Red Sox Would Have To Move Payroll For Oswalt

It's been a bizarro offseason, with the Marlins spending freely, the Angels winning a top free agent, and the Yankees and Red Sox exercising financial caution.  The Red Sox would have to make a move to free up payroll in order to sign Roy Oswalt, reports WEEI's Rob Bradford, putting a deal in doubt.

The Red Sox have maintained dialogue with Oswalt's agent in recent days, reports Jon Paul Morosi of FOX Sports, who feels the team must fortify their rotation.  Reportedly, Oswalt is looking for about $8MM guaranteed on a one-year deal.


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154 Comments on "Red Sox Would Have To Move Payroll For Oswalt"


redsx968
3 years 7 months ago

Do it. Who are our #s 4 and 5 right now?

3 years 7 months ago

It looks like Miller and Bard, lol.

GMwannabe
3 years 7 months ago

Miller will be lucky to stay on the 40 man roster.. Aceves or one of the castoffs they just signed depending on who has the better spring.. Not sure id want both Bard and Aceves to leave the bullpen though

hediouspb
3 years 7 months ago

Tazawa and bard

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

Doubt Tazawa is in the rotation, especially to start the year. More likely Bard and Aceves/Doubront/Cook/Silva/and now Padilla if they don’t sign Oswalt.

slider32
3 years 7 months ago

Why sign Cook and Padilla, they should have put that money into Oswalt.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

Well, I’m pretty sure all of Cook, Silva, and Padilla are minor league deals with invites to spring training so they wouldn’t even count toward the luxury tax unless they are added to the roster.  They also would serve as decent depth and/or help the bullpen.

Holidayjesus
3 years 7 months ago

Just acquire Garza from the Cubs already. 

StanleyHudson
3 years 7 months ago

I like where this guy’s going!

nestleraisinets
3 years 7 months ago

don’t worry. He will be the compensation for Epstein

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

Sure he will. Go ahead and hold your breath on that.

redsx968
3 years 7 months ago

He was joking. 

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

Sorry. The problem with dry humor here is that there are plenty of folks around here who ARE that thick, so sometimes, it’s hard to tell who’s kidding.

soxfanfromBC
3 years 7 months ago

Oh the irony

3 years 7 months ago

Adquirí a Garza

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

This kinda bugs me.  It’s a one year deal, you’re already over the luxury tax, you’re not actually hurting for money (you just want to stay close to the threshold), and you’ve finished in 3rd place two years in a row.  Spend the frigging money.

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

Wasn’t there something in the new CBA though that makes the rate of the luxury tax go up dramatically for repeat offenders? That changes things considerably.

EarlyMorningBoxscore
3 years 7 months ago

Yes, but John Henry is worth over 2 billion dollars. He has the money to spend. 

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

Do you suppose that billionaires get to be billionaires by throwing money around indiscriminately?

EarlyMorningBoxscore
3 years 7 months ago

If the Sox sign Oswalt for 1 year 8 million…yes they have to spend more on luxury tax. However, in signing him their chances of reaching the post-season is greater so the potential for more ticket, concession, and apparel sales also grows. Also, with the signing of Oswalt it could mean more apparel sales(Oswalt t-shirts, and jerseys). So that signing would potentially mean more money for the aforementioned billionaire. It’s not throwing money around indiscriminately if it is going to make him more in the long run.  

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

Meh. Sorry. Double post.

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

While I agree with what you said in your reply–that he would need to weigh the costs versus the benefit–that’s not the same argument as you appeared to be making initially.

Also: bear in mind that the luxury tax hit is more complicated than just 50% on top of Oswalt’s salary.

First, if the Sox stay below $178MM this year, that drops their potential luxury hit next year down to 17%.

So, if the Sox are only over the cap by $10MM this year, but end up having to go over by $20MM next year, that means signing Oswalt will have effectively cost them $11.6MM in taxes.

Second, there is a little understood clause in the new CBA called the “market disqualification” clause. Basically, that clause says that big market teams shouldn’t get revenue sharing. And the savings to the pool can provide large market teams that stay BELOW the cap with savings of as much as $13MM a year on their revenue sharing bills. I don’t think that one takes effect yet, but it bears mention, as it is a potential game changer.

