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phillipmike
02-03-2012, 11:16 AM
http://espn.go.com/blog/sweetspot/post/_/id/20265/al-east-showdown-position-rankings

C - 3rd (JP Arencibia)
1B - 4th (Adam Lind)
2B - 4th (Kelly Johnson)
3B - 3rd (Brett Lawrie)
SS - 1st (Yunel Escobar)
LF - 4th - (Eric Thames)
CF - 5th - (Colby Rasmus)
RF - 1st - (Jose Bautista)
DH - 2nd - (Edwin Encarnicion)
#1 Starter - 3rd - (Ricky Romero)
#2 Starter - 4th - (Brandon Morrow)
#3 Starter - 5th - (Brett Cecil)
#4 Starter - 4th - (Henderson Alvarez)
#5 Starter - 3rd - (Dustin McGowan)
Closer - 2nd - (Sergio Santos)
Bullpen - 2nd - (Casey Janssen, Darren Oliver, Jason Frasor, Jesse Litsch, Carlos Villanueva)
Intangibles - 3rd

Final Tally
1st - Yankees - 64 points
2nd - Rays - 53 points
3rd - Red Sox - 48 points
4th - Jays - 46 points
5th - O's - 29 points

Let's not turn this into argument about the Jays.

It is an in depth look of the AL East's lineup and remember it is only ONE guys OPINION. This isnt a crystal ball, it is a writer's opinion and remember on paper evaluation does not equal what will really happen.

Note: This was done before the Cordero signing so he may have bumped the Jays up to the best bullpen in the AL East.

nithanyo
02-03-2012, 11:18 AM
Seems about right. I think Lester, CC and Price are better pitchers than Romero

I don't think EE is the second best DH in the east and I don't think Rasmus is the worst. Glad to see Escobar get recognition

phillipmike
02-03-2012, 11:28 AM
Seems about right. I think Lester, CC and Price are better pitchers than Romero

I don't think EE is the second best DH in the east and I don't think Rasmus is the worst. Glad to see Escobar get recognition


No. 1 starter
1. CC Sabathia, Yankees
2. James Shields, Rays
3. Ricky Romero, Blue Jays
4. Josh Beckett, Red Sox
5. Jeremy Guthrie, Orioles

Whether you want Shields or David Price as Tampa's No. 1 starter, I have to give the edge to Sabathia. Last two seasons:

Sabathia: 475 innings, 439 hits, 135 BB, 427 SO, 37 HR
Shields: 452.2 innings, 441 hits, 116 BB, 412 SO, 60 HR
Price: 433 innings, 362 hits, 142 BB, 406 SO, 37 HR

If I ranked them individually, I'd go Sabathia, Price and Shields, with the acknowledgement that Price actually took a big step forward in 2011, despite the increase in ERA. He pitched more innings, increased his strikeout rate and lowered his walk rate. But Sabathia has done this over a period of years, so for now he's still the best pitcher in the division. Beckett had a 2.89 ERA in 2011, thanks in part to a low .249 average on balls in play. But he's reached 200 innings just once the past four seasons, while Romero is coming off a 225-inning campaign. Poor Jeremy Guthrie, an underrated pitcher who probably would have had a better career with just about any other organization and ballpark. (Imagine him in Minnesota, with a bigger park and better outfield defense.)

They have Beckett and Shields as Boston and the Rays aces. And have Romero at 3 behind CC and Shields. Lester and Price are both team's respective number 2s.

I did not think Colby was the worst but then i saw the list. Based on age, potential and most importantly last seasons production i think he is the worst in the AL East. But that does not mean anything considering who is in our division. Two MVP candidates in Ellsbury and Granderson from 2011. And two other young starters with much better numbers than Rasmus in Jones and Upton.

2009mvp
02-03-2012, 11:44 AM
Wada (midget throwing in the mid-80's) over any big leaguer at this point seems dumb to me, but otherwise it seems fine. Not like these position-by-position dealies are particularly useful anyways.

scottythegreat1
02-03-2012, 11:47 AM
It is an interesting assessment....Id say fairly accurate.

