Hot Sox

13 Dec 18
Boston Herald
LAS VEGAS — The Red Sox don’t have a vote, but if they did they’d vote no on banning the defensive shift. Even though they shifted on just 16 percent of opposing hitters in 2018, the Red Sox would prefer Major League Baseball decide not to add any new rules banning or limiting the ploy. Offensively, they led the majors with a .268 average and 5.41 runs per game and feel like trying to beat the shift is part of baseball. General managers and managers got together for meetings Wednesday at the Mandalay Bay hotel, and though the shift wasn’t a topic of discussion, it’s expected to be one before the 2019 season. The Red Sox prefer it not be. “It’s part of the game,” said manager Alex Cora. “Just trying to get outs, we’re defending. Our hitters do a good job of going the other way and beating the shift. You saw it with Jackie (Bradley Jr.) early in the season, he was hitting a lot of groundballs into it, he made an adjustment and he started hitting the ball in the air and going the other way. He finished strong. I think it’s part of the game. You have to play defense, you have to try to get 27 outs somehow, some way and defensive alignment is part of it.” Red Sox president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski agreed. “I know that everybody has their own opinion on it, it’s as diverse as the next person, but I’m not for banning them,” he said. “My mind is very simple in the sense that I don’t think that you should penalize intellect. If you have a way of figuring out a way to get people out, it’s up to you as a club and an industry to make those adjustments. “I know it’s been slow to adjust at times, but I think more and more clubs will adjust. If they don’t it’s an advantage for the others but I don’t have any vote on the case, that’s just my own personal opinion.” Signs of the times Stealing signs was a hot topic among the meetings with general managers and managers. “It has been front and center,” Dombrowski said. “That was a topic of conversation, they’re not ready to roll out the rules, I don’t think we’re really at liberty to discuss them at this time, but it is a topic of conversation that I think major league baseball will be addressing in a significant fashion starting this year.” Said Cora: “Paranoia, paranoia.” The Red Sox were in the middle of sign-stealing debates in the postseason, when the Astros were caught using a video camera near the Red Sox dugout at Fenway Park. “It is something they are going to significantly address,” Dombrowski said. “And I do think that is part of pace of play because the feeling is if you address that, you don’t have as many delays and changing signs on a consistent basis, you can have further reduction on mound visits. “I did see one number that really surprised me. I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised because we were part of it, but they showed that with some of the changes they made for the World Series with our clubs, that last year in 2017 there was an average of 19 mound visits per game in the World Series, and this year there were six. So that’s a significant difference.” Kinsler on market Gold Glove second baseman Ian Kinsler was spotted at the winter meetings and is looking for a new team for 2019. “Well, we liked Ian, but I would say, at this point, we’re not pursuing that,” Dombrowski said. The Sox will rely on Dustin Pedroia, Brock Holt and Eduardo Nunez at second base. They also could test prospect Michael Chavis there. “I feel right now we’re not prepared to offer anybody a major league contract for that, just because of where we are,” Dombrowski said. “I can’t say that in January if there was somebody sitting out there that didn’t have a big league deal that might take a big league invite, that we would be open to inviting them just to protect ourselves, but I think that’s a time away because players aren’t going to be ready to do that yet.” Extension talk Agent Scott Boras was asked about the possibility of Xander Bogaerts signing an extension before he’s eligible for free agency next winter. “I don’t know,” Boras said. “Dave and I have worked out deals before. It’s up to what the players direct me to do and what the organizations want to do prior to that time. You’ve got a shortstop hitting fourth or fifth in your lineup and he’s going to be a 27-year -ld free agent. Other than that, I haven’t thought about it.” . . . Dombrowski said the Red Sox don’t anticipate taking anyone in the Rule 5 draft today. They’d have to carry the player on the 25-man roster all year or risk losing him. It’s more likely they lose a player or two in the Rule 5. Dombrowski said he anticipates leaving the meetings without any trades or free agent signings completed. “I feel right now we’re not prepared to offer anybody a major league contract for that, just because of where we are,” Dombrowski said. “I can’t say that in January if there was somebody sitting out there that didn’t have a big league deal that might take a big league invite, that we would be open to inviting them just to protect ourselves, but I think that’s a time away because players aren’t going to be ready to do that yet.”  
13 Dec 18