The bottom line is: owners aren’t just looking at luxury tax hits as a one year hit. They can hurt the next year’s books or even affect their revenue sharing bills in the future.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 Yes, if they go over this year (which they already have, so it’s a moot point) their tax would go to 40% next year (or is it 50%?), and if they can stay under for a year it resets to 17% (which is the real incentive to get under).  But where they are already over, and acknowledged that they would be, they should go all in (especially for one year deals like Oswalt) and shoot for under the tax next year.

start_wearing_purple
start_wearing_purple
3 years 7 months ago

Is the luxury tax this year still $178M? If so then with the roster as is, I’m estimating a payroll just slightly under that.

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

I thought it was 189 this year.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 No, the new CBA made it so that it stays at $178M this year and goes to $189M in 2013.

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

Ah, thanks.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 Yeah, still $178M.  I don’t know the exact numbers but I saw somewhere the other day that by their own calculations they are already over the threshold.  I’m also pretty sure that there is like $10M in medical benefits that they have to include in the calculation.

slider32
3 years 7 months ago

The Sox are lucky, they under paid Lester, Pedroia, and Youk. There problem is the graveyard of pitchers.

notsureifsrs
3 years 7 months ago

so lucky. no talent at all involved in signing those players to those contracts

slider32
3 years 7 months ago

I agree, most of the time pitchers like Cook and Padilla don’t work out.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

There’s always a chance they work out (a la Colon and Garcia), but even if these guys do work out they aren’t as good as Oswalt.

Dan Block
3 years 7 months ago

They only seem to work out when the Yankees or Cardinals sign them

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

I chose my avatar specifically for comments like this…

3 years 7 months ago

I think Oswalt would be best in Kansas City.
The Orioles aren’t going to make any effort towards an Oswalt signing so why not head to KC. It would be good for baseball!

The bottom line is if the Red Sox are truly looking to move payroll to get this done, they should call up Theo Epstein and see what he wants to do since he was the one who caused the mess!

StanleyHudson
3 years 7 months ago

Bobby Jenks and his $6 million guaranteed looks worse than before right about now.

Guest
3 years 7 months ago

Really? It’s not that they offered Ortiz arb, signed Nick Punto, retained Andrew Miller and acquired Sweeny? At a total cost of about $22/23mm for all four in 2012. While I can’t fault them for any of those moves, well maybe offering Ortiz arb, I think in hindsight, they could have spent that $22mm a little better. You could have probably gotten Carlos Pena for $5.5mm, Oswalt for $8mm (or Kuroda for $10mm prior to his signing with the Yanks) and still have about $7mm-$10mm left which subsequently could have been used to sign Carlos Beltran. Beltran, Oswalt, Pena would have been far more effective than Punto, Ortiz, Sweeny, Miller and the cost would be the same. I don’t think Bobby Jenks is the problem here. 

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 Pena makes zero sense for the Red Sox

Guest
3 years 7 months ago

So does David Ortiz, only Pena likely cost’s a third of the price. It’s not so much I think Pena is a great fit, his name was used in my argument to show that the money spent could have been used much better this offseason. At least Pena could have filled in for Gonzalez on days off and during inter-league, would provide a little more roster flexibility. 

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

Ortiz makes tons of sense for the Red Sox; he was one of the better hitters in the game last year, and they were able to get him on the one year deal they wanted.

Guest
3 years 7 months ago

So does David Ortiz, only Pena likely cost’s a third of the price. It’s not so much I think Pena is a great fit, his name was used in my argument to show that the money spent could have been used much better this offseason. At least Pena could have filled in for Gonzalez on days off and during inter-league, would provide a little more roster flexibility. 

slider32
3 years 7 months ago

Jenks, Lackey, and D- K, all look bad.

AlKelz
3 years 7 months ago

As does Crawford.  I would love to see the Sox make a move for Oswalt . Even as an Oriole fan. Oswalt has been a favorite of mine for a while . I want to see him get a ring .

Don’t see much chance of him signing with the Twins or Royals as has been sugested by others . I think he will sign with the Rangers , along with Darvish and Prince Fielder .

The Angels have spent big this off season , the A’s and M’s aren’t contenders yet . The Rangers are seeing their hold on the AL West challenged . Their window for a championship could be closing .

