Mike Silva's New York Baseball Digest » Blog Archive » Are The Sox Taking Back The AL East?

Are The Sox Taking Back The AL East?

By Mike Silva ~ December 15th, 2009. Filed under: Offseason Speculation.

I have mockingly called Theo Epstein “boy wonder” because he often gets too much credit from the media when he succeeds, and not enough blame when he fails- at least nationally. Yesterday he may have earned that moniker as he made a couple of bold moves that could vault the Sox back atop the AL East, but it’s the potential future move that should have the Yanks queasy.

No doubt John Lackey gives the Sox a starting rotation that surpasses the Yankees. CC Sabathia might be in the Bronx, but outside of Pettitte, who is a lock to have a successful 2010? The Sox feature Lackey along with Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Daisuke Matsuzaka, Tim Wakefield, and Clay Buchholz. It’s Buchholz that holds a possible key that could make the Sox lineup on par with the Yankees.

Rumors are swirling that acquiring Lackey, and moving away from Jason Bay, will allow Theo Epstein to trade Buchholz as the centerpiece of an Adrian Gonzalez deal. “Gonzo”, as they call him, is every bit the player that Mark Teixeira is on both sides of the ball. Although I think Mike Cameron is overrated the Sox will have an outstanding defensive team, especially if Adrian Beltre signs as many expect. Adding a bat like Gonzalez will give them a balanced offense with eight players that can “pick it” in the field. A perfect combination if you believe in the runs produced/runs saved equation.

There are more moves for Theo Epstein to make. He first has to sign Beltre, and then work out a deal for Adrian Gonzalez. Most reports indicate that San Diego’s motivation is “very low” to trade Gonzalez from his hometown when he is still affordable. Things change when Theo Epstein opens the Boston prospect vault to his former assistant in San Diego. Jed Hoyer is fooling himself into thinking the Padres can compete, what they need do is trade off their stars, as Toronto is doing, and start rebuilding the farm system. Buchholz certainly can be the jewel of that type of organization philosophy.

Where does that leave the Yankees? They appear willing to complement their acquisition of Curtis Granderson with a veteran starter and Johnny Damon. Whether they are serious about Jason Bay remains to be seen. If the Sox do execute the aforementioned moves Brian Cashman, to quote our good friend Frank Russo, better hope his “precious prospects of River Avenue” (i.e. Chamberlain and Hughes) are as good as advertised. If not he will be left to wonder “what if” as the Sox reload for a serious run at the Bombers with their revamped pitching staff, balanced offense, and new focus on defense. The Yankees seem to be “gun shy” when it comes to letting go of the disappointing Chamberlain. If the Red Sox have no such aversions with their top prospects the balance of power may be swinging back north sooner than expected.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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16 Responses to Are The Sox Taking Back The AL East?

  1. BrooklynPaulie

    Such drama, Michael. It’s still early, and the Yankees are not done dealing. Let’s see how the rest of the team rounds out before such speculation.

  2. Michael

    I don’t see how getting both Adrian’s is an option. It’s either you sign Beltre to play 3rd with Youkilis at 1st or you deal for Adrian Gonzalez to play 1st and slide Youkilis across the diamond. No room for both.

  3. Mike Silva

    They could put Youkilis in the OF or DH him – depends on what they want to do. Ortiz is done IMO

  4. Nate

    hey mike relax. an of of cameron ellsbury and drew is dreadful offensively.

    and beltre is a terrible offensive player.


    your right getting both isnt an option thats why were going to get adrian gonzalez!!!!!getting lackey is the first piece of making a good team a great team….now comes dealing bucholz to SD with prospects for gonzalez…even if your not a red sox fan you have to agree that our starting rotation is now the best in the AL and if (WHEN) we land gonzalez our bats will be awaken again.

  6. Yankee1010

    I’m impressed that you’re still sticking to your goal of being completely retarded. Impressive consistency.

    I’d like to congratulate the Red Sox on winning the 2009 World Series behind the genius of Theo Epstein.

  7. Mike Silva

    Yankees1010 – always appreciate you stopping by.

