Boston Red Sox Rumors: 10 Reasons They Should Squash Roy Oswalt Interest
Enough is enough.
With opening day just a shade under three weeks away and the starting lineup and rotation coming into fruition, the team should at this point be realizing that they really do not have a sufficient need for Oswalt to keep courting him.
Honestly, it seems as though Oswalt himself has fallen into some type of baseball hybernation, which is actually a good thing for a team like the Sox. He (Oswalt) has managed to literally phase himself out of Boston's plan for 2012.
Rightfully so, and here are 10 reasons to support that cause.
Minimal to Zero Need for Him Now
At the start of free agency, Red Sox fans and media members alike were clamouring for the team to make some type of major acquisition, preferably in the form of starting pitching.
Several names were floated, Oswalt being one of them.
The general concern centered around the question of who would be the team's fifth starter moving into 2012? It was a foregone conclusion that Bard would be your fourth starter (a decision I'm still not sold on) and the team should go out and grab a solid free agent to come in as your number five guy.
Now, the way Bard has been pitching as well as Felix Doubront during Spring Training, it is safe to say that the rotation is rounded out.
Furthermore, the team still has Alfredo Aceves and Vicente Padilla, who are quite capable of putting in some innings for them and have both been fairly solid in Spring Training.
Now, the Red Sox wouldn't have to shell out anywhere near as much coin as they originally may have been forced to at this point should a deal be struck with Oswalt.
However, they should keep whatever funds they're thinking about paying for him in their coin purse.
Oswalt could still very well be looking to receive a contract in the $7-$10 million range for what appears to be a shortened season.
Roger Clemens can pull that stunt off Roy, not you. Sorry.
His Desire to Play in Boston Is Questionable
There really isn't much more to say about this. The Red Sox had made at least one offer to Oswalt.
It IS possible that they've made more offers that the public is unaware of. From my perspective, if he wanted to pitch in Boston, he would be in Boston.
Suffice to say, his public declaration and adoration for Texas and St. Louis should prove as a measuring stick as to where he'd prefer to play.
Timing Is Everything... or Is It?
I never thought I would say this with a straight-faced disposition, but when Oswalt is willing to come back to the game of baseball during the summer, I would rather have Daisuke Matsuzaka.
It sounds crazy, right?
The devil you know. Period.
Matsuzaka has proven his capability to pitch in Boston. He is going to be working under a manager that understands Japanese baseball. He is coming off of a Tommy John surgery that just might make him a solid pitcher.
Also, he's three years younger than Oswalt.
Sure, Oswalt has a better career ERA and WHIP; however, he's done most of his work in Houston.
I rest my case.
There Is No Urgency to Sign Him Any More
The Sox have an absolute plethora of pitching talent to utilize this season.
Fans are seeing Doubront truly come into his own and Bard has maintained a solid contingency of support as a starter.
As I alluded to before, there is quite the laundry list of guys that can lend a hand that are already under contract with the team. The city isn't burning. It wouldn't be the end of the world if....
Aaron Cook (who should be back in early April)
ETC, got a start in from time to time.
With age comes mileage.
Oswalt has pitched in 352 games in his 11 years in the big leagues. During which time he has thrown for 2226.1 innings.
Those figures factor in post-season performance as well.
While the modern pitcher may pitch well into their 30's, there is no certainty that he can maintain his effectiveness.
At 34 years old, face it, Oswalt is an old man in a young man's game (uh, just don't ask Jamie Moyer that).
Statistics can lie for you.
For example, looking at just Oswalt's ERA while in Philly, it appears that he's fantastic! It posts as a 2.96, which resembles 2003 Roy Oswalt numbers!
However, looking at his full season in 2011 with the Phillies, we see that he put up a 3.69 ERA. Now, that is far from terrible, but it is on the high side, especially for Oswalt, who historically hovers around the 3.00 mark.
His control has also become an issue. His WHIP of 1.338 in 2011 is the highest of his career.
Sure, these are arbitrary numbers, but it could be an early indication of a slip in talent.
I'd rather roll the dice on a younger player just entering his prime, like, Doubront, than worry about a man falling apart at this stage of his career.
There Are Other Areas That Could Be Addressed
While the roster is starting to fill out nicely, as the season progresses, there will be areas of concern, I'm sure.
Currently, Carl Crawford will be on the shelf opening day. This leaves Darnell McDonald, Cody Ross and Ryan Sweeney as your rotating outfield options.
As much as I enjoy Ross and appreciate how well McDonald has played in the Spring, I'm not exactly comfortable there.
This could be somewhere that the team allocates funds sooner than later, a wiser decision than spending it on Oswalt.
Viable Other (Creative) Options
If the Red Sox want to do something significant to bolster their rotation, try to pry Matt Cain or Cole Hamels away via trade this season.
If not, hold on to your pesos and go all-in to acquire one of these guys next year. Young, stud pitching.
It Has Dragged on Too Long
Frankly, I'm just getting tired of writing about him.
Call me selfish.
This whole "saga" needs to reach its conclusion. I mean, Andy Pettitte has retired and returned all while Oswalt has been muddling about deciding his next move.