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

How’s that trade working out? (X)

Good grief.

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Following the money


  1. mike_b1

    Good grief is right. This is from same paper, same day. Thank God we’re a two media critic town.Among the statistical devices Red Sox management has at its disposal is a program that simulates a major league season. One thing the Sox brass has done: place American League teams as presently composed in the National League and simulate a 162-game season. The club’s conclusion: There is a 10-game difference (which is considered gigantic) between leagues. In other words: An AL team that projects to win 85 games in the AL this season projects to win 95 in the NL, according to general manager Theo Epstein.Perhaps this helps explain the Sox’ remarkable run of success against the NL. They are unbeaten in six consecutive games (sweeps of Atlanta and Washington) and 8-1 overall this year vs. the NL. (They won two of three at Philadelphia last month. Going back to June 12, 2005, the Sox are 17-2 vs. the NL.)Against the NL this season, the Sox are 7-1 with a 3.55 ERA (relievers, however, are just 1-0 with a 4.91 ERA). As a team, the Sox are batting .332 and slugging .537 with a .406 on-base percentage against NL pitching. That’s a team OPS of .943. Now, Kevin Youkilis’s season OPS is .943, meaning just about every Sox batter who goes to the plate against an NL pitcher is performing like Youkilis.”Only two Red Sox regulars, Manny Ramírez (.233) and Coco Crisp (.269), are hitting less than .320 vs. the NL. The rest of the lineup: Trot Nixon (.387), Mark Loretta (.375), Jason Varitek (.333), Youkilis (.333), Alex Gonzalez (.333), David Ortiz (.323), Mike Lowell (.321). Gabe Kapler is 4 for 7 (.571). Even Sox pitchers are hacking with success. Josh Beckett is 3 for 7 with a homer and 3 RBIs, helping the pitchers to a total of 5 for 16 (.313).

  2. Dan Kennedy

    Mike — You seem to need instruction, over and over, in what I and other critics of this trade are really saying. Let me try again: The Sox could have made far better use of the Arroyo of ’04 and ’05 this year than they could make of even a healthy Wily Mo Pena. That said, Arroyo is clearly having a career year, and there’s no doubt he’d be a valuable member of the Sox’ rotation, even if his ERA were a run or a run-and-a-half higher than it is with Cincinnati. Which Arroyo himself says would be likely.

  3. mike_b1

    Dan — You seem to need instruction, over and over, in how to read the Standings column. Let me help:1. Boston 42-28 .600 2. NY Yankees 40-30 .571 That’s Boston there at the top. That’s a good thing.Unless, perhaps, you know of something that’s better than first place.

  4. Dan Kennedy

    Mike — The flaw in your logic is so grotesque that I hardly need to point it out. But I will anyway. Unless you’re prepared to say that the Sox are in first place because Arroyo’s gone, or because of something wonderful that Pena did, then this is completely irrelevant. It is obvious that the Sox would be doing better if Arroyo were taking someone’s place, be it Wells, Clement or Tavares. How much better? I’d say three to five games, but that’s just speculation.

  5. mike_b1

    Only 3 to 5 games? You are so right Dan! With Arroyo the Red Sox would be the Greatest Team Ever!The Greatest Team Ever!

  6. Anonymous

    Dan, for heaven’s sake, you don’t understand mathematics! The fact the Red Sox are in first by a game or two in June means we’re going all the way. That’s the way it always works!Another guy who doesn’t get math: Pedro, who seems to agree with that career baseball guy and statistically challenged manager Jerry Narron that Arroyo really is a pretty darned good pitcher. Where do these nuts come from?

  7. another face at zanzibar

    Dan, For as long as I can remember, every year the Sox have left up to 10 games “on the table” (you know, games they should’ve won, but didn’t for a number of reasons). I guess this Bronson trade got them halfway to their annual goal of 10 dumb losses. Tito will have to come up with a way to lose the others by himself.

  8. Stella

    Yawn… Snooze… Please wake me when there’s news.

  9. metallicaMobes

    Would anyone have picked up Wells or Clement though?Either way, releasing them and eating the contract would arguably have been better than the current situation, but anyone can Tuesday Morning Quarterback, future trades the Sox really should look for is picking up Zito or Ervin Santana. Yes the price would be steep, but that would all but assure the division, I think. Especially with the Yanks losing Matsui and Sheffield and at the current pace that they are overworking Rivera.

