If you think that after signing free agents David Ross, Jonny Gomes, Mike Napoli and Shane Victorino the Red Sox are all done in making moves this offseason, you better think again. These signings could actually be minor in comparison to what is to come.
The Red Sox have stuck with their “disciplined” approach and not signed any player to a long-term, large-sum contract, which was what got the team in trouble the past few years.
As it stands right now, Boston has roughly $40 million to spend on 2013 player salaries before reaching the luxury tax mark as it currently stand around $135 million. This leaves the Red Sox in a position where no player should be off limits while sticking to their disciplined philosophy.
Although much of the lineup is set, the team could still use another top of the line starting pitcher, a few utility infielders, as well as potentially a shortstop depending on how the organization sees Jose Iglesias in their future plans.
Besides adding these pieces through free agency, the team is also in a position to make a trade.
There are currently four catchers on the roster in Napoli (although he will primarily play first base), Ross, Jarrod Saltalamachhia and Ryan Lavarnway. Catching is a hot commodity this offseason and the Red Sox have a surplus, so it would be assumed a number of calls should be coming Boston’s way.
With the signing of free agent right-handed reliever Koji Uehara, the bullpen may also be an area the organization looks to for trade chips.
There are three lefties in Franklin Morales, Andrew Miller and Craig Breslow. Teams are always looking for lefties for their bullpen, so one of these three could be a valuable piece to any deal.
There are also relievers Alfredo Aceves, Andrew Bailey, Mark Melancon, Daniel Bard and Junichi Tazawa who could also be included in a deal to give a team bullpen help. Some of these names possess great value, especially Tazawa who is coming off an outstanding last two months of 2012.
Boston needs to fill a few holes in its roster before next season, but luckily for them they are in an ideal position to do so through whichever avenue they prefer – a free agent signing or a trade. Who would have ever thought this would be possible in the middle of last season?