Boston nearing deals with Smoltz, Baldelli

An inexplicable Rickey-less ballot
Heyman: Yanks fielding OF offers, comfortable with Damon

The Red Sox are on the verge of landing themselves a pair of injured players with high upside. Buster Olney reports that John Smoltz, a 20-year veteran of the Braves, will jump leagues and cities. He and the Red Sox are nearing a deal on a one-year, $5.5-million contract. Smoltz will be playing his age 42 season in 2009, and he’s coming off surgery. The Sox don’t expect him back until the end of May, and I wonder how he’ll handle the AL for the first time in his career. Boston, however, can well afford the risk.

Meanwhile, MLBTR directs us to various reports on an impending deal between Rocco Baldelli and the Red Sox. When healthy, Badelli ranks up there with the game’s top outfielders, but he has played just 155 games since the end of 2004. Baldelli received some good news earlier this winter when his mitochondrial disease was revealed to be a misdiagnosis, but he’s not out of the injury woods yet. Again, this is a nice potential low-risk, high-reward signing, but Baldelli shouldn’t be considered more than a role player until he can be healthy for long stretches at a time.

An inexplicable Rickey-less ballot
Heyman: Yanks fielding OF offers, comfortable with Damon
  • christopher

    i knew smoltz wasnt going to take more than petitte to sign – nearly same contract but smoltz’s is only half garunteed

    and they are signing baldelli.

    these are the type of moves the yankees made in the late 90s. Penny and smoltz may both be question marks, but the sox will have 6 quality starters going into next year and with all the spending the yankees still start the year essentially with 2 rookies on inning caps in the rotation.

    bad move not jumping on at least smoltz if not both of these guys. great signings by boston low risk/high reward and i already see smoltz winning big games in september

    not the end of the world but a shame the yanks werent aggresive on these guys and to see them go to boston hurts

    • Reggie C.

      I’m surprised Atlanta didn’t ante up more guaranteed money. Unless there’s something in Smoltz’s med report that the ATL docs didn’t like, if Smoltz is healthy there are going to be alot of pple questioning Whren on this one.

      • huuz

        this is a valid point. why would the braves pass on smoltz for a modest salary, when they are desperate for SP?

        • A.D.

          Braves don’t have the money to throw around like the Sox, if they spend 5-6M they want a sure thing

          • huuz

            i’m curious, what type of “sure thing” FA SP are you going to get for $5M? SPs like that are going to give you an ERA of 6, or worse.

            • A.D.

              By sure thing it was more, lack of injury concern, will pitch for you. Basically they may have to risk ceiling to raise the floor. My guess is they want to keep as much payroll flexibility as possible, and take less risks.

              Example would be say they need a starter by the break, they could go an trade for a guy like Washburn who is no Smoltz obviously, but will likely stay healthy and give innings… the financial cost for a half year rental of Washburn…just over 5M.

              • Mike Pop

                Good point.

              • the most felonious vocalist in the wide world of showbusiness

                So Smoltz only has to give you a “half year” in order to justify 5 million guaranteed salary, right? He got 5.5M from the Sox and you’re proposing that 5M and whoever you have to trade to get Washburn is worthwhile. By that logic you only need half a year from Smoltz to make it worthwhile even if you assume that he’ll only produce at Jarrod Washburn’s level over that half a season.

          • christopher

            reallly think they didnt want him back and decided as such. you would think smoltz would have even given them a hometown discount after playing ther for 20 years

            i think they are smiling today. they wanted to get youger in SP and didnt want him back and now he left on his terms – not theirs

      • christopher

        that is the only thing that I am counting on – that Atlanta has a track record of knowing their own players especially pitchers. they made it clear to smoltz during the winter meetings that he shouldnt hesitate to take a good offer showing me that they wanted him to leave via free agency rather than be stuck in a bernie williiams type situation where they have to tell smoltz they dont want him back publicly and create a PR nightmare.

    • Steve S

      I can see your argument on both. Smoltz would be interesting but he doesnt have the same allure as Pettitte and that contract is a lot more appropriate for a guy who had arm problems last year and is 42. Pettitte’s greatest attribute is that you know he can give you 200 league average innings. Smoltz has a higher upside but its likely he wont be able to pitch until May and then you dont even know how healthy he can stay. I can forgive them for this, it doesnt necessarily have to be Hughes in the fifth spot, there are plenty of guys for that fifth spot still available.

