Saturday, December 02, 2006

Shoot, now we have to go out and find another injury-plagued right fielder

No arbitration for Trot. Too bad Edes didn't give us the odds of that happening. Here's yesterday's post from Seth Mnookin's "Feeding the Monster" blog:

Read Tomorrow's News Today!

The Feeding the Monster blog, November 30, 2006: “There are some intriguing possibilities out there, though, at least one of which hasn’t been much discussed, and that’s the possibility that Trot Nixon ends up back in Boston on a one-year deal.”

The Boston Globe, December 1, 2006: “Sox: Nixon in ‘07? Team may offer him arbitration.”

I can't decide which is better: that he said an item reported by Buster Olney and Peter Gammons "hasn't been much discussed", or that he was proud he reported Gammons's (incorrect) information before the Globe had the chance to. Yesterday's Globe article cited only one "source with ties to the team"...i.e., Peter Gammons.

Just yesterday, our own GrieveRules used statistical analysis to prove that the chance of Nixon being offered arbitration was no more than 50%. I think that makes the GYS Network a more reliable source of Red Sox insider information than Seth Mnookin, the Boston Globe, or Peter Gammons, put together. Rock on.


  1. Well this still does not rule out Nixon coming back for a year. However, now with a team not having to forfeit any draft picks, it is much more likely Nixon will find a one year or two year deal to play every day. The problem is, he may be in Pittsburgh or KC. I am a bit surprised that they did not sign him. He would not be a bad insurance policy to have around (even if it is $8MM) and if everyone was healthy come July, it would be a piece to move for whatever help the Sox need.

  2. Yes, Trot will probably not be back. I agree with X. He'd add depth to the bench, and could spell Drew...

    Here's a strange one to think about...and highly unlikely, but sort of cool...

    What if the Sox sent Manny to Los Angeles (Dodgers), and got minor league talent and Nomar? I think, at this point, that Nomar is too banged up to play SS again, but what about first?

    It certainly is a good bat to have in the lineup, and someone who can handle Boston...

    Then what to do with Youk...He played 18 games in LF last year with no errors. And he spells Nomar at first...

    I know that there is only a 50-50 chance of this happening (it will, or it won't)...I know it is a 100 percent chance it won't, but I'd love to see it...

  3. Hi guys...and common sense is just as reliable a source. But I would so much rather see ANYONE but WMP in any Fenway outfield. My goodness...he cannot catch the ball. Can anyone say....say...TRADE?

  4. Nomar? SS? An injury waiting to happen....first base? Well, he's already signed, and I like Youk at 1B. he showed us all last year.

  5. Grieve, wait...wait! Youk was so uncomfortable palying left at Fenway it was painful to watch. You cannot go with his stats alone...that is the big mistake of all the stat people.....numbers do not add up to the right fit.

  6. I seem to remember questions about Manny coming to Fenway. and that seemed to work out okay. I like WMP. Give him a shot if they trade Manny (shudder, shudder, exhale). Nomar back to Boston - wow. I think Nomar pretty much hates Boston, so I would rule that out. I would welcome their stud first base prospect Loney. Hey, its all 50-50 at this point.

  7. After a bit more time to read all the morning news, I am surprised by some of the decisions. Apparently the Sox are pretty determined about signing Lugo and playing Pedroia (with Cora as the insurance) at 2B. Otherwise, why not offer Loretta arbitration. Again, short money that creates some flexibility. And they could always deal him to one of the number of teams that need 2B help. Or even cut him like they did T-Graf last year – of course that creates some ill will toward the players and they probably don’t want to have that reputation.

    I like how Edes framed it – “After signaling contrary intentions the day before, the Red Sox last night elected not to offer salary arbitration to outfielder Trot Nixon” So it was the Sox, who overnight, changed their minds. I was not that Gordon (or his “source”) were just flat wrong. Interesting that the Sox still have a “source” issue after last year. They are as bad as the HP board.

    And, if all these sources are wrong about Nixon, maybe they are all wrong (or being used) when it comes to Manny….

    I find it humorous that Selig is now saying he will retire after 2009. I know it is a bit different with Chief Executives and all, but most places I have work walk people out the dooe when they announce their intention to leave. And why is this news?

