After Tuesday's trade with the fabulous floundering fish, the Florida Marlins, the Red Sox have a new outfielder, Jeremy Hermida. This unexpected deal raises the question of what role he'll have on the team.
Hermida was a forner top prospect who has largely disappointed in the bigs. His best year was without doubt 2007: .296 / .369 / .501 (.870 OPS), 18 HR, 32 doubles in 123 games. Unfortunately, Hermida's star has fallen significantly since then, along with his OPS, which was .729 in '08 and .740 this year. Defensively, Hermida is not impressive, with a career -26.7 UZR, mostly in right field. In left, his numbers aren't very impressive, and he's spent almost no time in center.
My initial thought was that the Sox wanted Hermida as a bench player / 4th outfielder or as a piece for a trade. But Theo's remarks yesterday suggest they see something more:
"Hermida is a player who hasn’t fulfilled his potential yet. We acquired him today for a reasonable cost to see if he might be able to fulfill that potential with us. He’s somebody who has positive indicators that future performance might be better than his past performance. His minor-league track record, his age, his draft pedigree, our scouting reports over the year indicate there’s a chance that he can turn into the player he was once thought to be." Source
Maybe the Front Office thinks they can bottle lightning with Hermida. Theo has gambled on high ceiling position players before - think Wily Mo Pena or David Ortiz. Assuming Theo is high on Hermida, hopefully he's still looking at outfielders, because otherwise Hermida is going to be under a lot of pressure to replace Jason Bay's production. Holliday or Bay,or leaving a horse head in Andrew Friedman's bed and grabbing Crawford, should be the Red Sox plan for LF this year.