General Red Sox

Opening Move is a Closer

The new regime in Boston made their first player move this week, dealing Josh Reddick and 2 minor leaguers to Oakland for two-time All-Star closer Andrew Bailey and versatile outfielder Ryan Sweeney. 

Bailey has had some arm issues in the past, appearing in fewer games and throwing fewer innings with each successive season since his 2009 debut.  But when he has played he has been pretty much lights out, posting a sub-1.000 WHIP, a 206 ERA+, and a 3.55 K/BB over those 3 seasons.

As for Sweeney, the 26-year old outfielder can apparently play all three OF positions well and has better offensive numbers pretty much across the board than the 24-year old Reddick (+35 points in BA and +52 points in OBP, though -38 points in SLG).

While there is nothing earth-shattering here, and I don't know enough about the minor leaguers dealt to assess that portion of the deal, it would seem this is a pretty good move for Boston, with an apparent upgrade in the 3rd or 4th OF position and the filling of a big gap left by Papelbon's departure at relatively low cost.

Here's to hoping that Bailey's numbers have been massively inflated by pitcher-friendly Oakland Coliseum…

2 replies on “Opening Move is a Closer”

This was clearly a win for the Sox, on paper at least. Head is a 5ft10-ish power hitting converted 1Bman with raw power and Alcantara is 19 with a live arm. Neither was helping the Sox anytime soon.
So there are a few theories as to why the A’s would take this trade. 1, is that the market is so saturated with good closers this was the best deal they could get. 2, is that the A’s are concerned with Andrew Baileys knee and arm/elbow. 3, the A’s are now being run by Rachel Phelps. Theory 1 makes little to no sense as Bailey is under team control for 3 more seasons. There was no real reason to move this kid unless they were blown away by a trade offer. Josh Reddick is a 4th OF’r, Head is a gamble at best (PS the A’s have roughly 70 1Bman with the same “upside”) and Alcantara ends up as the wild card. Reading a lot of good things about him, but enough to trade an All-Star closer? Not that I’d ever wish injury on the kid, but it just seems like maybe the A’s were concerned about his health and wanted to capitalize while they still could. The Sweeney thing doesn’t excite me. He’s a singles hitter that plays Defense. He’s a 4th OF at best, but I’d be super excited if he was the starting RF for the Sox in 2012. Imagine Brett Gardner type power, OBP and BA minus the ability to steal bases and run.
Bailey is a Jersey kid, went to Wagner and already has a working relationship with Bobby V. I wish him all the best, except when he’s playing us or the division is on the line.

Sweeney is probably going to be a backup plan if they can’t get someone better. He will start while they wait for Kalish to recover and see what he can do. They did have one of the best offenses in the AL with pretty much nothing in RF last year anyway. I’m still not sure that Reddick will be anything more than a 4th outfielder at the most.
Bailey could be interesting, if he can stay healthy. I guess this means the Sox are committed to converting Bard to a starter next year.

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