AL East Notes: Victorino, Price, Lester, Yanks, Johnson

The Red Sox announced tonight that outfielder Shane Victorino underwent a season-ending lumbar disectomy surgery. The 33-year-old appeared in just 30 games for the BoSox this season, slashing .268/.303/.382 with two homers and two steals. Clearly, the second year of his three-year, $39MM contract with the Red Sox didn’t pan out as well as the first — which was arguably the finest season of his entire career. Though his contract was widely panned at the time of the signing, Victorino silenced critics by batting .294/.351/.451 with 15 homers, 21 steals and elite outfield defense — all of which combined to total more than 5.5 wins above replacement.

Here’s more from the AL East…

  • David Lennon of Newsday tweets that the Red Sox and Rays both received permission from their owners to trade their left-handed aces to any team in baseball, with one exception: the Yankees.
  • The injury to David Phelps should push the Yankees back into the starting pitching market, writes Mike Axisa of River Ave. Blues. As he notes, the case can be made that the Yankees’ five best starting options — Phelps, Masahiro Tanaka, CC Sabathia, Ivan Nova and Michael Pineda — are all on the disabled list at this time.
  • Allowing Matt Thornton to be claimed by the Nationals saved the Yankees about $1MM in 2014 salary and $3.5MM in 2015 salary, and Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports tweets that the Yankees could redirect some of those savings to add some pieces this month. New York is working on some potential additions already, says Rosenthal. GM Brian Cashman is “open to anything that makes [the Yankees] better,” he tells MLB.com’s Jake Kring-Schreifels.
  • The Orioles had interest in adding former closer Jim Johnson on a minor league deal, writes Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com, but they felt they didn’t have room to add him to the big league squad until rosters expand in September. Manager Buck Showalter tells Kubatko that he expressed that point to Johnson in multiple phone conversations
  • Former Red Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski tells Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com that while he assumes that many people will expect him to be bitter toward Boston, he has no hard feelings toward the organization or his former teammates (even those who have spoken against him since his departure). Pierzynski said he didn’t ask for a reason when he was DFAed, although he wasn’t exactly expecting the move. He also offers high praise for his brief time with the Cardinals and briefly discusses the difficulty of a catcher transitioning pitching staffs midseason.


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21 Comments on "AL East Notes: Victorino, Price, Lester, Yanks, Johnson"


MB923
1 year 27 days ago

” David Lennon of Newsday tweets that the Red Sox and Rays both received permission from their owners to trade their left-handed aces to any team in baseball, with one exception: the Yankees”

Shocking!!

Karkat
1 year 27 days ago

No aces for you :V

MB923
1 year 27 days ago

Hehe. Nope. Until Tanaka gets back.

robbyb
1 year 27 days ago

2016 should be a great year…

Scott Berlin
1 year 27 days ago

The Yankees could sign Lester. But lets see if Detroit keeps Scherzer and Price.

MB923
1 year 27 days ago

Guess you haven’t heard about his rehab as of now being successful.

robbyb
1 year 27 days ago

His 50 throws from 60 feet.. that is a successful rehab as of now… We can continue this conversation in SEP/ OCT timeframe.. or when he goes in for TJ..

MB923
1 year 27 days ago

There’s a reason I wrote as of now

robbyb
1 year 27 days ago

me too…

Mike1L
1 year 27 days ago

Victorino illustrates the other side of the Red Sox strategy of shorter term contracts. If you are going to sign someone to a three year deal, the cost of an injury year doesn’t have as much time to amortize. Net net, I think it works, especially when everything goes well for you at the same time, as it did for the Sox in 2013.

108 stitches
1 year 27 days ago

Ehh….he took care of his contract with 6+ WAR last year. At least close to it. Thank god he’s not signed through 2017.

1 year 27 days ago

The Sox knew what they were getting themselves into with Victorino. He was hot when they needed him to be. This year is unfortunate, but we’ll remember the 2013 WS a lot longer than we’ll remember the 30 games he played this year.

Karkat
1 year 27 days ago

We were more than just a healthy Victorino away from winning this year anyway (although it sure would’ve helped)

1 year 27 days ago

Very true. I dislike the notion that people will call the Victorino contract a failure, even though it was pretty much entirely validated by last year. You sign players to win rings. If they win rings, what they do in years where the team isn’t as good isn’t as important.

Karkat
1 year 27 days ago

I mean, a six year deal where the player helps the team win in the first year and then injured/bad for the remaining years would still feel pretty bad. It all depends on how long an aging/declining player hurts your overall makeup, and in Victorino’s case, it can’t possibly end up too poorly, given 2013.

1 year 27 days ago

Right. It’s certainly contextual and the value of a WS win doesn’t have a direct translation to WAR or any other stat. But you sign players to win rings.

Mike1L
1 year 27 days ago

i agree, but the strategy is useful only when it works–when you win, and you can afford the spend. It’s much harder for a team with lesser resources to take a $39M chance on a 30+ year old outfielder who relies on his legs.

1 year 27 days ago

Agreed. If we had no ring out of this, the contract would look pretty bad right about now.

Devern Hansack
1 year 27 days ago

Even by a WAR standpoint, it’s still not a bad contract. The cost of a marginal win is about seven million dollars. He was worth 39.2 million last year alone. It’s not a lot of surplus value if he has injury problems moving forward, but breaking even and getting a title was well worth it.

NomarGarciaparra
1 year 26 days ago

It doesn’t matter what Victorino did this year or next. What Victorino did last year was enough to cover his contract!

dc21892
1 year 27 days ago

On the bright side Victorinos surgery went well according to his Instagram. Now he just has to rehab like crazy and I’m sure he will bounce back and be an integral part in turning this ship in the right direction next season.