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Robbie Ross Jr., Red Sox Agree to 1-Year Contract Worth $1.25 Million

By on January 30, 2016 at 8:31am
ross Photo Credit: http://www.zimbio.com

Another day, another salary arbitration hearing avoided. Friday, relief pitcher Robbie Ross Jr. signed a 1-year contract with the Boston Red Sox worth $1.25 million.

In addition, Ross may be eligible for a $25,000 performance bonus if he takes the mound 60 times or pitches 60 innings.

Continue reading Robbie Ross Jr., Red Sox Agree to 1-Year Contract Worth $1.25 Million »

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Meet the Prospects: Anderson Espinoza

January 30, 2016 at 5:04pm in Boston, Red Sox

I have to be honest, I have a really hard time following and writing about the NBA. Even when it is the Celtics. I’ve written a couple posts about them, but I’m just lack the same passion that I have for baseball. So, in response to this epiphany, I have decided to start a new weekly segment leading up to spring training focused on Red Sox prospects. These are some guys that Red Sox Nation should keep their eyes on in this spring and in the coming years. Because of all the hype Yoan Moncada has gotten since his signing I will skip him and save you the redundancy by simply saying: he is a really promising prospect. To lead off the series this week’s post will feature Venezuelan RHP Anderson Espinoza, who was recently rated the #39 on the 2016 MLB Top Prospect List.

The Red Sox signed the 16-year old Espinoza for $1.8 million in the summer of 2014. At the time he threw his fastball 90-92, with a decent slider and makings of a change-up. This past season at 17 years of age, his first as a professional in the United States, he was sitting 94-96 on the gun and touching 98. Pretty good for the equivalent of a junior in high school.

Espinoza has a wiry build at 6 feet tall and 170 pounds, but looks like natural athlete on the mound. From the windup he as a simple low leg rock with an ever-so-slight pause at the top before he break his hands. This simple, efficient motion helps him repeat his delivery well for someone his age. Up to this point in his life he has been able to rely heavily on his explosive fastball without much need for a secondary pitch, and had a thorough debut in Rookie and low Class-A ball last year to the tone of a combined 2.16 ERA in the 15 starts. The next step in his progression will be to put on some muscle, develop a feel for his change-up and, like every young pitcher, improve his command of all three pitches.

Red Sox fans should not expect Espinoza to debut at Fenway Park anytime soon. He needs to put on some muscle and develop a pitcher not just a thrower. He will likely need time in Class-A ball for a year, but even that may still keep him on pace to debut at Fenway before his first legal beer. Expect him to start the year in Greenville with the chance of promotion to Salem by the end of the season. Plans for Espinoza are long term because he is so young, but with a special talent like his the sky is the limit.

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david price  globe

For the second year in a row, the Red Sox franchise’s Winter Weekend allowed fans, players, media, and management to come together and report on their off-season activities.

Hanley Ramirez declared he was working on his skills towards what he feels will be an “easy” transition from left field to first base. Since so much has been written about the Ramirez move, I’ll just say I will believe it when I see it. Less vertical box jumps posted to Instagram and more footwork and ball-handling drills, would be my advice to Hanley. Both are the secret to success at first base. Just ask Mike Napoli.

Continue reading Winter Weekend Yields Positive News from Dombrowski on Price, and More »

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Junichi Tazawa and the Boston Red Sox narrowly avoided arbitration, coming to an agreement on Wednesday night. This contract is not guaranteed by the Red Sox. Tazawa stands to make approximately $3.375 million in the 2016 season.

Continue reading Junichi Tazawa Avoids Arbitration, Comes to An Agreement With Sox »

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Travis Shaw (Kathy Willens/Associated Press)

By now just about everyone knows that the Red Sox are going to throw Hanley Ramirez out at first base in 2016 and hope for the best. The good part about that plan is that Ramirez can’t possibly be worse at first than he was in Left Field in 2015, so there is nowhere to go but up. One aspect of this move that seems to have gone unnoticed is the status of incumbent First baseman Travis Shaw.

Shaw played well in his limited sample of plate appearances in 2015, but it appears that there is not much room for him to take an expanded role on the 2016 Red Sox. This may actually be a positive for now, as Shaw’s success last season surprised just about everyone, given his lack of flashy tools and mediocre minor league numbers (.249/.318/.356 in Triple-A in 2015). In fact, Shaw finished the season hitting fifth in the Red Sox order and was relied upon as one of their better run producers in the month of September, yet is still going into the 2016 season without a major role. Is this because the Red Sox basically had nowhere else to put Ramirez defensively, or because they do not believe Shaw can sustain his breakout going forward? Let’s answer the latter question by doing a quick comparison of two players in their rookie seasons with the Red Sox:

Continue reading What to Expect from Travis Shaw »

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The Red Sox announced on Monday that they plan to retire former third-baseman Wade Boggs’ number, 26, during the 2016 season. He went on to play for the New York Yankees for four years and ended his career with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in 1999.

Continue reading Red Sox to Retire Wade Boggs’ Number… But is it the Right Thing to do? »

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David Price (left) & Dave Dombrowski (Winslow Townson/Associated Press)

The Boston Red Sox had a variety of options in finding an ace this offseason. The free agent market featured several top of the rotation pitchers, and the trade market (allegedly) features other pitchers who would easily feature as any team’s ace. The Red Sox ended up making David Price the richest pitcher in history and they were smart to do so, as Price made the most sense of any available ace. While the contract is obviously exorbitant, signing Price cost the Red Sox nothing but money; no prospect cost in trade, and no draft pick loss since Price was traded in-season.

Another pitcher in that tier is Johnny Cueto. Cueto, like Price, would have cost the Red Sox nothing but a sizeable financial commitment since he was a free agent that also was traded during the season. Some are saying that the Red Sox would have been better off signing Cueto since his agreement with the Giants came in $87 million shorter than the Red Sox commitment to Price. Adding to that sentiment is a report that the Red Sox were Cueto’s preferred destination, due in large part to his admiration of Red Sox legend Pedro Martinez.

Continue reading Red Sox Smartly Chose Price Over Cueto »

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