Look for the Rangers deep pocketed owners to over load on talent in hopes of finally putting the team over the top.

towney007
3 years 7 months ago

Folks need to come to grips with the fact that the Red Sox aren’t adding a significant piece this offseason. They’re just not.

dc21892
3 years 7 months ago

Thanks for the clarification. I wasn’t aware you were a part of the Sox front office.

3 years 7 months ago

No way, he will either sign with the Bo Sox or the Cards.  Cards are looking to trade Lohse, Westbrook or McClellan (the last one seriously bothers me considering how well he did as a starter for us.)  The only reason I think he will go to Boston is because the Cards would reportedly want to use him in a relief role unless they can move either Lohse or Westbrook. 

jhfdssdaf
3 years 7 months ago

No one else wants Westbrook, and both he and Lohse have no trade clauses anyhow.  McClellan may get moved (no protection, and other teams may actually want him), but I doubt it.

Only way Oswalt ends up with the Cardinals is if he wants to take less money.  Forget the “full rotation” problem.  They’ll eat Westbrook’s salary and move him to the pen after a few weeks to make room for Oswalt.

formerdraftpick
3 years 7 months ago

Oswalt isn’t that big of a guy.  I’m sure we don’t have to move the whole Payroll department just to fit him into the stadium.  

3 years 7 months ago

Oswalt always puts a clause in his contract that allows him to park his tractor at the stadium.

3 years 7 months ago

we need a starter for the new season..but the best news for us is that lackey this year will be out..

melonis_rex
3 years 7 months ago

This is why you don’t throw money at utility players before filling major needs. 

Cutting Miller/Sweeney/Aviles/Albers probably would’ve paid for most of Oswalt’s salary, and all of those guys are easily replaceable with league min guys for 2012. Also, Jenks and his 6MM look bad.

edit: took out Salty and Punto. They were decent beyond a league min guy.

nestleraisinets
3 years 7 months ago

Signing utility players are important too because they can easily be snatched by other teams

melonis_rex
3 years 7 months ago

Not nearly as important than filling major needs—like starting pitcher—though. 

Similar players will still be available later in the offseason. 

slider32
3 years 7 months ago

Pitching wins!

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

Saltalamacchia was worth 2.5 WAR last year. If you know where there’s a league minimum guy around ready to do the same, there are some GMs who would like to speak with you.

melonis_rex
3 years 7 months ago

You’re right, my bad. Took out him and Punto. 

But the others still would comprise a fair chunk of Oswalt’s potential salary. And you could throw in Jenks as well if you wanted to. 

dc21892
3 years 7 months ago

Miller is going to make spot starts, Punto will serve as a reliable bench player, Salty is the STARTING catcher, Sweeney is good when healthy and Albers had a great year minus two months. Aviles is insurance. Good try, though. Depth is key. Oswalt is a luxary at this point. Teams would be happy to have the limited holes Boston has to fill.

melonis_rex
3 years 7 months ago

I took out Salty and Punto—since they were actually decent/good. My bad. 

YanksFanSince78
3 years 7 months ago

You’re missing his point. They all serve a purpose but all, except for Salty and maybe Punto, are easily replaceable players.

aricollins
3 years 7 months ago

Those guy are all kind of necessary. Except MAYBE Miller or Albers. But Boston could use the pitching depth.

And most of those guys (especially Salty) project to be above replaement level.

Guest
3 years 7 months ago

Pretty much exactly what I just said above to someone else. I just think the Red Sox made some poor decisions this off season in light of all the other issues surrounding management. Let’s face it, it happens where managers leave, GM’s move on. Big deal, we’re all past that, but it still needs to be said that their current organizational decisions have been pretty awful this offseason, even the trade for Melancon, while useful, wasn’t great. I’m still shocked by the Bailey deal, perhaps one of the better trades of the entire offseason for any team, which begs the question; Did his arm fall off or something?  

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 What was wrong with the Melancon trade?  He has a lot of team control left and only cost us depth pieces with no real future on the Sox.

3 years 7 months ago

1. Ranaudo, Iglesias, Compensation for Garza, Marlon Byrd
2. Youkilis, Kalish, Iglesias for David Wright
3. Sign Oswalt 1/8mil
4. Sign Edwin Jackson 3/30mil
Which one(s) would you do if you were Ben?

