Could/Should The Sox Have Landed Cole Hamels?

Still the ace (RLRS Photo).

Still the ace (RLRS Photo).

If you have not heard the Texas Rangers acquired lefty Cole Hamels last night.  The cost was a sizable collection of talent but little in the way of real top end talent (e.g. Blake Swihart, Mookie Betts).  I found myself wondering if the Sox maybe could have topped the Rangers here.  Here is the deal;

Jorge Alfaro (#5 on Rangers list), Nick Williams (#4), Alec Asher, Jake Thompson (#3), Jerad Eickhoff and Matt Harrison to Philadelphia, Cole Hamels and Jake Diekman to Texas.

The Rangers pulled the trigger without giving up either of their top two prospects according to Baseball America; 3B Joey Gallo (#3 overall) and Nomar Mazara (#34).   Jake Thompson is the only BA top 50 prospect they surrendered and he is ranked #49.  What would a similar Sox offer look like?

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Rule 5 Prospects

A lot goes into Ben's decisions (RLRS Photo).

A lot goes into Ben’s decisions (RLRS Photo).

One of the issues that likely will be on Ben Cherington’s mind as the Sox gear up for the trade deadline is the Rule 5 draft in December.  While he has several months to prepare for that whether or not a player needs to be added to the 40 man roster by then will impact how valuable Cherington may see him.

With that in mind I wanted to look at a few players who are on that list.  The great folks at Sox Prospects were my source;




Henry OwensCertain Adds: Henry Owens, Pat Light, Manuel Margot

Nothing shocking here.  Owens and Margot are two of the Sox’ top prospects while Light has been a real eye opener since being moved to the bullpen.  The Sox are not letting these guys get away with out a fairly meaningful return.

With that said I would not be shocked if Owens was moved.  He seems to have been passed by Eduardo Rodriguez and Brian Johnson in the eyes of the organization and the 2014 Futures Game starting pitcher may have some appeal in trade talks.


Ty Buttrey is one to watch (RLRS Photo)

Ty Buttrey is one to watch (RLRS Photo)

Possible Adds:

Ty Buttrey – The 2012 fourth rounder has emerged in 2015 with an uptick in velocity.  He is still only at Hi A Salem so the Sox might view him as someone that can sneak through or if he is claimed would be returned by virtue of not being MLB ready.

Williams Jerez – I believe the former outfielder was eligible last year but went undrafted.  The hard throwing southpaw has made his way to Portland and certainly looks like a potential big league reliever.

Jose Vinicio – Vinicio was once described by a scout as having a “Jose Reyes toolkit.”  He has not really emerged over time but the Sox may view him as someone they do not want to lose.

Henry Ramos is a solid all-around outfielder (RLRS Photo).

Henry Ramos is a solid all-around outfielder (RLRS Photo).

Long Shot Adds:

Jacob Dahlstrand – Dahlstrand has not pitched since going on the DL in late April.  I cannot find a damned thing about WHY he has not pitched but there it is.  He has pitched well the last couple of years and if he could show some stuff the next couple of months he might be appealing to a team.

Marco Hernandez – I think Hernandez is more likely than Dahlstrand.  He has played his way up the system and is enjoying a break out year in Portland and now Pawtucket.

Henry Ramos – Ramos has had a rough 2015 with injury and non-performance getting in the way.  He is a dynamic player who generally gets good reviews and while he is a long shot it would not be surprising to see him on someone’s roster next year (think Adam Stern or Chip Ambres).

Tim Roberson – As a catcher the bar is a bit lower for Roberson than most. His fate likely hinges on the health of Christian Vazquez and whether or not Ryan Hanigan is still in a Sox uniform Saturday morning.

No Chance:  Mario Alcantara, Mike Augliera, David Chester, Carlos Coste, Keith Couch, Allen Craig, Jeffry Fernandez, Edwar Garcia, Carlos Garcia, Justin Haley, Kevin Heller, Kyle Kaminska, Zach Kapstein, Kyle Kraus, Deiner Lopez, Austin Maddox, Brandon Magee, Mike McCarthy, Simon Mercedes, Mike Miller, Aneudis Peralta, Randy Perez, Yankory Pimentel, Carlos Pinales, Heri Quevedo, Dioscar Romero, Jonathan Roof, Dave Sappelt, Robby Scott, David Sopilka, Zeke Spruill, Alixon Suarez, Aneury Tavarez, German Taveras, Jervis Torrealba,JT Watkins, Jordan Weems

We can't miss him if he won't go away (RLRS Photo).

