|11.07.14 at 9:49 pm ET|
The Dodgers announced that they’ve hired former Red Sox outfielder (and minor league manager) Gabe Kapler as their director of player development. Kapler spent parts of 12 years in the big leagues, including a stretch from 2003-06 with the Red Sox, before retiring after the 2006 season in order to become the manager of the Greenville Drive, the Red Sox’ Single-A affiliate. At the end of that year, however, Kapler resumed his playing career, spending three more years with the Brewers (2008) and Rays (2009-10). He went to spring training with the Dodgers in 2011, but was released near the end of camp. He’s been working as an analyst for Fox Sports since 2013.
Additionally, Mark Saxon of ESPNLosAngeles.com is reporting (via twitter) that the Dodgers will hire Red Sox special assignment scout Galen Carr. Carr — who has been with the organization for 14 years — was considered one of the top evaluators in the Red Sox organization.
|11.07.14 at 2:00 pm ET|
Gustavo Vasquez, the agent for free agent third baseman Pablo Sandoval, has told the San Francisco Chronicle that his client is seeking a six-year deal. Vasquez went on to suggest to the newspaper that the length of deal was more important to Sandoval than the money.
“Pablo is 28,” Vasquez said in the report. “He is still young. Maybe if he was 30 or 31 we could talk about four or five years. But he’s 28. He deserves more than that.”
The Red Sox are believed to have interest in Sandoval, who would fill a need for the Sox as a run-producer who can hit from the left side. The third baseman also is considered an above-average fielder.
Vasquez told the Chronicle that once his client identifies an offer he likes, “He’ll sign fast.”
|11.07.14 at 9:45 am ET|
In an interview on WEEI’s Hot Stove Show, Mets beat reporter Marc Carig or Newsday described New York’s National League club as being “somewhere in between” as they chart an offseason course, particularly as it pertains to the possibility of dealing starting pitchers.
At a time when Matt Harvey is expected back for the start of next season, the team has a number of high-end talented young pitchers from which to deal — including Rookie of the Year finalist Jacob deGrom (9-6, 2.69, 9.2 Ks/9 in 140 1/3 innings in 2014), right-hander Zack Wheeler (11-11, 3.54, 9.1 Ks/9 in 185 1/3 innings) and top prospect Noah Syndergaard (a 22-year-old with a 3.25 ERA, 10.0 Ks/9 and 2.6 walks per nine in his minor league career, including a 4.60 ERA in the hitter’s paradise of Triple-A Las Vegas in 2014). The team’s pitching inventory also includes less glamorous but nonetheless useful options such as left-hander Jon Niese (9-11 with a 3.40 ERA in 30 starts in 2014, under contract for $16 million total over the next two years with two team options through 2018) and right-hander Bartolo Colon (15-13, 4.09 ERA in 202 1/3 innings in 2014; one year remaining on his two-year, $20 million deal).
“They’ve certainly got some choices. They’re somewhere in between,” explained Carig. “Their two biggest needs are a corner outfielder with power, particularly a right-handed bat. That would be one. And right behind that would be a shortstop. I think any team that could offer one of those things to them becomes of extreme interest. Now it becomes a question of whether the Mets want to put in play their best trade chips. ‘¦
“They’ve got a really good core of young arms who would make a deal go. We’re taking Noah Syndergaard, their top pitching prospect, Jacob deGrom, who’s probably going to be the Rookie of the Year. It’s those guys where they’ve got to decide, are we going to put that in play? Zack Wheeler had a very good first full season in the major leagues this year. If you start talking about those types of guys, now you’ve got the keys to the kingdom. Now you can make something happen. I don’t think they’ve shown much indication of wanting to do that. So the second level would be some of the veteran pitchers they’ve got. Read the rest of this entry »
|11.07.14 at 7:09 am ET|
John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer, in an interview on WEEI’s Hot Stove Show, said that while he can imagine a scenario in which Reds starters Johnny Cueto and/or Mat Latos are dealt prior to the July 31 trade deadline in 2015, he does not expect either pitcher to be dealt this coming offseason.