3 years 7 months ago

I don’t think Wright is going anywhere.  I would easily recommend Jackson for 3 years.  As a fan of the Cards, I was excited to see him pitch for us.  Jackson is a beast on the mound.  His numbers might not be superb, but he is the definition of an inning eater.

slider32
3 years 7 months ago

David Wright will be a Yankee next year, A-Rod moves to DH.

AlKelz
3 years 7 months ago

Interesting , not sure the Mets would trade with the Yankee’s ? But it would be awesome to see this happen.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 #3 by a long shot.

sourbob
3 years 7 months ago

Why on earth would anyone trade Youkilis for Wright?

There are so many things wrong with that, I wouldn’t know where to start. 

jhfdssdaf
3 years 7 months ago

Because only GMs of the teams we root for have brains.  Other GMs are easily fooled into taking lesser players for superstars.

dc21892
3 years 7 months ago

LOL

JacksTigers
3 years 7 months ago

How do any of these help?

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

Signing Oswalt definitely helps.

JacksTigers
3 years 7 months ago

The money situation is what I’m referring to.

JacksTigers
3 years 7 months ago

How do any of these help?

Karkat
3 years 7 months ago

If I were in charge I’d go for #3, but if I were Ben I’d be an incompetent dolt and probably do #2.

3 years 7 months ago

$6 million with $2 million in incentives. Get it done Bo Sox.

bigpat
3 years 7 months ago

Maybe they should trade for a cheaper young pitcher, like the Yanks did with Pineda. Bummer they have so much money tied up to injured players, Lackey and Dice-K making 30M to rehab.

They should have made a bigger deal with the A’s to acquire Brandon McCarthy or Dallas Braden. McCarthy would have been a great fit as their #4 starter. Not like they gave up much to get Bailey in the first place, they could have just thrown in another player or two.

nestleraisinets
3 years 7 months ago

lars anderson for?

slider32
3 years 7 months ago

You mean Dallas, don’t walk on my mound, Braden. What a joke of a pitcher. He was a flash in the pan.

PWNdroia
3 years 7 months ago

If we didn’t waste our money on the likes of guys like Miller or Silva we’d have enough to pay Oswalt.  I prefer Oswalt to Padilla as well.

Blue_Bomb
3 years 7 months ago

All of those players are on minor league deals. Try again.

PWNdroia
3 years 7 months ago

But money is money, and it doesn’t grow on trees.

nestleraisinets
3 years 7 months ago

John Lackey would be willing to trade his $$ for chicken…

UltimateYankeeFan
3 years 7 months ago

When President Obama heard that the Red Sox were still talking to Roy Oswalt he was heard to say:
“The time for talk is over, the time for action is now because we know that if we do not act, a bad situation will become dramatically worse,” Obama said. 

Keep in mind President Obama won the state of Massachusetts in 2008 by almost 800,000 votes and got a whopping 62% of the vote in Massachusetts. So he obviously knows something about what it takes to win there..

3 years 7 months ago

I wish they got Maholm so the 5 spot could be fought for by Silva/Doubront/Miller/Cook/Padilla/Doubront/Tazawa/Bard/Aceves and let the best man win. SOMEONE decent would have emerged from the pack. The chance two emerge is highly unlikely. I don’t think Bard is cut out to start.

Blue_Bomb
3 years 7 months ago

What makes you say Bard ain’t cut out to be a starter? I’ve read some articles and I think he could pull it off. Keep in mind Dice-K’s coming back midseason.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

Trade Scutaro and his $6M for whatever you can get, and throw Iglesias to the wolves, so to speak.  I would think that that would free up enough money to sign Oswalt.

3 years 7 months ago

Nah, trade Carl Crawford for Soriano and Garza, then call it even.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 What? I don’t even…

stl_cards16
3 years 7 months ago

I guess that whole moving payroll part didn’t click, huh?

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

Couldn’t the Sox work the contract like they did Beltre’s and give him one year with a player option for like $1M, cutting his AAV to $4.5M instead of the full $8M?

NomarGarciaparra
3 years 7 months ago

Beltre’s player option was 5M I believe, and increased to 10M with 640 PA.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

Right, but it was the same idea.  Add a player option (that is never going to be exercised) to lower the AAV.