We can’t miss him if he won’t go away (RLRS Photo).

I cannot imagine the Sox worrying about Allen Craig at this point.  If he goes, he goes.  Edwar Garcia is dealing in Lowell but if Hi A to the Majors is a big jump then Short Season A to the Majors is Felix Baumgartner territory.

Kyle Kraus and Michael McCarthy have both pitched well but neither is a guy with the type of stuff or results that is going to ruffle anyone’s feathers if he goes.  Robby Scott has had a bit more success than both and is a bit more advanced but his fastball is high-80s.  He smells like a Rule 5 guy to me.

On Monday J.T. Watkins earned the save after catching the first 14 innings of a 15 inning Greenville victory.


Thanks For The Memories

Shane Victorino HomerThe Red Sox traded Shane Victorino for Josh Rutledge yesterday and to be honest, very few people batted an eye.  Ultimately this frees up space for Rusney Castillo and perhaps Jackie Bradley.

But Shane Victorino is in the Keith Foulke pantheon of guys who I will always remember fondly depsite being good for just one year in a three year deal.  My best friend texted me last night “good bye, don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out” and I’m always fascinated by people who see the negative in things (it’s his worst quality).

Victorino is the only player to have a GWRBI in the clincher of all three playoff rounds.  I will forever remember him sprinting up the first base line in Tampa and his drive off the wall versus St. Louis.

But for me the moment I will always remember is the grand slam against Detroit.  What an amazing moment.  The series hung in the balance and off the bat I thought “sac fly, maybe it can reach the wall” but it kept carrying…and carrying…and carrying and when it landed in the monster seats we went bananas.

My father who I was at the game with says he never saw Victorino rounding the bases because I was hugging him so much (story checks out).  I immediately thought “we’re going to the World Series” with Koji Uehara looming large over the game.  That little yellow “4” on the scoreboard just said so much.

A signing many of us questioned (MCoA was right about it though) Victorino became beloved.  Alex Speier reported that yesterday Victorino said through tears that he will probably not use “Three Little Birds” as his walk up music in Anaheim because of what it means to Boston.

On the larger scope this deal is a pretty good reflection of the sort of deals the Sox are likely to make.  But in the specific case of Victorino I will miss him terribly.  Even this year when he has been healthy he has been able to influence games either with his bat and more often with his still elite glove.

Thanks for the memories Shane!



Hall of Fame Weekend

I had the incredible good fortune to be in Cooperstown this weekend.  As you probably guessed if you have read this space at all that means lots and lots of pictures.  So read on for a look at the special weekend for Craig Biggio, John Smoltz, Randy Johnson and of course Pedro Martinez.

Class of 2015 Craig  Biggio, John  Smoltz, Randy  Johnson, Pedro  Martinez

There are a lot of photos here.  The Pedro stuff is at the end.  If you skip ahead, I won’t be offended.

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Happy Pedro Martinez Day

Today is his day (RLRS Photo).

Today is his day (RLRS Photo).

Today at 1:30PM Pedro Martinez will be officially inducted into the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame.  I will be in Cooperstown for the ceremony and hopefully will have some photos to share with you tomorrow.

In the meantime, just an open Pedro thread.

An open thread for the man who struck out more Yankees in the Bronx than anyone before or since.

An open thread for the man who started the 1999 All Star Game at Fenway and earned MVP honors.

An open thread for the most artistic pitcher I have ever seen.

An open thread for a David Ortiz sized personality in an Eddie Gaedel sized body.

An open thread that needs to be tied to a dugout pole.

An open thread that is not afraid to come inside.

An open thread for the man who pitched six innings of no hit ball…on the road…in winner take all circumstances…against a 1,000 run offense.

An open thread for a man who caused people to literally run through the aisles at Fenway waving Dominican flags.

An open thread for one of the 25.

An open thread for a man who brought me so much joy during his time in baseball.