite closers on the market are not going to be.

But even beyond the Red Sox, Broxton has proven he can be a great pitcher. Whether he pitches that well after coming back from this injury is unknown, but his price tag isn’t outrageous and it is only for one year. How many teams around the league could use a strong setup man? Or even use a chance at having a strong setup man?

Broxton is anything, but a sure thing. But he has lots of potential and has already proven that he has the stuff. So congrats to the Royals on a strong pickup and to the Red Sox: why didn’t you try to sign him?