Re: We all knew Crawford signing was horrific but who knew he was another Julie Drew?
posted at 4/28/2012 9:52 AM EDT
The projections of CC per Bill James, was very encouraging as CC would age his speed and running would not decline as fast as his hitting...but this is the third major injury...
"Age well" did not assume he was going to improve as he aged, just not drop off as fast as normal. I said it at the time we signed him, "even if CC gives us 7 years of his career norm or even career best, he was overpaid by about $50M". How a career .337 OBP and .781 OPS ages was not the major issue.
The other glaring weakness of the signing was CC's putrid numbers vs LHPs. He may have done just well enough to play everyday in TB, but his numbers vs LHPs do not even come close to what is needed to play in Boston. Thus, my "glorified platoon player" comment. Our numbers vs lefties was a huge issue when we signed him. The LF position is one of the best positions to fill ith a RH'd power bat, and we locked ourselves out of that choice for 7 years. The extra $50M spent on CC could have been used wisely to fill other gaps. If CC remains injured all the time, it really amounts to $20M lost a year, but I do not think we should view it this way. CC has always been in tremendous shape. It's hard to expect things like this.
As for the AGon trade and extension signing: AGon is a dominating player. I was for both teh trade and signing only because getting a bat like his for what little we gave up was worth it. I expressed a couple of concerns about the signing beyond the obvious risk any longterm signing entails:
1) The 1B position is full of good to great players and is one of the easiest positions to fill every year. The differential between a top 3 MLB 1Bman and an average 1Bman is not that great when compared to other positions, so gaining AGon was not much of an upgrade over what we had (Youk) or could have had for cheaper going forward.
2) I realize moving Youk to 3B projected to improve two positions offensively with one move, but at Youk's age, I warned that we were risking losing or seeing a more rapid decline from our one true RH'd power bat and OB machine. Youk was at the age where 1B should have been his position. I'm not saying his recent injuries were 3B related, but trying to play hurt at 3B vs 1B is a different thing.
The trading of Youk (or letting Papi walk and make Youk the DH) and extending Beltre argument was a tough call. Beltre's deal was too long for his age, and he's gotten hurt as well. It's hard to say if we'd have been better not having AGon. We may have traded Rizzo and Kelly for somebody else, and used the money spent on AGon for Fielder or Pujols... who knows.
I'm happy we have AGon, but when it comes to CC, I'm not Monday morning QB'ing: even if he gives us 5 years of near his career best season, he's not worth close to $20M/yr. Period.