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  1. #1
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    No Ace Up Cherrington's Sleeve

    when Cherington and the Red Sox tackle the rebuilding program, they do not see landing an “ace” as part of that task. In fact, it’s not even essential.

    “We just want to be good,” said Cherington before last night’s game. “We need to build a good team, we need to win games. There’s different ways to do that. It’s nice to have an ace at the top of the rotation, but you can be good in different ways. We’ve had really good teams without that.”

    ...

    Cherington was not saying yesterday that the Red Sox would not benefit from an ace. His comment, however, suggests strongly the team remains leery of long-term, big-money commitments to starters on the wrong side of 30. This is nothing new. The Red Sox have been preaching fiscal restraint ever since their payroll-shedding blockbuster with the Dodgers two Augusts ago.

    The Red Sox were in terrible shape then with proven aces or near aces Lester and John Lackey, and they are back to terrible with those two now gone.

    When the Sox look near the top of the standings, they see the Orioles and the Brewers and the Pirates and even the Yankees, with Brandon McCarthy atop their rotation, as ace-less teams.

    In the Braves (with Julio Teheran) or the Angels (with Garrett Richards), they see aces who blossomed in-season versus an ace those teams were leaning on in April.

    “There are plenty of teams that are contenders this year, teams that will be in the playoffs that don’t have that (ace),” said Cherington. “We just have to build a good team. We have to build a team that can win games. We know pitching’s a big part of that. There’s different ways of building a pitching staff.”
    Boston Herald


  2. #2
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    Toss in the report that Lester's side DID counter the stinking 4/$70M offer with a 6/$140Mish counter.

    Now we know that Masterson will be our ace. Not the actual Masterson, just the best kid we come up with over the next season and a half would be a virtual Masterson. Huzza. With kids being developed to man well over half the team, and no serious money for FA's it looks like it'll be run as if we're Pittsburgh - spend when it looks like a playoff team, and run it tight it otherwise.

    If that ownership group thinks 3 titles will mean we'll be happy for another 4-6-8 years of teams like '12 and '14, they have another thing coming.


    6/27/09: “We expect [Rondo] to play by the rules and be a leader as a point guard. We need him to be more of a leader,” Ainge said. “There were just a couple situations where he was late this year, I don’t know if he was sitting in his car, but showed up late and the rest of the team was there. We have team rules and you have to be on time. He was fined for being late, he said he was stuck in traffic, and it’s just unacceptable.”

    Some jerks never learn.....

  3. #3
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    He's not going to say "we need an ace" and make us look desperate for Lester. That would only drive up his price. Not saying we will get him but this doesn't change anything IMO.

  4. #4
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    Nice slip of the tongue Ben. We will have a top of the rotation starter next season. Ben will not allow this team to enter with Clay as our ace. Whether it's Lester, Hamels, Shields etc. who knows.

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  5. #5
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    I can't remember the last time a Red Sox team didn't go into a season either over, at, or just under the luxury tax threshold.

    There's roughly $80 million available this offseason to reach that with only Koji and the starting rotation to address so something's fishy.

    I think Ben is bluffing on the ace comment, or he truly plans to go bananas on beefing up the offence. (Sign a Hanley, trade for a Stanton + extension)
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  6. #6
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    I don't see what the problem is. We didn't have an "ace" last year, just a guy with a high 3's ERA who got hot at the right time.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haystack View Post
    I don't see what the problem is. We didn't have an "ace" last year, just a guy with a high 3's ERA who got hot at the right time.
    His career from 2008-2012 inclusive had him with a 3.57 raw ERA (can't believe you just quoted his raw ERA); a 122 ERA+, and a 4th, 3rd, 5th, 9th in AL rWAR in that 5 year period. Those numbers clearly put him into the top 15 among all active starters during the same period, if not top 10. Labeling him a "just a guy with a high 3's ERA" doesn't resemble who he was at the time. Please name a starter from those 5 years that had 4 or more top 9 rWAR scores?

    His performance this year (ERA+ in the high 150's) should be enough proof to indicate that the outlier was 2012 and first half of 2013. Perhaps you forgot Lester had 4 different pitching coaches between the final game of 2010 and the end of the 2012 season. Maybe you didn't examine the fact that Lesters ERA and slash was far worse with Salty catching him than the other catchers during his tenure and that he threw to Salty a great deal in 2012. In 2012 Lester pitched to Salty 19 games with a 5.67 ERA and a slash of: .307/.367/.502. To the others (Shop and Lavarnway): 14 games 3.86 ERA slash .233/.286/.371. Perhaps it's Salty and the two pitching coaches Lester had in 2012 were the problem? Ample evidence to argue that case.


    6/27/09: “We expect [Rondo] to play by the rules and be a leader as a point guard. We need him to be more of a leader,” Ainge said. “There were just a couple situations where he was late this year, I don’t know if he was sitting in his car, but showed up late and the rest of the team was there. We have team rules and you have to be on time. He was fined for being late, he said he was stuck in traffic, and it’s just unacceptable.”

    Some jerks never learn.....

  8. #8
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    As a Red Sox and a Liverpool fan it would look bad for Henry if he didn't invest a considerable amount of money in rebuilding the Red Sox during the off season.

    I say that because he's spent nearly £100,000,000 (≈$168,000,000) on Liverpool during their off season bringing in players, etc. (Granted they did sell some players to make money.)