I have to say it....EE at second for DH is actually right.....Its strange, but its true. He could even be first....I honestly think that Ortiz is declining, although Red Sox fans would disagree. Ortiz hits about 28HRs a year now, a threat, but not the 40HR guy anymore.

Pena....ahead of Lind.....its close Ill give it to him

Yunel as the best shortstop??? We hit the top....it makes sense, especially with Jeter declining.

Lawrie is third at third.....Although if A-Rod gets injured again, thatll change, he only played 46 games last year and hes above Youk....thats pretty impressive.

I can see why Rasmus is at the bottom of the CF, Theyre all pretty good, but Colby Rasmus could be the comeback player of the year (its a longshot, but its possible).

Santos ahead of Bailey....Im not completely sure about that one I dont know a lot about Bailey other than where he came from....you never know Oakland, theyre very good at trading away their players at the right time.....I dont know about Santos OR Bailey and how they will both fare closing in the AL East. We have a very good fallback plan IF Santos falls apart in this division.

Our bullpen is probably now at the top just because of the Cordero signing.

I agree with the points....it sounds about right.....We could possibly overtake Boston this year...maybe even the Rays

phillipmike
02-03-2012, 11:52 AM
Wada (midget throwing in the mid-80's) over any big leaguer at this point seems dumb to me, but otherwise it seems fine. Not like these position-by-position dealies are particularly useful anyways.

Probably the first time i am agreeing with you. :)

Twitchy
02-03-2012, 12:22 PM
I thought Colby, Cecil & Alvarez should have been higher but otherwise it's not bad.

Sanyo
02-03-2012, 12:56 PM
Soon enough:

Jays will have the best catcher (D'arnaud).
Lawrie will overtake Longeria/A Rod soon enough to be #1 there.
Marisnick if he reaches his full potential could make that LF spot higher for the Jays. Obviously a dark horse at this point and thats in a few years. I dont see Crawford staying healthy and Gardner is not really all that good except for his speed and ability to get to the ball in the outfield...
If the Jays got Votto they'd become #1 at 1B but likely isnt happening now. Lind needs a big bounce back but if Lind puts up his 2009 numbers he could overtake everyone to be #1 -- A gon is coming off a very strong season which will be tough to repeat, Teixeira is a guy who's just on a downswing now for me. Lind is still young enough to redeem himself.

Romero could easily be #1 if he continues his upswing and even be better than guys like CC and Shields.

Starting rotation is a dark horse right now for the Jays. Rays will be matching them for a while, but I think the Jays could be better than the Sox/Yanks (atleast the bottom part of their rotation) soon enough.

Lots of good upside still to come for the Jays. Alot of the guys mentioned from other teams are locked to long term deals and they obviously wont be producing at that level forever and are on average older than who the Jays have...I could easily see more Jays at #1 in 12-24 months...

ILDD
02-03-2012, 12:57 PM
Seems about right to me.

Lind, Johnson and Rasmus all have the potential to be good (certainly better than last year's production at the respective positions) but I'd probably agree with ESPN on their list.

Mostly useless for ranking the teams though - Bautista is so much better than any other RF but only gives a small bump in Blue Jays ranking.

GrumpyOldMan
02-03-2012, 01:55 PM
I think the rankings are pretty good. Glad to see Santos get some respect. Not that rankings like this mean much, but they are fun.

Sanyo
02-03-2012, 02:03 PM
Jays were only two points behind the Sox as well -- hmmm...

bluenoserINsd
02-03-2012, 04:30 PM
Soon enough:

Jays will have the best catcher (D'arnaud).
Lawrie will overtake Longeria/A Rod soon enough to be #1 there.
Marisnick if he reaches his full potential could make that LF spot higher for the Jays. Obviously a dark horse at this point and thats in a few years. I dont see Crawford staying healthy and Gardner is not really all that good except for his speed and ability to get to the ball in the outfield...
If the Jays got Votto they'd become #1 at 1B but likely isnt happening now. Lind needs a big bounce back but if Lind puts up his 2009 numbers he could overtake everyone to be #1 -- A gon is coming off a very strong season which will be tough to repeat, Teixeira is a guy who's just on a downswing now for me. Lind is still young enough to redeem himself.

