Question of the Day

How should the Sox handle Papi? Bench indefinitely? Release? Wait it out?
Interested to hear thoughts from all sides.

29 comments… add one
  • I understand that without him, it’s unlikely either of the two recent championships happen. For that, I’m grateful.
    That being said, it’s obvious his time has passed and he’s painful to watch now. At this point he’s just tarnishing his legacy with a team that hasn’t got much room for error as it is. Send him down to ‘work out his issues’ and let some imaginary injury keep him there until the 40 man roster call up, letting him bow out with grace. He’s a great guy and I wish him well, but I root for the Red Sox on the front, not the number on the back.

    ponch - sf May 5, 2010, 10:24 am
  • Agree that what would be best for at least most involved would be for Papi to be able to salvage some dignity at this point. I think everyone will understand if he has the million-dollar injury or gets sent down etc. Let him go with grace, as ponch put it.
    I also think it would be best if we could find the people who booed him at Fenway last night and have them horsewhipped, but I suppose that’s a separate discussion.

    Beth May 5, 2010, 10:39 am
  • Certainly wasn’t me. I was cheering wildly whenever he did the least-productive thing possible.

    AndrewYF May 5, 2010, 11:17 am
  • You don’t have to cheer wildly for failure to NOT boo a guy who all but singlehandedly won your first ring in 86 years. There ARE options other than those two.

    Beth May 5, 2010, 11:46 am
  • normally i’m happy when a sox doesn’t do well…but, this is different…he’s a proud man that doesn’t seem to realize that his time might be up, and the sox, for a change, don’t seem to have the heart to tell him…sounds wierd, but i actually admire the sox indecisiveness on this one…

    dc May 5, 2010, 11:48 am
  • It’s got to be a “wrist” or “knee” issue that sends him to the DL for a while.
    They can’t release him and we can’t waste the roster spot having him on the bench.
    I’m going to the miss the big guy and for damn sure will never forget the joy he brought me over the years.

    LocklandSF May 5, 2010, 12:25 pm
  • He’s an automatic out right now, how much good will is there left in the bank account? It’s going on three seasons now of low production. Maybe his wrist does hurt, maybe that was leaked to pave the way for a DL stint. Something’s got to give. I think they’ll go through the weekend with him, and if nothing turns around, then DL him.

    dw (sf) May 5, 2010, 1:40 pm
  • Honestly, the only option at this point is to stick with a platoon and Lowell. The problem is that pushes VMart into the field. If Papi still isn’t hitting in two weeks they have to release him. They really screwed the pooch when it came to roster construction. And signing Beltre meant they can’t even make use of Youk’s flexibility. It would be easier to ride out Papi if they had somewhere else to play Lowell or VMart. They don’t.

    Paul from Waltham May 5, 2010, 1:41 pm
  • “It’s going on three seasons now of low production”
    Because they should have platooned him two years ago. The fault is on your management.
    I don’t see the Sox DLing him. The choice is to cut him or not.

    Paul from Waltham May 5, 2010, 1:58 pm
  • The problem is that pushes VMart into the field… they really screwed the pooch when it came to roster construction.
    If Ortiz is released then they have the entire DH spot to use for roster flexibility. Roster flexibility isn’t the problem right now. And VMart isn’t as bad in the field as you keep suggesting; he’s thrown out like 9 of the last 10 runners that’ve tried to steal against him.

    Atheose - SF May 5, 2010, 2:22 pm
  • Atheose – don’t you realize that everything the Sox front office does is wrong? Of course, the Yankees F.O. are all genius.

    dw (sf) May 5, 2010, 2:37 pm
  • he’s thrown out like 9 of the last 10 runners that’ve tried to steal against him.
    Considering VMart has thrown out only 7 all year against 35 attempts I’m guessing that you might be overstating his recent success a bit.

    Don Watts May 5, 2010, 2:52 pm
  • V-Mart is currently at 20% 7 for 28 http://www.baseball-reference.com/teams/BOS/2010.shtml
    V-Tek 2 for 11 – I think they’ve all come recently. so that’s where he gets the 9 from.
    These don’t includes the pick-offs by Lester and Buchholtz (I don’t think anyone else has one). These are recorded as assists by the pitcher and put-outs.

    dw (sf) May 5, 2010, 3:05 pm
  • oh no – the html italics zone is on!

    dw (sf) May 5, 2010, 3:06 pm
  • There’s a very simple test as to whether VMart is adequate behind the dish: Do the Sox re-sign him? Seeing as there’s no decent catcher available this off-season, and when they don’t, you’ll have the answer.
    “If Ortiz is released then they have the entire DH spot to use for roster flexibility. Roster flexibility isn’t the problem right now.”
    Sorry, but that’s exactly the problem. Beltre is completely redundant with Youkilis and Lowell. That makes Lowell a DH. VMart is a DH if he can’t play 1B and with Youkilis, he shouldn’t. Ortiz is a DH. That’s three DHs. Releasing one doesn’t solve the problem. Moreover they were planning to trade Lowell. Where would they be without his bat?
    “don’t you realize that everything the Sox front office does is wrong?”
    That’s not exactly true. But I’m thankful their overreliance on a unreliable set of stats has removed that nonsense from the discussion. You build top teams around pitching and offense. Defense is helpful but not critical, and it certainly can’t be traded 1 for 1 with offense the way some folks spun it this winter.
    “These don’t includes the pick-offs by Lester and Buchholtz”
    I always thought pick offs were given to the catcher as caught stealing.