The Rule 5 draft will take place in Las Vegas on Thursday December 13th, at 11 am Chicago time. The draft exists to limit the ability of teams to bury guys in the minors. The rules (very) simplified are, if a player signed his first professional contract at the age of 18 and under he […]

13 Dec 18
Las Vegas Review-Journal
#gallery-1469520-1 { margin: auto; } #gallery-1469520-1 .gallery-item { float: left; margin-top: 10px; text-align: center; width: 33%; } #gallery-1469520-1 img { border: 2px solid #cfcfcf; } #gallery-1469520-1 .gallery-caption { margin-left: 0; } /* see gallery_shortcode() in wp-includes/media.php */ Baseball agent Scott Boras speaks to the media during the Major League Baseball winter meetings in Las Vegas, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018. Boras represents star free agent Bryce Harper and many other big names in the game. (AP Photo/Janie McCauley) In this Sept. 7, 2018, file photo, Washington Nationals’ Bryce Harper takes off his batting helmet after he flied out during the first inning of the team’s baseball game against the Chicago Cubs in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass, File) Baseball agent Scott Boras speaks to the media during the Major League Baseball winter meetings in Las Vegas, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018. Boras represents star free agent Bryce Harper and many other big names in the game. (AP Photo/Ben Walker) It was 11:30 Wednesday morning when the J.T. Realmuto Baseball Winter Meetings morphed into the Scott Boras Show. In the media working room on the ground floor of the Mandalay Bay convention area there arose such a clatter: Bryce Harper’s agent would be holding a news conference in front of a giant Christmas tree upstairs. And faster than you could say $300 million, 10-year contract, trade rumors about Realmuto — who batted .277 with 21 home runs in 2018 but somehow had become the top story of the first two days of these meetings — were pushed to the Hot Stove League’s rear burner. If you were sitting near the front of the media room, you were last to clatter up the stairs. By the time I arrived at the giant Christmas tree, the kind of scrum members of the New Zealand All Blacks rugby team only dream about had formed. About all those relegated to positions closer to Starbucks than the giant Christmas tree heard from Boras was this: “He wants to win …” It was followed by muffled gibberish akin to Charlie Brown’s teacher lecturing. It was assumed Boras was speaking of Harper, the 26-year-old Las Vegan who has been accused of not being a winning player based on the Washington Nationals’ failure to produce in the postseason. But Boras also represents former Pirates shortstop Jordy Mercer, and it’s possible the beat guy from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette was just doing his job with due and audacious diligence. Security threat “Keep it moving, folks.” “Gotta keep the aisles clear.” “Come on people, let’s make room.” “Anybody need rodeo tickets? For most of the Boras filibuster, the only voices heard were those of the Mandalay Bay security force and guys sporting bushy mustaches and cowboy hats. When the scrum finally began to dissipate, those in back lacking super hearing powers were able to get in a couple of questions about the Harper negotiations. A year ago when the countdown to these meetings began, there was speculation the winner of the Bryce Harper sweepstakes might be announced this week in his hometown. Not gonna happen, Boras said. “It could be in the short term, it could be in the long term,” he said about a timetable. “When you represent superstars, you know that sometimes the people who get this done do it when they’re sitting in a board room. They’re evaluating, and then they say: ‘We’re doing this.’ The process completely changes and you get a phone call and you’re surprised. “I’ve been doing this long enough to know that’s how it happens.” Three-horse race Boras did not mention an ultimate price tag. “If any team mentions Bryce Harper or says they need a young outfielder, that means they’re interested and have already bid $300 million,” he said. “The goals of Bryce, fundamentally, are the relationship with ownership to where he knows they are going to be consistently competitive, and they’re going to allow quality teammates around him, that type of thing. So really, it’s about an owner’s intent to win.” Primary suitors would appear to be the Dodgers, Phillies and White Sox. Boras suggested a door that Yankees general manager Brian Cashman seemed to have closed in regard to Harper wearing pinstripes in 2019 could be reopened, despite a no vacancy sign in the New York outfield. “When the nurse walks in with the thermometer, the issue isn’t what (it reads) that day … it’s the health of the patient when they’re ready to leave the hospital,” Boras said. Like the Las Vegas Aviators’ logo, one had to give that serious thought. What Boras was trying to say: The Yankees supposedly weren’t interested in signing his client Mark Teixeira, either, before they did to an eight-year, $180-million contract during the 2008-09 off-season. By the time Boras started making cryptic analogies, the guy who offered his buddy $20 if he’d sneak around to where the super agent was holding court and push the giant Christmas tree over on his head had wandered off toward the cowboy hats in the casino. Apparently, he needed rodeo tickets. After an hour of seemingly saying a lot but in reality very little about Bryce Harper’s immediate future, Scott Boras walked over to where another scrum, this one comprised of Japanese reporters, had formed. The media over there wanted to know if he had heard anything about the possibility of J.J. Realmuto being traded to the Chunichi Dragons. Contact Ron Kantowski at rkantowski@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0352. Follow @ronkantowski on Twitter.
