In response to moonslav59's comment:
In response to notin's comment:
The Sox have looked somewhat at this with Chris Denorfia and by keeping communication open with Stephen Drew. The connection with Drew is obvious, but only slightly likely.
I get the interest in Denorfia. And apparently the Sox are thinking “backup CF/RF who can hit LHP,” which makes sense. Two other names that also make sense include Justin Maxwell and John Mayberry Jr. Of the 3, Maxwell is far and away the best option, as he not only hits LHP very well but is a very good defensive OF. Really, both Mayberry and Denorfia are better suited to playing the corners than CF.
I think the Sox can go get pretty much anyone they want for this role, but for the sake of not overcomplicating things, I am going to assume they deal from their redundancy and move Mike Carp. Carp is not a starter and is out of options, and plays corner OF/1B, two positions the Sox have well covered on the 25-man roster alone, with Nava, Gomes, Napoli, and Victorino all secure with roster spots and roles. And while both Carp and Nava are considered corner OF, neither is a defensive whiz capable of playing RF and allowing Victorino to move to CF. That hs ie dirt cheap, has control left and is coming off a career year also helps. AS for Mayberry, he isn't very good all around, and not worth Carp in a deal. On top of that, Philly needs more left-handed hitters like they need a small pox outbreak. He shall not be discussed again.
The problem with Carp is the same – he is a LHH 1B/OF, and not exactly high on the priority list of the teams who control Maxwell and, Denorfia. There are teams that could use Carp. If he is viewed as a DH option, those teams include Baltimore, Tampa, Oakland, Milwaukee, Minnesota, Houston, Miami, and Pittsburgh. RHH CF candidates from these teams include Darin Mastrionani, Gorkys Hernandez, Robbie Grossman (switch hitter), and Jose Tabata.
First off, I would eliminate Mastrionanni and Hernandez as options. Neither are worth giving up Carp for, and really, are not any better than the available minor league FA pool of CF talent. The two intriguing names are Robbie Grossman and Jose Tabata.
Grossman figures to be harder to acquire. He has nearly 6 years of control left, makes no money, and figures to hold CF until George Springer is ready (re: passes the Super Two date).
That leaves Carp for Tabata. Is it worth it?
Pittsburgh would make this deal no question. Their current 1B situation appears to be a platoon of Chris McGuinness and Gaby Hernandez, fairly weak for a team that made the post-season last year. They are loaded in the OF, with Starling Marte, Andrew McCuthchen, Andrew Labo, Jaff Dacker, Travis Snider, and top prospect Gregor Polanco all looking for time along with Tabata. And Tabata makes $11.75mill over the next 3 years, with expensive options to follow.
Tabata is not a perfect fit for Boston. He can hit LHP, but does not exactly excel against them. And he plays a weak CF and RF. And his track record as a hitter is spotty at best, although his 2013 was fairly productinve, and a huge improvement over his poor 2012.
However, Tabata is also a former elite prospect who was among the fastest risers in the Yankee farm system. For all his experience, he is still only a month older than Will Middlebrooks. Heck, he is only 4 months older than Bryce Brentz, who has yet to master AAA ball or the fine art of cleaning a rifle. There is no denying that Tabata has talent. And while his past is limited, there is a chance he even develops into a productive corner OF as a starter in the near future, especially if he actually develops some power, which he certainly looks like he will be capable of.
A UAPM of Tabata projects him to be a .268 / .330 / .383 hitter, which is harly dazzling, but I think he is young enough and has the ability and potential to improve.
Is Tabata even a gamble? If the cost is only Carp, I don’t think so. This is not an aging role player, but a potential (albeit not likely) starting corner OF for the future who can be had for a role player.
I say, take the chance, Ben.
Great post, notin.
Do you think it's a fluke that Carp has hit lefties better than righties over his career (.792 to .779)? (Note: he hit righties way better in 2013 at .904 to .745)
While Gomes certainly has hit lefties better than Carp, and the Gomes-Nava LF platoon may really produce well for us in 2014, I like the idea that Carp is under team control 3 more years. He has 2 more arb years after this one. He won't make what Gomes makes this year, so we could save some cash by trading Gomes instead.
I realize Gomes is Farrell's favorite, so I doubt they trade him, but I like the fact that Carp can back-up Naps at 1B. I don't like the idea of Nava at 1B and Gomes in LF full time, if Naps gets hurt.
I do like the idea of trading Dempster to create cap space, but I think we may wait to make a trade for a CF'er or leftside IF'er until after the season is underway, and we have a better idea of what we have at CF, SS and 3B.
The team will only carry so many OF's. I'm not sure Carp being under team control or simply being around to hit righties and back up 1B will be the deciding factor on whether we keep him. I don't mind the Nap/Carp and Gomes/Nava platoon as long as we keep Carp as far away from the OF as possible.