    The Glavine silliness continued to today, after he signed with the only team that offered him a contract. “Glavine said that there was no single factor that swayed his decision,” Well other than the fact that “The Braves did not offer Glavine a contract.” It reminds me of when I was deciding to get married. I had to choose between Jennifer Garner and Debbie. In the end, I chose Debbie and there is nothing that Jennifer Garner could have done to change my mind. Geez.

    And with the Giants not offering arbitration to Bonds, that sets the stage to for a revenge signing – look for Bonds to go to either the A’s or the Dodgers for short money.

  8. Wow, so many comments!

    - Nomar has actually said some pretty conciliatory things about Boston lately. (That could have something to do with wanting to undo his $30M mistake, but who knows). Still, I can't imagine the Sox would trade for him.

    - WMP was decent in CF, making me think he'll adjust to the outfield. Hey, you know who else sucks at defense? David Ortiz. Trade the bum.

    - Yeah, Glavine's ridiculous.

    - As I mentioned in the post above, Edes only had one source telling him about Nixon. My guess is it was Gammons. All kidding about statistics aside, if Gammons says something is about to happen, there really is about a 50% chance that he's wrong. I'd love to see his stats from the last 5 years.

    - Yeah, I really don't understand not offering Trot or Loretta arbitration. The downsides to doing either just aren't that big.

    - Regarding Selig, my guess is he's grooming a successor.

  9. Earl nailed it on the head with regards to Selig. I can't wait for Selig Jr. I bet it will be a sort term. Speaking of which who has the shortest term?

  10. Ok.. so I am an ass. It is Bart Giamatti.

  11. Wait...they didn't offer Nixon arbitration because no one else made him an offer, because he is probably looking at 8-9MM (hey, that is Juan Pierre money!!!) and it would have cost them a draft pick.

    The Sox would have offered him arbitration if there was a hot market for him. There wasn't.

    Not sure about Loretta. I guess that the Sox really have (had) the Nixon/Loretta money earmarked for Lugo, and were probably afraid that with (first round? was Loretta a Type A free agent?) draft pick attached to him that they could have had troubles like T-Graf.

    I think that Nomar would return.

    Also, Peter...Youk had never played first base before, either. He worked one off-season on that and how did that work out?

    Also, also...If the Sox get Adrian Gonzales in the Ramirez deal (if there is one), then where is Youk going to play? Probably LF...

    By the way...X, I wasn't scared of Manny in the outfield because he WAS going to produce, and did...He also wasn't known as a terrible OF before hand... I think Wily Mo can cover CF, but he's got to work with Magidan to fill some of those holes in his swing quickly.

  12. Also, X...just think...You gave up on Jennifer Garner and she married Affleck...A Cambridge boy...and she wouldn't have liked Northern California, anyway...

    And speaking of Affleck...How much money would one put on the fact that J-Lo is probably back to wearing NY Yankees hats instead of Boston? Makes me want to write a scathing email to NESN for wasting all that air time on her when they were at the games...

  13. I agree about WMP and walks. But he's still only 24, with plenty of time to learn. And it looks like he can learn. His career OBP prior to last season was .303...last season it was up to .349. Another increase like that and we're looking at a guy with a 900+ OPS, who makes under $2M.

  14. I'm a bit confused. GR, you said:

    "Wait...they didn't offer Nixon arbitration because no one else made him an offer, because he is probably looking at 8-9MM (hey, that is Juan Pierre money!!!) and it would have cost them a draft pick."

    It would not cost the Sox a draft pick to offer him arbitration - they could have only gained one. I figure you offer it to him and you either get the pick, have him as insurance or a platoon/4th OF, cut him and pay 1/4th or trade him. I think he has no offers because teams were waiting to see if he was offered arbitration. I guess he will sign a two (maybe three) year deal and be a starter somewhere else. It is a big gamble, I guess. So either they are thinking they have a chance to bring him back at much lower salary or they truly have no interest.

    As for Manny, you may not have been concerned, but a lot of people were. I agree that it was (and still is) worth the trade off. He was not a butcher (and still isn't, for the most part), but there were serious, serious concerns about him playing RF after he signed with Sox. It was a major hot stove discussion that winter - whether he would move to LF (he initially said he would not move and Nixon, although the starter did not really have his break out year until after Manny arrived), if he could handle RF at Fenway.

