November 1, 2006

Wakefield's 2007 Option Picked Up

Tim Wakefield's $4 million option for 2007 was picked up by the Red Sox.

Wakefield was sidelined last July with a stress fracture in his ribs and pitched only 140 innings, his lowest total since 1999. In 23 starts, he had a 4.63 ERA -- approximately the same as the AL league average (4.61). His ERA+ of 100 was second best on the staff, behind Curt Schilling (112) and ahead of Jon Lester (97) and Josh Beckett (92).

As far as my health is concerned, I feel great ... I'm looking forward to getting back to the gym and starting to throw, probably by the first part of December. My body feels a lot better than in July. ... I think time is the cure-all for this injury, and now that I’ve been off for a month, it feels really good. ... I plan to pitch as long as the Red Sox continue to pick up my option.
Two more Boston players -- Alex Gonzalez and Mark Loretta -- filed for free agency, joining Trot Nixon, Doug Mirabelli and Gabe Kapler.

Former Royals GM Allard Baird was named as Theo Epstein's assistant. He will oversee the team's professional scouting department.


Peter N said...

And to think that our record setting infield defense might be split up...a crime. Hope you all are well.

Pokerwolf said...

It's going to be an interesting off-season, that's for sure.

It's going to be really weird not to see Mirabelli, Kapler, and Nixon in Boston uniforms.

Jack Marshall said...

I see no justification for not re-signng Loretta. Did Pedroia look ready to you? Not to me, and Loretta was a Marty Barrett-style, smart, sound, clutch-hitting second-baseman. They should re-sign both Gonzalez and him.
Wakefield's injury made the difference between 2nd and 3rd. And could you believe that stat about only 6 runs of support in his 12 losses? What lousy luck.

I would feel a lot better if they knew how he broke that rib, though.

gregpoole said...

Greetings from Japan!
Speaking of the offseason, I am sure you are all aware of the following news:
You remember him from the WBC surely? A phenom.
How exciting would it be for the Nation (let alone the Sox management-- think of the marketing bucks to be gained by tapping into the Japanese fan base!) if Theo is able to bid successfully for Matsuzaka? In terms of impact, I would say this pitcher will be bigger than Matsui or Ichiro (let alone Taguchi or Iguchi)-- a (healthy) rotation of Schilling, Wakefield, Beckett, Papelbon, and Matsuzaka would be arguably the best in the majors!

Forget Sheffield-- the Sox organization definitely needs to make a serious bid for Matsuzaka!

9casey said...

Jack, ribs are tricky bones.. My sister cracked a rib when she had the flu.....from coughing....

Just wondering why would it make you feel better too know how he broke the rib?

I like Marty Barrett as much as the next guy but Loretta is a better offensive player.

It would be nice to see Loretta back but if they used him more like Mueller , lower in the lineup 8 or 9th , Then you could have

1. Youk
2. lugo
3. papi
4. manny
5. Nixon or pena
6. Lowell
7. varitek
8. crisp
9. loretta

Just a thought.

Jack Marshall said...

Casey: I'd feel better because when a 40 year-old pitcher's ribs start breaking for no discernible reason, it raises at least a prima facie case that he's starting to break down.

I certainly agree that Loretta's a better bat than Marty. My comparison was more based on their mutual ability to make smart plays and rise to the occasion.

Jack Marshall said...

Here's a vote for passing on Matsuzaka, except maybe to stay in the bidding long enough to make the Yankees pay thru the nose. From "Fat Toad" to old friend Byung and Jose Contreras, guessing which one of these imports is ready to step in and pitch at star level in the majors is a crap shoot. 30 million just for BIDDING RIGHTS on a guy who's never pitched here? Absurd. Insane.

Walk away, Theo.

Jack Marshall said...

Red Sock: I call foul on the post here from Guy Barry. I don't like being tricked into jumping to a religious site when I'm here to discuss the Boston Red Sox.That's a bait and switch if I ever saw one. Please delete it and tell this fraud to have the guts to pedal God openly and somewhere more appropriate.

Woti-woti said...

Sox middle infield defense was one of league's best last season, Pedroia showed he is a far from seamless transition, Lugo couldn't even crack an NL West lineup. I'm for showing some confidence in both AGon and Loretta (although if L. is looking for longer than 2 years, forget it),then put all your focus on the real problems. My gut tells me that Theo and co. will leave them both dangling as possible fallbacks while they try to orchestrate the mega-deal(s) to fill numerous areas.
I see Matuszaka as being equal parts a baseball decision and team policy. Sox need another starter, there is not much out there (Zito would be fine in another Division)and Schilling comes off the books next season. Room for an ace. You have to gamble on Matz track record in Japan (plus ML scouting reports) as being indicative of that potential.
This ownership group already knows what a World Series win is worth to them financially. It wouldn't surprise me if they concluded that as lucrative as this market is, it is fairly well milked. Thus another one wouldn't be a huge payday unless they could tap another huge market. Enter Japan. My understanding is that the posting fee will not count against luxury tax. It's only money (and not mine). Look how AJ Burnett and BJ Ryan look like bargains now, only 1 year later. I think Sox owners go for broke on this one and try to move the BRAND to the Land of the Rising Sun.
And Guy Barry, beat it.

redsock said...

Jack: Done and done.

There is no doubt that is spam. I've received 2 or 3 in the past day or so. I have less than zero tolerance for that shit and they will be zapped as quickly as humanly possible.

I get an email every time a comment is posted, so if there is a spam comment on a post from way back in June 2004 (which there was a few months ago, for mountain climbing equipment (?!?)), I can go right to it via a link in the email and bzzzzzz.

Zenslinger said...

Woti, are you saying that Matsuzaka is a potential revenue stream for the Sox? Japanese press picking up NESN for his games, Japanese ads...see what you mean.

As for Wakefield, I think we have to have some confidence in the Sox medical staff. Sentiment is one thing but I doubt they'd pick him up without a strong probability he was going to be able to pitch.

Woti-woti said...

Zenslinger, yes that's exactly what I'm saying. I dunno about the intricacies of getting NESN on Japanese TV, but the goal would be to see more caps with 'B' on them on the Ginza.

9casey said...

Prima facie is a Latin expression (come by way of Middle English) meaning "on its first appearance,"

Jack Marshall said...

Right, Casey, and that's what I meant...until somebody tells me why the guy misses two months with an injury he can't remember getting, I'm stuck with "first appearances," which was and is..."Hmmm...that seems mighty suspicious to me!" In law, "prima facie" means that there seems to be a case based on a viewing of the bare facts, until some evidence comes forward to the contrary. Well, I haven't seen any of that contrary evidence yet.

I'd still resign him. But I always regarded Wake as money in the bank, streakiness and all. Now I'm not so sure.