Under $170M and improved (perikson’s offseason plan)

PREAMBLE

The sox are a lock to win the division. They won 93 games without Jimenez and Robert for most of the year. I’d expect a lot more from Jimenez next year and for Robert to pick up where he left off. With my plan I wanted to provide better defense and also help against RHP which was a problem for the right-handed heavy lineup. I did this without moving any major pieces from the major league team and no large free agent deals. I also didn’t trade Vaughn and found someone to provide cheap value for the short term in the case that Vaughn still struggles.

ARBITRATION-ELIGIBLE PLAYERS

  • Lucas Giolito: $7.9M- Tender.
  • Reynaldo López; $2.8M- Tender.
  • Evan Marshall: $2.3M- Non Tender. Due to TJ would give a minor league deal.
  • Adam Engel: $2.2M- Tender.
  • Brian Goodwin: $1.7M- Non Tender.
  • Jimmy Cordero: $1.2M- Non Tender.
  • Jace Fry: $1M- Non Tender.

CLUB OPTIONS

  • Craig Kimbrel: $16M ($1M buyout)- Pick up.
  • César Hernández: $6M- Decline.

OTHER IMPENDING FREE AGENTS

  • Leury García (Made $3.5M in 2021)- Let go.
  • Carlos Rodón ($3M)- Resign
  • Billy Hamilton ($1M)- Let go.
  • Ryan Tepera ($950K)- Resign

FREE AGENTS

No. 1: Carlos Rodon (2/30m). Breakdown of $10/20. The second year is a vesting option at 130 IP. I think this is a good deal for both sides. Rodon gets a big jump in pay for someone who hasn’t ever pitched an entire season. If he can repeat his 2021 a vesting option kicks in which would pay him as a top 15 AAV for a SP. Rodon seems to really like playing in Chicago judging by him taking a smaller offer this offseason and this gives him some short term security while also possibly getting one last pay day at age 31.This is risky, but if the sox manage his innings and occasionally skip starts it could work.

No. 2: Ryan Tepera (2/12m). Breakdown of $5/7(500k buyout). Tepera has no track record of success outside of a decent 2017 and 2021. I don’t know how many multiyear offers he would get so I would add a club option for year 2.

TRADES

No. 1: Trade Bryan Ramos and Micker Adolfo for Tony Kemp and Lou Trivino. Oakland looks like they might be signaling a full rebuild with Melvin leaving for the Padres job. The Sox struggled with right-handed pitching last year and have a right-handed heavy lineup. Kemp puts another lefty bat in the lineup (130 WRC+ vs RHP). He mostly played 2B replacing Marcus Semien, but also played LF and was a solid defender there. I’d be shocked if the sox moved Vaughn and this move should bolster the team in the short term and offer some insurance in multiple positions, but not prevent them from getting Vaughn playing time.

No. 2: Trade Bryce Bush for Elias Diaz. Can’t have Collins/Zavala as the backup next year. Diaz is a good defensive catcher who won’t embarrass himself at the plate, by any means (92 WRC+ vs both RHP and LHP).

No. 3: Trade Craig Kimbrel and cash(4m) for Adam Frazier and Dinelson Lamet. Exchanging two deadline flops. Kimbrel has a history of being an above average to elite closer. I don’t know why he struggled so much in Chicago, but it seems he has to be closing games. The Padres need a closer and won’t be able to find anyone better than Kimbrel especially without adding significant money to an already bloated payroll. Sox get another lefty bat (117 WRC+ vs RHP) and solid defender to fill the gap at 2B. They also bring back Lamet who has had trouble staying healthy and likely moves to the bullpen. I would use Lamet to reduce the innings Rodon has to pitch.

No. 4: Trade Dallas Keuchel (plus 5m), Jared Kelly, Andrew Dalquist and Chase Krogman for Alex Speas. Pure salary dump. Texas only had two pitchers throw more than 130IP in 2021. At the very least Keuchel can eat innings and possibly be flipped in July.

SUMMARY

C: Grandal
1B: Abreu/Vaughn
2B: Frazier
SS: Anderson
3B: Moncada
LF: Kemp/Vaughn
CF: Robert
RF: Jimenez
DH: Sheets/Vaughn

UT: Engel
UT: Gonzalez
UT: Vaughn
UT: Diaz

SP: Giolito
SP: Lynn
SP: Cease
SP: Rodon
SP: Kopech

RP: Hendricks
RP: Crochet
RP: Bummer
RP: Trivino
RP: Tepera
RP: Lopez
RP: Lamet
RP: Ruiz

Payroll: $170.45

Defense and struggles against RHP were the two most obvious flaws with this team. I addressed both of those issues with low cost options that didn’t require a large contract or giving up high end assets. The sox haven’t handed out many large contracts and I would highly doubt they would be in the market for a Semien type player. I feel all of these moves are pretty realistic and fit into the 170m payroll. If the team still has obvious flaws they can use guys like Vaughn, Cespedes, Adolfo, Montgomery or Kath to fill those holes in July.

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Ben

Totally agree that the A’s are open for business. Trivino and Kemp would be great fits.

I think the Padres would be open to moving Frazier as well. That disappointing player swap makes a lot of sense. Paying the extra money for Lamet makes a lot of sense too. Him, Lopez, Kopech, and Rodon would probably combine to be healthy enough to fill out the back end of the rotation.

andyfaust

I like the Oakland trade as well and I would jump all over the SD trade if they were interested. My only real complaint is the lack of impact FA’s (no i don’t count Tepera and Rodon), but for $170M, what can you expect? I agree that you have probably improved the team by staying at $170M, albeit modestly. It will take real creativity via trade such as this to improve the club and stay at the money limit. The easy solution is to exceed the money limit, but you did the hard work and stuck to 170, good job.

metasox

Seems llike a well-reasoned plan. Starting rotation depth is hard problem to address, but Lamet would at least fall into the rotation depth chart

GrabSomeBench

I like you’re thinking but I wonder if Kemp is any better than Garcia. They seem like similar players and Garcia gives you the switch hitting ability and backup shortstop ability that Kemp lacks. Like the SD trade, however.