By now, you’ve heard the news. The Sox have signed Hanley Ramirez to a 4 year, $88 million deal with a vesting option of another $22 mil in the final year. They’re also about to sign Pablo Sandoval to a 5 year deal of probably about $100 million.
The question going around New England today, and rightfully so, is where Hanley will play. He can apparently move to the outfield, but he would become the 87th outfielder there. Yeonis Cespedes would likely be the one traded… nevermind, you’ve heard that before also.
So let me try to say one thing that you might not have heard: Ben Cherrington is clearly following the Daryl Morey strategy of “Just Collect Assets.” Cherrington is betting that he can cash in those assets in order to actually fill the needs that the Sox will have, aka starting pitching. And the strategy seems like it should work much easier in the MLB than NBA, where the rosters are greater and it’s easier to trade for a starting pitcher like Mat Latos than a superstar like, say, Dwight Howard.
Also, to break down the signings themselves, I asked what the Red Sox should pay Sandoval, and I said that my limit for 5 years would be $115 million, so by those standards, the Sox are getting a good deal. With the Hanley deal… Hanley is 2.5 years older than Sandoval, and he’ll be playing a less important position, and I don’t think he’s as good of a player as Kung Fu Panda, despite what many others, and the dollars themselves, might think. But to pay a guy for only 4 years, you have to pay extra per year, so the deal becomes worth it.
My heart doesn’t usually get in the way of my head. In fact, it was Daryl Morey himself who said “You can’t afford to be emotional.” But I really, really want Jon Lester on the 2015 squad. Hopefully the owners feel that there’s enough cash left for him, and then this offseason will have been awesome.