Romero could easily be #1 if he continues his upswing and even be better than guys like CC and Shields.

Starting rotation is a dark horse right now for the Jays. Rays will be matching them for a while, but I think the Jays could be better than the Sox/Yanks (atleast the bottom part of their rotation) soon enough.

Lots of good upside still to come for the Jays. Alot of the guys mentioned from other teams are locked to long term deals and they obviously wont be producing at that level forever and are on average older than who the Jays have...I could easily see more Jays at #1 in 12-24 months...

That is some pretty intense optimism... I wish I had that in me too!

tazsub3
02-03-2012, 04:44 PM
The way i look at this, our team, as it stands, is very close, so a lucky break (a player breaking out), and an injury or two to key competition, on paper our team can challenge even for the division.
From here i think AA struck gold by building the bullpen. if those variable alllign, he has the solid relieve core.
if not he has assets to trade

es0terik
02-03-2012, 05:24 PM
I agree with the rating for Colby, all four of those center fielders did much better than he did and all four of them are safer bets. Of course by the end of 2012, that could be completely different.

nstojic
02-03-2012, 05:26 PM
we've got to work on a dynamic answer at 2B, going forward...

es0terik
02-03-2012, 05:28 PM
Kelly Johnson is a top 5 2B in the major leagues if he returns to 2010 form.

nstojic
02-03-2012, 05:31 PM
Kelly Johnson is a top 5 2B in the major leagues if he returns to 2010 form.

you're absolutely right but if that sentence ended at 'leagues', i'd sleep better at night :D

es0terik
02-03-2012, 05:33 PM
you're absolutely right but if that sentence ended at 'leagues', i'd sleep better at night :D

But then again, Johnson can stay at 2011 form and completely bust into a failed major leaguer while Hill can return to 2009 form and be a perennial all-star second baseman for the D-Backs for years to come :)

How's that for sleeping better at night :laugh2:

es0terik
02-03-2012, 05:34 PM
Can you just imagine if Johnson and Rasmus got back to their 2010 numbers though? The AL East would have Pedroia, Cano, Zobrist and Johnson at 2B and Ellsbury, Granderson, Upton, Jones and Rasmus at CF. That would be ridiculous.

nstojic
02-03-2012, 05:37 PM
But then again, Johnson can stay at 2011 form and completely bust into a failed major leaguer while Hill can return to 2009 form and be a perennial all-star second baseman for the D-Backs for years to come :)

How's that for sleeping better at night :laugh2:

scary thought.. and after how much I thought of hill, his first few years :sigh:

I don't care who provides it but I would love to see solid-spectacular D at 2B, with stats like this:

.292/.366/.435 35 2B, 15-18 HRs, 65-85 RBI, 20-30 SBs...

is that asking too much?

wamco
02-03-2012, 08:47 PM
this is an awful way to compare teams

Cooshman
02-03-2012, 10:26 PM
this is an awful way to compare teams

I completely agree....this comparison is silly and does not give any accurate indication of how a team will compete against another team.

the_jon
02-03-2012, 10:31 PM
I completely agree....this comparison is silly and does not give any accurate indication of how a team will compete against another team.
I'd say the O's in 5th is pretty accurate.

Cooshman
02-03-2012, 10:50 PM
I'd say the O's in 5th is pretty accurate.

LOL - Well, I am not going to argue that!!!

PJ Awesome
02-04-2012, 03:48 AM
On paper, lookin' like a Sox/Jays/Rays race for 2nd place?

es0terik
02-04-2012, 01:30 PM
On paper, lookin' like a Sox/Jays/Rays race for 2nd place?

Not really, it's looking like a Sox/Rays race for second with whoever loses that race against the Jays competing for the 3rd spot.

Twitchy
02-04-2012, 03:10 PM
It's really not much of a race. 1st/2nd is pretty clearly NYY/TB. Boston's looking pretty weak with Bard as a fourth and Silva/Cook as a fifth. Especially given the high chance of injury from Beckett/Youkilis.

es0terik
02-04-2012, 04:01 PM
People are greatly underrating the Sox heading into this season because of their 'collapse' which was mostly just a crap load of bad luck. They still have an elite offense and they'll still win a whole lot of games. You can't really dictate which teams are 'pretty clearly' the 1/2 when the Sox were 'pretty clearly' the division winners of the AL East and the world series favorites this time last year.

