2-7-2011: Sox add Reyes to bullpen options, announce NRIs

The Red Sox announced the signing of veteran left-hander Dennys Reyes to a minor league deal this weekend. Should he make the big league club and play a lot, he could earn $1.4M in 2011.

A 34-year old this coming season, Reyes has played 14 years of MLB, and been mostly a journeyman LOOGY reliever. A strong groundball pitcher (career 50.0%), he throws a 90 mph fastball and a good slider, and has a show-me changeup that he will throw to righties. Reyes has always posted decent strikeout rates, but he walks a lot of hitters (as most lefty relievers do). He should be a solid, if unspectacular, option. We project him for about 40 innings and a 3.94 ERA.

Reyes’ signing makes it more likely that the Sox will employ Felix Doubront as a starter, rather than using him in the bullpen. The Sox now have several Major League-caliber lefty options after Hideki Okajima, including Andrew Miller, Randy Williams, Rich Hill, and Reyes.

Non-Roster Invitees

The Sox announced their list of NRIs for this year. As I’ve noted earlier, I like the way that they’ve focused on younger players with some upside as well as veterans who should contribute.

Links 12-1-2010: The plan forming, Victor as a DH, compensation picks, trading Scutaro, Guerrier, Parraz, Spring Training schedule

It’s starting to look like a near certainty that the Red Sox will sign one of either Jayson Werth or Carl Crawford. As I’ve said before, I like the idea of adding Werth as a long-term right-handed bat with some punch, though Crawford would be a good add as well. Werth is pretty good on defense as well, while Crawford is stellar in that category. Signing either would go a long way towards replacing the offense we’ve lost from last year’s team.

Yes, it’s been a slow offseason so far, but before you start complaining about how the Sox never spend money, read¬†this.¬†They are simply waiting it out. Werth is a Boras client, so any offer made now would simply be used as leverage to drive up the price. Werth will almost certainly not sign before Christmas, and may even hold out until late January.

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Links 3-31-2010: Sox sign Padron, Spring winding down

The front office is keeping us busy as we come down the stretch to Opening Day. The Red Sox are set to sign Cuban OF Jorge Padron to a minor league contract with a reported $350k signing bonus. It was first tweeted here. Padron, who defected in 2009, is regarded as a good contact hitter from the left side, but does not have much pop.

Casey Kelly made his first career Spring start, and looked good against the Rays. He threw 61 pitches, striking out four and allowing two runs on four hits. It was a decent three innings against a good lineup. Prospect Anthony Rizzo also showed why he is a top prospect at 1B, collecting three hits and bashing a HR off Rays closer Rafael Soriano. Another good sign: the Red Sox were playing smart out on the field as well as hustling and playing good ball.

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Links 3-30-2010: Tazawa to have surgery, Lowell, pitching notes

After consulting with Dr. James Andrews, it looks like Junichi Tazawa may need to undergo elbow ligament surgery. As we’ve seen in a greater and greater number of pitchers, Tommy John surgery is nothing to fret about, expect for the fact that it pushes back a player’s development by about a season.

The Texas Rangers may be revisiting a trade for Mike Lowell, months after nixing a deal because of thumb surgery. For those out there who keep saying that the Sox were trading Lowell for a bag of balls back then, they weren’t. They were willing to pay $9M or more because they were getting a quality prospect back in Max Ramirez. As much as all parties want Lowell to move on, they won’t give him up for free.

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Links 3-29-2010: Sox won’t go long with Beckett, get Schoenweis and Frandsen

Gordon Edes reports that the Sox are not willing to extend the same contract to Josh Beckett that was given to John Lackey this offseason. The difference seems to be in their concerns long-term about his shoulder; whereas Lackey had tricep and elbow issues the past two years, he seems to be healthy again. As a result, the Sox want to limit any deal to four years, rather than commit a fifth year to Beckett. Peter Abraham speculates that a four-year deal could be worth about $66M.

Soon after releasing lefty Brian Shouse the other day, the Sox signed LHP Scott Schoenweis to a minor league contract. Brian MacPherson at the ProJo gives us the slash lines of lefty hitters against Schoenweis since 2005. Pretty impressive. Apparently he has always wanted to play for the Sox. A widower and single father with four young kids, I do wish him the best of luck.

The Red Sox also made a deal with the Giants for infielder Kevin Frandsen this week. He’s not the strongest defender, but he’s good enough and he posted a strong .312/.369/.456 line at Triple-A (yes, that is the PCL, where all offense is exaggerated, but still!). Frandsen will in all likelihood fill the role of Jed Lowrie until he is fully recovered from his mononucleosis, which can knock out people for months in severe cases. Dave Cameron gave his take on Frandsen as a good utility infield option, and I don’t have much to add to that.

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Links 03-23-2010: Mauer, Crawford, Westmoreland, roster shuffling

In case you’ve been living in a cave the past few days, Joe Mauer signed a prodigious 8-year extension with the Twins. That means Victor Martinez becomes the top free agent catcher after this year. To his credit, he says that the deal doesn’t change anything for him and that the ball in is in the Red Sox’ court.

While we’re on the topic of next offseason, it looks like if we want Carl Crawford, we’re going to have to outbid New York for him after 2010.

Ryan Westmoreland was able to leave the ICU last week after his brain surgery, and the prognosis looks good going forward.

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Links 3-17-2010: Marlins fishing for Lowell?, Westmoreland update

According to this Miami Herald blog post, the Marlins may have interest in 1B/3B Mike Lowell. Their current depth starters at the corners include Jorge Cantu, who is a decent hitter but not much of a third baseman, and unproven first basemen Gaby Sanchez and Logan Morrison. The Sox have done business with the budget-conscious Marlins in the past, so a deal could conceivably be struck if the Sox eat $9M of Lowell’s salary or more. I wouldn’t get too excited yet, but they are a team in need of a corner infielder.

OF prospect Ryan Westmoreland had successful brain surgery yesterday, and is recovering at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Arizona. His friend and fellow Sox prospect Anthony Rizzo had some comments on the situation.

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