Konnichiwa, everyone!

Here is the complete story, in case you haven’t seen it:

Sox place winning bid for Japanese pitcher
By Michael Silverman
Boston Herald Sports Reporter

Tuesday, November 14, 2006 – Updated: 08:23 PM EST

NAPLES, Fla. – The battle to spring Daisuke Matsuzaka free from Japan was won by the Red Sox tonight – for a cool $51.11 million.

    Now, the Sox have 30 days to forge a long-term contract with super-agent Scott Boras on a rich multi-year deal that will make the right-hander a critical component of the starting rotation.

    In a simultaneous press conference held at the Naples Grande Resort at the GM meetings and in the suburban Tokyo, Japan, headquarters of the Seibu Lions, it was announced the Red Sox were the winners in the system that allows the 30 major league teams to bid on the right to negotiate with a posted Japanese player.

    By most accounts, the Sox’ winning bid of $51.11 million was well above bids submitted by other Matsuzaka pursuers, including the Mets ($35-plus million), Yankees ($30-plus million) and the Rangers ($27 million, according to the Dallas Morning News). The Red Sox’ bid is due five days after the team wraps up a contract with Matsuzaka. If they fail to do so in that 30-day window, the money will not have to be paid. Matsuzaka would then have to return to the Lions, pitch next season and then go through the posting again in order to be eligible to play in 2008.

    For the three parties involved – the Red Sox, Matsuzaka/Boras and the Lions – there are compelling reasons working in favor of a deal being struck.

    For the Sox, Matsuzaka is the best starter on the open market, and, at 26, his best seasons could be ahead of him. He has dominated the Japanese Pacific League for most of his eight-year career, posting a 108-60 career record with a 2.95 ERA with 1,355 strikeouts in 204 games. He has five plus-pitches – two- and four-seam fastballs, changeup, curve and slider – and with the exception of a non-structural elbow problem in 2002 and slight strains in his elbow and shoulder at the end of this past season, he has proven durable.

    By signing Matsuzaka, the Sox would not only keep him out of the clutches of the Yankees but add him to a rotation that has Curt Schilling, Josh Beckett, Jonathan Papelbon and Tim Wakefield. With Schilling no doubt primed to make his last year a memorable one, Beckett more likely than not to become more consistent and effective, Papelbon looking to duplicate his 2006 success as a starter and Wakefield healthy again, the Red Sox rotation could be far better than most in the league.

    For the pitcher and his agent, there is a clear-stated desire to come to the major leagues. Since Ichiro Suzuki and Hideki Matsui made their formidable marks in the majors, Matsuzaka represents the next biggest import by far in terms of talent alone. Boras is said to be looking for only a three-year deal – he has already begun calling his client ‘D-Mat’ – to allow him to become a free agent after the 2009 season. The agent likely will drive a hard bargain, but the perceived risk that Matsuzaka would have to return to Japan could lessen Boras’ already considerable leverage.

    For the Lions, they have already shown their motivation by accepting the bid rather than risk losing Matsuzaka on the open market as a free agent after the 2008 season.

    Matsuzaka is expected to arrive in Los Angeles this morning and stay there through the weekend. Boras, in town for the GM meetings, is expected to return to his base in Newport Beach, Calif., later this week and meet with Matsuzaka.

    “We’ve had a pretty good relationship,” said Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein of Boras before the announcement. “We’ve gotten some deals done (Jason Varitek) and some we haven’t (Johnny Damon). He’s very smart. You always do a lot of listening (when meeting with Boras).”

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80 comments

  1. ellencullum@bellsouth.net

    Jeff, when youasy that he is 26 and his best years could be ahead of him; Aren’t most players on their plateau at 26??? I mean Curt and Wake are not of the norm.

  2. Jeff

    Hi, Ellen. I didn’t say that. Michael Silverman, who wrote the article, did. I think the prime of a pitcher’s career is usually the late 20s through the early 30s (maybe 27-34). Some pitchers obviously have more longevity than others.

  3. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    KONICHIWA, Jeff lol

    sigh, today was a great day. Matsuzaka is finally going to be a Sox and I managed to find a half-decent photo of myself to post on facebook…

    Now Theo needs to tackle Sata… I mean Scott Boras lol

  4. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    Lol you guys crack me up. Jamie, welcome to facebook, I must admit though, I am avidly against high schoolers being on facebook. It used to be something that was part of the whole getting into college thing, now it is turning into another myspace.

