|Hot Stove: Eric Chavez to sign with Diamondbacks||12.05.12 at 2:42 pm ET|
|Hot Stove: Red Sox, Yankees could compete for Eric Chavez||12.04.12 at 8:24 pm ET|
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — With four free agent signings now in the books, here’s how the Red Sox roster looks:
C: David Ross – RH
C: Jarrod Saltalamacchia (SH) or Ryan Lavarnway (RH)
1B: Mike Napoli – RH
2B: Dustin Pedroia – RH
3B: Will Middlebrooks – RH
SS: Jose Iglesias (or free agent) – RH
LF: Jonny Gomes – RH vs. LHP
LF: Ryan Kalish (LH) or Daniel Nava (SH) vs. RHP
CF: Jacoby Ellsbury (LH)
RF: Shane Victorino
DH: David Ortiz (LH)
UT (2B, 3B, SS): Pedro Ciriaco (RH)
That’s 12 roster spots for position players that seem fairly well defined, barring a trade. With the remaining spot, GM Ben Cherington suggested that he’d like to add a first baseman who can also play an additional position of positions. Given the right-handed tilt of the lineup, the team would likely also want a player who could rake against right-handers.
Enter Eric Chavez.
Chavez, who turns 35 this week, was an outstanding contributor for the Yankees in 2012, a bargain signing on a $900,000 deal that included playing time incentives. In 113 games, he hit .281/.348/.496/.845 with 16 homers in 313 plate appearances (all but 39 of which came against right-handers). He wasn’t a left-handed Yankee Stadium-created mirage, either — he had batter across-the-board offensive numbers on the road than he did at home.
A six-time Gold Glover at third base in his early career with the A’s, Chavez was a solid defender at both corners for the Yankees in 2012. A major league source confirmed that the Red Sox view Chavez as a potentially strong fit for their roster needs for 2013.
Of course, with Alex Rodriguez now out for the first couple months of 2013, the Yankees also have interest in retaining Chavez. That could pit the two division rivals against each other for his services, although with Will Middlebrooks positioned as an everyday third baseman for the Sox and Mike Napoli an everyday first baseman (with the versatility to slide behind the plate), Chavez might have a greater playing time opportunity in New York than Boston, particularly with Rodriguez out.
|Kevin Millar on M&M: Red Sox should ‘make a splash,’ chase Matt Garza||07.27.12 at 1:53 pm ET|
MLB analyst and former Red Sox first baseman Kevin Millar joined Mut & Merloni for his weekly appearance on Friday afternoon, saying he would pursue Matt Garza at the trade deadline if in charge. To listen to the interview, check the Mut & Merloni audio on demand page.
“I would add another starter immediately and make a splash,” Millar said. “I’d get a hold of the Cubs and I’d try to get Garza and I’d say, ‘Lets go for it.’ You can’t go wrong with another arm in this rotation.”
Millar said he wouldn’t give up starting pitcher Josh Beckett in any deals, but he does see the Red Sox pursuing a trade to send Beckett out of Boston in the offseason.
“He’s wearing thin out there in Boston,” Millar said. ” His press conferences are wearing thin, the statements are wearing thin, and if he doesn’t turn it around and go off the charts at some point I think there will be a move made.”
Added Millar: “He’s had some great years with the Red Sox, but if things don’t turn around I can see him gone.”
Other than chasing Garza, Millar didn’t have much to say about Boston’s trade possibilities because most of the lineup is set.
“They have the players in place, they just have to do what they’re capable of doing,” Millar said. “They’re not asking for Sandy Koufax numbers, but they’re also not asking for the common-ground numbers with a 5.00 ERA. These guys are good players and good pitchers still and you wonder why, at some point they haven’t put this thing together.”
Added Millar: “The only move you can make here is remove one of the guys at the top [and] make a splash.” Read the rest of this entry »
|Terry Francona: Mike Cameron shows again why ‘he’s as professional as you can be’||04.10.11 at 9:39 pm ET|
Following a what looked like a devastating 4-6-3 double play on an interference call on Kevin Youkilis at second base – keeping Dustin Pedroia at third – Cameron chopped a grounder into the new Fenway dirt and beat out Eric Chavez‘s throw to first, scoring Pedroia and giving Josh Beckett and the Red Sox a 1-0 lead.
The reason Cameron was even in the lineup to begin with was Francona’s decision to sit the struggling Jacoby Ellsbury against Yankees lefty ace C.C. Sabathia. Cameron was 8-for-16 lifetime against Sabathia while Ellsbury had just one hit in 13 ABs.
“I wanted to get Cam in there and Ells hasn’t had a lot of success,” Francona said before the game. “One through nine, against a guy like Sabathia, you’re not going to have nine guys who’ve really had their way with him. He’s one of the better pitchers in the game but I wanted to get Cam’s bat in there.
I know he’s trying to. He’s doing it as professionally as possible. I don’t want him to sit very often because he’s a big part of what we’re doing. Cam’s about as professional as you can be.”
|The dirt on the new Red Sox infield at Fenway Park||04.09.11 at 3:58 pm ET|
The complaints about the Fenway Park infield have been legendary.
From Eric Chavez calling it the “worst he ever played on” years ago when he played with Oakland to Dustin Pedroia ripping it last year for its inconsistencies, the infield on Yawkey Way has been notorious among major league infielders for decades.
But all of that has hopefully changed this year as the infield is brand new.
‘It looks beautiful,” Terry Francona raved before Saturday’s game. “A couple of things that excite us are, the texture of the dirt is really good, and I think it’ll get better as we get into a couple of homestands and it’s get played on, it’ll even get better. But everybody was really excited.
‘The hardest thing for players is inconsistency. But, again, when I walked it [Friday], it had a real nice texture to it. How’s that going to hold up? We’re one game in, and [head groundskeeper] Dave Mellor needs some days, too. He’s got to check with everybody and see how it plays and see how it digs up, if it clumps. But the initial reviews were really good.’
Pedroia was all aglow after Friday’s game, raving about how the ball bounces much truer and stays down lower to ground without coming up unexpectedly.
‘It was new,” Francona added. “There’s five infields that have this same surface. You’d have to ask Dave. But I believe it’s five. I’m sure those guys talk. Cleveland has the same one.”
Someone may have forgotten to tell Jed Lowrie. Making his first start on the new infield Saturday, he put his glove down on a grounder by Alex Rodriguez. He expected to come up like the old infield. It stayed down on the new one. Result: E-6. It was an error that opened the door for a two-run Yankees second, one of which was unearned.
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