By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

How’s that trade working out? (IV)

In the interest of fairness: Bronson Arroyo yesterday pitched five innings and gave up five earned runs, including two homers, in an 8-7 loss. Oh, yeah: He also went 0 for 2. But I never said he was a front-line pitcher — just more valuable than Wily Mo Peña.

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How’s that trade working out? (III)


Independence day


  1. Mitch

    I was at the game yesterday, which was my first chance to see Wily Mo in person. Look, it’s just not good when seeing a fly ball hit to your right fielder makes you want to throw up. It would be one thing if he were jacking a homer a game, but his bat in no way outweighs his putrid defense. He was directly responsible for both of Seattle’s runs yesterday, and almost let them get a third. He was horrifying. He should not be playing major league baseball for a living.Had to get that off my chest.

  2. Fork Ball

    WMP cannot even be sent down to Pawtucket to work out his obvious lack of skills.

  3. Wes

    Sincerely hope all know that WMP and BA are pawns here. The real point is that the much vaunted, oft cited as “genius” Theo Epstein has – in his brief stint – cost the Sox one helluva lot more than any good he’s done. And, this trade stunk up the diamond in so many ways; the unbelievable backstap of Bronson which certainly uncuts any aspect of “cred” the Sox management wants to convey, is just the most obvious one.

  4. mike_b1

    Theo must have pulled a Seinfeld on Wes’ fiance or something…

  5. Anonymous

    Mike, you’re wandering into that personal insult territory again . . . Anyway, Mike, how did you think Wily Mo looked in right that last few days? Good think Trot’s on the way back.

  6. Steve

    Mitch – how about that split second in the 9th yesterday when a Mariner it a sinking liner to right? Everyone around me gasped, but then realized it was Mohr in right and not Wily.

  7. mike_b1

    I don’t know that I’m being any more insulting that Wes and his asinine “I hate Theo and everything he has ever done” remarks. And I don’t recall Theo ever calling himself a genius.Epstein has done a brilliant job with the Red Sox. Is he infallible? Of course not. But judging the WMP-Arroyo trade after a couple weeks is dumb, dumb, dumb. Would you want your life graded on the basis of a single week or two plucked out at random? If not, then put down your guns.

  8. Anonymous

    Sorry, Dan, but all of these too-cute Red Sox postings are getting really, really tiresome. I’ll pass on reading Media Nation again until after the baseball season is over.

  9. Anonymous

    Anonymous 4:17 – Lighten up! DK has blogged here on lots of good stuff lately. It’s spring and baseball has arrived. Multitask!

  10. Dan Kennedy

    Anonymous 4:17 — Actually, I’ve arranged to have you banned once baseball season is over.

  11. Anonymous

    Anyone else notice the “Manny wants to be traded” news item vanished when Arroyo was traded? As Terry Glenn might say, “do the math.”

  12. Mark R.

    Dan, Have you joined the dark side? Will we, in the not-too-distant future, hear this on WEEI: “Join us tomorrow morning for the Dennis, Callahan and Kennedy Show.” ??Jeez, we’re not even 15 games into the season and you’re sounding like some idiot on sports radio. I remember you thinking the 2004 sqaud was unlikable. Well, you were wrong then. And you’re wrong again. (Have you checked the standings?)I like reading your blog when it’s about the media. Stick to that. Please. I beg you.

  13. aaronbooke

    At a party last night I did hear a very legit explanation behind the WMP for Arroyo trade. Arroyo is 31 years old. He’s pretty good, but the bottom line is that he will not be getting much better than he’s been over the past few years. In an organization like the Red Sox, that means he is, at best, a #5 starter, and more likely he’s middle relief to augment Timlin.The problem with that idea is that assuming Foulke gets better, or at least doesn’t implode, then Timlin doesn’t need any middle relief. So it’s mighty expensive to keep Arroyo’s salary around just as a “backup”.WMP, OTOH, is very young, is on his third (right?) season in the majors and has never consistently played in his first two. He is not a sure thing, no, but he does have a lot of “potential”. Plus he’s got the added advantage that when Nixon’s contract is up next year, he’ll have a year of experience at the position to fill Nixon’s vacancy (look, I love Nixon, but the man is mighty fragile – I don’t see him coming back…not if WMP lives up to everyone’s hopes). And Pena will still be here in two years when Manny almost certainly leaves.Now mind you, this trade was engineered when both Foulke and Wells looked a lot more promising. But Wells wasn’t going to get a two-birds-with-one-stone like Pena, and Foulke has waaaay too much upside to give up on too easily (It’s been a rough start but he’s already looking better than last year. If he’s not improved by Memorial Day, then I’ll be nervous, but until then I’ll have hope) So that left Arroyo.And I’m the first to agree that Arroyo got dicked over by Red Sox Mgmt…although as Arroyo acknowledged, when you don’t have ink to paper, you don’t have nothing in terms of security. So yeah, I would’ve liked to see Arroyo stay but at the same time, I think by the end of this season, and certainly over the next few years, we’ll be seeing that Pena wasn’t a bad idea after all.And oh by the way, there’s been some huge news in the land of college radio, there, Dan. Any words of wisdom on WAVM or WSMA? Or Zumix?

