Saturday, January 19, 2013

The New Acquisitions

For the first post back, let's take a look at the new members of the Red Sox:

Ross was signed for two years and $6.2 million.  This is probably the best signing of the offseason for the team.  Ross provides veteran leadership behind the plate in a platoon role.  The big question will be whether he platoons with Jarrod Saltalamacchia or Ryan Lavarnway.

Napoli was signed for one year and $5 million.  He has a bat seemingly tailor-made for Fenway Park and should knock more than a few balls out of the park.  It will be interesting to see if there are any lingering ill will effects from having to renegotiate his original three year $39 million contract.

Holt was acquired in a trade with the Pirates along with Joel Hanrahan.  Holt has had limited Major League experience but has shown a decent eye at the plate.  He could stick in a bench role.

Drew signed as a free agent for one year and $9.5 million.  This one does not make much sense to me.  Drew blocks Jose Iglesias at shortstop and is being paid too much when his numbers have been on the decline for a couple of years.  Yes he has had injury concerns, but this still does not make a lot of sense.

Victorino was signed as a free agent for three years and $39 million.  He is coming off his worst season as a regular which saw the popular outfielder traded from the Phillies to the Dodgers.  He did steal 39 bases, but his other numbers across the board were down.  It will be difficult for Victorino to live up to his contract.

Gomes was signed as a free agent for two years and $10 million.  Gomes has been a journeyman bat, usually off the bench.  He was once a major antagonist in fights with the Rays so it was a little surprising that he signed with the Red Sox.  This is a little bit of a reach in terms of money, but Gomes should provide some power.  He is very capable of hitting 20 home runs.

Dempster signed for two years and $26.5 million as a free agent.  Boston attempted to acquire Dempster a couple of times throughout the 2012 season.  He was traded from the Cubs to the Rangers at the trading deadline.  Dempster's numbers promptly declined coming to the American League.  Boston is hoping he will learn from those mistakes.  He will not be expected to be a top of the rotation starter which takes some pressure off.

Uehara signed for one year and $4.25 million.  He is a control pitcher from the bullpen, further strengthening what has already become a powerful weapon for the team.

Hanrahan was acquired in a trade with the Pirates along with Brock Holt.  Hanrahan is expected to take over as the team's closer.  He had decent numbers with the Pirates when the team was contending last year, but those took a slide with the team's fortunes.  He should be fun to watch.

The big concern that I have is that a lot of the signings block players that were seemingly ready for the Major Leagues in 2013.  Ross and Napoli block Ryan Lavarnway.  Drew blocks Jose Iglesias.  Gomes and Victorino block Ryan Kalish.  Lavarnway, Iglesias, and Kalish are not expected to be superstars, but they deserve a shot to see if they could stick at the Major League level.

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