      But PLEASE stop with the late 90’s stuff. How many 42 year injured arm starters were the Yankees signing back then? Sounds more like the mid-2000’s. As for Baldelli it would have been interesting but he might only be a fourth outfielder at this stage considering his health and the Yankees happen to have two guys in Cabrera and Gardner for that role. Not to mention as constituted, including Melky and Gardner, they have six outfielders (Damon, Nady, Swisher, Mastui, Melky and Gardner).

      • christopher

        speaking more toward the pitching depth and going into camp with 6-7 veterans

        wells – the second time he came around

        el duque, doc gooden

        stawberry = baldelli

        • jsbrendog

          el duque was young when he came in, he is smotlz’s age ish now so he obv wasnt back then. duh

          wellls the second time aroudn wasnt that old either, as he is also now around the same age if not younger than smoltz. and since neither of them are getting signed this yr, but 10 yrs ago, you nare wrong.

          gooden possibly but remember he was only like 21-22 in 86 when they won, so 13 yrs later to be signed in 99 he would have been…drum roll please…..34-36.

          • christopher

            he also didnt pitch for years and was a coke head that the yankees took a chance on. you are correct he wasnt 42, but was taking a chance on him any different than taking a chance on smoltz.

            to me a coke head who hasnt pitched in years is a bigger gamble than a guy who was effective 2 years ago

            focus on the age like a moron – i am talking about the element f risk vs. reward that these players offer

            • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

              Don’t call anyone else a moron around here.

              • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                Yes. Corky Simpson is a moron. We may disagree on things around here, but nobody who posts on RAB is Corky-Simpson-level dumb.

        • steve (different one)

          right, except Smoltz won’t be “in camp”.

          i’d say there is only a 50% chance that he pitches effectively at all this year.

    • steve (different one)

      Baldelli grew up a Red Sox fan. his family is in Rhode Island.

      sometimes a player just wants to go to a certain team.

      • christopher

        perfectly valid point and I agree with you. I think he had his mind up where he was going if the money was right. i live down in tampa now and i know the fans here loved him and wanted him back and i think the rays did as well, but as you say he is from RI and wanted to be a red sock.

        he could work out well for them but that is a huge if and this signing is just a total fishing expedition hoping to get lucky. maybe he is their next ortiz but more likely, he never even plays a game for them.

        feel for the guy because he has such talent, but cant stay healthy for reasons beyond his control. that is a shame

    • Sweet Dick Willie

      but the sox will have 6 quality starters going into next year

      Um, except that Smoltz will be out until at least June, at which time he will be 42 years old.

      So I guess it all depends on you definitions of “quality” and “going into”.

    • deadrody

      Great signings ? Hardly “great”. Not even close, really.

      Regardless of these signings, I think you are over-estimating the “quality” of their rotation. Look at Dice-Ks residuals. He was incredibly lucky or his defense was otherwordly. Wakefield ? At some point the AARP is oging to come take him away. And I’ll believe Lester is for real after he does it for more than 1 season.

      The only one that stands out is Beckett, and in 3 years in Boston, he’s had 1 that is consistent with his “ace” status. His overall ERA in Boston is 4.11.

      And you can worry all you want about “innings caps”, but Joba had a VORP of 33 in just 100 innings. That’s as good or better than Wakefield and Beckett in their 181 and 174 innings, respectively.

      That leaves one spot and the Sox right now have two – what you call “quality” starters, but both of them are coming off injuries.

      Color me unconcerned

    • Let’s Talk About TEX Baby

      These are two good low-risk, high reward signings for the Red Sox. They don’t shift the balance of power in the east. They don’t make up for the Sox not getting Tex. They’re just two good signings that might work out. I know I don’t look forward to the prospect, unlikely as it may be, of facing a healthy 1-2 punch from Beckett and Smoltz in the playoffs. As for Baldelli, he’s still got a huge upside but I don’t see where he’ll get the playing time for the Red Sox.

  • jsbrendog

    john smoltz at age 42 n the al east foer the first time facing the rays/yanks many times a yr? color me skeptical….

    • Reggie C.

      Assuming good health, Smoltz is a way superior bet than Penny to put up really solid SP numbers. Good pitchers pitch well anywhere. The Penny signing didn’t bother me. This one sorta does.