    I think a pitchers prime is about 27-32 for most pitchers, so boras is wise to make d mat a free agent at 29, right smack in the middle of that range. The guy may be a jerk, but there is a reason he brings in the big bucks, he is a flat out genius at what he does.

  5. arnieschmo@hotmail.com

    Hmmm…Schilling, Beckett, Papelbon, Wakefield, Matsuzka, this will be an interesting year, there is so much potential. But every one of those guys has a question mark over his head. Does Schilling have one more good or great year in him, Beckett, can he learn to pitch. Will Papelbon be as effective when he goes through a lineup three times, will Wakefield find a consistent groove and stay healthy. And Matsuzaka, aka Pedro jr. He’s never thrown a pitch in the Major leagues. There is no way of knowing until he proves himself or flops.

    Having said all that, I am really excited about next year because of all the ??? and suspence. It will be a year to remember. That’s my prediction, stay tuned folks you don’t want to miss this! Don’t forget, the Yanks will have an answer for all this and there will be some great games.

  6. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    http://sports.yahoo.com/mlb/news?slug=jp-matsuzaka111406&prov=yhoo&type=lgns

    sorry, couldn’t resist, now who’s evil and spending more on one player than entire teams payrolls….before even signing them. Hopefully this move takes some pressure off a rod, who will be making the same amount if you combined the bid (i know it’s not part of the payroll) except playing 5 times the games.

    I did find it interesting that that particular writer doesn’t think the sox will become as popular as many thing because D mat is not on the same level as matsui and especially Ichiro though.

    Sorry, I’ll stop mocking the hypocracy soon, I promise. Ew, i read the yankees are going after wolf and suppan, please keep them the **** away and go after lilly, pettite or somehow get an angels young gun or zito (if you don’t have to pay through the nose for him)….or else just wait until hughes and sanchez (who is rumored to be trade bait, I just hope it’s not for meche like they claim) are ready.

  7. arnieschmo@hotmail.com

    I agree about the hypocracy of reviling the Yank’s spending and then glorying in ths Sox’ spending. But with all due respect to the author of the article you linked, this is the same old complaint, “Baseball is doomed by huge salaries”. I remember at spring training games in Fl. when Dave Kingman had signed a (then) huge contract, it would not even be close to the minimum now, he was booed. People were yelling at him about his big money. It’s an old, old argument and baseball just keeps cruising along doing fine.

  8. kumar0330@yahoo.com

    Read somewhere that the current year one of the most prosperous years for all the MLB teams as a whole and the many teams have lot of cash. And there are very very few quality pitchers available. There’s going to be a lot of bidding for Zito & Schmidt. My guess is either one or both of them may be asking for 15 mil a year or even more.

  9. kumar0330@yahoo.com

    I think Zito and Schmidt will get more than Matsuzaka per year(if we exclude the bid amount) as more than one team is eligible to negotiate with them and one only one team can negotiate with Matsuzaka. Mets, Yanks, other teams teams will definetly drive the price for Zito or Schmidt way way up.

  10. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    I agree they will both probably rival or surpass oswalt’s 5/75, particularly zito, but the market has officially been set, we are in 2001/2002 all over again.

  11. Jeff

    I heard a report this afternoon on ESPN Radio here in Orlando that the Devil Rays are believed to have posted the winning bid for Akinori Iwamura. If this is true, then the Sox will have to figure out something else for their second base or third base plans. Personally, I wanted Iwamura for second base. I like Lowell, though I do see the appeal in his trade value.

  12. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    Vince, Matsuzaka cannot file for free agency for SIX years after signing. The can file for arbitration, but he’s under the contractual control of the Sox until 2012.

    =)

  13. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    Jeff, I don’t think the TB rays have the highest bid for Iwamura. That would make no sense since they’re a prospect-based team. They can’t possibly risk signing someone like him. Personally, I think that it’s Theo’s grand strategy to invade the Japanese market this offseason. With Matsuzaka in the center, Iwamura and possibly some relievers to back him up, the Sox can establish a powerful following in Japan. Still, I would be happy with Lowell returning. What about 2008 though, when Lowell’s a FA?

