FanPost

Aidan's Offseason Plan

Aidan's Offseason Plan

Arbitration-eligible (with projected salaries from MLBTR):

Write "tender" or "non-tender" after each of the following names (note: you can trade before or after tendering a contract):

Tender all of them.

Contract options (pick up or buy out)

I wouldn’t be very happy if Hahn picked this up as Alexei didn’t do very well last year and he’s pretty old. $1 buyout

Impending free agents (re-sign, let go, or qualifying offer?):

Free agents (stats used from Baseball Reference)

Peruse the list of potential free agents and name two (or more) you would pursue, the max offer you would extend to them, and a brief explainer. A good-bad example:

No. 1: Matt Albers- 2 years for 6 million with a 4 million club option for a 3rd year. He was one of our only strong spots of our bullpen and we need him back.

No. 2: A.J. Pierzynski- 1 year for 3 million. He batted .300 and had a 1.6 WAR which is great and improving from a down last couple of years even at age 39. He was a huge part of the 2005 team and he is a veteran that could help the team in a great way. He can provide a platoon with Flowers as Flowers could pitch with Sale and Mark Buehrle (see below) could pitch to A.J. with them splitting days in the middle.

No. 3: Mark Buehrle- 1 year for 7 million. He had a 3.81 ERA with the Blue Jays and like A.J., could really help the team with his veteran leadership. Yes, he’s another lefty and Rick Hahn might not do this but he could also really help our team and end his great career on the team he won the World Series with in 2005.

No. 4: David Freese- 2 years for 14 million with a club option of 9 million for a 3rd year. This guy had a 2.6 offensive war in 121 games with the Angels last year. He was stable at defense with a 0.0 defensive war and overall a 2.3 solid WAR. He played well and could solve 2-3 years of a plus 3rd baseman. He’s relatively cheap because of his injuries but if he stays healthy with not overplaying him by putting Tyler Saladino there for about 20 games, he can be pretty good.

No. 5: Alexei Ramirez- 1 year for 5 million with a club option for a 2nd year worth 7 million (in case Tim Anderson isn’t ready yet and Alexei plays well in 2016). There isn’t a lot of other options at shortstop and instead of picking up 10 million, you could probably sign him to this kind of deal for a year until Tim Anderson is ready. Also I think that they shouldn’t break up this team too much. He did have a 1.0 WAR last year which isn’t horrible and could be an okay bounce-back candidate for next year.

No. 6: Franklin Gutierrez- 2 years for 13 million. He could take over right field for us with Avisail Garcia getting sent down to AAA if he doesn’t show himself in the Spring. I like Avisail Garcia but I think he needs some more time to develop. I think Gutierrez could have a great year as he batted .292/ .354/ .620 with 15 homers in 59 games!! He had a 2.4 WAR last year in his only 59 games and could be a great solution for our right field spot. He was a great player earlier in his career and a great defender and last year showed how good he was earlier and could continue his production. It's a little risky but it's a cheap move and if it doesn't work out, Avisail Garcia or Thompson could take his spot for a platoon. He also has plus speed with 25 stolen bases in 2010.

No. 7: Mike Leake- 3 years for 21 million with a club option of 8 million for a 4th year. He could fill our 3rd/ 4th starter role and had a solid year last year. The Sox need to take advantage of this year’s great pitching in the free agent class and they could have a 1-4 of Sale- Quintana- Leake (to split up lefties)- Rodon for at least 3 years. That is up there and in the postseason, pitching really helps.

Trades

No. 1: John Danks, Adam LaRoche and 16 million to the Orioles for a player to be named later. John Danks and Adam LaRoche combined are around 27-28 million in 2016 and if we get rid of that and give 16 million, the Orioles are only paying 11-12 million for two bounce-back candidates which to me, seems pretty fair. We won’t get anything but money to spend for the free agents above. The Orioles, I think, will lose Chris Davis and Adam LaRoche could bounce-back to at least sort-of fill his role and John Danks could be a solid 4-5 starter for the Orioles as they need pitching depth.

Summary

I didn’t have any really huge signings but "it’s the little things that count" and I believe that this plan seems pretty reasonable to me and it’s not so much money that the Sox can’t handle it: around 130 million. If they want to be a serious contender, they need to spend more money, PERIOD. This team can really take this team far.

If Avi isn’t sent down, I think that Trayce Thompson, Avi, and Melky share time with DH or left field or the occasional right field if Gutierrez needs a break. I think that Trayce should be moved to the left field starter for defense and Melky to DH.

Regular day Lineup (my guess would be around 8th- 15th in the league/ a little better than average):

  1. Eaton CF (all my projections) - .287 with 13 homers, 63 RBI and 16 SB

  2. Cabrera DH- .275 with 15 homers, 80 RBI and 2 SB

  3. Abreu 1B- . 289 with 28 homers, 117 RBI and 1 SB

  4. Gutierrez RF- .274 with 24 homers, 91 RBI and 9 SB

  5. Freese 3B- .269 with 16 homers, 79 RBI and 2 SB

  6. Ramirez SS- .262 with 12 homers, 71 RBI and 16 SB

  7. Thompson LF- .271 with 14 homers, 69 RBI and 9 SB

  8. Flowers C- .233 with 8 homers, 29 RBI and 0 SB/ Pierzynski C- .280 with 5 homers, 31 RBI and 0 SB

  9. Sanchez 2B- .241 with 8 homers, 44 RBI and 4 SB

Bench (If Avisail Garcia’s sent to AAA):

  1. Tyler Saladino (used as utility in infield and defense)- .231 with 2 homers , 15 RBI and 9 SB

  2. J.B. Shuck (used as utility in outfield)- .278 with 1, 20 RBI and 7 SB

  3. Leury Garcia (another utility)- .201 with 0 homers, 7 RBI and 8 SB

Starting Rotation (I think what puts this team over the top/ around 3rd-8th in league):

  1. Sale LHP- 2.87 ERA

  2. Quintana LHP- 3.31 ERA

  3. Leake RHP- 3.81 ERA

  4. Rodon LHP- 3. 45 ERA

  5. Buehrle LHP- 3.98 ERA

Bullpen (with better years from Duke and Robertson; at least 5th-10th in the league)

  1. Robertson CL- 2. 83 ERA and 38 saves

  2. Albers RHP- 2.02 ERA

  3. Putnam RHP- 3.32 ERA

  4. Duke LHP- 2.89 ERA

  5. Jones RHP- 3.42 ERA

  6. Jennings LHP- 3.89 ERA

  7. Carroll RHP (if SP out early in game)- 3.68 ERA

With this 25 man roster, with only spending around 130 million, this is a contender already and this seems pretty reasonable to me as I said above. They would most likely have an above average/ average offense, a top 5 rotation, and a top 10 bullpen. With this team, they have veteran leadership, speed, pitching, and an improved defense; all things that help win in October. I believe this is already a 2nd place AL central team getting at least a wild card spot and maybe passing the Royals.

Finally, I know that the Sox have a good chance of trading one of their young pitchers for position players but I think they don’t need to win with this plan. They can save their pitching for later trades when needed during the year or just save them for a later trade or later in their career. Erik Johnson didn’t really work out the first year he came up, so why not give him some more time to be safe. If someone gets injured, they have the depth to fill it almost like it never happened. Thanks for reading.

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