The Winter Meetings have come and gone, and proper now the Red Sox discover themselves marginally improved however nonetheless largely in the identical place they had been on Monday.
Two of Boston’s division rivals, nevertheless, are on the verge of a lot greater leaps ahead.
The New York Yankees got here into the offseason needing two beginning outfielders. First they picked up Alex Verdugo and have now reeled in Juan Soto in a blockbuster commerce, sending pitchers Michael King, Drew Thorpe, Jhony Brito, Randy Vasquez and catcher Kyle Higashioka to San Diego to land the three-time All-Star.
The Toronto Blue Jays wanted a bat. Now they’re reportedly a finalist for Shohei Ohtani, who may make his lengthy awaited resolution by the tip of this weekend.
The Red Sox, then again, wanted pitching. They’ve gotten some, however largely within the type of prospects and depth items who may assist a little bit now and perhaps extra down the highway. Greg Weissert, a part of the Verdugo return, and Justin Slaten, a Rule 5 decide acquired Wednesday from the Mets, may each issue into the bullpen image. Richard Fitts, additionally acquired for Verdugo, instantly ranks as among the finest pitching prospects within the group.
Helpful? Yes, however nowhere close to sufficient to shut the hole with the remainder of the AL East, a truth Craig Breslow acknowledged on Wednesday night.
“In a perfect world we’re walking out of here with starting pitching and we feel really good about that, we’ve tried to advance the ball as much as possible, we’re probably not alone in being a little bit disappointed on that front, but obviously we were able to make the trade yesterday and get back three arms that we can add to the organization,” Breslow mentioned. “We remain active in all paths. My hope is things start to shake free shortly but we can only control what we can control.”
Underwhelming as this week has been, it’s necessary to recollect not one of the high pitchers on the free agent or commerce market moved throughout the Winter Meetings, so it’s not like Boston’s missed out on anybody. Compared to final winter’s speedy hearth offseason, issues are taking part in out way more slowly this time round.
Why is that? It takes two to tango, and for quite a lot of causes each groups and gamers have had purpose to take their time.
“As we deal with other teams or free agents there is always another party involved in these conversations,” Breslow mentioned. “There’s still some time but it feels like I’m not alone in thinking more than likely things are going to heat up over the next couple of days.”
Once Ohtani indicators, the free agent market ought to kick into overdrive, and the Soto swap ought to have the same affect on the commerce panorama. Things will turn into chaotic, and Soto touchdown within the division is already an enormous downside for Boston. Ohtani doubtlessly selecting Toronto would make issues even worse.
After all, Baltimore’s solely going to get higher and Tampa Bay isn’t going wherever. Add an MVP-caliber expertise in New York and doubtlessly Toronto as properly and the AL East may turn into a nightmare.
Breslow is aware of that, after all, and when requested concerning the chance he emphasised that for the membership to achieve success, he’ll should maintain his head.
“I think it’s important that we remain disciplined in what we need to do and not get caught up in the emotions of what other clubs are doing,” Breslow mentioned.
There’s no must get on Breslow’s case simply because issues aren’t occurring as rapidly as we’d like. He says they’ve been aggressively pursuing their high targets and that they’re deliberately taking part in issues near the vest to maximise their probabilities. He reiterated that beginning pitching is the precedence, as is a right-handed hitter who can play some outfield.
For all we all know we may lookup in a few days and people efforts may have paid off within the type of a blockbuster cope with Yoshinobu Yamamoto or one other big-time starter.
Asking persistence of Red Sox followers is a tall order on a very good day, but it surely’s value reiterating that the Winter Meetings may nonetheless be successful if the groundwork laid behind the scenes this week bears fruit later.
That being mentioned, the Soto deal additionally drives house that the competitors isn’t sitting nonetheless both. All of Boston’s targets are nonetheless inside attain, however now the stakes are a lot greater, and so are the results of failure.