“I don’t see either one getting traded, Johnny Cueto because he’s coming off such a good year. I think the Reds think their best chance to win is with him. In Mat Latos’ case, he’s had three separate injuries that put him on the disabled list last year, so I don’t think the market for him is as great as it once was,” said Fay. “Now if the Reds struggle out of the gate, and they decide to sell around the trade deadline, you could see one or both of them go, but my guess is that you’ll see them start the season with both of them.
“I think you’ve got to look at the mindset of the owner,” added Fay. “They have the All-Star Game next year. He thinks this is a big chance to sell some season tickets and to make a run, and they think their best chance is with those guys.”
Cueto went 20-9 with a 2.25 ERA in 243 2/3 innings in 2014. He will be pitching under a $10 million team option in 2015, after which he’ll be eligible for free agency. Latos was limited to just 16 starts with a host of injuries, going 5-5 with a 3.25 ERA, but that snapped a string of four straight years of 30-plus starts for the 26-year-old, who has a 3.27 ERA over the last five years. Latos, like Cueto, will be eligible for free agency after the 2014 season. Read the rest of this entry »
|11.07.14 at 7:04 am ET|
Former Red Sox outfielder Jonny Gomes, who is a free agent after having concluded the season with the A’s following a July 31 trade that sent him and Jon Lester to Oakland in exchange for Yoenis Cespedes, acknowledged that he and other Red Sox players were puzzled when word leaked of Boston’s unexpectedly modest four-year, $70 million offer to Lester early in the season. Gomes was whether he was surprised by the nature of the offer to the Sox’ Opening Day pitcher.
“Yeah,” he said. “[But] I’m a baseball player. There’s so much we don’t know. That’s why there’s so many front-office people. There’s language this and language that.
“At the end of the day, Jon Lester is going to pick where he wants to play. He’s going to land somewhere where he wants to be and they want him. The market changes every single year. I don’t know what’s fair and what’s not fair. … I can’t determine the market, the years, the wear and tear of a guy’s age, the wear and tear of a guy’s innings, but if it was Game 7 of the World Series and I had to pick just one guy, Madison Bumgarner just did it but I tell you what, Jon Lester has done it quite a few times and I’d still pick that guy.”
Gomes explained why he views Lester as the top player on the free-agent market this winter.
“I think he is [the top free agent],” said Gomes. “It was a crazy metaphor that I was explaining to a younger kid the other day. It’s like horse racing or dog racing or even dog shows. What do you go after first? You go after the pedigree. You go after they’ve won before. They’ve won the Triple Crown. Is there this young guy coming up with a lightning arm and all that? Yeah, absolutely. But when you go after No. 1, you go after pedigree. You see the Giants getting pretty decorated now. … Everyone is going to be looking to that guy with the pedigree to provide the answers, and everyone is going to try to get the ball in that guy’s hand. Read the rest of this entry »
|11.06.14 at 6:12 am ET|
Join WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford for a live chat, starting at noon, to discuss all things Red Sox offseason. It’s the perfect way to storm into another Hot Stove Show, which kicks off on WEEI at 7 p.m. Thursday with Bradford, Alex Speier and Mike Mutnansky talking baseball’s team-building season.
|11.05.14 at 10:04 pm ET|
WEEI’s Chris Villani feels that this winter represents the right time for the Red Sox to deal Clay Buchholz. Do you agree?
|11.05.14 at 11:31 am ET|
Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia, who on Tuesday was named winner of his fourth Gold Glove, checked in with Middays with MFB on Wednesday morning and said he’s feeling substantially better since having surgery on his wrist. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.
Pedroia had surgery on Sept. 11 to repair a tendon in his left wrist. It caused an early end to a disappointing offensive season in which he hit .278 with seven home runs and 53 RBIs. In the field, however, he continued to shine, posting a .997 fielding percentage that ranks as the best ever for a Red Sox second baseman.
