Cafardo On Red Sox, Lackey, Buehrle, Epstein

Upon joining the Cubs, Theo Epstein will leave behind one contractual headache in John Lackey and acquire another one in Carlos Zambrano, writes Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe.  The difference between the two, as a National League scout pointed out, is that Zambrano could once again be a top-of-the-rotation hurler while some doubt if Lackey is even a No. 4 or 5 starter.  The answer for both clubs could be a "garbage-for-garbage" deal that allows them to exchange one bad contract for another.  Some prime candidates include Chone Figgins, Barry Zito, Vernon Wells, and Derek Lowe.  Here more from Cafardo..

  • While Sox pitcher Mark Buehrle is an interesting free agent possibility for the Red Sox if they could get him on a two-year deal.  The veteran could be their No. 5 starter or serve as a strong lefty in the bullpen.
  • It's hard to tell if David Ortiz is serious about leaving the "drama" of Boston for the Yankees, but the veteran wouldn't be a fit in New York as they have no need for a DH.
  • A.J. Hinch, the vice president of pro scouting for the Padres, could have interest from teams like the Red Sox, and possibly the Cubs with Epstein there.  Las Vegas agrees, as oddsmaker Jimmy Shapiro placed Hinch as the odds-on favorite to get the Sox managerial job.  Meanwhile, Josh Byrnes is currently a special assistant with San Diego and could depart for a bigger role with Epstein in Chicago.
  • Mariners skipper Eric Wedge is a very interesting name that could be involved in the Red Sox’s managerial search.  However, getting Wedge out of his deal in Seattle could be a problem as he has a good deal of personnel power there.
  • Tony La Russa would be an interesting choice for Boston, but it appears he'll be staying in St. Louis or retiring.  La Russa has always spoken fondly of the city, but it doesn’t appear at this stage of his career that he would want to deal with some of the issues in the BoSox organization.
  • Brian Cashman's contract extension is nowhere near done.  The Yankees GM’s deal expires at the end of the month, but neither side is feeling any pressure to get something completed.
  • Meanwhile, Cashman's top two assistants, Billy Eppler and Damon Oppenheimer, are being interviewed by the Angels for their GM job.  Cashman told the paper that he feels both men are absolutely qualified to take the next step.  Recently, our own Ben Nicholson-Smith spoke with Oppenheimer about the possibility of becoming a GM.
  • Cafardo wonders if history will be kinder to Dan Duquette now that the Theo Epstein era is concluding in Boston.  Duquette never won a championship as the Red Sox's GM but the 2004 team certainly had his fingerprints on it.  Now working as a business consultant, the longtime MLB exec never got the chance to be a GM again, but hasn't ruled out doing so in the right situation.


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50 Comments on "Cafardo On Red Sox, Lackey, Buehrle, Epstein"


Member
bglaszcz
3 years 8 months ago

My dad was always a supporter of Dan Duquette, glad he’s getting some recognition for his work on the 2004 team.

Member
$6101468
3 years 8 months ago

So true.

Member
Howie Handles
3 years 8 months ago

He’s responsible in large part for the 2004 WS. I’d like to see Theo offer him a role with the Cubs, if/when this is finished. 

Guest
3 years 8 months ago

Do it, sign Mark Buehrle. He’d be a great number 4 starter. Drop Lackey to fifth or bullpen

Member
redsox4434
3 years 8 months ago

Yes. That would be amazing. Cherington needs to do that.

Member
3 years 8 months ago

Alfonso Soriano is a much bigger contractual headache, than Zambrano. 3 yrs $57 million vs. 1 yr $18 million. 

Member
jammin502
3 years 8 months ago

Alfonso Soriano may have an unmovable contract, but at least he still performs, has a good attitude, and has really improved on his defense in the outfield.  He has also been a big plus to the other Latin players on the Cubs.

Member
3 years 8 months ago

In regard to his performance, his actual value this season was about 1/3 of what he was paid according to WAR. A sub .300 OBP is dismal no matter how many HR he hits. And to say his fielding has improved is a bit of a backhanded compliment. The only aspect of his fielding that might be above average would be his arm. It’ll be interesting to see what Theo does with him. His value would probably be optimized if he was in a strict platoon. I wouldn’t mind seeing him paired with JD Drew, Seth Smith, or an approximation thereof.

Member
Howie Handles
3 years 8 months ago

and wasn’t Alfonso crying about batting so low in the lineup? I’d much rather deal him for Lackey. Why would Theo want to bring that contract with him?

Member
johnsilver
3 years 8 months ago

I would take Jason Bay from the NYP and hope his power returns before a non OBP guy like Soriano. Soriano never, ever knew how to not swing at a ball from his ankles to his eyes, not the Red Sox type of player at all and he’s not really a better defender than bay, which ain’t exactly a compliment. Both would have to play LF somehow with either Ells/CC moving to right.

In a contract swap, neither is really actually preferable to Lackey, but the “hope” that Bay’s power would somehow return and his awful contract would probably be better is my 2c.

Member
crashcameron
3 years 8 months ago

i must try and catch the Cubs more often. does this mean ’Fonso has improved from THE worst to ONE OF the worst?

Member
MikhelB
3 years 8 months ago

Does he still stands at home staring at his homeruns? he did it with the Yankees until he was reprimanded by the manager after various of his shots hit the wall and he just could get to first base on time to be called safe.

Member
Howie Handles
3 years 8 months ago

Exactly, why would you trade a guy with one year left, for a guy with multiple years? I’d rather keep Zambrano, then take on Lackey. 

Member
scott brecht
3 years 8 months ago

why would the cubs take on the other huge contracts that he mentioned when z only has a year left on his deal.  they will release him before taking on another contract in return.  not sure what the writer was thinking. 

Guest
3 years 8 months ago

Why would Buehrle go out of the BP? makes no sense. Of course he’d be the #4 starter

Member
StanleyHudson
3 years 8 months ago

Yea, I scratched my head at that too. The blatant need for the Sox is starting pitching so why acquire a proven starter and throw him in the pen? I’d be all for getting Buehrle, though.

Member
Howie Handles
3 years 8 months ago

Yeah, this guy Cafardo is showing his stripes. No way is Buerhle a regular season bp guy at this point in his career. 

Member
sox2727
3 years 8 months ago

Right, Mark Buehrle to the bullpen and pitching full-time in the AL East…both are totally logical…