Now that the Patriots’ season is over (long sigh), fans will quickly turn their attention to the other Boston teams. The Red Sox won 93 games last year, but they were knocked out in the divisional round. So far they have not done anything noteworthy this offseason to improve the team. One option is former Tigers and Diamondbacks slugger JD Martinez. Last year, Martinez had a career year with 45 home runs, 104 RBI, and he is a free agent. One of the teams with interest is the Red Sox. The Red Sox SHOULD NOT sign Martinez for three reasons:
Money and Production
According to Jerry Carasnick, Martinez’ agent, Scott Boras is looking for $200 million. The Red Sox have already wasted money on players such as Pablo Sandavol, who was cut last year. Rusney Castillo has been a bust since he came over from Cuba. Hanley Ramirez who has been okay, but not living up to his contract. They have a big payroll, but bad decisions cannot be made if they want to contend. You cannot win with players not living up to their potential. Also, they are reportedly unwilling to go over the luxury tax. Martinez is 30 years old so his production will go down by year, and he struggles with injuries. Martinez was the second best hitter in Detroit behind Miguel Cabrera and in Arizona behind Paul Goldschmidt. The Red Sox did not replace David Ortiz’ power, leadership, and ratings/marketing, and Martinez is not the guy.
Might Not Be the Year of the Red Sox
The Red Sox should wait another year. They already missed out on Giancarlo Stanton, who was regarded as the top need for the Red Sox. The list of free agents in 2019 include Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Charlie Blackmon, and Josh Donaldson. These players will cost more than Martinez, but they are more talented and younger players worth waiting for. Many fans in Boston are spoiled and have a win-now mentality because of all the winning this century, but the Red Sox are better off waiting considering it is going to be hard to beat the Yankees this year anyway.
Is He That Good?
Do they really need Martinez? JD Martinez is a great player, but he is not good enough to make them better than the Yankees, Astros, or Indians. Is spending all that money really worth it, considering 2018 might not be Boston’s year anyway? If David Price opts out and the Red Sox can find a way to clear some more money, then the Red Sox can sign big free agents next offseason. Young stars such as Mookie Betts, Andrew Benintendi, Rafael Devers, Xander Bogaerts, and Jackie Bradley Jr., will not be due for a big payday yet.
If the Red Sox can get their offense from 2016 back, and the pitching staff is as good as it was last year then they will be legitimate contenders. Not having Martinez should not be a problem because they led the league in runs in 2016, and the pitching staff ranked fourth in 2017. Their roster has not changed that much since 2016, and the Red Sox could win the world series if new manager Alex Cora puts all the pieces into the puzzle the right way.
Cover image courtesy of MassLive.com