2010 and beyond….

What now for our beloved Red Sox.  After a good regular season and a gawd awful post-season, many questions lie waiting to be answered about the Olde Towne Team.  Lets get started.  Here is the list of free agents I am working from.

What to do with leftfield.  Jason Bay is a free agent.  Not only that, but one of the five marquee free agents in the game.  He will command quite a price.  At least 5 years and something like $14-16 mill. per year.  Then there is Matt Holliday.  The other big time outfielder who will command as much, if not more coin.  I like Bay, I think he fits well in Beantown.  I do think that a certain team from the Bronx will go hard after him.  If that does happen, a nice fallback option would be Carl Crawford.  The Rays have a $10 million option on him.  That could be a bit too much for that franchise.  If he is let go, Theo should snatch him up.  A fast, great defensive outfielder just entering his prime would be nice to have. 

The catching situation seems to be set.  V-Mart will be back and will catch the majority of the games.  Varitek’s team option for $5.5 mill will be rejected, but he does have a player option for $3.5 mill. If he doesn’t retire(a good chance) I think he’ll take that for one more year.  If neither happens, a nice back-up like Jose Molina could be an option.

Pricey Old Men

Onto pitching.  The top four spots in the rotation are set.  It also seems like Wake will return.  They always need guys to fill in and hopefully Tazawa and Bowden can develop into those guys.  Another option could be a trade.  They tried to get Felix Hernandez from the Mariners and that may get revisited.  Other low-end options could be Eric Bedard, Justin Duchscherer(coming off injury), Brett Myers(same) or Ben Sheets(ditto).  All are risky, but they could pan out.  Hopefully better than Smoltz and Penny.

As for the pen.  You know, the strength of the team before game 165.  Is there a chance that Pap could be gone?  Yes.  Only for the right type of player(young power-hitting corner infielder or outfielder.)  Most likely he’ll be back(at a hefty price tag, but who cares, not our money!!)  Delcarmen, Bard, Saito(team option), Okajima and Ramirez all return.  That is a pretty solid core to work with.  If Paps get traded, expect the team to sign Wagner for a couple years as Bard gets himself ready.  Otherwise expect some sort of low-end signing of another righty and lefty to fill the holes.

So what do I think we look like in 2010, here is my early thought:

Ellsbury CF, Pedroia 2B, Martinez C, Youkilis 1b, Ortiz DH, Lowell 3B, Crawford LF, Drew RF, Gonzalez SS.

Lowrie, Kotchman, Varitek, Anderson as reserves.

Beckett, Lester, Dice-K, Buchholz, Wake as SP’s.  Paps, Bard, Okajima, Delcarmen, Saito, Ramirez, and Scott Eyre(lefty FA) in the pen.

Ideally, I would love to get younger at 3B and DH but I don’t think it is feasible.  I think that line-up can win 95 games and get into the playoffs.  They need depth at the starting pitcher spot, but thats about it.  The bench is solid and the speed/power in the lin-up is balanced.  I think Crawford can be a 20+ hr, 50+ steals, .300 avg, 100 runs, 85 RBI guy as he enters his prime.  Also, Ells, Pedroia, Youk, Lester, Bard and Clay will continue to get better. 

Now, I know there are other big names out there.  Would I love Lackey in the 3rd spot behind Becket and Lester, damn right.  Would I love to have wagner back in the pen, yeppers.  I would also love to snatch up Prince Fielder for a song.  I am trying to be somewhat reasonable and level headed( I hear my family laughing out loud right now.)

BTW, 123 days till Spring Training.

One Response to “2010 and beyond….”

  1. Baseballbriefs.com tracking back 2010 and beyond…….

    Baseballbriefs.com tracking back 2010 and beyond…….

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