10-12-2011: Epstein to join the Cubs

If you haven’t heard it by now, Theo Epstein to the Cubs is pretty much a done deal at five years and between $15-20M. He will assume GM duties there, but he will be given basically free reign and report to only one person. It’s hard to blame him for wanting the opportunity Chicago offers, with a bigger market, a high-profile team, and a chance to make history – again. Still, if I were him, I don’t think I would want to leave a team like this, after the biggest September collapse in Major League history.

From what was reported, the front office was trying desperately to keep Epstein, but he’s had issues with them before about having more autonomy. On the bright side, the Sox stand to gain compensation for letting him leave a year early. It looks like it will be a high-profile prospect and cash, and names like RF Brett Jackson and SP Andrew Cashner have been mentioned. I’d be glad to add either of those guys to our organization; both of those are areas of need.

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Links 12-7-2010: State of the Sox, bullpen, right-handed bat, Gonzalez, Miller, depth signings

Theo Epstein delivered his yearly “State of the Sox” address yesterday, and noted the need for relief pitching and possibly adding a right-handed bat. He didn’t mention catcher, though I’m sure he’ll pick one up if the right opportunity presents itself.

I still think Scott Downs is the top option available, primarily because he’s pitched successfully in the AL East for a long time. He’s also a solid lefty who can get righties out as well, a la Hideki Okajima, ca 2008. Other names that have been mentioned include Koji Uehara, Brian Fuentes, Matt Guerrier, and Ron Mahay. Notice there are a lot of lefties named here. I think two quality lefty relievers is a must in this division.

The Red Sox are indeed showing interest in both Magglio Ordonez and Josh Willingham, right-handed hitting outfielders who could handle left field and fill in for J.D. Drew when he is out.

As we surmised, it seems the Sox have an agreement in place with newly-acquired 1B Adrian Gonzalez which would extend him for 7 years and $154M. For those of you who just can’t get enough Gonzalez Kool-Aid, here’s an interesting post featuring Katron.org’s batted ball park projector.

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11-19-2010: Crazy offseason scenario number 1

All of this Justin Upton talk has me thinking. The Red Sox need two bats to replace Adrian Beltre and Victor Martinez, and it’s generally thought that we will likely sign a free agent corner outfielder (Jayson Werth or Carl Crawford) and a corner infielder. What if, instead of blowing $100M on two good but aging players, we fill those spots via trade for good young players, utilizing our top prospects? Stay with me here.

Step 1. Send Clay Buchholz, Daniel Bard and Josh Reddick to Arizona for Justin Upton

I know, you’re saying WHAT? But hear me out.

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Links 12-17-2009: More Adrian talk, more on Lackey and Cameron, and more

Adrian Gonzalez thinks he will be traded to the Red Sox in the next ten days, claims Jorge Arangure of ESPN.com. Ken Rosenthal says that the Sox are “working hard” to land the first baseman, but the talks don’t seem to be going anywhere as of now. He suggests that Jed Hoyer wants a package including Clay Buchholz and one of Casey Kelly or Ryan Westmoreland back in any deal, and that latter demand has been a sticking point for Theo Epstein. John Tomase says that the rumors are way overblown at this point, and I think I agree that this deal may not happen until July.

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Links 12-04-2009: Jason McLeod leaving

Sox scouting director Jason McLeod has decided to leave for San Diego to join his friend Jed Hoyer as assistant GM. Everyone knows that the Sox have done a great job with the draft, and there is some reason for concern going forward. But it’s important to note that the Sox have drafted based on recommendations from a large group of scouts and talent evaluators. As long as we don’t lose too many more in baseball ops, we should be okay.

Links: Sox to meet with Beckett, Hazen staying, AFL update

The Red Sox plan to meet with Josh Beckett to discuss his future with Boston. This is a contract year, and I wouldn’t mind seeing him locked up for a 2-3 more seasons.

Despite interviewing with the San Diego Padres and their new GM Jed Hoyer, director of player development Mike Hazen has decided to stay with Boston. That’s despite the fact that Hazen was a player in the Padres’ system at one time; that’s an encouragement.

Dustin Richardson has been selected to the AFL All-Star team. After his star dimmed a bit over the last year or so, the lefty looked impressive with the Sox this year and is throwing harder than ever. Casey Kelly and Jose Iglesias are splitting time at shortstop, and Kelly hopes to decide soon – offense or defense?

Hot Stove 2010: Trading for Adrian Gonzalez

It seems that an Adrian Gonzalez trade is drumming up the most excitement in Red Sox Nation so far, so let’s formulate an off-season plan revolving around acquiring him from Jed Hoyer’s Padres. Hoyer has noted that a contract extension with Gonzalez is “definitely on the docket”, and he would like to keep him playing for his native San Diego; however with A-Gonz in line for a major free agent deal after 2011, it makes you wonder if the Padres and their $40M payroll will be able to hang on to him much longer (former Padres GM Kevin Towers agrees). Okay, so here’s fantasy off-season plan A (for Adrian):

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