    I can’t wait to see how much Matsuzaka and Boras demand. The business and financial aspects of business appeals to me greatly. Maybe i’ll get into the business someday. Sounds like fun, right?

  14. Jeff

    Jamie, the Rays definitely placed a bid for Iwamura. The local ESPN affiliate here said the report about the Rays winning the Iwamura sweepstakes was not definite, but anticipated. The Rays have a new owner – he took over the team before last season – and is willing to spend. They are also looking at Mulder and Weaver among other pitchers. And, in the Orlando Sentinel this week, there was a story where the Rays’ GM insisted that Carl Crawford would not be traded. So it appears that the Rays and the Blue Jays are increasing payroll. Not sure what the Orioles are doing.

  15. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    The Rays are far from contention and neither are the Orioles, but the Blue Jays are serious contenders. I just see absolutely no point for TB to bid on a Japanese player. They’d be just wasting money… they’re supposed to build for the future which means drafts and trading veterans for prospects. I dunno, maybe they placed a bid, but if the Sox are serious about developing a substantial Japanese market, I can’t see them letting Iwamura go so easily. Of course, spending more than 10m on the posting would be rather stupid, but… why would the Rays do it??

  16. Jeff

    ABout 2008 and beyond at third base, the Sox could move Youkilis to third and bring in a power bat at first. They also have Chad Spann, who may be trade bait but also plays third. Lars Anderson is thought to be the first baseman of the future, but he is still in Single-A, I believe. Who knows what will happen after 2007. I’m just interested in the 2007 season right now!

  17. levelhead@bonsai.net

    I dont think Matsuzaka is under any kind of contractual control of anybody. He’ll enter into a contract with the redsox which will determine how long he’ll be under the control of redsox. It would be best for redsox to sign him to a long term contract, wo that the bid will spread itself across more years of service. But that would be riskier. Investing to protect get the max out of a previous investment.

  18. Jeff

    Jamie, Iwamura is a young player, so I think it would be wise for the Rays to pursue him. They have so many good young players, it is mentally exhaustive to think about it. What they lack is pitching, which is why they are willing to spend free agent money this off season. They see Iwamura as a key part of thier future, if they win the bid. He is only 27.

    Personally, I like a more competitive AL East. I think that makes winning the division or getting the wild card that much more meaningful. I think the Rays will be greatly improved in 2007. The jury’s still out for the Orioles. Of course, the Sox will be a better team in 2007 as well, so we should be able to contend for a World Series title regardless of what other teams in the AL do.

  19. Jeff

    Level, we’re looking at a three of four year deal with Matsuzaka. Boras doesn’t want a five-year deal since Matsuzaka can get bigger money if he just signs a three-year deal and proves himself as an elite MLB pitcher.

  20. levelhead@bonsai.net

    I guess you are right Jeff. I was responding to Jamie’s comment that redsox control Matsuzaka for 6 years.

  21. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    Right, all the published reports said boras has every intention of getting matsuzaka back on the free agent market before he turns 30, so a 3 year contract. I am unfamiliar with any sources that say six year deal, that makes no sense whatsoever for boras or matsuzaka, esp a place like boston which can be a pressure cooker. I also heard from multiple sources about tampa winning the bid, and Jamie, I’m not so sure why u find a team chaging it’s front office philosophy this offseason so surprising 😉

    I got this cool feature from my si subscription called mySI, it is a toolbar with all sports article links and my screensaver is straight up SI pictures…it also gives fantasy updates and whatnot, pretty cool.

  22. Jeff

    That is interesting. I read where he would under the Red Sox control for six years. So if he signs no longer than a three-year deal (as Boras may require), what happens for the remaining three years if the Sox cannot work out a new deal? Does he return to Japan? Can the Sox do a sign and trade? That’s well into the future, but I am curious about it. Does anyone know?

  23. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    Jeff once the bid is posted and a contract is reached there is no japan visit. He would be a free agent, just like anybody else. Where are the six year rumors coming from, I have seriously seen like four or five reports, including mike and the maddog, which said 3, maybe 4 but that the sox desired 5 or 6

  24. Jeff

    Vince, what Jamie means abouts ix years is that, as a rookie, a team controls the rights to a player for a certain amount of time. I read about six years as well, but I am confused about this. Perhaps a player needs six years of MLB service time before he can be a free agent. Is this the case? Does anyone know?

