Looks like the Sox aren’t going to be the #1 Dong Chasers, and will also not end up with Ohtani. With the Winter Meetings coming, what should they do next?
Add at 1B
I like the idea of the Sox working out an Abreu trade. I am generally an advanced stat nerd, but if you won’t trade Bradley in an Abreu deal, you’re nuts. If you need to add to the deal, Michael Chavis has 4A player written all over him to me.
My backup plan at 1B would be Carlos Santana. He’s better than you think, and will likely be cheaper and a better fit than Hosmer. His expected power should be better than Hosmer’s career year.
Add Another Bat
If they’re all in for 2018, they can then sign JD Martinez, and move Benintendi to CF. For those who follow the Tony Mazz School of dismissing any non-household name as a guy who “Stinks”, JD Martinez is the real deal with the bat. He’s had 4 consecutive top 10 seasons in Slugging and OPS, and coming off a 4 WAR season (his 3rd in the last 4 years- that’s very good), in which he had a line of .303/.376/.690 (led MLB), 45 HR and 104 RBI.
Martinez may not be considered in most circle as quite as “Feared” a hitter as Stanton, but so what, that argument is stupid. Case in point, it got a completely undeserving Jim Rice into the HOF.
There is a lot of built in risk with Martinez, however. He’s coming off a career year and he’s never been more than a questionable fielder, at best. If you’re replacing JBJ in CF, you’ve already weakened your biggest strength, OF defense. He’s also entering his age 30 season, so even though he’s a late bloomer, he isn’t likely to improve.
When it comes down to it, Martinez and the deal he’s likely to get, are too risky for me, and also may take you out of the running for one of the guys available after the season…Bryce Harper or Manny Machado. I would make this the #1 Priority.
Set the table for Future
My biggest plan for this offseason, is to get ready for next. I don’t care what they’re going to get, I’m in on both of these guys- with the idea of signing one. $400 Million…sure, don’t care. Each of these studs will be as worth their contract as any big Free Agent in history.
You know how the baseball world was captivated with the young slugger, Aaron Judge, and how well he acclimated as a rookie? Well, Aaron Judge is OLDER than both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper, who have a combined 1500+ Games played, 288 HR’s, an MVP and 3 other top 10 finishes. Studs like this don’t come around too often, and usually when they hit FA, they are ~ age 30. These two haven’t even hit their primes yet. If I am the Red Sox, I empty both barrels and my side pistol (registered legally, of course) to bring one of them in.
Lower Tier Moves
If I’m passing on an OF, and have traded JBJ, I go sign Jarrod Dyson (or two Jarrod Dyson’s), to replace most of JBJ’s defensive value on the cheap. Bank on your newly acquired 1B, and expected improvement from your core bats to add what you need offensively.
I’d also be looking to add some relievers, and I’m looking to starters with good stuff who didn’t pan out. Get yourself the next Andrew Miller or Mike Minor. Those types are the newest shiny toys, and now that Farrell is gone, you may have someone who can maximize a player like that.