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Edwin Encarnacion contract likely sent Sox in new direction this offseason

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If you look at what Hahn and the Sox have done this offseason, I think the failed EE experiment last year, and to a lesser extent the Gio Gonzalez deal, led the Sox in a different direction.  For $13M (prorated though it was), the Sox got a .157/.250/.377 anchor in the middle of their lineup.  Had they brought up Andrew Vaughn last year, he likely could have hit better than that for next to no money. Zack Collins probably could have done better with EE's 181 plate appearances. So might have Yermin Mercedes. 

But once they committed to that kind of contract, they weren't just going to cut him or not play him.  They left Renteria out to dry with not much choice other than to play him most of the time. Sure, RR moved other guys through the DH spot, including Grandal when McCann caught. But EE still got 44 of 60 games to drag the Sox offense down. 

And at the end of the year, they had nothing to show for it. Didn't win a playoff series. Didn't help develop a longer term player. Didn't save money they could use for more productive things. 

I think it was that contract and experience that led Hahn not to go get another temporary bat to place in front of Andrew Vaughn, when Zack Collins might serve well as a DH until Vaughn covers his service time for an extra year of Sox control. 

At catcher, they signed Lucroy for depth, but only gave him a minor league deal so as not to block Collins from playing. 

On the pitching side, they did add Rodon, but only for $3M, because their hope is he's just a bridge until Kopech is ready. 

In short, I think the Sox decided this year to make sure their young trio of Vaughn, Collins, and Kopech will have no veterans in their way once service time issues are resolved.

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No, they didn't get a temporary bat for DH, they got one for RF. 

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They purposefully didn't learn anything by not cutting him and giving someone younger ABs. Now they can pretend like Collins isn't a waste of a roster space until they want to bring up Vaughn.

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You seem way more optimistic about Collins than the organization does.

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24 minutes ago, VAfan said:

If you look at what Hahn and the Sox have done this offseason, I think the failed EE experiment last year, and to a lesser extent the Gio Gonzalez deal, led the Sox in a different direction.  For $13M (prorated though it was), the Sox got a .157/.250/.377 anchor in the middle of their lineup.  Had they brought up Andrew Vaughn last year, he likely could have hit better than that for next to no money. Zack Collins probably could have done better with EE's 181 plate appearances. So might have Yermin Mercedes. 

But once they committed to that kind of contract, they weren't just going to cut him or not play him.  They left Renteria out to dry with not much choice other than to play him most of the time. Sure, RR moved other guys through the DH spot, including Grandal when McCann caught. But EE still got 44 of 60 games to drag the Sox offense down. 

And at the end of the year, they had nothing to show for it. Didn't win a playoff series. Didn't help develop a longer term player. Didn't save money they could use for more productive things. 

I think it was that contract and experience that led Hahn not to go get another temporary bat to place in front of Andrew Vaughn, when Zack Collins might serve well as a DH until Vaughn covers his service time for an extra year of Sox control. 

At catcher, they signed Lucroy for depth, but only gave him a minor league deal so as not to block Collins from playing. 

On the pitching side, they did add Rodon, but only for $3M, because their hope is he's just a bridge until Kopech is ready. 

In short, I think the Sox decided this year to make sure their young trio of Vaughn, Collins, and Kopech will have no veterans in their way once service time issues are resolved.

Signing Adam Eaton sort of blows this theory out of the water (among many other things) but OK.

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carlos rodon

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It isn't popular to say, but I am OK with what they did in the EE signing.  It didn't work out, but instead of trying to force a guy who might not have been ready into a role, they spent only money to sign a guy that carried no obligation past one season, and still had guys like Collins and Mercedes, as well as Vaughn as back up options if they wanted to use them.  I wish they had done more EE style moves in this off season to give this squad more insulation and protection against injury and failures.

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49 minutes ago, Tony said:

Signing Adam Eaton sort of blows this theory out of the water (among many other things) but OK.

How so?  I don't think they have somebody knocking on the door to play right field, so they clearly needed somebody to fill that position (who was better than the statue we had there last year).  It would blow the theory out of the water if they were dying to give Adolfo at bats, but I don't think there's anybody who's ready.

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1 hour ago, VAfan said:

If you look at what Hahn and the Sox have done this offseason, I think the failed EE experiment last year, and to a lesser extent the Gio Gonzalez deal, led the Sox in a different direction.  For $13M (prorated though it was), the Sox got a .157/.250/.377 anchor in the middle of their lineup.  Had they brought up Andrew Vaughn last year, he likely could have hit better than that for next to no money. Zack Collins probably could have done better with EE's 181 plate appearances. So might have Yermin Mercedes. 

But once they committed to that kind of contract, they weren't just going to cut him or not play him.  They left Renteria out to dry with not much choice other than to play him most of the time. Sure, RR moved other guys through the DH spot, including Grandal when McCann caught. But EE still got 44 of 60 games to drag the Sox offense down. 

And at the end of the year, they had nothing to show for it. Didn't win a playoff series. Didn't help develop a longer term player. Didn't save money they could use for more productive things. 

