AL East Notes: Upton, Red Sox, Kuroda, Gio, Bard

The latest news and notes out of the AL East:

  • The Rays have talked about trading B.J. Upton but will likely end up keeping him, according to Buster Olney of (Insider link). While Upton is becoming more expensive, the Rays would have difficulty replacing his offensive and defensive production on the cheap.
  • The Red Sox are "kicking around their preference" between trying to sign Hiroki Kuroda or trade for Gio Gonzalez, writes Yahoo's Tim Brown.
  • WEEI's Alex Speier takes an in-depth look at the process of converting relievers to starters, with a focus on the Red Sox. Speier notes that even though the Sox are preparing Daniel Bard to start, it doesn't necessarily mean the right-hander will end up in the rotation.
  • Baseball America published their choices for the Rays' top ten prospects today, and though there are some surprises, the name atop the list isn't one of them.
  • For a few Orioles items, check out our post from earlier this morning.

57 Responses to AL East Notes: Upton, Red Sox, Kuroda, Gio, Bard Leave a Reply

  1. Minorityfanbasewannabe 4 years ago

    I think the RedSox are bringing Bard into spring training as a starter as much more more of a precaution then as a certainty. I not that worried that he’s going to end up actually starting.

  2. RedsoxNation15 4 years ago

    Trade for Gio

    • Yes! Do that! O’s can sign Kuroda!

      • Bleed_Orange 4 years ago

        I’d love for the O’s to go after Kuroda but with as picky as he has been in the past about where he plays I just don’t see it. 

    • commenter3346 4 years ago

      Yes, do that. So that they can completely deplete their farm system even more than it already is for a guy with bad numbers against the AL East. It’ll work out well in the short-term & long-term.

      • RedsoxNation15 4 years ago

        They need to win now not in a couple years you think 3 years with out making the playoffs is acceptable , well 2 but the way angels swept us makeS it 3

        • start_wearing_purple 4 years ago

          I take it you’re not part of the generation of Sox fans who had the mantra “wait til next.”

          • when people start winning. you get a whole lot of new “fans” of the team thats closest to them. only if they win tho

        • 0bsessions 4 years ago

          Gutting our farm for a guy who walks five batters an outing on average is not the secret to winning now OR in the future.

          • Cmon, that worked our for Dice-K … oh wait..

          • johnsilver 4 years ago

            Not so sure giving Kuroda an approximate 12-13m is a great idea either when maybe an extra 2-3m would bring Oswalt if he truly will take a 1 year deal.

      • excuse me.. im a little confused here… what farm system? ;p

      • Bleed_Orange 4 years ago

        I don’t think the red sox have the prospects now to get a Gio trade done.  But if they squeeked it out yeah they would be donezo for a couple of years…. on second thought yeah trade for Gio, go for broke

        • johnsilver 4 years ago

          They don’t have the people at the top end right now Beane says he wants.. as in at least 1 top prospect OF in the mix.. Then since when has that been a detriment to beane to mix things up and not take other top prospects instead?

          Unlike the usual rabble of posters here (who are without a clue) and always chime in with “Boston has no farm” he knows the Sox from AA on down and especially High A bal has the likes of Bryce Brentz and Brandon Jacobs as his superp talented OF.. Brentz just put up 32 HR last season slugged in in .600 range and an OPS nearing 1.000, while Jacobs was the TOPPS SAL player of the year.

          • commenter3346 4 years ago

            I think the Red Sox have some good prospects in their system (Jacobs, Middlebrooks, Cecchini, Brentz, Bogaerts, Lavarnway, Barnes, Coyle, etc.). But I also think that they lacked depth in the minors last year & that trading away those players for a pitcher that has mediocre to bad numbers against the AL East isn’t worth it.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Change it to “lacked major league ready depth in the minors” and I’ll agree with you; the biggest plus to the Sox’s system right now is how deep the farm is, the problem is that none of it (particularly pitching wise) was ready for the majors last year (or likely will be this year).

          • johnsilver 4 years ago

            I agree with stripping Fed-X, Chiang etc for bedard was a looney move and was bound to have been a disaster from the start. I was denouncing it from the very moment it was made.

            Those people ATM could be used as trade chips, rather than as in Fed-X’s case the LAD starting catcher.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            None of those guys would be anything more than complementary pieces in a trade though, and Bedard actually pitched pretty well for the Sox down the stretch.  If the Sox had made it to the post season, the view of the Bedard trade would have been a lot different than it is now.

          • johnsilver 4 years ago

            Hindsight is always 20-20, yeah. it is those complimentary pieces type.. As in what a Fife, even Fed-x ATM culd be used coupled with 1-2 of the lower level people could have an impact now for a SP.

            I still don’t buy that roster crunch stuff.. They have openings now and could free 1-2 more with some not named people. Bedard was a injury risk when they got him, wouldn’t pitch (the rumors were) because he wasn’t 100% after they got him and ended up exactly as figured he did.. 100% waste of trade chips over the winter of 2011-12.