Twitchy
02-04-2012, 04:39 PM
People are greatly underrating the Sox heading into this season because of their 'collapse' which was mostly just a crap load of bad luck. They still have an elite offense and they'll still win a whole lot of games. You can't really dictate which teams are 'pretty clearly' the 1/2 when the Sox were 'pretty clearly' the division winners of the AL East and the world series favorites this time last year.

They had an elite offence. Past tense. Their SS has been replaced by a bunch of 600~ OPS guys. Their RF is gone and Kalish is injured. Their starting LF, who whether or not you believe will break out, had a wrist injury which saps power. Youkilis is bound to miss 30-40 games putting Punto/Aviles in the same roster. Ellsbury sure as hell isn't hitting like he did last year.

I don't think they're #1 in runs scored anymore. Top 3 is still good, but given the liabilities in the rotation they need to be #1 in offence to stand a chance here. NYY and Tampa are far more balanced than Boston.

I said before last season started I wasn't impressed by Boston and that they'd lose to Tampa. Blame it on the "collapse" all you want, but don't forget they started the season 0-10 or something crazy. Once is a fluke, twice means there might be something more too it than luck.

Especially when their rotation, believe it or not, has taken a step back. Yes, Lackey/Dice-K sucked. But guess what? Bard as a starer isn't any better. The bullpen is weaker, as Melancon/Bailey aren't Bard/Papelbon. Their fifth starter, be it Silva/Cook/Aceves/Miller whoever is just as bad as Wakefield or anybody they had last year.

Really the only days they have quality SP is Beckett (who is injury prone and crappy every other year), Lester, and Buchholz (who while not injury prone, is 26 and has thrown more than 100 IP in the majors once). And if any of those guys goes down for a long period of time, that means Bard (who has never had any success as a starter), and 2 of Silva/Miller/Cook/Aceves will be in the rotation. That's worse than the Jays rotation, believe it or not.

The Sox were an overrated team last year, and they remain overrated this year as well. I'd be shocked if they got to 90 wins again.

Towelie
02-04-2012, 06:55 PM
I wouldn't put too much into these rankings. It's amazing how down people are on Youk, call him injury prone but the same can be said about Arod. Joyce over Swisher? Insane to me. I also very much disagree with the closer rankings as well. All this is on paper, and means nothing.

Towelie
02-05-2012, 04:05 AM
It's really not much of a race. 1st/2nd is pretty clearly NYY/TB. Boston's looking pretty weak with Bard as a fourth and Silva/Cook as a fifth. Especially given the high chance of injury from Beckett/Youkilis.

Beckett is injury prone? Yeah his 185 IP average is very injury prone. Silva/Cook isn't our 5th. Padallia would be. Dice K would be the 5th by June. Youk is injury prone I'll give you that but when healthy is one of the best in the league. Considering it took the last game and a epic collapse don't see how it's "Not much of a race" It's not like losing Wake and Lackey doesn't help the Sox.



They had an elite offence. Past tense. Their SS has been replaced by a bunch of 600~ OPS guys. Their RF is gone and Kalish is injured. Their starting LF, who whether or not you believe will break out, had a wrist injury which saps power. Youkilis is bound to miss 30-40 games putting Punto/Aviles in the same roster. Ellsbury sure as hell isn't hitting like he did last year.

Had? You lose a SS Aviles has a borderline .700 OPS with the Red sox. Starting LF is Crawford, who a wrist injury doesn't effect just power but if in pain changes the swing as well. One bad season VS a career of being amazing I'm gonna pick amazing. Youk isnt bound to miss 40 games, he's had the issues two seasons only. Why wouldn't Ellsbury hit like he did last year? I don't expect him too, but I don't expect a massive regress either.



I don't think they're #1 in runs scored anymore. Top 3 is still good, but given the liabilities in the rotation they need to be #1 in offence to stand a chance here. NYY and Tampa are far more balanced than Boston.