I think it was that contract and experience that led Hahn not to go get another temporary bat to place in front of Andrew Vaughn, when Zack Collins might serve well as a DH until Vaughn covers his service time for an extra year of Sox control. 

At catcher, they signed Lucroy for depth, but only gave him a minor league deal so as not to block Collins from playing. 

On the pitching side, they did add Rodon, but only for $3M, because their hope is he's just a bridge until Kopech is ready. 

In short, I think the Sox decided this year to make sure their young trio of Vaughn, Collins, and Kopech will have no veterans in their way once service time issues are resolved.

It is interesting that the Sox seem to have learned their lesson and stopped blocking the progress of young players by blowing money on meaningless veteran filler.  I think they let the pendulum swing a little too far in the opposite direction at the expense of depth, but I'm excited to see the Vaughns and Kopechs of the world show what they can do.

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5 minutes ago, southsider2k5 said:

It isn't popular to say, but I am OK with what they did in the EE signing.  It didn't work out, but instead of trying to force a guy who might not have been ready into a role, they spent only money to sign a guy that carried no obligation past one season, and still had guys like Collins and Mercedes, as well as Vaughn as back up options if they wanted to use them.  I wish they had done more EE style moves in this off season to give this squad more insulation and protection against injury and failures.

The Sox record with FA DH's is worthy of an ESPN docudrama.

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1 minute ago, pcq said:

The Sox record with FA DH's is worthy of an ESPN docudrama.

I won't argue that they picked the right guy, but the concept of what they did and how they tried to do it was 100% correct.

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1 hour ago, VAfan said:

If you look at what Hahn and the Sox have done this offseason, I think the failed EE experiment last year, and to a lesser extent the Gio Gonzalez deal, led the Sox in a different direction.  For $13M (prorated though it was), the Sox got a .157/.250/.377 anchor in the middle of their lineup.  Had they brought up Andrew Vaughn last year, he likely could have hit better than that for next to no money. Zack Collins probably could have done better with EE's 181 plate appearances. So might have Yermin Mercedes. 

But once they committed to that kind of contract, they weren't just going to cut him or not play him.  They left Renteria out to dry with not much choice other than to play him most of the time. Sure, RR moved other guys through the DH spot, including Grandal when McCann caught. But EE still got 44 of 60 games to drag the Sox offense down. 

And at the end of the year, they had nothing to show for it. Didn't win a playoff series. Didn't help develop a longer term player. Didn't save money they could use for more productive things. 

I think it was that contract and experience that led Hahn not to go get another temporary bat to place in front of Andrew Vaughn, when Zack Collins might serve well as a DH until Vaughn covers his service time for an extra year of Sox control. 

At catcher, they signed Lucroy for depth, but only gave him a minor league deal so as not to block Collins from playing. 

On the pitching side, they did add Rodon, but only for $3M, because their hope is he's just a bridge until Kopech is ready. 

In short, I think the Sox decided this year to make sure their young trio of Vaughn, Collins, and Kopech will have no veterans in their way once service time issues are resolved.

These certainly might be secondary reasons why they added Rodon and left DH open but it still ignores the bigge$t rea$on.

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Call me crazy -- I'd entertain bringing in EE again ... I know he wants consistent AB's so he may just rather sit out than get a short leash/playing time, but I'd imagine you can get him for $2-3mm. He could fill in at DH for a month or two - if it's going well keep sprinkling him in, if it's not? Cut bait. Not saying I'd actually do the deal - I'd just consider it. 

 

: Ducks head: 

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4 minutes ago, BrianAnderson said:

Call me crazy -- I'd entertain bringing in EE again ... I know he wants consistent AB's so he may just rather sit out than get a short leash/playing time, but I'd imagine you can get him for $2-3mm. He could fill in at DH for a month or two - if it's going well keep sprinkling him in, if it's not? Cut bait. Not saying I'd actually do the deal - I'd just consider it. 

 

: Ducks head: 

I am here too.  Let him try the spot until Vaughn is up.  If he's producing, you dont have to rush Vaughn.  But if Vaughn is ready maybe you can get a poop prospect.  

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17 hours ago, Tony said:

Signing Adam Eaton sort of blows this theory out of the water (among many other things) but OK.

Eaton is a lot cheaper than EE. He's younger. And he can play a position.  Plus there was no internal option unless you think Garcia/Engel could hold down RF and do their other roles.  

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17 hours ago, Balta1701 said:

No, they didn't get a temporary bat for DH, they got one for RF. 

Yeah, I would say that the eaton signing is exactly the same as the EE signing or many other sox veteran signings, i.e getting an older veteran maybe coming of a weaker year on the cheap and hoping for a bounce back.

That isn't isn't a terrible strategy even though it often will fail because that is baked into the price but you do need a plan B in case it fails.

Trying EE was not the worst idea but they should have cut ties earlier and released him when it didn't work

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1 hour ago, BrianAnderson said:

Call me crazy -- I'd entertain bringing in EE again ... I know he wants consistent AB's so he may just rather sit out than get a short leash/playing time, but I'd imagine you can get him for $2-3mm. He could fill in at DH for a month or two - if it's going well keep sprinkling him in, if it's not? Cut bait. Not saying I'd actually do the deal - I'd just consider it. 