  25. Jeff

    No, what I meant Vince, is that if the Sox do have his rights for six years, but he signs just a three-year deal, if the Sox cannot work out a new deal after the first one expires, what happens? I know that sounds confusing.

  26. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    I have never heard of that rule before, there have been plenty of players traded before six years, and is Mat considered a rookie? Or is international different, I mean rookies don’t exactly get bids posted and 8 figure salaries either.

  27. Jeff

    I remember that Bronson Arroyo said that he will play his three years in Cincinnati, and when he is eligible for free agency, he will return to the Red Sox. I’m thinking that a player must have six years of MLB service time to be eligible for free agency. If that is the case, then the Sox do indeed have Matsuzaka for six years, unless they deal him. They will just have to work out a new contract during that time frame.

  28. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    If that is a rule i would think they get first dibs at resigning and if they can’t he is free to explore other deals….which i guess is exactly like free agency lol, I don’t know, I never heard the six year rule before so I can’t comment. All I know is there have been many reports of 3-4 years by boras’ request

  29. Jeff

    I do know that Matsuzaka will be considered a rookie. Even if a 38-year-old Japanese player debuted in the bigs, he would be considered a rookie for service time purposes.

  30. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    Hmm, I don’t know, the only thing I keep reading is when he is 29 boras will get him back on the market and either make the sox pay through the nose assuming mat isn’t a flop, or go somewhere else.

  31. levelhead@bonsai.net

    I think the club controls players for 6 yrs if they were drafted by the club. Matsuzaka is a free agent rookie. Not a draftee. That is the difference.

  32. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    no there is absolutely no difference… Matsuzaka is under the complete control of the Sox for 6 entire years. Remember, a Japanese player CAN win the Rookie of the Year award, so they ARE considered rookies… and you gotta have SIX years of service before trying to get FA status.

    Like all others, if Matsuzaka signs a 3 or 4 year deal, the remaining years will be determined via ARBITRATION. Boras would be stupid to not want a long term deal since arbitration tends to favor the TEAMS… rather heavily, too. I bet Papelbon will make 15m easy on the open market (provided that he get maybe a few more years’ or experience. Just bear with me). In arbitration, he won’t make more than 10m.

    Boras wants a long-term contract. Trust me.

  33. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    all rookies are the same. Where they get drafted from (or IF they are drafted) has no significance when it comes to the 6 year rule. Go to MLB.com and check the rules…

  34. kumar0330@yahoo.com

    Jamie that’s a wonderful point. Matsuzaka is considered a rookie that is for sure. But I am not sure if the same rules apply. If as you say the rookie rules apply that would be great. Great point.

  35. Jeff

    I’ve been reading the last few days where the Sox are in discussions with the Padres regarding relievers. Scott Linebrink is the most prominent name mentioned. I like the idea of acquiring Linebrink. He is an effective set-up man who some teams are interested in as a closer. I imagine Wily Mo Pena is the player most likely to be included in a deal to the Padres, since they are seeking a power-hitting outfielder. I like Wily Mo, but we do have a surplus of outfielders (Murphy, Ellsbury and Moss to name three) at the AA and AAA level, so if we could get a solid relief pitcher, I wouldn’t mind Pena being dealt.

  36. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    Murphy still has potential, but Moss… hmm probably not. WMP would be an EXCELLENT DH for a team that currently has a DH batting .240 and slugging .300. Remember some of those Yankee DHs? Embarrassing… honestly!

    Kumar, I’m 99.9% positive that I’m right about Matsuzaka and rookie rules lol (do I sound like a lawyer yet? I kinda have to for mock trial!)

  37. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    LOL HAHAHAHA guess what, guys?

    Remember how we got squashed by the Royals last season…?

    We’re STARTING THE SEASON AGAINST THEM!!

    I can’t stop laughing!!

  38. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    ok now i’ve stopped laughing. seriously, i love the schedule. We start off rather easily against teams like Kansas (ok i guess i had one last laugh in me lol) and Seattle.

    Hmm what’s the probability of Matsuzaka or Papelbon (or Beckett) throwing a nonhitter against the Royals? That’d be amazing.

  39. kumar0330@yahoo.com

    Some interesting news from some other teams in AL-East. Devil Rays did win the negotiating rights for 3B Iwamura. And BlueJays are near an agreement to sign Frank Thomas for 2 years.