            Nobody (or me at least) thinks Fed-X will surge ahead of the Sox catching depth to be their catcher, or even Fife would have been a SP for them, a long guy tops. Chiang maybe a 4th OF tops, but all had some trade value and would have been at AAA, or higher level guys they could have moved easier, rather than lower level prospects some teams want.

            Now, they just have young Alex Wilson and Doubront for instance as legit guys at the AAA/close to MLB level and doubt either is moved, unless it’s out of options Doubront, so hard to see either moved.

            Sometimes it is prudent to not throw away for nothing, or low odds gambles all of a systems upper level depth on crapshoots in the wind.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            The point is they gave up a couple of guys who would have been nothing more than complementary pieces at best in any other trade for a guy who could have been (and would have been had the other starters not fallen apart) the tipping factor in their chase of the playoffs; a guy with #2 starter potential.

          • johnsilver 4 years ago

            Tink we agree on all those guys traded were then, as they would have been now just trade pieces, but disagree on Bedard only. Bedard (IMO) never had a chance and never put any effort into even wanting to pitch in Boston from the beginning and that was why thought here it was a bad time to give up those trade chips.

            No argument they needed a starter at that time from me either, they needed one badly. Maybe they should have researched him a bit better and given up more for someone who has a better reputation with regards to when he decides will pitch and health in general? Who knows. too late anyway.

            A Fife, Fed-X added to a Brentz is a decent trade proposal for some team. A lot more stomachable than having to throw out a Ranaudo has been my point all along since it happened.

            Think we agree on a lot of this and it just all ends up at bedard and some of “us” feel he never had any intentions of pitching unless he was 100%, which he earned that reputation at various stops along the way and some Sox fans think he did not.. It’s ok.. All of “us” have opinions and are certainly entitled to them. People said Jimmy Palmer was the same way years ago, Earl Weaver couldn’t stand him and said he invented muscles to pull, only because he wouldn’t complete as many games as his other aces did.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            I just have a hard time buying that because he actually pitched well for the Sox.

  3. The Rangers had some success in converting relievers and they’re hoping for the same success again this season. Bard is still young enough where he could transition to long relief with some spot starts if need be if the starting gig doesn’t go as planned. 

    And the Sox would be better to trade for Gio rather than roll the dice on Kuroda. Oakland needs some young, controlled outfielders, and that’s one of the brighter spots of the Sox farm. Kuroda probably won’t sign with an East Coast team, anyway. 

    • vtadave 4 years ago

      Kuroda has been as consistent as they come and could be just as valuable as Gio this year. Then factor in what it would cost in terms of prospects for Gio and Kuroda is a no-brainer.

      • He’s also 10+ years older. The right move should be a long-term outlook. 

        • 0bsessions 4 years ago

          The long term outlook agrees with Kuroda over Gonzalez considering the fact Kuroda doesn’t cost prospects.

    • chico65 4 years ago

      You off the naughty-boy list again I see?

  4. I don’t understand BA’s “Project 2015 lineup” thing they do, its entirely impossible to follow as they include the team resigning free agents and ignores much of the current roster. Like, BJ Upton won’t even be on the 2013 team, but he’s listed on the 2015 one. Its just a minor gripe…I love their top 10 lists and best by skill and write ups. They have Moore as having a higher ceiling than Price…wow. 

    • vtadave 4 years ago

      It’s all in fun. Of course it’s not going to be the 2015 lineup, but it gives you an idea as to who is a projected future starter and who is not.

      • It doesnt look like fun! Perhaps they should change the font to comic sans to make it look less serious.

        It just looks ridiculous having Upton in RF when he wont be with the organization, and they put the gold gloved Zobrist at 1B when he should be either RF or 2B. These are easy things to fix but hey, I’d rather have it there than not have it exist at all or worse, have to pay for it.

  5. jhfdssdaf 4 years ago

    I wonder what kind of haul the losers in the Beltran sweepstakes would be willing to pay for Upton.  Trading him now may get a nice return.

  6. FS54 4 years ago

    That BA article does not make much sense. Top ten prospects, best tools, and 2015 projected lineup do not come together at all. Best Athlete from best tools section, Ty Morrison, is not top ten prospect? Mikie Mahtook, 2nd best OF prospect, he is not in 2015 projected lineup? Except couple of passages, the article is mainly about what happened in St. Pete’s last summer and their direction. One of the most incoherent baseball articles I have read these past days!

    • MikhelB 4 years ago

      In most cases the best Athlete is not always a prospect anymore, for example the best player in the yankees minor leagues is Jorge ‘el chato’ Vázquez who again teared the AAA with his power, and right now is leading the Mexican winter league (again) in homeruns, RBI, OBP, is second in hits, top 5 in AVG, SLG, and Runs… though he is not a prospect anymore and is being paid the minimum with the Yankees so he’ll never make it to the majors, opposed any other player with WAAAAY below average stats who signs for a bigger contract and the NYY promotes him to the majors (that guy Vázquez has monster power and a pretty good OBP despite his high K rate).