      • steve (different one)

        sure. but “assuming good health” is 90% of the argument.

        he currently is unhealthy. he’s 42 years old.

        if you are a Red Sox fan would you rather:

        1. have Masterson or Buchholz at the back of your rotation and used the $10-15M they spent on Penny on Smoltz to make sure you leave that meeting with Teixeira’s signature

        2. have 2 pitchers coming off of serious shoulder injuries

        • christopher

          i think the sox will do what they have done the past 2 or 3 years and work their rookies in slowly and rotate the final spots of the rotation

          as they did with lester and bucholz 2 years ago.

          • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

            And what about what they did with Buchholz one year ago when he was a total bomb? Or are you just ignoring that for the sake of your pro-Smoltz argument?

            • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

              Not sure what last year has to do with his argument. He was speaking on two years ago.

              • deadrody

                I don’t think you can ignore last year regardless of the context of the argument when you are talking about the hideous season Bucholz had last year.

  • christopher

    if you are the type you believes in guts and grinding and after watching comey his last few seasons and el duque for so long, i do – than this is a guy who can play on this stage even at 42.

    his stuff still looked very good last season and he can always drop into the bullpen to pitch the 7th or 8th if necessary. at one inning a time he would be great.

    so they take a gamble on his health and stuff, but a good one because its not a ton of garunteed money, they can wait until may if not june to bring him up, and have the relief experience to fall back on

    • Nady Nation

      Aren’t you gonna throw it back to SportsCenter, Peter?

      • christopher

        ha ha

        cant help it – sorry. loved both of these guys at the start of the offseason and was dying for the yankees to take a flier on them

        • Nady Nation

          Yea, it sucks that they’ve only netted Teix, CC, and Burnett so far. Why isn’t Cashman more on top of things?

          • jsbrendog

            yeah fire that asshole. suxor.

          • christopher

            so the team is perfect now – nothing left to do?

            it is okay to go in with 2 guys who wont give you more than 150 IP best case scenario when you just invested 1/2 billion on the team.

            i never killed cashman for not getting these guys. yes i am dissappointed that they didnt get a look and if given the choice between the yankees and red sox offseason of course i choose the yankees. i applaud cashman for what he has done, but does the fact that he does done a great job mean that i am not allowed to be dissapointed that they didnt sign one guy?

            • steve (different one)

              the point is that you want them to sign EVERYONE.

              it’s just not realistic.

              • christopher

                no it isnt. that i wanted them to sign an injured starter off the scrap heap is unrealistic?

                wow – i guess i am rooting for the rays now.

                this isnt a star free agent and i am not pissed at them for not getting him just think he would have been a great pick up.

                do you see me calling for them to sign any of the expensive guys left out. NO

                in fact i wanted this injured guy for 5 million more than andy for 10 million precisely because i know they cant have a 300 million dollar payroll.

                saying i want them to get EVERYONE because i wanted smoltz is ridicuous

                • steve (different one)

                  i thought you were the person who still wanted them to sign Manny. perhaps i am confused. if so, i apologize.

                • christopher

                  before they signed Tex and when it seemed very unlikely that they would, yes i wanted manny and i mentioned that often.

                  have I said i wanted manny since 12/23 – no i havent

                • steve (different one)

                  like i said, i misremembered. my bad.

                • christopher

                  sorry – if i came off like an ass. people just went off on here because I said i was dissapointed that they didnt sign smotz as if it was some type of attack on the yankees or cashman.

                • Mike Pop

                  That is because we got 3 of the top 5 FA’s on the market and you sounded like you were bitching about a guy who might not even be able to pitch this season…lol

                  It’s all good, I would of liked to take a flier on him too but 5.5 is just too much to gaurantee him. Go get Saito for 2 million or so. That is what I want to see.

            • Nady Nation

              I agree with you that we need another starter. But I don’t think not signing Smoltz, who won’t even be available for the first 2 months of the year, is that big of a disappointment. Also…

              “it is okay to go in with 2 guys who wont give you more than 150 IP best case scenario when you just invested 1/2 billion on the team.”