 

: Ducks head: 

Given his history of slow starts, this seems like a horrible idea

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20 hours ago, southsider2k5 said:

It isn't popular to say, but I am OK with what they did in the EE signing.  It didn't work out, but instead of trying to force a guy who might not have been ready into a role, they spent only money to sign a guy that carried no obligation past one season, and still had guys like Collins and Mercedes, as well as Vaughn as back up options if they wanted to use them.  I wish they had done more EE style moves in this off season to give this squad more insulation and protection against injury and failures.

x2

I'd like to highlight it was only money. I really don't care how much they spend in cash, it's how they spend the talent to get more talent that get's be interested. They can make more money, they can't retrieve a blue chop prospect. 

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6 minutes ago, Texsox said:

x2

I'd like to highlight it was only money. I really don't care how much they spend in cash, it's how they spend the talent to get more talent that get's be interested. They can make more money, they can't retrieve a blue chop prospect. 

The problem with the who cares its just money argument is that edwin sucked.

White Sox spent 12 mil on Edwin to be a negative asset to this team.

They could have spent 18 mill on Ozuna to have an MVP candidate.

They always go for the second servings or worse with these signings. Pay up a bit more, get the value back. 

 

 

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29 minutes ago, iWiN4PreP said:

The problem with the who cares its just money argument is that edwin sucked.

White Sox spent 12 mil on Edwin to be a negative asset to this team.

They could have spent 18 mill on Ozuna to have an MVP candidate.

They always go for the second servings or worse with these signings. Pay up a bit more, get the value back. 

 

 

So why didn't they sign Ozuna? The who cares it's just  money argument is spend the money and sign Ozuna instead of trading a top prospect to gain a player of that quality. 

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17 minutes ago, Texsox said:

So why didn't they sign Ozuna? The who cares it's just  money argument is spend the money and sign Ozuna instead of trading a top prospect to gain a player of that quality. 

Ozuna had comp pick attached to him. think it's tough to give up that pick for one year of ozuna during what at this time last year, was probably a stretch to win a world series. 

I think also if you look back on the EE signing most of us were very much on board at the time. now i know age and sluggers are generally a slippery slope and fall off quickly - it appears we got on at the wrong time -- that said we were happy with him at what .... $11mm a year ago ... 50 games later ... are we convinced that he is DONE DONE? 

If not, is it that far fetched to pay him $3mm and let Vaughn get some bats in AAA through say ... June? Who knows - maybe you get 30HR version of EE back and it's a steal of a deal and a nice bat to have around. 

It's definitely devil's advocate angle. 

I'd offer him up to $3mm on my end.

Really I'd offer any of these guys in the $1-3mm range to fill that short term role:

Cespedes

Soo-Choo

EE

Scooter Gennett

Brett Gardner

Markakis

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48 minutes ago, BrianAnderson said:

Ozuna had comp pick attached to him. think it's tough to give up that pick for one year of ozuna during what at this time last year, was probably a stretch to win a world series. 

I think also if you look back on the EE signing most of us were very much on board at the time. now i know age and sluggers are generally a slippery slope and fall off quickly - it appears we got on at the wrong time -- that said we were happy with him at what .... $11mm a year ago ... 50 games later ... are we convinced that he is DONE DONE? 

If not, is it that far fetched to pay him $3mm and let Vaughn get some bats in AAA through say ... June? Who knows - maybe you get 30HR version of EE back and it's a steal of a deal and a nice bat to have around. 

It's definitely devil's advocate angle. 

I'd offer him up to $3mm on my end.

Really I'd offer any of these guys in the $1-3mm range to fill that short term role:

Cespedes

Soo-Choo

EE

Scooter Gennett

Brett Gardner

Markakis

Well, when it comes down to it, 4 of the guys on your list have earned >$120 million in their careers, Gardner has earned $85 million (Gennett is the lone one who hasn't already earned a big contract). If you've earned that much in your career and you're already dealing with pain from whatever nagging injury has beset you, do you really want to gear yourself up for a 5 week spring training and then spend 6 months away from your family for an extra $3 million?

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3 minutes ago, Balta1701 said:

Well, when it comes down to it, 4 of the guys on your list have earned >$120 million in their careers, Gardner has earned $85 million (Gennett is the lone one who hasn't already earned a big contract). If you've earned that much in your career and you're already dealing with pain from whatever nagging injury has beset you, do you really want to gear yourself up for a 5 week spring training and then spend 6 months away from your family for an extra $3 million?

Great point. They could also hold out hope that they will get a phone call in June. 

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I would have preferred signing McCann (which they probably could have done for 3/30 last year)  and signing Joc Pederson to platoon with Engel in RF.

Water over the bridge now.

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1 hour ago, Texsox said:

So why didn't they sign Ozuna? The who cares it's just  money argument is spend the money and sign Ozuna instead of trading a top prospect to gain a player of that quality. 

My point was that the Front office wasn't educated enough to sign Ozuna instead. They tend to spread the money around to mediocre or weak players. 

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