  40. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    lol probability? 0-150 million. All three of those guys will demand the bullpen and then it will be downhill from there haha. Sorry, cheap shot….but you did knock the royals! a very respectable A club

  41. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    lol Vince, the Sox do have a pretty lousy bullpen. I really hope Theo can make it better. Making a ‘pen requires real skill, not just $$.

    Therefore, I hope Theo has skill. Maybe find the “David Ortiz” of reliever (e.g. transforming Snyder into Rivera type stuff)

  42. ellencullum@bellsouth.net

    Hey all!! Sorry to step off the subject matter for a moment but I think we all need to give Jeff his due. His blog space has been vrtually “rant” free. A really nice place to stop in for a cold one after work.

    Thanks Jeff!!

  43. ellencullum@bellsouth.net

    If we lived in perfect world I’d love for Jon-Bon to stay in the pen as our closer. But we don’t live in a perfect world, and I wouldn’t want to see him used up after 2-3 years and end up hurt. WAY too much natural talent there.

  44. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    lol hi Ellen. I’m off to bed now though. Reading Moby **** for 5 hours today has made me extremely tired. I finally finished it though… all 133 chapters of it!

    GO ME!

  45. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    Ellen, school has a funny way of rewarding you with a break when you most need one. Five papers and five days of work and five days of classes have certainly taken its toll, but I am two classes and one paper away from an entire week off for Thanksgiving, so I am almost there!

  46. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    Jeff and Ian are in steep competition for most comments per entry….Jeff currently is in the lead by a slim margin.

  47. Jeff

    Hi, All:

    I’ll write a new post tomorrow. I’m waiting for some more Hot Stove news beforehand. Here is the answer to a question we all wondered about. It is from Gordon Edes’ chat transcript on the Globe web site:

    Rising_Son: Because Matsuzaka could break down early (due to how much he already has thrown), could it be smarter for the Red Sox to go for (or “settle” for) the shorter-term contract that Scott Boras supposedly wants? The Red Sox still could re-sign Matsuzaka as a free agent in 3 or 4 years.

    Gordon_Edes: Rising Son, first to clarify something: Dice-K is eligible for free agency in SIX years, just like any other first-year player, unless Boras is able to negotiate a clause granting him FA, which I suspect the Sox, given their enormous investment already, will be reluctant to do. This could be a real sticking point in talks. Hideki Matsui had such a clause; Ichiro did not, but re-signed with the Mariners before he became arbitration eligible.

  48. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    Gordon_Edes Rising Son, first to clarify something: Dice-K is eligible for free agency in SIX years, just like any other first-year player, unless Boras is able to negotiate a clause granting him FA, which I suspect the Sox, given their enormous investment already, will be reluctant to do. This could be a real sticking point in talks. Hideki Matsui had such a clause; Ichiro did not, but re-signed with the Mariners before he became arbitration eligible.

    That was a transcript from his chat on the Globe website today. See? I was right =)

  49. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    lol wow i see that Jeff and I read similar material!

    Anyway, Dan Shaughnessy is a total *****. he think that the Sox have reverted back to the “win now” policy. What the **** is he smoking…? Getting a Japanese player is the same thing as getting a player from your own AAA team, but only with more $$ involved. The player is young and under control for six years. Matsuzaka is a prospect – a VERY VERY VERY good prospect.

    So Dan, don’t start yapping about stuff you don’t f-ing understand. You sound like a freakin jacka$$ (as usual) and mislead an entire Sox nation. Seriously dude, you’re worse than the guys at FOX. Honestly.

  50. Jeff

    Jamie, I wouldn’t really follow the words and opinions of any Boston sports media member – print or broadcast. They all have a sky is falling mentality. The Sox lose two games, and the world is ending, according to Boston newspapers and broadcast outlets. Like you, I’m not a fan of Dan Shaugnessy. He just writes outlandish copy to generate responses. It’s all sensationalism – no different than the weathercasters here in Florida who, at the slightest sign of a tropical storm, incite people into a panic believing the storm of the century is approaching. So don’t let the opinion of Shaughnessy or any other Boston reporter affect you. It’s not worth it.