13 Dec 18
Las Vegas Review-Journal
#gallery-1549878-2 { margin: auto; } #gallery-1549878-2 .gallery-item { float: left; margin-top: 10px; text-align: center; width: 33%; } #gallery-1549878-2 img { border: 2px solid #cfcfcf; } #gallery-1549878-2 .gallery-caption { margin-left: 0; } /* see gallery_shortcode() in wp-includes/media.php */ Baseball agent Scott Boras speaks to the media during the Major League Baseball winter meetings in Las Vegas, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018. Boras represents star free agent Bryce Harper and many other big names in the game. (AP Photo/Janie McCauley) In this Sept. 7, 2018, file photo, Washington Nationals’ Bryce Harper takes off his batting helmet after he flied out during the first inning of the team’s baseball game against the Chicago Cubs in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass, File) Baseball agent Scott Boras speaks to the media during the Major League Baseball winter meetings in Las Vegas, Wednesday, Dec. 12, 2018. Boras represents star free agent Bryce Harper and many other big names in the game. (AP Photo/Ben Walker) It was 11:30 Wednesday morning when the J.T. Realmuto Baseball Winter Meetings morphed into the Scott Boras Show. In the media working room on the ground floor of the Mandalay Bay convention area there arose such a clatter: Bryce Harper’s agent would be holding a news conference in front of a giant Christmas tree upstairs. And faster than you could say $300 million, 10-year contract, trade rumors about Realmuto — who batted .277 with 21 home runs in 2018 but somehow had become the top story of the first two days of these meetings — were pushed to the Hot Stove League’s rear burner. If you were sitting near the front of the media room, you were last to clatter up the stairs. By the time I arrived at the giant Christmas tree, the kind of scrum members of the New Zealand All Blacks rugby team only dream about had formed. About all those relegated to positions closer to Starbucks than the giant Christmas tree heard from Boras was this: “He wants to win …” It was followed by muffled gibberish akin to Charlie Brown’s teacher lecturing. It was assumed Boras was speaking of Harper, the 26-year-old Las Vegan who has been accused of not being a winning player based on the Washington Nationals’ failure to produce in the postseason. But Boras also represents former Pirates shortstop Jordy Mercer, and it’s possible the beat guy from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette was just doing his job with due and audacious diligence. Security threat “Keep it moving, folks.” “Gotta keep the aisles clear.” “Come on people, let’s make room.” “Anybody need rodeo tickets? For most of the Boras filibuster, the only voices heard were those of the Mandalay Bay security force and guys sporting bushy mustaches and cowboy hats. When the scrum finally began to dissipate, those in back lacking super hearing powers were able to get in a couple of questions about the Harper negotiations. A year ago when the countdown to these meetings began, there was speculation the winner of the Bryce Harper sweepstakes might be announced this week in his hometown. Not gonna happen, Boras said. “It could be in the short term, it could be in the long term,” he said about a timetable. “When you represent superstars, you know that sometimes the people who get this done do it when they’re sitting in a board room. They’re evaluating, and then they say: ‘We’re doing this.’ The process completely changes and you get a phone call and you’re surprised. “I’ve been doing this long enough to know that’s how it happens.” Three-horse race Boras did not mention an ultimate price tag. “If any team mentions Bryce Harper or says they need a young outfielder, that means they’re interested and have already bid $300 million,” he said. “The goals of Bryce, fundamentally, are the relationship with ownership to where he knows they are going to be consistently competitive, and they’re going to allow quality teammates around him, that type of thing. So really, it’s about an owner’s intent to win.” Primary suitors would appear to be the Dodgers, Phillies and White Sox. Boras suggested a door that Yankees general manager Brian Cashman seemed to have closed in regard to Harper wearing pinstripes in 2019 could be reopened, despite a no vacancy sign in the New York outfield. “When the nurse walks in with the thermometer, the issue isn’t what (it reads) that day … it’s the health of the patient when they’re ready to leave the hospital,” Boras said. Like the Las Vegas Aviators’ logo, one had to give that serious thought. What Boras was trying to say: The Yankees supposedly weren’t interested in signing his client Mark Teixeira, either, before they did to an eight-year, $180-million contract during the 2008-09 off-season. By the time Boras started making cryptic analogies, the guy who offered his buddy $20 if he’d sneak around to where the super agent was holding court and push the giant Christmas tree over on his head had wandered off toward the cowboy hats in the casino. Apparently, he needed rodeo tickets. After an hour of seemingly saying a lot but in reality very little about Bryce Harper’s immediate future, Scott Boras walked over to where another scrum, this one comprised of Japanese reporters, had formed. The media over there wanted to know if he had heard anything about the possibility of J.J. Realmuto being traded to the Chunichi Dragons. Contact Ron Kantowski at rkantowski@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0352. Follow @ronkantowski on Twitter.
12 Dec 18
WGN Radio - 720 AM