    Bostonians and Red Sox fans wouldn't look too kindly if he started to strip down on the Red Sox purchases and improvements.

    I understand being leery of handing out huge contracts to aging players as the Red Sox have been somewhat burned recently (Adrian Gonzalez to some extent and that douche bag Carl "Let Me Bash Boston Every Chance I Get, I'm an Overpaid Dip **** With a Sperm Tattoo on My Neck" Crawford.) Like Bags said, the Red Sox fans won't stand for a mediocre team for long.

  9. #9
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    That's weird how demanding you guys are of this team, considering 3 world series titles is more than the last 86 years put together.
    In fact, if i had told RedSox fans in 2003 that they could win 3 world series in the next 10 years but then suck for the following 10 years, 100% of you would have taken that deal. Even if the other option was having a good competitive team for the next 2 decades.
    Last edited by ciaban; 08-08-2014 at 09:41 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by bagwell368 View Post
    His career from 2008-2012 inclusive had him with a 3.57 raw ERA (can't believe you just quoted his raw ERA); a 122 ERA+, and a 4th, 3rd, 5th, 9th in AL rWAR in that 5 year period. Those numbers clearly put him into the top 15 among all active starters during the same period, if not top 10. Labeling him a "just a guy with a high 3's ERA" doesn't resemble who he was at the time. Please name a starter from those 5 years that had 4 or more top 9 rWAR scores?

    His performance this year (ERA+ in the high 150's) should be enough proof to indicate that the outlier was 2012 and first half of 2013. Perhaps you forgot Lester had 4 different pitching coaches between the final game of 2010 and the end of the 2012 season. Maybe you didn't examine the fact that Lesters ERA and slash was far worse with Salty catching him than the other catchers during his tenure and that he threw to Salty a great deal in 2012. In 2012 Lester pitched to Salty 19 games with a 5.67 ERA and a slash of: .307/.367/.502. To the others (Shop and Lavarnway): 14 games 3.86 ERA slash .233/.286/.371. Perhaps it's Salty and the two pitching coaches Lester had in 2012 were the problem? Ample evidence to argue that case.
    Don't be silly. Jon Lester in 2013 was nothing like Jon Lester in 2008. I would say that Jon Lester was an ace in 2009 and 2010 when he was 9th in WAR among starting pitchers and had an ERA, FIP, xFIP in the low threes. But between 2011-2013, I wouldn't consider him to be an ace. He was 16th in WAR and had an ERA, FIP, xFIP in the low 4's, or high 3's. And it wasn't just a matter of one bad catcher or one bad year. His peripherals began to decline in 2011, before his ERA did.

  11. #11
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    You're reading too much into this. No GM is going to make declarations publicly about acquiring a certain type of player. I've seen statements like this from GM's, and hours later they contradict themselves in a signing or trade.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by -Lavigne43- View Post
    You're reading too much into this. No GM is going to make declarations publicly about acquiring a certain type of player. I've seen statements like this from GM's, and hours later they contradict themselves in a signing or trade.
    Exactly. What was Cashman's infamous statement about being ready to go into the next season with Bubba Crosby as his starting centerfielder?

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by bagwell368 View Post
    Toss in the report that Lester's side DID counter the stinking 4/$70M offer with a 6/$140Mish counter.

    Now we know that Masterson will be our ace. Not the actual Masterson, just the best kid we come up with over the next season and a half would be a virtual Masterson. Huzza. With kids being developed to man well over half the team, and no serious money for FA's it looks like it'll be run as if we're Pittsburgh - spend when it looks like a playoff team, and run it tight it otherwise.

    If that ownership group thinks 3 titles will mean we'll be happy for another 4-6-8 years of teams like '12 and '14, they have another thing coming.
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    We also only have somewhere around 100 mil in cap commitments for next year, and no long term commitments after 2015 except for Pedroia (TO's on Ortiz and Clay for 2016). Even including those two, we have somewhere around 50-60 million in cap commitments for 2016.


    Hell, I would be happy with the team spending around 160 mil a year (which is still 20 mil under the lux tax!). The lester offer was an absolute disgrace - this team can afford to pay him (maybe not 140/6, but somewhere around there).


    I am all for being fiscally smart with your team, and not signing tons of aging guys to long term deals, but this team doesn't have any bad contracts on the books. A guy like Lester, who can be (and has been) that #1/#2 guy for you is the kind of player the team needs to sign.

    This team isn't that far away from competing - especially with the moves they made at the TD. A pitcher or two in free agency puts us right back in the mix.
    Last edited by xnick5757; 08-09-2014 at 11:43 AM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by celticsman2009 View Post
    Nice slip of the tongue Ben. We will have a top of the rotation starter next season. Ben will not allow this team to enter with Clay as our ace. Whether it's Lester, Hamels, Shields etc. who knows.
    Just be prepared. We've seen statements like this in the past and they've paved the way (PR wise) for decisions they made.

    The primary problem I have with the comments is suggesting that the "no ace" approach "working" in 2014 could somehow be a pattern for the future. This season is clearly an aberration from years past. Trying to make an argument out of such unusual production would be foolish.

  15. #15
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    I think this article is being overblown. I want the best team possible and think we can get that ace or no ace.
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