Alright, it’s that time of the year. We’ve just wrapped up the first month of baseball and I thought I might give out some grades to some of Boston’s newest residents.
I’m going to look at their performance on the field and any other criteria I think might be suitable. In other words, these are entirely subjective and at least partially full of baloney. Using all of the mathematics skill I possess, I count six ‘major’ signings who are all with the big league club.
Grady Sizemore: B+
Sizemore was essentially Jacoby Ellsbury, before Jacoby Ellsbury but now, nearly six season removed from his last full season, he is merely a shadow of his former self. After initially winning the center field job out of spring training, Sizemore has been ousted in favor of rookie Jackie Bradley jr and has now seen more time in left than in center. Sizemore looked less than sharp in center though, a step or two slow and a little out of place, which probably has more to do with the fact that he has been out of baseball for two full seasons than anything.
Furthermore, to the detriment of my fantasy team, Sizemore has been struggling with the bat since a hot start to the season. He’s collected only five hits in his last ten games, a span of 39 at-bats. That he only has two stolen bases on the season only lends credibility to the notion that he has lost a step or two since 2009.
But, I’ll give him points for being my favorite player growing up and for his award winning smile/dimple combination. He also gets some serious props for returning from a two year absence to be, at the very least, a serviceable major league outfielder.
After spending more of his career as a serviceable starting pitcher, Capuano has transitioned exceedingly well to his full-time bullpen role. Before getting shellacked in his last outing against Oakland, Capuano was sporting a pristine ERA and the two earned runs he allowed without recording an out raised it only to 1. 20 on the season. Both his WHIP and ERA
For the money Boston paid him, he’s looking like an ace pickup in the bullpen thus far. In addition to his excellent numbers, he gets some points for his style, rocking the high sock look every time he trots in out of the ‘pen.
Jonathan Herrera: C+/B-
Herrera has played in over 100 games exactly once in his big league career. If you looked up ‘utility infielder’ in the dictionary, you’d probably see a picture of Herrera’s face. He beat out Brock Holt for the job due to his ability to play shortstop. Though in retrospect, considering he has only seen action in two games at short, and in one of those spots, he committed his only error on the year.
Personally, I dont like the price we paid for them, as I believe Franklin Morales would have served this team well. Furthermore with Brock Holt hitting well in Triple-A, Herrera needs to start hitting better than .182 to cement his spot in the line up. He gets bump for his 70-grade smile, but not much more.
Burke Badenhop: B-
Badenhop came over in a deal with the Milwaukee Brewers over the off-season. A groundball specialist, his 3.22 GO/AO are especially impressive, especially considering the batter’s park he plays in. While his performance hasnt been all that bad, a 3.57 ERA is nothing to sneeze at, his high WHIP and BAA are probably not what the Red Sox envisioned when they dealt for him.
Once again, I’ll throw him some points for the high-sock style that I am so fond of.
A.J. Pierzynski: B+
My biggest issue with Pierzynski is his hack happy way at the plate, but as long as he produces, it’s not really that big of a deal. Not wanting to give Jarrod Saltalamacchia a multi-year deal, Boston opted for Pierzynski on a one-year pact. Most projection systems have Pierzynski’s 2014 only a shade behind Salty’s output in 2013. While Salty has gotten off to a good start in Miami, his departure from Boston looks fairly seamless.
After some early struggles with the pitchers, Pierzynski chatted with John Farrell and it appears that the 37-year-old has put his troubles behind him. And at least in recent games he is looking more like the guy Boston thought they were getting.
I give A.J. a small handful of points because everyone else seems to hate him, and heck, I am a nice guy.
Mujica has been pretty bad. That’s all there is to it. Boston thought he might be reliable second to Koji Uehara, perhaps even his successor next year, but this year he has been pretty appalling. Mujica has pitched himself to a 9.00 ERA and a whole host of other aesthetically unpleasant statistics and to top it off, he may even be injured as he was unable to come into Saturday’s game against the Athletics.
Mujica loses points for defecting from the World Series losers to the Champions. After all, the last guy who did that, Edgar Renteria was also not very good at baseball in Boston.