Day 3 of “Sox on the Beach”, John struggles with getting hot water for his shower and he reports the hot water Michael Cohen is in. Chicago Tribune Restaurant Critic, Phil Vettel phones in, and Sox players Nicky Delmonico and Yolmer Sanchez joins in live from Riviera Maya Mexico!       http://serve.castfire.com/audio/3576112/3576112_2018-12-12-163312.128.mp3

12 Dec 18
Dodgers-LowDown

According to a report made by Pittsburgh Pirates’ beat writer, John Perrotto, the Dodgers have ceased trade talks with the Pirates including catcher Francisco Cervelli. Cervelli, 32 years old, has played the past four seasons with Pittsburgh, slashing for a .748 OPS in that time. The veteran Cervelli would seemingly be a perfect fit for […]

12 Dec 18
SportsTalkATL.com

As the winter meetings wind down, a lot of Braves fans will be disappointed no splashes have been made, and it does not look like there will be one coming soon either. According to multiple reports, the Braves aren’t close to any free agent signings or trades in any of their three areas of concern. […]

12 Dec 18
CBS New York

It appears the Yankees know a good thing when they see it.

12 Dec 18
Sox Sphere

It didn’t take long for the Red Sox rumors to begin during the Winter Meetings. Let’s take a look at how valid each are. It’s the most wonderful time of the year for hardcore baseball fans. Every GM in baseball is attempting to improve their respective clubs and rumors are in abundance. Each team has […]

12 Dec 18
SportsTalkATL.com

There’s no denying the main thing that separated the Braves from some of the truly elite teams out there, like the Dodgers and Red Sox, was their lack of depth. In their rotation, they didn’t have enough reliable pitchers that could handle the heat of the postseason. The bullpen needed more quality arms at the […]

12 Dec 18
Archy news nety

If I had to describe my response to the Harold Baines Hall of Fame in one word, that would be easy: Unprepared. When I saw that Baines was hanging on the ballot box for five years before he was cut off, I had made peace with the idea that he had been a very good […]

12 Dec 18
CBS Boston

In their offseason quest for bullpen help, the Red Sox continue to show interest on right-hander Adam Ottavino.

12 Dec 18
Branded Sports

The news may have technically been late Monday, but when the baseball world woke up on day two of Winter Meetings Tuesday, they were treated to yet another example of the Mets being the worst organization in baseball. There has indeed at least been talk of 3-way where Realmuto goes to Mets, Syndergaard to yanks. […]

12 Dec 18
iPhillySports

For the first time in 25 tries, Villanova lost a Big 5 game. And it came at the hands of Penn at the famed Palestra. It hasn’t been a good year in Nova terms after winning a national championship last season. The Wildcats got blown out by Michigan and then lost to Furman, both […]

12 Dec 18
iPhillySports

For the first time in 25 tries, Villanova lost a Big 5 game. And it came at the hands of Penn at the famed Palestra. It hasn’t been a good year in Nova terms after winning a national championship last season. The Wildcats got blown out by Michigan and then lost to Furman, both at […]