Re: Big Contracts, 2013, and Beyond...
posted at 8/15/2012 8:13 PM EDT
Moon, I completely agree. Papi is worht 14M / yr. And if we let him go because of crippling contracts: Craw, Lackey, Beckett, it really would be a shame.I think that shedding one of these contracts will create the payroll flexibility necessary to retain Ortiz (a must) and aquire a top of the rotaion starter (a must).I've been saying: we should look into dishing some prospects w/ bad contracts for no return. We'll give you this package of prospects (Brentz, Renaudo, Carpenter) if you take Beckett. We dont need anything back. I'd like to see us get creative with something like this.I was hoping at the deadline that a GM would claim Beckett. But he's really hurt the chances of this happening. It only takes one foolish GM to claim Beckett, and the whole world scratched their heads when CWS claimed Rios. Unfortunately, Beckett has continued to stink and hurt his chances of being claimed. Still its odd that he hasnt hit waivers yet. Hopefully he'll throw a fluke 9 inning shutout, the sox will immediately put him on waivers, a rival GM will read too much into a one game performance and claim him.Maybe this is what the sox are waiting for?At least the 15M for Jenks and DiceK is freeing up. I know that most of this money is going to go to raises for arbitration eligible players, but still...can you imagine the situation we'd be in we had another 15M in dead money? Those arbitration raises would still come.
We can still win in 2013 without dealing a dead weight salary, but it won't be easy. Assuming no salry dump is made, a number of things need to happen, and some of them are highly unlikely. I think we will need at least 2-3 of these things to come together next year for us to have a solid chance at a ring:
1) The big 3 starters have to stay healthy and pitch well all year. (As I said last winter, this was unlikely, and that we were putting all our beans in this one basket- hence my call for trying to get durable 1-2 slot starter).
2) We wisely spend the $28-30M or so that we will have left on the budget after all arbs are dealt with.
3) We make a key minor to mid level trade or two involving the usual suspects: Salty, Aviles, Sweeney, Atchison, Melancon... that fills a high need area, like SP, RF, or DH if Papi walks.
4) We deal some prospects for someone more than just a one-year fix. Someone young and relatively inexpensive, but proven (not easy to do).
5) We finally have a team that all comes to camp in shape and in the right frame of mind to work hard and stay healthy, plus the bad luck injury bug flies a bit Soutwest of Boston over the winter.
6) Hope some fast-tracked prospects make it big, and we have a rookie infusion like 1975: 2-3 of Lava, Bradley, Brentz, Iggy, Barnes or a surprise like Linares.
I'd rather not have to count on #1, 4, 5 or 6, and help ourselves along by dumping one big contract, perhaps using your method, and allowing us to keep Papi at least one more year, get a solid starter, and maybe find another Cody Ross diamond in the ruff, or something more longterm.
I know Beckett looks like the obvious choice for a number of reasons:
1) Has more value than the surgery needing CC or the returning from injury Lackey.
2) Seems to have lost the drive we saw in 2007.
3) Shake things up, and make everyone see that they are all expendable.
However, Next year is Beckett's "on year", as it is odd. He still represents one of our best chances as a starter in a playoff game, regardless of all that has happened recently. Dumping him, would now mean we need to top of rotation starters not one.
Drew, I like your idea, but another option would be something I have suggested often, like trading CC and maybe $8M a year from 2014-2017 to SF for Barry Zito and maybe a Sergio Romo or Hector Sanchez (we give them Cecchini or Aviles too). We won't save money in 2013, but beyond we strike gold. Zito's not the only MLB player that a team is looking to dump.