Hot Stove 2010: The shortstop situation, more on Halladay, Sox acquire Hulett

The Toronto Blue Jays signed Alex Gonzalez this week to a one-year deal for $2.75M. They also hold a $2.5M option for 2011. The Sox reportedly had offered one year and $3M, but they weren’t ready to sign Gonzalez without checking out their other options at the upcoming Winter Meetings, so they lost him. This is one case in which Boston’s circumspection hurt them. Some see Marco Scutaro as the only remaining viable option on the free agent market, but he’s 34 and coming off of a career year (he has mentioned Boston as one of his top choices). Don’t be surprised if the Sox try to get a younger shortstop via trade rather than give an overpriced three-year deal to Scutaro and a first-round pick to Toronto.

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2009-11-17 Links: Minor league free agents, Adrian Gonzalez, Hermida

The Red Sox lost a number of players to minor league free agency this week. These players are no longer a part of the organization, though I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of them come back:

P Devern Hansack, P Charlie Zink, P Jose Vadequano, SS Angel Chavez, SS Iggy Suarez, P Dave McKae, 2B Travis Denker, P Jarod Plummer, P Derrick Loop, OF Brad Correll

The Red Sox also lost a number of players when they were taken off the 40-man roster and they opted for free agency:

RP Takashi Saito, RP Javier Lopez, 2B Nick Green, C George Kottaras, 1B/OF Jeff Bailey, 2B Gil Velasquez, RP Marcus McBeth, RP Billy Traber, RP Enrique Gonzalez

No one expected Saito to return, but the loss of lefties Lopez and Traber means that we have to sign at least one lefty reliever this offseason. There are a number of quality major league free agents available, and names like Casey Fossum and Chris Capuano are available as minor league free agents.

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The Case for Hank Blalock

Alright, I’ve had some time to think this through, and I think the Sox should go after Hank Blalock. Here are some of my reasons why:

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7/20/09 Injuries and contingencies

Hallelujah, Jed Lowrie is back! Lowrie appears to be healthy, but as the Sox are wont to do, they will bring him along cautiously, and platoon him with Nick Green for a while. Along with that move, Julio Lugo has been DFA’d to make room on the roster. Whether he is released or traded, the Red Sox will be eating the rest of his contract. Give Theo some credit for admitting his mistake in signing Lugo to an inflated 4-year deal.

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Lowell mending, Dice-K taking it slow, Lowrie’s knee a problem

Mike Lowell says he feels better after being placed on the DL last week, and he will be hitting off of a tee starting today. Jeff Bailey was recalled in Lowell’s absence, but he may now go on the DL as well, probably opening the door for Chris Carter to see some time. Carter has been struggling since being sent back to Pawtucket back in April.

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How do you replace David Ortiz?

David Ortiz continues to struggle, even though it seems as if he is hitting some balls harder recently. I don’t think he is done done, but he is certainly hurting the team. Now that we are two months in, it is time to seriously start considering trade options and what they might cost. Unless Papi goes on the DL for 60 days, I think we should look at a right-handed platoon mate for Ortiz, or else a left-handed outfielder who can slot into left and allow the defensively challenged Jason Bay to DH. Here’s a quick rundown of candidates that have been mentioned and what they might cost:

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Links: Sox on the mend, Francona’s health

Mark Kotsay. Now that’s a name you haven’t heard much of lately. But Kotsay is scheduled to return to the Major League roster this Tuesday. It looks like Jeff Bailey’s run as our 1B/OF reserve is over, unless something unexpected happens, like David Ortiz hits the DL or something like that.

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