  7.   Another day another Gio rumor.  This is getting old.  Being a A’s fan I can tell you they are not that desperate for OF prospects.  They have Choice, Mitchel,  and Green who will be up very soon.  Its 3b that is the A’s biggest need.  The Nationals has Rendon  Rangers have Ott so those 2 teams lead the pack for Gio.  The redsox would need to include their best prospect or its just useless babble.  The yanks had their opportunity which would have costed their 3 top prospect and turned the A’s down.  For all the babble from sport writers it looks like Beane is in a wait mode for a team to get desperate to trade their top prospects or he will keep Gio whos value will go up closer to June when a team need a starter desperately.

    • Fangaffes 4 years ago

      If you think this is old, you should have been here for Halladay and Santana.

  8. FS54 4 years ago

    I think under new CBA rules, when Upton leaves after next season, Rays do not gain anything. If they trade him now, they might get at least one A prospect or a cost-controlled major league ready player. Someone like Rendon (insurance in case Evan bolts) and more can only make that system even better. Anyways, does not make much sense if they pay his salary and show nothing special for Upton after 2012.

    • 0bsessions 4 years ago

      The problem is that the Rays are still in position to compete next year and trading Upton greatly hurts that possibility. It basically comes down to a choice of now or later if you trade Upton as, while they’re a potential playoff contender, losing Upton puts them dangerously close to not making it. They’d be competitive without him, but they’d have to rely way too heavily on luck to make it.

      • FS54 4 years ago

        I realize that but some additions such as full season of Desmond, Guyer, Moore has gotta make up for some of that loss. Right now, all I see is just one supplemental pick for BJ when he is definitely worth more.

        • 0bsessions 4 years ago

          Guyer, maybe, but Moore is basically diminishing returns. Their rotation is one of the best in the MLB, but their offense was mediocre last year even with career years from Kotchman and a few others. If they don’t replicate Kotchman’s numbers from last year, trading Upton leaves two offensive holes. Jennings is probably an honest upgrade on Upton, but then you’ve got Fuld as the every day left fielder and he’s a massive downgrade. Guyer, Jennings and Upton in the outfield makes for a nice outfield. They could get by with Fuld, but I’m not sure they’re a playoff team without massively upgrading somewhere else if they ship out Upton.

          • FS54 4 years ago

            I am not too much concerned with contending next season. Not having Upton decreases their chances for next season, but may provide greater benefit in future.

      • johnsilver 4 years ago

        I really hope they keep him anyway.. He is going to suck up north of 5m in arbitration they could use to find someone who could help the offense. upton has not really helped the offense in a productive way since 2007 and they have a replacement for CF anyway.

        Sure he plays good defense 95% of the games and steals bases, but is that worth 5m for a team with limited resources when Friedman can probably find a team that will give him something in return, allowing him to find a real bat to help his offense?

        IMO, really hope they hang onto him and let him ride out his Rays time to the max, until his contract runs out.

    • As I understand it, teams will still be compensated with two picks as long as they make a qualifying arb offer equal to the average of the top 125 players.  This year that is about 12.5 mil and will probably be pretty similar next year.  The Rays will offer that to BJ and get the picks when he refuses. 

  9. biffsniff 4 years ago

    “…the Rays would have difficulty replacing his offensive and defensive production on the cheap.”
    Desmond Jennings?

  10. Leonard Washington 4 years ago

    Sox still got a great front three in the starting rotation so I would go with Kuroda all the way. Gio is going to be ridiculously expensive and if we can give our farm a season or so its gonna pay off in a major way. Theo obviously knew what he was doing and we got a ton of great hitters and solid arms coming through the system their just newer signers so times gonna be needed to get them into Pawtucket so they make some stupid list and make everybody shut up. I would rather keep them. Get a quality placeholder for the four spot then go after a nice FA next offseason and or bring along a young arm that progresses. We need a Kuroda type and a solid  pen guy (If Bard closes) or above average (If he starts). Then we can wrap it up.

    • MaineSox 4 years ago

      League, Oswalt, and Beltran FTW.

      • Leonard Washington 4 years ago

        I wouldn’t mind all three but I would prefer some combo of League/Soria/Bailey and Oswalt.

        • MaineSox 4 years ago

          You mean without Beltran?  I really like Beltran on a shorter deal personally.

          Also, Soria and Bailey would cost too much in prospects to be worth it.

          • Leonard Washington 4 years ago

            No I mean if they got Beltran on a short deal great. I just think the offense would be good if the season started today with or without him.

          • MaineSox 4 years ago

            Oh sure, they don’t need Beltran (or anyone else to “help” the offense for that matter), but I’d love to have him if it’s on a 2 year (or two with an option) deal.

          • Leonard Washington 4 years ago

            Def and from the sounds of it they are at least kicking the tires on it.

  11. im not a rays fan, and i dont appreciate your tone.

  12. EarlyMorningBoxscore 4 years ago

    You mad?…Boy the Christmas spirit is radiating off you today.

  13. start_wearing_purple 4 years ago

    Take a Valium or 2.

  14. haaa oh wow. for saomeone calling themself mrbaseball, it should mean you appreciate all aspects the game. if your a fan of baseball you just have to recognize how successful the rays have been considering their situation. even if your not a rays fan, thats just good baseball. 

  15. OrangeCards 4 years ago

    I’ll take 2 doc.

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