    Paul from Waltham May 5, 2010, 3:48 pm
  • nope, pick-offs are recorded as a put-out.
    I guess all the research into run prevention and how it correlates to winning ball games doesn’t count? Where does it say the sox F.O. relies on “unreliable statistics”?
    Defense doesn’t win games? The Mariner’s are a prime 2009 example of where that is incorrect.

    dw (sf) May 5, 2010, 4:04 pm
  • UZR, at least, isn’t reliable:
    http://www.hardballtimes.com/main/blog_article/how-reliable-is-uzr/
    “The Mariner’s are a prime 2009 example of where that is incorrect.”
    Oh, yeah? How’d they finish? If you’re cool with the Sox winning 85 games, then I’ll stand corrected. Like I said, defense is helpful – or correlates – but it isn’t critical. Go check the defense on the last MLB dynasty. Who were the outstanding defenders on those teams?

    Paul from Waltham May 5, 2010, 4:20 pm
  • Small samples of any dataset aren’t useful. The sox never said they utilized UZR – that’s a media creation.
    No, I will not be happy with 85 wins, my point is – the marines were 27th in runs scored – and still managed to win 85 games, because their run differential – they were 6th in runs allowed.
    The key always scoring more than your opponent – doesn’t matter how you get there.
    To get back on track – Papi is not helping them score more runs, and he needs to either start hitting, or sit.

    dw (sf) May 5, 2010, 4:32 pm
  • “No, I will not be happy with 85 wins, my point is – the marines were 27th in runs scored – and still managed to win 85 games, because their run differential – they were 6th in runs allowed. ”
    Runs allowed is more about the pitching. Fielding has many more random elements.
    More to the reliability, how are the M’s doing this year?
    Defense sometimes works. But you can’t count on it. The stats either aren’t good enough yet or there’s just too much noise to ever nail it. I’m split between the two perspectives until we get the Field F/X.

    Paul from Waltham May 5, 2010, 5:13 pm

  • I think it’s premature to release him. He turned it around last year and ended up producing quite respectable numbers, and I think he’s earned the opportunity to do that again. Maybe he’s just become a more extreme version of Teixeira, and will have slow starts from now on. And maybe he’s no longer a full-time DH, and will need to be platooned. But I don’t think you cut the guy who’s been the foundation of your offense for this long over a bad month.
    Also, just for the record, the Red Sox have scored 5 runs per game so far this year. They’re 4th in the AL in runs scored (shocking, I know). The problem is not that their newfound “focus on defense” has gutted their offense. The problem is that that defense is allowing 4.85 runs per game, while their pitching is posting the 4th worst ERA in the AL. The offense is doing fine, it’s the defense (and pitching) that isn’t playing well.

    Rex Manning Day May 5, 2010, 5:19 pm
  • Runs allowed is both pitching and fielding – the Mariners this year: average fielding, horrendous offense.
    I suppose you (PfW) evaluate pitchers based on ERA and wins as well?

    dw (sf) May 5, 2010, 5:22 pm
  • “I suppose you (PfW) evaluate pitchers based on ERA and wins as well?”
    Nope. Runs allowed is much more about the pitching because the best pitchers keep the ball out of play.
    You’re putting your faith – like your front office – in a stat in which the year-to-year reliability is highly suspect. There’s a .30 correlation there. That means 70% of the variance remains unexplained. Good luck building a baseball team with that much variability. That’s Stats 101. Offense is the most reliable. Then pitching. Then defense.
    On Papi, let’s not forget that the Sox simply don’t have time to let things work themselves out. Playing .500 ball for another month could easily mean they’re 12 games back of the wild card in June.

    Paul from Waltham May 5, 2010, 5:32 pm
  • Beth May 5, 2010, 8:40 pm
  • Ortiz homerun !!!!!

    WAY...SF May 5, 2010, 9:29 pm
  • Sit his ass till Mike cools off

    WAY...SF May 5, 2010, 9:30 pm
  • I must have been counting put-outs as caught-stealing then. My mistake there.

    Atheose - SF May 5, 2010, 9:44 pm
  • Sox are on fire now…you guys feeling better??? This weekend should be in-ter-esting!!!

    krueg May 6, 2010, 12:36 pm
  • I’d feel better if the three teams ahead of us in the division weren’t all on big win streaks too!
    But seriously I feel good about this team. The pitching is finally settling in and it shows.

    Atheose - SF May 6, 2010, 1:40 pm
  • I bet if the Sox win the series this weekend, that all the bad feelings from will subside…
    It would also start the “old yankees” with their injuries are done talk too I bet.

    krueg May 6, 2010, 1:51 pm

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