  51. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    3 years, 96 million, enjoy it. Can Matsuzaka put up any numbers worth 32 million a year? Will he be worth 15 million a year? And yes, a free agent by the time he is 29….I don’t care what team you are, that is an enormous contract that comes with enormous pressure for a guy that’s only potential flaw according to Bobby V is that he won’t know how to handle the pressure.

    Posted by: yankeevmm@yahoo.com | November 16, 2006 04:22 PM

    Btw in case any of you didn’t catch on, it has been reported by two boston sources, that Matsuzaka was signed for 45 million ad 3 years.

  52. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    lol vince, you have to take in more consideration that that.

    Here’s my take:

    50m bid, 60m paid over 6 years (2 years of arbitration = cheap)

    That’s 110m spent on him.

    At least 80-100m will be made in Japan. Or, if some sources are correct, they’ll make MORE than 110m back, thereby making an actual profit off of signing Dice.

    so that’s about 30m, 6yr for a guy who can win about 20 wins each year. 5m per year. Not too shabby.

  53. Jeff

    Vince, the Sox have Matsuzaka under their control for six years, as the post on my blog today from Gordon Edes’ chat indicates. ANd marketing experts are confident the Sox can recoup their $51.1 million bid money from the apparel and collectible sales in Japan. I think this is definitely worth the risk. It not only provides the Sox with a top MLB starter, but it also opens doors to Japan, since the Sox will become one of the more popular teams there. As the Yankees have known for years with the money they have spent, there is always a risk when you sign any free agent – especially one with a contract like D-Mat. I’m glad that Henry is willing to take that risk.

  54. Jeff

    I agree with your comments, Jamie. It is worth it. Now, let’s sign Lugo, find a solution in right, figure out what we’re going to do at second, and bring in a set-up man, a left-handed specialist and a closer. ESPN’s Insider reports that the Sox may still trade Manny as well. It is obvious that this is only the beginning of the activity we will see with the Red Sox leading up to spring training and opening day.

  55. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    I highly doubt that Manny’s going to be traded despite what ESPN might imply. The signing of Matsuzaka signals a Sox intention to WIN, and Manny WAS the 2004 WS MVP… he and Papi are simply indispensible to our offense. In fact, I want to get ANOTHER slugger and not trade one. Carlos Lee, 5yr 70m sounds reasonable. I still hold onto the belief that WMP’s capable of great things, though. Maybe we’ll see in spring training.

  56. kumar0330@yahoo.com

    Jamie Sox don’t have to make 110 mil over the next 6 years in Japan to make this trade justifiable. They just have to make 50 mil in the next 6 years in Japan. My logic says that even if sox didn’t sign Matsuzaka then they would have send that 60 mil on some other free agent pitcher.

    And one more good thing is this 51 mil doesn’t count towards the payroll.

    The Sox payroll came down to 120 mil in 2006(down from 127 mil in 2005). In 2007 the payroll will definetly go up. When Theo said Sox don’t have the flexibility of Yanks, this is what he meant. I Sox can’t keep on increasing the payroll every year. The Yanks Can. If Sox increase their payroll this they have to compensate by bringing it down next year. And if they bring down the payroll this year they have the flexibility of spending more money next season and so on.

    I have been going through the payroll of yanks and Sox for the last 20 years and this is what I came up with. The Yanks Payroll from 1988- 2006 was rising each and every year

    18 20 20 27 35 41 44 46 52 59 63 88 92 112 125 152 184 200 204

    On the other hand the Sox payroll from 1988- 2006 fluctuates going up one year coming down next year which validates my point earlier.

    15 18 20 32 42 37 36 28 39 43 51 71 81 109 108 99 127 127 120

    I just want to make point that Theo was not lying when he said Sox don’t have the flexibility of Yanks and can’t build a uber-team like yanks.

  57. arnieschmo@hotmail.com

    Hi Sox fans! You miss me?

    How many times have you read in the paper about some huge Yankee free agent signing and thought,”Oh no,now we have to pitch to him? Arrgghh.” And “Why can’t WE get some of these guys?” You know the frustrated feeling. Sure, we’ve made some big signings, but not with the same consistancy. So now the NY fans have that feeling over Matsuzaka, so we’ll hear nothing but $$$$ fumings. “Who’s evil now? Too much money, he ain’t worth it” And in your heart of hearts, isn’t it a great feeling to hear all the, what did Jeff call it- sour grapes!! Don’t ya just love it! On the NY blog before the bidding started many of the posts had D-Mat penciled in the rotation already, talk about entitlement!