Again 0-10 start and a massive collapse still losing by a single game despite Tampa doing it's best to lose.



I said before last season started I wasn't impressed by Boston and that they'd lose to Tampa. Blame it on the "collapse" all you want, but don't forget they started the season 0-10 or something crazy. Once is a fluke, twice means there might be something more too it than luck.

Especially when their rotation, believe it or not, has taken a step back. Yes, Lackey/Dice-K sucked. But guess what? Bard as a starer isn't any better. The bullpen is weaker, as Melancon/Bailey aren't Bard/Papelbon. Their fifth starter, be it Silva/Cook/Aceves/Miller whoever is just as bad as Wakefield or anybody they had last year.

Aceves and Miller are as bad as Wake? You're insane if you actually think that. Aceves is legit a great pitcher. 4.99 xFIP vs 4.03. But yea, you're very right.



Really the only days they have quality SP is Beckett (who is injury prone and crappy every other year), Lester, and Buchholz (who while not injury prone, is 26 and has thrown more than 100 IP in the majors once). And if any of those guys goes down for a long period of time, that means Bard (who has never had any success as a starter), and 2 of Silva/Miller/Cook/Aceves will be in the rotation. That's worse than the Jays rotation, believe it or not.


[/quote]
The Sox were an overrated team last year, and they remain overrated this year as well. I'd be shocked if they got to 90 wins again.[/QUOTE]

90 Wins? So despite not having Wakefield, JD Drew, Lackey, and adding Ross, Bailey, and a revamped pen, and adding Bard to the rotation you expect them to be worst? How can they be over-rated when everyone is projecting 3rd place?

wamco
02-05-2012, 09:33 AM
based on minor league numbers, I'm not sure I'd be too excited about Bard's prospects in the rotation though.

Towelie
02-05-2012, 12:05 PM
based on minor league numbers, I'm not sure I'd be too excited about Bard's prospects in the rotation though.

Yes, someone who doesn't know about Bard would see those numbers and agree. Bard struggled massively with control problems when he first signed with the Sox. The coaches tweaked his delivery, and it effected him horribly. Boston brass then decided to shift him to the pen for a quick MLB ticket. This is a good article on it. His pitching mechanics are very different, and he's a different pitcher now.

http://www.overthemonster.com/2011/12/5/2612418/what-we-might-know-about-daniel-bard-as-a-starter

Twitchy
02-05-2012, 12:07 PM
Beckett is injury prone? Yeah his 185 IP average is very injury prone.

A guy who threw 127 innings in 2010 and 174 in 2008 is injury prone as far as I'm concerned. 30, 21, 32, 27 starts the last 4 seasons. That's injury prone. If you're not consistently making 32+ there's a problem, likely due to injuries. Especially for a guy at the top of the rotation alongside Lester.


Silva/Cook isn't our 5th. Padallia would be.

And the difference between them is negligible, which is why it doesn't matter what you call them.


Dice K would be the 5th by June.

Considering control is the last thing to come back, and Dice-K never had any control, and hasn't been good in years, it's not going to make much of a difference. Can't expect guys coming back from TJ to be that useful the year they return. I mean, his lowest ERA was 4.69 over the past 3 years. We're not exactly talking about a useful arm here.


Youk is injury prone I'll give you that but when healthy is one of the best in the league. Considering it took the last game and a epic collapse don't see how it's "Not much of a race" It's not like losing Wake and Lackey doesn't help the Sox.


Thing is Youk hasn't been healthy in 3 years. You and I both know he's going to be injured at some point, his production will suffer for it, and worse yet it will force Aviles & Punto into the lineup as the SS/3B.

And it wasn't just one epic collapse. It was two. Or do you forget the 0-10 start to the season?

It's true that losing Wakefield and Lackey don't hurt the Sox - but it forces them to potentially put Aceves, Miller, or other guys in the rotation who have a career FIP of 5 or higher when they're in a starting role. Which, coincidentally, is what Wakefield (4.99 FIP) gave the Red Sox last year.


Had? You lose a SS Aviles has a borderline .700 OPS with the Red sox.

