Saturday, November 14, 2015

Boston just gave up a lot of young talent for a reliever

Excuse me if I'm a bit jolted this morning. The events in Paris are hitting close to home. My two sons' punk band - Sheer Mag (you once knew them as The Deadly Spinners) - is playing in London today, heading to Paris tomorrow. Parenthood's a bitch.

Then, suddenly, ka-boom: The Redsocks get Craig Kimbrel.

Listen: We knew Dave Dombrowski would shoot for the quick fix, and that it would involve prospects. We knew they needed a closer. (Also, an 8th inning man, because Koji Uehara will be 41 and coming off an injury.) They got their man, one of the best. They filled the hole.

Last year, both the Yankees and Redsocks faced 60 "Save Opportunities." Thanks to Betances and Miller, we suffered the fewest blown saves in baseball, just 12. Boston saved 2 out of 3 - a 67 percent rate that was ranked 20th. (Our save rate - 80 percent - was second, behind the Cards.)

But Kimbrel didn't come cheap. Boston gave up two top 50 ranked prospects, plus two others. It would be the equivalent of us trading Jorge Matos and Aaron Judge - for a reliever.

Yes, no matter how you slice it, they gave up four dynamic prospects for a reliever.

If that were us, I'd be squawking today. Do you give up that key of talent for a reliever?

(Broken record time: You give it up if you signed Yoan Moncada last winter, because he is yet another top 50 prospect.)

Boston still has a huge hole. It's called the rotation. Dombrowski says he'll look to free agency to fill it. That's what scares me most. They will spend money. The question is whether Prince Hal would rather just sit on his mountain of gold and watch the Redsocks restock. Because if Boston adds a Price or a Greinke - or, gulp, both - without even having to bid against the Yankees, well, it's going to be a long season.

The Yankee opening day payroll last year stood at $219 million, second in MLB behind the Dodgers. Ten years ago, it was $205 million. In all that time, the Yankees have stayed relatively the same, while payrolls throughout baseball have exploded. The Yankees are barely six years into having a brand new stadium, partially funded by the taxpayers. The ownership last year sold the majority stake in YES Network to Rupert Murdoch, and at the time, Forbes estimated YES as worth $4 billion. So what are the Steinbrenners doing with all their money? And how can we - as fans - allow them to poor-mouth?

One final note: Mike Axisa of River Ave Blues is coming through for us on this. I've worried in the past that he would become a owner-toadie, just taking the Yankees at the word when they say they can't spend any more. Nobody should let them get away it, and Axisa has buckling down lately. It's a small victory, but maybe it's a sign that mainstream beat writers will start shaming Hal, whenever he talks about frugality. Good grief, I'm almost missing Billy Madden.


Alphonso said...

Not that it is helpful, but Paris will be the safest city in the world for the next few days. If one can get there and if anything is open.

Anonymous said...


Leinstery said...

The Steinbrenners have to be going broke and are in the process of delaying the inevitable. That is my only explanation for what they are doing (or not doing) with their money, it's not there anymore.

Rufus T. Firefly said...


I'll second Alphonso's sentiments and add hoping for merely a great story to in your sons' future years.

Rufus T. Firefly said... "TELL" in your sons' future years.

eye blaim spel czech.

John M said...

The Paris attacks reopened all the emotional stuff I thought we had under control about 9/11 in NYC. Guess what? We didn't.

Hope your son stays safe, Duque. There are worse things in life than canceling a gig or two...if it comes to that.