  58. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    arnie, it’s definitely cool to know that the Sox can embarrass the Yanks like this by outbidding them by so much.

    kumar, it’s not that Theo doesn’t have the flexibility, it’s that he doesn’t really NEED flexibility as much. Cashman has wasted so much $$ on players (paying extravagant $ for useless bench players and declining pitchers). I’m not saying Theo’s amazing, but he has a MUCH better financial sense and rationalization.

    It’s easy to forget, however, that we DO have the 2nd highest payroll in baseball. The fact that the DIFFERENCE between the Yankee and Sox payroll is enough to pay for the entire Whitesox roster just goes to show precisely how much $$ Cashman has flushed down the toilet…

  59. arnieschmo@hotmail.com

    I don’t care how much money any of them spend. It is NOT bad for the game! Just so we get in on the fun.

    Can anyone tell me why Theo feels compelled to have a new middle infeild every year?? What in the world is wrong with Loretta? Gonzo can pick everything in sight! Theo!! We know you’re working, you don’t need to prove it by getting players we don’t need. Get us a slugging RF and a bullpen! THAT we need.

  60. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    Gonzo’s not a great hitter, and as superb as he is defensively, a .250 hitter isn’t worth so much.

    I love Loretta. He was amazing in 2004, and was injured in the subsequent years. Theo should resign him to a 2-yr 8m deal.

  61. arnieschmo@hotmail.com

    Don’t forget that the Sox were under different ownership in many of those years and were sometimes a poorly run team. Henry bought in what, 2003? So new management will take a while to build a good system and get everything in place. When you buy a business, especially one that hes been mismanaged, it takes a long time to get everything in proper order and start to be consistant. Not to mention profitable.

  62. kumar0330@yahoo.com

    Just read that Gonzo was offered 3 year 15 million by some undisclosed team. Maybe Chi Sox or Cincinati reds.

  63. jamie12345432@hotmail.com

    The ideal thing to do with our IF would be to just plug Pedroia at 2B or SS (probably SS) and resign Loretta for a short term. This way, the Sox can go after a FA when there’s a REALLY GOOD one… or get one through trade (Tejada…).

    I’m now more than curious than ever to find out what Theo’s planning… after spending 51M, i can only imagine what’s next! Soriano??

  64. arnieschmo@hotmail.com

    Pedroia and Loretta would be OK if Pedroia is ready. He did not show it last year, but then, when he was playing the whole team was reeling so it may not be a fair assessment. The Lester news and Papi going down, Not a good time to be trying to play for a playoff spot. Soriano can play OF and 2nd. He’d be great. I’m not so keen on Drew.

  65. yankeevmm@yahoo.com

    Jamie even the greatest pitchers of all time don’t win 20 games all year, especially ones who are considered “soft contact” pitchers in Japanese leagues and have never faced american hitters outside of a 3 game microcosm, yet.

    Cashman’s flushed down the toilet? Sox have had the 2nd highest payroll for the last two years at least and have no playoff victories to show for it, don’t start bringing up a one sided “flushed money down the toilet” argument.

  66. levelhead@bonsai.net

    Jamie: Bidding 13M higher than the next highest bid is not an embarassment to the losing bidder. If anything it is a gross over-estimation by the redsox of how much their opponents bid (probably due to the fear in the opponent). So, who should be embarassed?

    And you should be creaming to think that you can sign Matsuzaka for 60M-6 years. Remember that both parties have to agree to a deal. Even if Matsuzaka went back to Japan for the next 2 years, he’ll sure get atleast a 72M (possibly a little more) contract over the four years after that. That in addition to the money he’ll make in Japan the next two years. If the redsox fail to sign Matsuzaka, guess who looks bad.

  67. levelhead@bonsai.net

    Some people say one and others say two because he missed one season(2002, I think) because of injury and that doesn’t count as service in Japan. A player should have 10 yrs service before he becomes an FA in Japan. I was going with the best case for Boston.

  68. levelhead@bonsai.net

    If it only one year, it makes even more sense for Matsuzaka NOT to sign a BAD deal with Boston NOW. He will have some leverage.

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