I've been over this several times. Aviles doesn't walk. He doesn't hit for power. He doesn't play defence. He is completely reliant on his BABIP. Meaning he'll either be a sub replacement hitter, or he'll be decent. But there's no way of knowing, and generally guys with little power or OBP skills don't get lucky when pressed into a larger role. He's living off a career year in 2008, and when you look at the past 3 years it's a sub 700 OPS.

And yes, it's a clear downgrade from what Scutaro provides the Sox with.


Starting LF is Crawford, who a wrist injury doesn't effect just power but if in pain changes the swing as well. One bad season VS a career of being amazing I'm gonna pick amazing.

It doesn't matter if you pick amazing. You can't expect a guy coming off an injury to simply come back like they were before. Wrist injuries always sap power and linger on throughout the season.

You know better than this. Don't try to act like some silly homer here. You know wrist injuries are bad for hitters.


Youk isnt bound to miss 40 games, he's had the issues two seasons only.

He's played in 120, 103, and 136 games the past 3 years. It's safe to say he's going to miss time, and IIRC I said he'll likely miss 30-40 games. You can ignore the missed time all you like, but Youkilis has never played a full season, and the past few seasons he has missed significant time.

I'm not sure how you can ignore the injury risk of playing 3B here. You can wish him to be healthy all you want, and maybe he will be, but there's a greater chance he misses significant time than there is he plays a full season.


Why wouldn't Ellsbury hit like he did last year? I don't expect him too, but I don't expect a massive regress either.


That's interesting. I would put money in the bank you were one of the ones who said Bautista was a fluke, but that Ellsbury won't have a massive regression.



Again 0-10 start and a massive collapse still losing by a single game despite Tampa doing it's best to lose.


Right, once is a fluke. Twice means there are significant issues. Like, I don't know, a pretty crippling weakness in the rotation.


Aceves and Miller are as bad as Wake? You're insane if you actually think that. Aceves is legit a great pitcher. 4.99 xFIP vs 4.03. But yea, you're very right.


Actually, I'm not insane. I did the math. It's a funny story and I'm glad you asked.

Wakefield FIP/XFIP as a SP = 5.04/4.85
Miller FIP/XFIP as a SP = 5.41/4.92
Aceves FIP/XFIP as a SP = 4.36/6.33 (career=4.94/5.58)

Turns out I'm not insane. Aceves was good as a reliever. But as a starter, not so much.

Maybe you should do your research next time. Aceves and Miller are much better in the bullpen than they are in the rotation.


90 Wins? So despite not having Wakefield, JD Drew, Lackey, and adding Ross, Bailey, and a revamped pen,

You can't call it "revamped" when the bullpen is worse than last year. Jon Papelbon was the third most valuable Sox pitcher by WAR (3) and his 1.53 FIP and 2.16 XFIP vs Andrew Bailey who was 0.9 WAR, 2.86 FIP and 3.52 XFIP. Not to mention Paps did it in more innings and isn't as injury prone as Bailey. And Bard of course was much more valuable than Melancon, beating him in WAR (1.8 to 0.8), FIP (2.96 to 3.25) and XFIP (3.05 to 3.14).

Of course, I'm surprised you think that Bailey, with his home/road splits would do alright in Fenway compared to Oakland. Or that Melancon would do better in the AL East than in the NL Central. But I mean hey, if you want to call a downgrade "revamped", then by all means. Just make sure you understand that it's approximately a 4 win downgrade via WAR.


and adding Bard to the rotation you expect them to be worst?

Have I not explained how I don't think Bard is going to be an upgrade in the rotation considering he's never had success at any level? You're the Boston fan, wasn't he posting 6-10 ERA in the minors and therefore had to be moved out of the rotation?


How can they be over-rated when everyone is projecting 3rd place?

Because of arguments like yours.

wamco
02-05-2012, 02:22 PM
all that being said, it would be a surprise if we finished ahead of the sox

Towelie
02-05-2012, 03:14 PM
A guy who threw 127 innings in 2010 and 174 in 2008 is injury prone as far as I'm concerned. 30, 21, 32, 27 starts the last 4 seasons. That's injury prone. If you're not consistently making 32+ there's a problem, likely due to injuries. Especially for a guy at the top of the rotation alongside Lester.