    Again, this site is not about rooting for the Yankees, but putting out opinion and debate topics. Everything is fair that I bring up. Of course, there is the other side (yours) that I respect. There are plenty of popular Yankees fans sites that will spew pro Yankee propaganda, but this site remains, to quote a famous news outlet “fair and balanced”

  8. joe

    yea right the red sox stink face it Yankees won and they will win again they pound lackey so forget him beckett is coming off a terrible year and there outfield is trash k position by position tex is better than youk cano is right theree wit dped jeter is a lot better than scutoro arod is better than beltre mo is better than pap cmon Yankees will sign a starter and get bay forget the sox

  9. Yankee1010

    Mike, you’re ridiculous. It’s clear your understanding of baseball is at an elementary school level at best.

    You either write your drivel to generate site traffic or to prove that you forgot your helmet. Mission accomplished.

    I also love the “pro Yankee propaganda” bit. It’s a damn shame that they suck like the Mets. If only they could be successful.

  10. Mr. Peters

    Well for starters, I think it’s correct to start worrying when Theo Epstein starts to gamble. Some of his gambles have certainly worked in the past, such as trading Nomah and signing David Ortiz (PED’s or not, certainly a different topic). What remains to be seen is what this Red Sox team will bring when it shows up. It will be fairly balanced IF Ortiz, Drew, Cameron, and either Lowell or Beltre can be productive offensively. The combo of Pedroia, Ellsbury, Youk, and Martinez should be fine. But If the others each bat around .250 with mid 80-90 RBI’s and low walk rates, the Yankees will have no problem with their lineup fairly secure.
    With that in mind, the Yankees should certainly add another bat to the lineup. I am leaning towards what I have been saying to friends all along, that they will push for Jason Bay either with incentives for a 5th year or guaranteed otherwise. My reasoning is simple: They absolutely need a right handed bat to compliment A-rod and he certainly needs protection. While Posada could fit that bill, he is still questionable as time goes on. If the asking price for Bay is 4-5 years and approximately 65-70 million dollars, this should be no problem for the Yanks. And it may be worth the risk, especially considering how much money the new stadium has brought in (and not mentioned yet.) Plus, this will be relatively cheap considering next years free agent class, though Halladay is seemingly off that list with Mauer seemingly leaning towards staying with the Twins. I think it’s fair to say Epstein is making some moves, but they could ultimately fail if Lackey’s health has him miss the first 30 something games like the previous two seasons, Dice-K maintains his diva attitude towards fitness, Ortiz continues to miss Manny and PED’s, and the rest of the ensemble show their age. The one thing they do have thats a sure thing: The impending free agency of Josh Beckett who will surely look to have a walk year worth mentioning.

  11. Sox Fan

    Uh… the Sox would not get both Beltre and Gonzalez. Then, that relegates either Youk or Ortiz to the bench. Or, it could put Youk in LF, which won’t happen either.

    Sox fans are hoping that Buchholz+Westmoreland+others go for Gonzalez and Youk plays 3rd. Big Papi is working out at API this offseason, so Sox fans can also hope for at least a decent walk year for him… and they will have drastically improved offense, defense, and pitching for 2010.

  12. Faiaz

    The title of this article is the funniest thing I’ve read in a while. Enough said.

  13. Matt


    As a fellow journalist, you wrote a good piece – until someone commented that there would be no room for both Adrian’s. You replied by saying they can put Youk in the OF or at DH. For me, that weakens your credibility a ton. If you came out and said, “You’re right, my mistake” – you would have saved face.

    Putting Youk at DH or in the OF makes no sense. Youk is a gold glove winning INF. There is no room for him in the OF or at DH with Ortiz. Youk is way to good to be a DH or and OF, and as a journalist, you should realize that.

  14. Mal Tempo

    Dear obtuse New Yorkers, the Red Sox will not deal with Boras again after what he did in regard to Teixiera. Hence, no Beltre.

  15. Mike Silva


    It was just a wild idea, I didn’t think people would get so mad at me for suggesting Beltre at third and Youkilis in the OF. I think both Gonzo and Beltre are better defensively than Youk, but that is up for debate. Not sure where expressing an opinion relates back to credibility etc. Regardless, the point is Gonzo could change the dynamic of the division. Also, there is a chance Ellsbury will have to go in a Gonzo deal (my assumption) so you might need Youkilis in the OF – not crazy in my opinion.

  16. Matt

    Hey Mike,

    You’re right – I did come off too harsh on you for an opinion you presented. I don’t necessarily agree with Youk in the OF, but you did present an opinion that provoked reaction, good or bad. That’s what we hope for we write something!

    I found your site on Google yesterday and it will be added to my list of sports sites I visit daily.

    Have a good holiday!

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