Charles Krupa/Associated Press
Status at Trade Deadline: Buyer
Boston Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington has a tough balancing act in front of him. On one had, he has the best overall pitching staff in the AL East. As a matter of fact, it is the best unit in all of baseball if pitcher’s WAR is used, per FanGraphs.
On offense, the Red Sox are all over the place. Some games, they remind everyone of the team that won the 2013 World Series. In other contests, they look like they are new to the sport.
It will be up to Cherington to find a way to improve both groups without leveraging too much talent from the minor leagues.
Major Areas of Need
Like other teams, the Red Sox need starting pitching. Led by Jon Lester and John Lackey, the rotation has been, at best, disappointing. And if the Red Sox want to catch the rest of the division or make a run at the wild card, improving the group that takes the ball every fifth day is critical.
There are options in-house, of course, but Cherington may opt to go with a veteran arm that has a proven track record and solid peripherals.
Brock Holt has been moved to right field, which gives the Red Sox exactly one outfielder who is playing remotely good baseball. Don’t take that the wrong way—Holt is playing very well, it’s just that he’s alone.
Jackie Bradley Jr. isn’t ready to hit in the big leagues, Jonny Gomes is struggling mightily and Daniel Nava is doing worse. It’s a bad situation. The good news here is that Cherington has ample talent in the minor leagues to acquire a difference-maker.
It must be noted that Shane Victorino could rejoin the club as early as this weekend, but before he went down, he had a .276 on-base percentage and was slugging a meager .352. Here’s to hoping he impacts the lineup in a positive way.