Lars Chunks
3 years 7 months ago

Either that or trade Youkilis.  I don’t see what other options they would have for clearing payroll.  They do still have Aviles, so he could always play SS/3B until Iglesias/Middlebrooks get called up. Plus Punto is in the mix but he can’t hit.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 Youkilis is too valuable to the offense to trade for salary relief.

mvpedroia
3 years 7 months ago

I saw Liverpool isnt having any problems bidding 10MM$+ for players so pony up and pay Oswalt

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

We should try to get Jenks contract eaten by including a nice prospect in a deal. Or just get Garza, we were trying to get Felix again this offseason and were turned down just use a third of what we offered for him to get Garza. 

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

I don’t get how getting Garza would work but signing Oswalt wouldn’t.  Assuming Oswalt will really sign for $8M he would be cheaper than Garza.

(this isn’t just to you, I’ve seen it said a bunch of times over the past month)

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

I am not an expert on arbitration but Garza should be around 8M this year. If it were a question of clearing 6M to get one or the other Garza would obviously be the ideal acquisition just because of age and prime years left. It would cost talent but a long term deal for Garza would likely be cheaper than signing Hamels or Cain next season, considering they have better seasons under their belts. We could clear the necessary room by moving Jenks with a solid prospect, or Scutaro if that wouldn’t work. We could then use Aviles/Iglesias in a platoon if we had to. I think the teams lineup would be great everywhere else so having a bit of a downgrade at SS in exchange for defense would be sort of like when we had Gonzalez there some seasons ago. Possibilities. If that were to go down we could use Padilla in the pen and as a spot guy.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 Garza isn’t as good of a pitcher as those other guys, and as you said, he would cost prospects as well as money.  And after making $6M last year, and having an outstanding year, he will likely be closer to $10-12M than the $8M Oswalt reportedly wants.

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

Like I stated im not great with arbitration raises so your likely correct. And I know Garza isn’t as good as Cain & Hamels and I stated as much by saying he would cheaper do to his resume comparably.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

 Right, but those are all just more reasons Garza doesn’t fit for the Red Sox.

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

Just throwing bones. Wasn’t sure about his raise so I couldn’t be sure he wasn’t comparable in price to Oswalt. I don’t expect this lux tax cap to continue forever so extending him would be plausible next season. I think the Sox will sign one of the best FA pitchers available next season cap or not so getting him now and getting the cheaper long term deal made some sense if he was comparable to Roy.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

Eh, if they were to sign Oswalt this year they would have his $8M, Ortiz’s $14ishM, Jenks’ $6M, Scutaro’s $6M, and Dice-K’s $10M, plus being one year away from dropping Youk’s $13M (and all of them other than Dice-K are likely to be replaced by league minimum players).  Plenty of room to add a one of the free agent pitchers next year.

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

I am not saying Oswalt would stop us from making a move next season, just tossed out Garza because at this stage he is more durable effective. Again this was only proposed on a tossed out arbitration figure which is apparently wrong. Then again if they could get him for a reasonable package they might just go over the line.

MaineSox
3 years 7 months ago

No, but Garza would stop us from getting one of those other pitchers next year.  And I honestly think I would prefer Oswalt to Garza anyway (I’m still not convinced that the ‘new’ Garza is the real Garza).

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

Yeah I wouldn’t mind either one. Just some possibilities. The route that would coincide the most with this off seasons theme would def be Oswalt so I still see it as the vastly more probable acquisition. I do believe Garza is for real though. I think the SO could come back down slightly if he returned to the AL but I still think he would be very effective, and far more durable than Oswalt.

Guest
3 years 7 months ago

You’re not very good at this are you? You need very high level prospects to trade for a pitcher like Felix. You make is sound like they actually had a chance. Both the Yanks and Jays would have blown the Sox out of the water had Felix been available. As for Garza, just use a third? Like who. I don’t think you guys could even land Garza right now. You criticize me in another thread, but you clearly have no idea of your own prospect values. 

Leonard Washington
3 years 7 months ago

We have lots of good prospects between the couple in the high minors and the many in the lower. I in no way indicated we were close to getting Felix, I only stated that we tried as it was reported on this site. As for the third comment I assumed our package would be enourmous for Felix as it was in years past so a third of that is not really far off from what it would cost for Garza. And we do have the prospects to land garza in fact some of ours match up pretty well with their needs like 3B Middlebrooks, who Theo obviously thinks highly of.