Sometimes, offseason acquisitions work out. Sometimes they don't. Sometimes, they are spectacular failures.
In 2000, the Red Sox were having problems at third base. Regular third-baseman John Valentin was suffering from major injuries and was only able to play ten games that year. Rookie prospect Wilton Veras disappointed greatly and Manny Alexander and Lou Merloni were both limited players.
In late June, the Red Sox traded Cesar Saba and Dennis Tankersley to the Padres for Ed Sprague, hoping that the former All Star would be able to step in and bring stability to the position. It was a steep price as Saba and Tankersley were both well-regarded prospects. Neither really developed into the players they were expected to be, which was good because Sprague tanked in Boston.
Sprague played in 33 games for the Red Sox, with a slash line of .216/.293/.306/.599 with two home runs and nine runs batted in. He was relatively decent in the field, which was surprising as Sprague was not well-known as a good defensive player. But what value he brought defensively was negated by his horrible bat.
Sprague was released at the end of August and returned to San Diego.