              Yet, you don’t want to give Pettitte an extra few mil? Pettitte has a much better chance of giving more innings and having a bigger impact than Smoltz this season

              • christopher

                sayinf i am dissapointed does not mean that I am mad, wont watch games, or even think they screwed up.

                i like the guy and think he was a perfect fit because he could split time with hughes and joba. everyone is making this out to be a much much bigger deal than it is.

                is john smoltz the key to a ring? no he isnt. I just think he would have been a good investment at 5 million moreso to take pressure off hughes and joba (who are much more important to the team) than anything else

                • Nady Nation

                  I think you’re assuming Smoltz is MOST LIKELY going to be healthy, which isn’t such a safe assumption, as s.d.o. has mentioned.

                • christopher

                  it is more the thinking that it is worth a 5 million dollar gamble because I do think he will be healthy enough to give you 15 – 20 decent, better than ponson starts which the yanks will need and i dont want to see another rasner or ponson.

                  it is a gamble. last year they gambled on colon and we saw how that worked. it is just a gamble that I would have liked to see the yankees make.

                  it is not a big dissapointment to the team or its fans that they didnt take a shot at smoltz. I am sayng that I am dissapointed that they didnt because I think the gamble would pay off.

                  if you dont think the gamble will pay off then obviously you dont think they should have looked at smoltz and it is a reasonable asssumption

                • steve (different one)

                  it is a gamble. last year they gambled on colon and we saw how that worked.

                  it worked poorly. he got hurt after 33 innings, came back in september and ran away from the team before the play-offs.

                • christopher

                  that was my point…that gambles dont always work out.

                  hence the name,”gambles” noun version of the ver “gambling” or “to gamble”

                • steve (different one)

                  ok, that wasn’t clear. my bad.

                  it sounded like you were saying Colon was an example of a gamble paying off.

                  i’m just going to shut up now b/c i keep screwing up.

            • http://twitter.com/OldRanger Old Ranger

              We don’t really know if Cash did or did not make an effort to sign both or one of them. He may have approached them and they said no. Cash is very undercover with most of the things he does.
              Baldelli was a guy I hoped we could get. I like a OF of Baldelli-RF, A-Jax-CF, and Crawford-LF…that might be OK. (still haven’t gotten the hang of smiley faces)

    • huuz

      $5M to $10M is a lot for a bullpen guy w/ serious injury questions.

      cashman got railed by a lot of people for signing Marte (much younger, no current injury concerns) for a lot less than that.

      if smoltz doesn’t make it as a SP, then this is a bad deal for the sux

  • Phil McCracken

    I would have taken a shot at Smoltz, especially since we need some flexibility in the rotation if Hughes/Kennedy/Aceves can’t handle it. Even if he was a 5-6 inning pitcher at this point in his career, still would have been worth a look.

    Plus he’s also shown he can throw out of the bullpen as well.

    • christopher

      you have to add joba to that argument because of the innings limit. 2 guys at the back end who you can really only count on for 25 starts is a dangerous thing for a team with this type of expectation

      • Count Zero

        you have to add joba to that argument because of the innings limit. 2 guys at the back end who you can really only count on for 25 starts is a dangerous thing for a team with this type of expectation

        I don’t get this argument — I mean if Smoltz (“best case” scenario) won’t be in the rotation until June, then isn’t he just another guy with a 150 inning limitation?

        Overall, it’s not a bad gamble by the Sox, I agree — I just don’t get the innings cap argument. As someone said above — if the innings cap is your main concern, then Pettitte and his innings seem like a much better solution than Smoltz?

  • Reggie C.

    B/w Matsui and Baldelli … both who i think are likely to assume very similar roles next season for their respective ballclubs … i think Matsui is still the better bet to deliver a nice comeback campaign. Matsui will hit for higher average and drive in more runs.

    • A.D.

      I don’t know about similar roles, Matsui probably has the DH spot as long as he’s healthy, and there are far less question marks for Matsui. Baldelli has to go out and prove he should get at-bats beating out Ortiz, Bay, Drew, or Ellsbury, not something that’s going to be easy, especially since I doubt he can play the field every day.

      Remember Matsui is coming off a relatively routine knee surgery while Baldelli has mixed reports on what rare disease he has.

      • christopher

        i dont even think he can play every day let alone play the field every day. Supposedly he suffers from really bad fatigue issues. He may have been misdignosed with that mitochondrial disorder, but the guy has something wrong with him.

        i really wished he had resigned with tampa or gone somewhere else because i would have liked to root for him to come back

  • JeffG

    Not sure why they just didn’t go after old Pedro? Just kidding here but I think Boston is not using their resources wisely.
    Also, wondering if backing up fragile Drew with Baldelli is a good move. Would have worked better for a team with a DH that can play the outfield. If only we didn’t have six outfielders already.