And the difference between them is negligible, which is why it doesn't matter what you call them.



Considering control is the last thing to come back, and Dice-K never had any control, and hasn't been good in years, it's not going to make much of a difference. Can't expect guys coming back from TJ to be that useful the year they return. I mean, his lowest ERA was 4.69 over the past 3 years. We're not exactly talking about a useful arm here.



Thing is Youk hasn't been healthy in 3 years. You and I both know he's going to be injured at some point, his production will suffer for it, and worse yet it will force Aviles & Punto into the lineup as the SS/3B.

And it wasn't just one epic collapse. It was two. Or do you forget the 0-10 start to the season?

It's true that losing Wakefield and Lackey don't hurt the Sox - but it forces them to potentially put Aceves, Miller, or other guys in the rotation who have a career FIP of 5 or higher when they're in a starting role. Which, coincidentally, is what Wakefield (4.99 FIP) gave the Red Sox last year.



I've been over this several times. Aviles doesn't walk. He doesn't hit for power. He doesn't play defence. He is completely reliant on his BABIP. Meaning he'll either be a sub replacement hitter, or he'll be decent. But there's no way of knowing, and generally guys with little power or OBP skills don't get lucky when pressed into a larger role. He's living off a career year in 2008, and when you look at the past 3 years it's a sub 700 OPS.

And yes, it's a clear downgrade from what Scutaro provides the Sox with.



It doesn't matter if you pick amazing. You can't expect a guy coming off an injury to simply come back like they were before. Wrist injuries always sap power and linger on throughout the season.

You know better than this. Don't try to act like some silly homer here. You know wrist injuries are bad for hitters.



He's played in 120, 103, and 136 games the past 3 years. It's safe to say he's going to miss time, and IIRC I said he'll likely miss 30-40 games. You can ignore the missed time all you like, but Youkilis has never played a full season, and the past few seasons he has missed significant time.

I'm not sure how you can ignore the injury risk of playing 3B here. You can wish him to be healthy all you want, and maybe he will be, but there's a greater chance he misses significant time than there is he plays a full season.



That's interesting. I would put money in the bank you were one of the ones who said Bautista was a fluke, but that Ellsbury won't have a massive regression.




Right, once is a fluke. Twice means there are significant issues. Like, I don't know, a pretty crippling weakness in the rotation.



Actually, I'm not insane. I did the math. It's a funny story and I'm glad you asked.

Wakefield FIP/XFIP as a SP = 5.04/4.85
Miller FIP/XFIP as a SP = 5.41/4.92
Aceves FIP/XFIP as a SP = 4.36/6.33 (career=4.94/5.58)

Turns out I'm not insane. Aceves was good as a reliever. But as a starter, not so much.

Maybe you should do your research next time. Aceves and Miller are much better in the bullpen than they are in the rotation.



You can't call it "revamped" when the bullpen is worse than last year. Jon Papelbon was the third most valuable Sox pitcher by WAR (3) and his 1.53 FIP and 2.16 XFIP vs Andrew Bailey who was 0.9 WAR, 2.86 FIP and 3.52 XFIP. Not to mention Paps did it in more innings and isn't as injury prone as Bailey. And Bard of course was much more valuable than Melancon, beating him in WAR (1.8 to 0.8), FIP (2.96 to 3.25) and XFIP (3.05 to 3.14).

Of course, I'm surprised you think that Bailey, with his home/road splits would do alright in Fenway compared to Oakland. Or that Melancon would do better in the AL East than in the NL Central. But I mean hey, if you want to call a downgrade "revamped", then by all means. Just make sure you understand that it's approximately a 4 win downgrade via WAR.



Have I not explained how I don't think Bard is going to be an upgrade in the rotation considering he's never had success at any level? You're the Boston fan, wasn't he posting 6-10 ERA in the minors and therefore had to be moved out of the rotation?



Because of arguments like yours.

I could go point to point with this but no point. I fully expect the Sox to surprise a lot of people. Being told you're the best on paper doesn't do much for anyone as proven by the Sox last year. Perhaps a sig wager could be made?