Wednesday, February 24, 2010

2010 Team Analysis: Boston Red Sox

Boston Red Sox:

2009 Record: 95-67

General Manager: Theo Epstein

Manager: Terry Francona

Organizational Philosophy: since John Henry bought this team in 2002 and flirted with the idea of hiring Billy Beane as his first GM, the Red Sox have become favorites among statisticians and sabermetricians.  On the financial side, Henry has been a genius in revitalizing the Red Sox franchise and turning them into a major brand name.  Since he purchased them, they have built and sustained a healthy payroll and made a significant profit.

On the front office side, the hiring of Theo Epstein as GM and publically announcing that stathead guru Bill James would come onboard as an advisor made it clear to everyone that the "moneyball" era was here to stay.  Since that time, statistical analysis has evolved past the basic formulas fleshed out in Michael Lewis' 2003 book but the Red Sox (and their later success) were instrumental in giving this minor revolution legitimacy.

As a philosophy, the Red Sox operate as a team of incredibly talented baseball minds that are well-versed in the process of finding market inefficiencies, looking for statistical advantages and locating talent (both here and abroad) showing signs of future MLB success.  The Red Sox have been able to win by using an assortment of strategies such as locating players previously released (David Ortiz) or as marginal free agent pickups (Bill Mueller and Kevin Millar come to mind).  The team also has their fair share of splashy trades (Curt Schilling, Josh Beckett, Mike Lowell, Coco Crisp and Jason Bay) but the bulk of their lineup comes through player development.  Jonathon Papelbon, Dustin PedroiaKevin Youkilis, Jacoby Ellsbury, Jon Lester and Clay Buchholz are important homegrown pieces to this team and with their pipeline emerging more and more intriguing prospects (Casey Kelly, Ryan Westmoreland, Michael Bowden, and Josh Reddick to name a few), this franchise has presented itself as an efficient business model.

2010 Commitments:

Starting Rotation:

Jon Lester ($3.75M)
Josh Beckett ($12M)
John Lackey ($18.7M)
Daisuke Matsuzaka ($8M)
Clay Buchholz ($400K)
Tim Wakefield ($3.5M)


Jon Papelbon ($9M)
Hideki Okajima ($2.75M)
Manny Delcarmen ($900K)
Ramon Ramirez ($1M)
Daniel Bard ($400K)
Michael Bowden ($400K)

On the field:

C: Victor Martinez ($7.7M)
C: Jason Varitek ($3M)
1B: Kevin Youkilis ($9M)
2B: Dustin Pedroia ($3.75M)
SS: Marco Scutaro ($5.5M)
SS: Jed Lowrie ($400K)
3B: Adrian Beltre ($9M)
3B: Mike Lowell ($12.5M)
LF: Jacoby Ellsbury ($400K)
CF: Mike Cameron ($7.75M)
RF: J.D. Drew ($14M)
OF: Jeremy Hermida ($3M)
OF: Bill Hall ($8.5M; $7.1M is paid by Seattle)
DH: David Ortiz ($13M)

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