  • christopher

    i have a feeling the baldelli move is one they are making for the chance his diagnosis was off and he can recover to play.

    get him in and if he is healthy they will lock him up to a long term deal

    • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

      I think it is also a PR move being he is from the area and he makes for a good “anti-yankee” story.

  • Reggie C.

    Rotoworld is reporting that Andy Pettitte is “extremely unhappy” with the way negotiations are going with the Yanks that he may now consider playing for the ‘Stros.

    • jsbrendog

      let him. he was made a fair offer.

    • steve (different one)

      enjoy 4th place Andy!

    • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

      Ole Drayton does not have the coin to pay him, and from what I heard from somebody who knows Drayton personally that he is none too fond of Andy.

    • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

      Also Andy and his agents are known and proven liars.

      Andy only wants to pitch for the Yankees (obviously not true)
      Andy has a multi year deal on the table for some obscene and unrealistic amount of money (obviously not true)

      plus all the 5 different HGH stories

      ENOUGH

      SEE YA ANDY

      BE OUT!

      • christopher

        he is gooing to come out of this looking pretty stupid when the yanks tell him to screw off and he winds up with a 5 million dollar deal

        • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

          I hope he goes back to the Stros for way less and gets knocked around.

          Smotlz is not really the answer for us even though I really like the guy, we need an innings eater if we sign a free agent pitcher and we need one that is not going to cost way more than their market value, and we need a one year deal.

    • Mike Pop

      Will he get more than 10 mill a year from the Stro’s? I doubt it but maybe they give him a multi-year deal. I love how it says 10 mill goes alot farther in Houston than it does in Manhattan.. Lol, guess he can’t live off 10 mill in NY.

      • christopher

        this whole thing cant come out well for his NY reputation, especially after last season and the mitchell report. as it looks, the yanks gave him an above market offer, but maybe he has that 3 year 26 million somewhere. if he does, i guess that saves him some face. hoping he doesnt though and he comess through looking like an ass.

        makes me miss moose though.

  • christopher

    doesnt need to be smolz or petitte, but i am really of the opinion that the yankees need 1 more decent veteran arm that they will look to for 15-25 starts. i thought smoltz was perfect partially because of the fact he wouldnt join the team until may or june and could come in at the perfect time to give the kids a break.

    i want hughes to get his chance which is why I am not all for bringing back petitte or any other 200 innings pitcher. wanted that part time guy out and smoltz would have worked perfectly.

    a rotation of him joba and hughes ofr the 4th and 5th slot allows for all three to keep their innings low

    • http://twitter.com/OldRanger Old Ranger

      Phil can go about 160-180 innings (I think), Joba only 150. Aceves can go 200 and if Coke is in the pitcher he could make about 100 innings.
      We have good arms to pick up the slack for anyone on pitch counts.

      • christopher

        i hope he can. not sure the effect the AZ fall league would have on his inning this season. perhaps someone here does.

        more than anything, let’s hope he finally shows the potential he has out there and gives us quality innings.

  • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

    I would hate to see Smoltz go to Boston. Big fan of that dude.

    • steve (different one)

      me too. i’m a big fan.

      but i wouldn’t have guaranteed him $5.5M either.

      • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

        I think the Braves should guarante the $ though. They need pitching, and he should stay there.

        • Ryan S.

          I’m with you two, I love Smoltz and I’m bummed he’s on the Red Sox. I’m surprised the Braves didn’t do everything they could to keep him but such is the business of baseball. Red Sox have a ton of pocket money so giving Smoltz $5.5 guaranteed isn’t that big of a deal to them … I think he has incentive clauses that could make the deal with $10MM. If this was almost anyone beside John Smoltz though, it seems like $5.5 – 10MM for a half year of an old pitcher coming off back surgery is a shitty idea

          • steve (different one)

            here is my point though, the Sox have “tons of money” to take this gamble, but they let $12M keep them from the ONLY sure-thing this offseason, Mark Teixeira?

            if Cashman had lost out on Teixeira for $12M and then spent $11M of that on Smoltz and Penny, wouldn’t you be pretty pissed??