  10. another face at zanzibar

    Dan, See what Bruce has to say: Scroll to “Move On People” (too bad Bruce never took a grammar course) a screen or two down the page.

  11. jacksullivan

    Nov. 7, 2012 — NEW YORK — To the surprise of few, Yankees fireballing lefthander Francisco Liriano easily outdistanced Boston Red Sox ace Jon Lester for the Bronson Arroyo Award as the American League’s best pitcher. Liriano won the Arroyo, formerly called the Cy Young Award, by garnering 28 first place votes.Goog grief, Dan, I can’t take it anymore. OK, you don’t like the trade. OK, Arroyo is having a career year. But he ain’t no Koufax, Drysdale or even Blyleven. He’s a Key West guy with a Key West approach who will be forgotten in a few years. This is not the first unpopular or even bad trade any team has made (I give you the aforementioned Liriano and Joe Nathan for AJ Pierzynski, not to mention Varitek and Lowe for Slocumb, Scott Kasmir for Zambrano, Tony Armas and Carl Pavano for Pedro, Babe Ruth for half-a-mil, and a slew of others.) When Arroyo retires and goes to the Hall of Fame, it will be with the purchase of an admission ticket. Fercryinoutloud, let it go.

  12. Don

    Could this be the kiss(ing yourself) of death?

  13. mike_b1

    I’m sure Dan has some excellent data that shows why the Red Sox would be even more in first place if they still had The Greatest Pitcher Ever.Because, as we all know, you can do better than first.

  14. Anonymous

    How ’bout this Dan? I’ll admit it for you: This was the worst trade ever in history, or at least the most one-sided transaction since the Lousiana Purchase. Without this trade, the Red Sox would be 72-0, and the rest of the MLB owners would be convening this weekend to vote on whether to finish the season or to just cede the World Series title to the Sox now and cancel the rest of the season, which they would have voted to do unanimously, since the Sox would have had Arroyo, after all. There … that better?

  15. Wes

    Let’s see hope that this team can win against winning teams. That they only have a 2 game lead right now sends a shiver. This aint Labor Day. And, the trade was a Hillabrand-Kim reverse.

  16. mike_b1

    YEAH! They should fire Francona and hire Jerry Narron. His .476 lifetime winning percentage would be just the ticket The Red Sox need to make the playoffs.Greatest Manager Ever!

  17. Dan Kennedy

    Mike — Your selective use of statistics is amusing, to say the least. What was Terry’s winning percentage before he came here? And yes, he’s the best Sox manager I’ve seen. (Although I’ve still got a soft spot for Joe Morgan.)

  18. mike_b1

    And Dan, your use of no statistics is even more amusing — when it’s not completely offensive to the intelligence of the folks you read this crap, that is.Seems to me you’re the one being selective. Arroyo sucked last season, but if the Red Sox had him this year they would be in … where would they be again? Oh yeah, first place. Same place they are right now. You say it’s important for the Sox to “win now” — which they are — then bitch about the trade. Want some cheese with that whine?

  19. Anonymous

    Mark Loretta is 7 for 12 lifetime against Arroyo. Put that in your pipe and smoke it!

  20. Dan Kennedy

    Anon 3:16 — Then I’m glad they traded Arroyo for Loretta. Oh, wait. They didn’t.

  21. jacksullivan

    OK, I hope this is it for me. Hanley(it’s Hedley) Ramirez, Anibal Sanchez, Jesus Delgado, Harvey Garcia, Bronson Arroyo, Edgar Renterria and Kelly Shoppach for Mark Loretta, Coco Crisp, Josh Beckett, Mike Lowell, Wily Mo Pena and Jermaine Van Buren.Do you make this trade? And if not, are you still in first? I say yes to the first and no to the latter and a chance of not making it as a wild card. Wily Mo’s giving nothing this year, as expected, but can you plug Arroyo’s Reds’ numbers wholesale back into this rotation? Fuggedaboutit. He’s too laid back for this town and too nonchalant to dig in in Fenway.

  22. mike_b1

    June 28. 3.5 game lead. What was that about the Red Sox not playing for this year?

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