  14. Dan Kennedy

    Mark R. — I didn’t realize that the reason the Red Sox were in first place was because Arroyo was gone and Pena was here. This is a good team. It would be a better team with Arroyo — and without Pena.Aaron — Arroyo is 29, not 31. I haven’t given up on Foulke, either. But Wells has proven to be no more fragile than anyone could have predicted, given his age, weight and knee.I have not been following the college radio story, although I acknowledge its importance.

  15. Anonymous

    Aaron – 1. If the Arroyo deal was predicated on the strong belief he is in decline, why did the Sox sign him to a reasonably lucrative 3-year deal before the season started, and why were the Reds (they have scouts and coaches and stat. analysts, too, plus a much smaller budget than the Sox) willing to take on that contract? 2. You’ve got it completely wrong about Nixon.

  16. Steve

    Some recent news on WAVM (which is a high school radio station in Maynard) here.There’s another story here.In short, it looks like WAVM will keep its frequency (91.7) and be allowed to increase its power from 10 watts to 500 watts (which means I’ll actually be able to hear it from 2 miles away now).

  17. mike_b1

    Anon 10:11 am: Your sense of what’s lucrative is off base. The deal the Sox signed Arroyo for was heavily in the RS favor. In fact, his own agent publicly said he shouldn’t sign it. The deal was a factor in being able to move him, as has been reported in many places, because even a small market team like the Reds could afford it.Also, Arroyo wanted to stay here, but in no case has he or Sox management said that he was promised that they would not trade him. Given that, it’s strange that anyone thinks he was dicked over.Re Nixon: Aaron has it completely right. Nixon is terribly injury prone, and there’s a great Baseball Prospectus study on how “injury-prone” isn’t just a myth. Nixon falls into that category. He is well past the age when most hitters are in their prime (which is theiur age 27 season), and his contracy expires at the end of this year. I could see him coming back only if the Sox can get him at a pay cut. Love him or hate him, Wily Mo is the future.

  18. mike_b1

    File under Reality Bites:Arroyo’s April 16 line: 5.0 IP 6 Hits 5 Runs 5 Earned Runs 2 HRs 3 BB 3 K His ERA jumped from 1.98 to 3.86. (BTW, that’s 4 HR’s allowed in 18 innings pitched.)

  19. Steve

    Mike – I, too, think Wily Mo might be the future, but I think he’s the future LEFTfielder, not rightfielder, after Manny’s contract is up. I think this will be a better fit for him – Fenway’s RF has always been a lot of ground to cover, with VERY tricky walls to play.(On the second “triple” to right on Sunday, I was thinking that for any true Red Sox fan, interference with balls like that is MANDATORY when Wily is in RF. It might cost an ejection, but it’ll hold the batter to a double.)Yes, Wily will have to learn the ways of the Monster, and that bizarre little piece of foul ground, but I still think Fenway’s LF makes fewer demands of a fielder.Mohr is more the type to play RF – decent fielder, decent range, good arm. He seems lost at the plate, though. A little improvement over Kapler, but not much.

  20. mike_b1

    Not while Manny is on the team, Steve. Ortiz’s deal locks up the DH position (one reason it wasn’t the RS wisest move), which means that Manny stays in left (his deal runs through 2008, which two team option years after that which, it is safe to say, will not be picked up).

  21. Anonymous

    Mike, if Baseball Prospectus told you to jump out the window . . .

  22. mike_b1

    I would hit the ground with two feet.

  23. Man whos a college radio fan

    Another note on WAVM is here at Scott Fybush’s NorthEast Radio WatchAnd Zumix got an article in the Globe recently Ya just can’t keep a guy like Steve Provizer down!WSMA is that religious repeater with a goofy-ass signal that was shoehorned into the South Shore in a place nobody thought another station could fit. It’s going to do a number on WZBC’s fringe reception down there (which is legally outside of WZBC’s “service contour” so unfortunately there’s little ZBC can do about it). However, in February 2005 WSMA requested a waiver from the FCC that normally would require them to maintain a staffed “main studio” in the city of license (Scituate) and there was a massive wave of protest against it in light of the FCC’s stepped-up efforts on “localism”. Over 200 petitions to deny and informal objections were received. Earlier this month, WSMA hurriedly built their station to get it on the air before the construction permit expired on April 2nd, and filed to make the license final. Not much in the news, but word on the grapevine is that there’s still no main studio (as is required – the waiver was never granted) and that while there is an antenna mounted on a tower, there’s no signal on 90.5 save for a brief period of tests. And that more people are filing petitions to deny, trying to keep WSMA off the air.

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