            • Mike Pop

              Oh hell yea. The thing is, Teix would of most likely gauranteed them the division and I think they would of ran away with it. But they spend it on two guys who might not be able to compete this year. And if people make the argument where they say that 11 or 12 million was not for one year only like these 2 deals, they could of gave him that as a signing bonus.ha.. I’m so happy we got Tex though.

            • Ryan S.

              Hmm. Interesting point. Boston seems almost neurotic sometimes.

              • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

                I think they saw the writing that they were going to get the man even if they put in that $12 mill.

                Also a possibility could be they came up with a value for him and then stuck to it, thinking he had no other offer from a team with a chance to win on the table.

                As much as Tex is a good player I still do not feel like we got some super “value” buy.

            • christopher

              another example of how brilliant it was of cashman that he kept the Tex negotiations so much on the DL. In the press conference i couldnt believe it when tex said he had made his decision (or his wife did) to come to the yanks in mid-december and the NY and national media had no idea negotaitions were serious or even going on. had things gone bad we wouldnt had ever known they were interested

              because the negotiations were so public, the sox do come out looking a bit bad for giving penny and smoltz money they could have given to Tex.

              • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

                I really fail to see how signing Penny and / or Smoltz has anything to do with Tex or vice versa.

                Not knocking Cashman here, but I think any quality east coast team could have gotten Tex to ink the deal we laid out.

          • christopher

            i am anxious to see the details of the incentive package – innings, starts, etc.

            i am wondering how attainable will they be. is it aimed more toward him just returning from the injury, i.e. money kicks in as soon as he makes 1 start or will the incetivess start at 10, 15, 20 starts?

  • Reggie C.

    I just hope Hughes has that 3rd pitch at least ML average by the start of the season. Reports on Pettitte’s status don’t look promising.

    • Mike Pop

      I hope both Hughes and Joba give us seasons like Lester did for the Bosox last year. ;)

      I really think Hughes is going to do better than people expect. People are just freaked out because we assume he is going to get injured. I really hope he gives us a full season just to see how he adjusts.

  • Axl

    What I’m afraid of is that the Red Sox are notorious for lucking out. They always gamble on these injury type players and it usually works out for them. Even the non injured guys like Ortiz who was a .260 career pinch hitter lucked out for a while into a star.

    I really just hope there is some end to the barrell of luck they’ve all been drinking from in the recent years.

    I really can’t stand them…

    • rbizzler

      Bart Colon wasn’t exactly a masterful signing last year.

      • steve (different one)

        Wade Miller.

        • KW

          Didn’t they sign Scott Williamson too?

          • jsbrendog

            matt clement

          • the most felonious vocalist in the wide world of showbusiness

            Williamson was nasty against the Yanks in 2003 but he did cost them more than he contributed.

    • Andy In Sunny Daytona

      Easy with the defeatist attitude. You’re not a Red Sox fan are you? Then you shouldn’t act like one.

    • christopher

      they also take cances on a very large amount of pitchers as mentioned here giving the appearance of luck.

      sort of like being at a bar – talk to enough girls and you will get laid

  • Mike Pop

    Two more guys who I liked but now I have to learn to hate…lol

  • Januz

    There is no question that the Smoltz and Baldelli signings are good moves for Boston (Smoltz is a gutty, gritty pitcher). I just do not think it will be enough to overcome the additions of Teixeira, Sabathia, and Burnett to the Bronx, and Burrell and a full season of Price in Tampa. This team looks like a third place team as presently constituted (Of course, rosters change: Injuries, trades, players projected output changing good or bad etc).

    • http://www.riveraveblues.com Ben K.

      The “no question” assessment is a bit overblown. They’re good moves because they’re high reward and low risk moves for the most part. They don’t definitely make the team better. These moves make the team better if both players are healthy. Baldelli hasn’t been health since 2003, and Smoltz is old coming off of shoulder surgery. I doubt Epstein is counting on them to contribute all that much.

    • D.B.H.O.F. p.k.a The Last Don

      “There is no question that the Smoltz and Baldelli signings are good moves for Boston”

      Agreed. They are great moves. Great moves do not always pan out, but for the risk involved there is no way that team as currently constructed could not try those options at that price.

      I felt the same way about the Swisher deal at the time. I am not a big Swisher fan. I wanted no part of him, but getting him for what we were able to subtract from our team it was great. Getting rid of Wilson B. for anybody is a good deal, let alone getting a player of value.

