All seem like good moves for the Red Sox although I would have liked to see them give Hill a contract. Before hitting the DL for Tommy John surgery this past season, Hill was a solid reliever for the team with a zero ERA in eight innings.
Albers was solid in 2011 for the team and is a welcome addition to the 2012 roster that has some holes in the bullpen. Melancon will definitely help out a bullpen that could be losing Daniel Bard. New manager Bobby Valentine even said Melancon could very well be the teams closer in 2012.
Shoppach is underwhelming but should be a solid backup for Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Punto will be the utility man that Lowrie was without the injury issues.
Even though they had a busy week, the Red Sox still have a lot more to do this offseason. They still have a couple holes in the starting rotation to fill as well as a right handed bat in the outfield.
Overall, the team looks like they are headed in a nice direction and moving past the debacle that was the 2011 season.
It was announced today that the Boston Red Sox signed uber-utility man, Nick Punto, to a two-year contract worth $3-million. The team also traded Jew Lowrie and Kyle Weiland to the Houston Astros for 26-year-old reliever, Mark Melancon.
Punto will certainly be an upgrade over the oft injured Lowrie as he does nearly the same thing without the health issues. In 2011, he played all the infield positions except first base and has even ventured into the outfield for a few games.
In 63 games with the World Chmapion St. Louis Cardinals, Punto recorded a .278 average with 20 runs scored and 21 RBI.
Tony Massorotti of the Boston Globe pointed out another major plus, he is a great clubhouse guy, something the Red Sox need after 2011’s debacle.
As for Melancon, he is a good bullpen arm but is not the Red Sox answer to their open closer role. Thankfully, it doesn’t seem as though that is the direction they want to go in either. With Daniel Bard reportedly set to enter 2012 in the starting rotation, the Red Sox still have some work to do putting together the 2012 ‘pen.
The signing of Punto also puts Mike Aviles’ position on the team in jeopardy as there may not be two spots on the roster for utility men who do the same exact thing.
After a triple by Jed Lowrie, that bounced off Ichiro’s leg, Carl Crawford crushed a fastball right up the middle to walk-off with the win for the Sox.
This was a huge moment for Crawford and the Red Sox as a team. After seemingly rebounding, the Sox had begun another downward spiral and getting swept at home by the Mariners was not going to help the cause.
Hopefully Crawford can build of his 2-4 day today and start to heat up, with the weather, during the month of May. As of today, we are five games out of first behind the Yankees. Look for the Sox to make up some ground this month and get things back on track. If the Sox don’t have a winning record by the end of May we may have some serious problems on our hands.
Was I right or was I right? Before the season began I said that Terry Francona made the wrong decision naming Marco Scutaro his starting short stop in January. Lowrie has started the season 16-29 and was the spark plug that led the Red Sox to their third victory of the season Saturday. Thank god Tito came to his senses and started Lowrie again at short stop. Keep the man in the starting line up! He is the hottest bat on the team right now. Bat him in the leadoff spot and throw Crawford down in the order. He is like two for a million from the leadoff spot, just awful.
In other news, TWO WINS IN A ROW BABY. Today’s win puts the Sox at an amazing 4-10. WOO!
Including todays 1:05PM start against the Phillies, the Red Sox will have played seven Spring Training games without a single one being broadcast on TV. This makes about zero sense to me.
With all the hype of the new faces coming to Boston this season, I want to be able to see their first at-bats in a Sox uniform without having to book a trip to Fort Meyer’s, Florida. Come on NESN. This is Red Sox Nation, people will skip work to watch the first Spring Training game on TV but instead I have to wait until the eighth game of Spring Training to see any live baseball.
When Jed Lowrie returned from injury late last year he really brought an offensive spark to the team hitting .313 with nine home runs and 21 RBI in the months of August, September and October. In the same span Scutaro hit just .262 with four home runs.
I know Lowrie has had major injury problems in his young career but the stretch run last year showed us what he can do when healthy. Personally, I think a healthy Lowrie is better than a healthy Scutaro.
I don’t want to hear all the babble about how Lowrie is more valuable coming off the bench because he can play multiple positions. That is not how this works, you play to win the game. And to win the game you put the best team on the field for 162 games and there is a good possibility that the best Red Sox team that can be fielded includes Lowrie at shortstop.
Now I am not saying name Jed Lowrie the starting shortstop and ditch Marco Scutaro immediately, I just think Francona should give Lowrie a fair shot and not name Scutaro the starter in January.
Lowrie has great potential, give him a chance to live up to it.
Does Lowrie deserve a fair shot at being the starting shortstop? Leave your comments or vote in the poll below…