AL East Notes: Red Sox, Lester, Hanrahan, Rays

The possibility exists that at some point this season, the Red Sox could field a lineup, along with a good chunk of their rotation and bullpen, that is comprised almost exclusively of players and pitchers who have played only for Boston, writes Michael Silverman of the Boston Herald.  Thanks to the club's emphasis on homegrown talent, injuries/days off for David Ortiz, A.J. Pierzynski, David Ross, and Mike Napoli could make this idea a reality sometime this summer.  Here's more out of the AL East..

  • Two winters ago, the Red Sox were able to find success by overpaying free agents on an average annual basis while avoiding long-term deals, but they're mistaken if they think they can do the same with Jon Lester, writes Sean McAdam of  Boston reportedly offered the standout pitcher a four-year, $70MM contract extension before the start of the season.
  • Rob Bradford of agrees that the Red Sox are making a mistake in their handling of the contract talks with Lester, as the southpaw has no real reason to take such a relatively below-market extension.  Such a deal would also likely not sit well with the MLBPA, which Lester recognizes.  "I don't want to be the guy where you sign a deal and then a guy like [Felix Doubront] comes up and says (sarcastically), 'Thanks Jon for helping me out.' That's the tough part," Lester said.  "You've got to balance what makes you happy and still have to take into account where the Players' Association is, you have to take into account the market and what's fair, and then you do what makes you happyIf you're a little bit below market value and it makes you happy, who cares? If you're astronomically below market value, then that's where you need to look at it."
  • Nick Cafardo of the Boston Globe believes that the Yankees are the best bet to sign free agent reliever Joel Hanrahan.  The former Pirates closer is set to audition for teams on Thursday in Tampa, Florida.  The Mets, Angels, Rangers, Rockies, Royals, Athletics, Red Sox, and Rays are also said to be among the teams with interest in the 32-year-old.
  • Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times looks at the Rays and their ability to keep their young players under team control.  Of course, those type of deals aren't offered to all good young players, and not all accept it, not wanting to trade off larger future earnings for security.  Right-hander Alex Cobb and outfielders Desmond Jennings and Wil Myers are among the young notables who don't have long-term pacts.

28 Responses to AL East Notes: Red Sox, Lester, Hanrahan, Rays Leave a Reply

  1. ColonelBoston 1 year ago

    Why on earth would the Sox be interested in Hanrahan? Unless they’re just doing their “due diligence” all they need to do his fire up his film from last year…

    • johnsilver 1 year ago

      Keep him away from NY, which really needs him as a setup man, late inning guy and If I was him? go there for a decent shot at play off money.

      As for those home grown players listed in the Silverman story?

      Those guys (other than Wilson/WMB, substitute Cecchini) would be a better team than several currently in the game.

      • ColonelBoston 1 year ago

        You don’t sign players & use up precious roster spots just to keep them away from other teams. Why waste a spot on a guy who couldn’t handle the spotlight when Workman is wasting in AAA. Hanrahan couldn’t handle Boston, you think he can handle New York? He’s a typical NL pitcher who can’t handle the pressure or lineups of the AL.

        • jjs91 1 year ago

          I didn’t think he would work in the Al east, but he did only have 7 innings…

          • Denny Doyle 1 year ago

            7 innings… with a torn ulnar. There’s no way of knowing whether Hanrahan can handle AL East. He clearly had a problem in ’13 Spring Training, then carried into April before he was shutdown.

        • Denny Doyle 1 year ago

          “Hanrahan couldn’t handle Boston” He had a torn ulnar nerve and needed Tommy John surgery. An injury doesn’t determine whether or not a player can “handle” something. With that logic, Jeter couldn’t handle NY last year, and Pedroia couldn’t handle Bos in ’10.

        • johnsilver 1 year ago

          It wouldn’t be entirely keeping him away from a contender. I think Hanrahan could help Boston also, but NOT as a main 8th inning setup, or even possible closer alternate like he could be in NY.

          In Boston, he would be behind Koji, Taz and possibly even Mujica. If he had a choice? Where do you think he would pick with only Robertson possibly ahead of him at NY?

      • Riaaaaaa 1 year ago

        The Yankees aren’t in desperate need for a setup man/late inning guy. Betances and Warren have dominated in the pen so far and when Robertson gets back, Kelley would go back to the 7th or 8th, and the pen could be a strength for this team. Hanrahan would be more of a luxury, not a necessity.

        • johnsilver 1 year ago

          He would be a solid veteran with plenty of closing experience, that if he’s as good as he was pre YJ, will throw 96-99mph with a devastating slider. I really wouldn’t mind Boston resigning him either, just think that NY could really use someone like that an awful lot more.

          • Riaaaaaa 1 year ago

            Personally, I don’t think the Yankees need him at all. They have more than enough arms in the pen: Warren, Betances, Kelley, Cabral, Robertson, Thornton, Phelps, Nuno, Greene and possibly Daley, Bailey, and Ramirez for later in the year. I guess we have to agree to disagree.