  • christopher

    hopefully, health will finally become an issue for tampa so we can see how they deal with injuries.

    they nearly had an injury free season last year. i know a big part of that is young players, but young pitchers do at times have problems because they havent learned to stay healthy.

    Boston needs a big year from jason bay or the manny thing will look even worse in hindsight now that they failed to get Tex. luckily for them, red sox fans never question their team – and the yankees are “the evil empire”

    Red Sox fans have been brain washed into believing that Theo knows all. they probably think it was good that the sox didnt get tex. that not getting him was part of their long term strategy

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=15305165&ref=profile Doug

      I took a look at YFSF and every Sox regular on that site is convinced that Boras and Tex were out to screw them from the beginning.

    • GG

      TB was far from injury free last year, dont compare them to the Yanks b/c what happened up here was ridiculous but in TB Kazmir, Crawford and Longoria all went down for a while and there was probablly more I’m not thinking of too

  • Stryker

    i love rocco but i think he’s definitely carried a lot of momentum into this and he’s now totally overrated. even when healthy, he was never really that great of a player – he had problems demonstrating patience, and other than 2006 he was really never that impressive, it was more talent than performance. in 2006 he was great, a plus defender with a plus bat and plus power, but it was only in 90 games. the two years before that, he was bad defensively and didn’t have much power or patience. now, he’s hobbled by weak legs, his defense is definitely going to be negatively impacted, and he’s never shown that patience. so while sox fans are excited and think they hit the gold mine, they probably haven’t.

    it’s a better story than it is signing. rocco hasn’t played anywhere close to a full season in nearly 5 years and that was before he had a disorder that makes him more likely to be out. it’s not really a low risk, high reward signing, it’s more like a high risk, mediocre reward signing – if he is offered a major league contract. i don’t think it’s a great deal, and there’s a reason Tampa cut ties with him and didn’t try too hard to re-sign him.

    • Count Zero

      Exactly. Memory makes it seem like he was better than he actually was…he was mostly a decent player on a bad team. Even at his best he was only a slightly better than average OF with a career high OPS+ of 122. His career OPS+ of 102 is less than than inspiring…

  • deadrody

    Neato!!! Yay for Sox fans. But, wait, uh where does Baldelli play even IF healthy ? I thought the greatest player – scratch that, SECOND (Pedroia) greatest player EVAH – Jacoby Ellsbury – was their centerfielder.

    For the 100 millionth time, as much as the Sox and their moron fans are dying for a new bat, unless the guy plays SS (and is better than Lowry) where does this unknown bat play ? With Ortiz firmly entrenched at DH, Bay, Ellsbury, and Drew in the OF, there is not a single position unfilled.

    Maybe Gammons will lobby MLB for them and get the lineup increased from 9 to 10.

  • Ken

    Smoltz, Penny, They will get lit up in the AL. That is if their arms don’t become disconnected from their bodies.

  • KO

    The Red Sox have the bucks, why not roll the dice on these two? Low risk, high reward.

  • Ken

    Are the Red Sox going to sign Jaret Wright or El Duque next, or bring back Pedro?

    • http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/CRsmithT1.jpg tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      Two words: Scott Erickson.

  • Ken

    The Red Sox could lose 140 games next year and that still wouldn’t be enough. I hate those bastards especially Paplebon, Yokullis, and Becketl.

  • Ken

    The highlight of our 2009 season was when Joba beat Beckett at Fenway, knocking down Yokullis in the process, and when the Yankee fans booed the Red Sox during introductions at the All Star game before a national audience and when Paplebon was booed when he came in to pitch and the fans chanted MARIANO!!! MARIANO!!!!! ……

  • Joey H

    Watch, As soon as Baldelli’s pen leaves the paper it will be revealed that his condition is how it was before this “news”

  • Mac

    The Braves and the Rays know the “real” condition of their players not the BS that their agents are putting out. As for the Red Sox, they’ve been out of the loop this off season being beat out for everyone that was in there sites when the season ended last October. They’re just throwing sh*t (coco crisp/JD Nancy Drew) against the wall and hoping that something sticks so that their pink hatted latte drinking fans (Aleck) keep buying overpriced tickets in the little league bandbox on Yawkey Way from the real fans.