    It really is amazing how much in flux this team is right now.

    I should do my "contest" to predict the starting lineup next year. I know it is still December and other teams have holes, but this team could go in so many different directions.

  15. Following X's lead I'll take the first stab:

    Coco (CF)
    Youk (1B)
    Papi (DH)
    Manny (LF)
    Lugo (SS)
    Varitek (C)
    Lowell (3B)
    Drew/WMP (RF)
    Cora/Pedroia (2B)


    Papelbon (Closer)

    Naturally, if we get a closer we can move Papelbon to the starting rotation.

  16. Hey wait a minute. I need to define the rules a bit. The contest will be for the *exact* starting rotation on opening day, plus who will be the other four starters, plus the closer. Thus having Drew and WMP in RF is not acceptable.

    We will have points - still to be defined.

    So it will be something like.

    9 points for someone currently on the Sox Roster.
    18 points for someone not.
    -1 point for each position in the batting order you are off for a given player.

    Or something like that. And no hedges, like if we get a closer papelboner is it.

  17. Ok.. well I doubt I messed things up as I my guesses are likely to be the furtherest off. However, I think this is the week to do the contest - don't you think?

  18. Yeah definitely - I need to work out the final parameters and then have a deadline.

    On another note - nice to see this little tidbit from Tony Mazz, concerning Barajas backing out of his contract:

    "Indeed, upon learning of Barajas’ change of heart, the Jays signed Gregg Zaun to a two-year contract worth $7.25 million.

    Wouldn’t it be nice if more teams took this hard-line approach?"

    Hmmm. I seem to remember Mazz was very critical of the Sox for letting Damon go to NY. Which, according to most reports was because the Sox took a hard-line approach on their contract offer to Damon.

  19. My point was that if there was a market for Trot, that the Sox would have offered him arbitration because (more than likely) someone else would have tried to get him. Then the Sox would have gotten the pick.

    If...the Sox offered him arbitration without much of a market for him (as is the case now)...they would have ended up with him in the OF (or, I should say, as an extra outfielder and paying him 8 or 9 MM after arb).

  20. I guess I was confused by the comment that it would have cost them a draft pick, thinking you meant the Sox not the acquiring team. Sorry about that. I hear the logic, I just am a bit surprised by it. I actually think that there is a market for Nixon and it will be a pretty healthy one at that - I wouldn't be suprised to see him get two years with an option in the $5-6MM range as a starter. Balt, Philly, the Padres, SF, Seattle, Wash - they all need OFs. I think the reason that there is a perception of no market is that teams were waiting to see if it would cost them a pick - since Nixon would not cost a pick, only add a supplement pick in affect the teams were waiting to see which players would cost a pick (in the case of A's vs. Bs). I don't think the pick itself would stop them from signing, but no real harm in waiting. Hell, even the Sox who seem hell bent on getting Drew waited it out on the outside chance the Dodgers did not make the offer. god, I hope that makes sense.

    And if he accepts, $8MM for one year is manageable - they could try to move him. Or pull a T-Graf and let him go. Or even if he accepts, they could still settle in the $6MM range.

    My guess is he ends up in Baltimore for $12MM over two years and a vesting option for 3. since Nixon was a type B the O's don't lose a pick but the sox would have gotten a supplemental pick or the equivalent pick that they used to get Papelbon two years ago.

  21. Lugo (SS)
    Youk (LF)
    Sexson (1B) Three-way deal
    Papi (DH)
    Drew (RF)
    Lowell (3B)
    Varitek (C)
    Pedroia (2B)
    Coco (CF)

    I reserve the right over the next week to alter the order in which they appear, but that is my guess. Sexson will be gotten in a three-way deal giving the Sox a big bat for the infield...which they desperately need. Then Youk and Drew will give them 20 HRs in the corner OF spots which should suffice. Papi will move to the big cleanup spot.

    Schilling (it's his final year and they'll let him take the mound first)

    I would say Wake moves to the number 5, but they like to break up the fastball guys in the rotation. Since the Sox have somewhat limited vision, they will not see that it is just as likely that (when the season gets underway) Schill will follow Papelbon (and those are two fastballers)...