      • MB923 1 year ago

        Actually I think your Sox could use him again. Koji’s shoulder stiffness is worrisome for a 39 year old.

        • Jesus Ortiz 1 year ago

          We have edward mujica for that.

          • MB923 1 year ago

            I never said he had to be the closer, but they could use him for late relief more. I”m also Not saying they need him so don’t get me wrong

            Truthfully I think the Angels or Rangers could use him the most (among the teams listed)

          • johnsilver 1 year ago

            Like posted above MB, I’d gladly take him back, but think Hanrahan is going to want to pick somewhere he gets opportunity to at least pitch late in games and I doubt Boston will have that with both Koji and Mujica around.

            Good point on Texas and the Angels. I’d like to see the Marlins spend some cash on the BP as well, they need to.

          • jjs91 1 year ago

            Mujica has been awful since august.

          • Jesus Ortiz 1 year ago

            So far for us he only had 1 bad inning

  2. Tigers72 1 year ago

    Tigers could really use Harranahan. Ausmus said he didn’t need two lefties out of the pen and have him replace Coke.

    • McTigers 1 year ago

      Agree, was rather surprised to see the Tigers not mentioned as being interested given how thin their BP is.

    • hartvig 1 year ago

      I’ll third that notion. I understand that there are limits to what they can spend but it would seem silly to spend as much as they already have and then let a couple million more potentially stand between them and the playoffs or World Series.

      I didn’t see Coke during spring training but his numbers were OK. But it’s also true that in spite of his playoff heroics of a couple of years ago his numbers have progressively declined since 2008 and they weren’t all that impressive for a reliever in the first place. What I saw of him towards the end of last season and once so far this year he looks really unsure of himself and his control is horsedung. He’s all over the place and then when he needs to get one over he takes something off it and gets hammered. Time to part ways and give him a chance to see if he can get his stuff back somewhere else.

  3. $40129616 1 year ago

    Man, every time Jon Lester opens his mouth I have more respect for him. Here’s a guy who is not single minded, who tries to think of others (including the needs of the team, the needs of other players, and his own interests), and who is willing to take a nuanced position when talking to the press. He’s worked his way up to Tim Wakefield status on my list of “most respected Sox players.”

  4. NOLASoxFan 1 year ago

    I do NOT understand the way the Sox are treating Lester. He’s one of their absolute core players, he’s 30, and they have the long-term contract commitments of an expansion team. There’s absolutely no excuse for offering him a contract that far below his market value.

  5. Daniel Morairity 1 year ago

    The rangers need to sign joel hanrahan because their bullpen this year has been terrible

  6. Eric Droegemeier 1 year ago

    Boston front office needs to stop treating Lester like trash. He can’t be happy after helping them win 2 rings and then he gets offered something about 50-60 million under his market value? That’s not a home town discount, that’s a scam. Cherington needs to wake up and smell the coffee to this fact: Pitchers like Lester are not easy to come by, and treating them this way is not good for business.

  7. Eric Droegemeier 1 year ago

    Boston front office needs to stop treating Lester so badly. He can’t
    be happy after helping them win 2 rings and then he gets offered
    something about 50-60 million under his market value? That’s not a home
    town discount, that’s a scam. Cherington needs to wake up and smell the
    coffee to this fact: Pitchers like Lester are not easy to come by, and
    treating them this way is not good for business.

  8. jb226 1 year ago

    The Red Sox might continue to have success by offering higher AAVs over shorter terms — the problem is they didn’t bother to do that with Lester. If we’re going to be very generous to them, $17.5MM might be on the low end of his market value. That isn’t even close to the concept of overpaying annually.

  9. I’m less on Lester’s side after the Union remarks. The Player’s Union doesn’t get to dictate what’s fair for the market. Saying you’re not taking a deal because of how it might affect future players is a complete copout. The Sox are offering much less than what another team would. Lester doesn’t need to pretend that he’s altruistically seeking more money, the fact that another team will pay him more is reason enough.

    • $40129616 1 year ago

      What makes you think he’s “pretending” that he cares about the precedent he’s setting by accepting less money? He’s established that he’s willing to offer a hometown discount. Isn’t it quite reasonable that he’s aware that by doing so he’s injuring the negotiating positions of other players? It’s absolutely true that contract negotiations are done by referencing other contracts for similar players. He doesn’t want his low contract to be a point in the favor of management’s position when other, similar players are negotiating.

      • Hometown discounts are regarded as such. They’re reference points.

        There’s at least 30 million dollar difference from the 5/100-110 mentioned in the media and the 70 that the Red Sox offered. I don’t blame Lester for not wanting that, but it doesn’t have anything to do with Felxi Doubront. I’d do the exact same thing only I wouldn’t hide behind the union. The Sox are lowballing him.

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