“It was just frustrating,” he said of the injury that nagged him during the season. “The year before, I found a way to perform, playing nicked up. The year before it was a loose feeling — I tore that ligament in my thumb and everything just felt loose, so I was able to figure it out and let the ball travel more and just try to slap balls the other way and get hits and not try to drive the ball. This year it was more, I was restricted. I didn’t have any motion. It was so swollen and tight all year, I couldn’t get a feel of how to get through it. It was tough. I fought it all year.
“Now that it’s fixed, it’s night and day. I can already tell that. There’s a lot of IOU’s to hand out to people, so I’m pretty excited about it.”
Added Pedroia: “I feel great. I’m back to a hundred percent. I’m doing all my lifts and everything. My rehab’s going good. I’m full strength and I’m pretty excited. It’s been a long time since I’ve been myself. It’s going to be a lot of fun next year.”
Pedoria received a reported eight-year, $110 million contract in the middle of the 2013 season. There are critics who say the Sox overpaid for an aging player who has struggled with injuries of late.
“Honestly, I never put any pressure on me about that,” Pedroia said. “My job is to come out and win games. For what I do to try to help the team win, I don’t know how much they’re paying for that these days but I’m sure it’s a lot, and my contract’s a lot, so there’s not anybody that puts the amount of expectations to perform well than me.
“So, trust me, I don’t need anybody to get on me or anybody to say anything bad about me if I don’t play well. Trust me, I’m pretty hard on myself as it is. I don’t ever look at it like that. I view everything as wins and losses. And obviously when your team’s in last place, that’s how I view it as not good. I’d rather live up to wins and losses than anything else.”
The Red Sox went from last place in 2012 to World Series champions in 2013 back to last place last season. Pedroia is eager to get the Sox back to the top next year.
“I’m trying to do my job, and that’s get ready to help us any way I can to win games, because we’ve got to do that,” he said. “Because last year was pretty painful.”
For more Red Sox news, visit the team page at weei.com/redsox.
|11.04.14 at 7:45 pm ET|
Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia won his fourth career Gold Glove as the top second baseman in the American League. Pedroia became the first Red Sox infielder ever to win as many as four Gold Gloves. He’d previously been tied for the franchise record of three with Frank Malzone and George Scott. He’s the fourth Red Sox to win as many as four, joining Dwight Evans (8), Carl Yastrzemski (7) and Fred Lynn (4).
Fangraphs had Pedroia as the major league leader at second base by a considerable margin in UZR, crediting him with having saved 18.3 runs, a mark that compared favorably to finalists Ian Kinsler (13.0) and Robinson Cano (-3.8). John Dewan’s Plus/Minus system had Pedroia as second to Kinsler in both runs saved (17 for Pedroia, 20 for Kinsler) and defensive plays made above average (24 for Pedroia, 30 for Kinsler). But American League managers determined that Pedroia was the superior defender.
A pair of Red Sox outfielders who were Gold Glove finalists did not win the award. Yoenis Cespedes fell short of Royals left fielder Alex Gordon, while Jackie Bradley Jr. lost out to Orioles center fielder Adam Jones.
|11.04.14 at 5:43 pm ET|
The Red Sox announced that first baseman Mike Napoli underwent successfully surgery to address his sleep apnea on Tuesday morning. The procedure was performed at Mass. General Hospital by Dr. Leonard Kapan, chief of oral and maxillofacial surgery. Napoli will stay in the hospital in the immediate aftermath of the procedure but is expected to be released later this week.
‘I’ve been dealing with sleep apnea for a long time, my whole career,’ Napoli wrote in a text to WEEI.com last month. ‘I’ve tried numerous things and none of them worked. Dental mouth piece, CPAP machine, medicines ‘¦ It’s just gotten to the point where I have to get this done.’
Napoli, who turned 33 last week, hit .248 with a .370 OBP, .419 slugging mark and 17 homers in 119 games in 2014, the first of a two-year, $32 million contract he signed with the Sox as a free agent after the 2013 campaign.
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