TLD's in the driver's seat.

Everyone else is doing these "what the Sox should do over the offseason" posts, I thought I'd do one of my own. I know my opinions are not the most popular here, so I invite you all to rip me a new one if you don't like what I have to say.

The Coaching Staff.

With Maddux having removed his name from consideration, I call in Ryne Sandberg for an interview. I like what Pete Mackanin brings to the table though, so I hire Mackanin as the manager, and Sandberg to be the bench coach. With Don Cooper having signed an extension in Chicago and Dave Duncan wanting to return to St Louis, I'm going to attempt to steal Charles Nagy away from Arizona with a large paycheck to be the new pitching coach. He's not really my first choice, but he did a pretty good job with Dan Hudson and Ian Kennedy in a high-offense park. Finally, I move Bogar from third to first, then replace him with our AAA third base coach.


Red Sox FAs

With a generally bad Free Agent pool, I bring the majority of our FAs back. I let JD Drew, and Tim Wakefield walk, while offering Jason Varitek a position on the Pawtucket coaching staff whenever he wants to take it. 


I bring back David Ortiz on a 2/24 deal with a mutual option for one more year at 12 million. It might be a little much, but I wan't David to think on the Sox favorably when he retires, so that we can bring him back as our next hitting coach. I bring back Erik Bedard on a one year, 3 million contract with incentives that go up to 10 million, and a vesting option at 5 million with the same incentives to go up to 12 million. The option and incentives will be based on starts and innings pitched. The option would vest at 27 starts or 150 innings pitched.  I bring back Dan Wheeler because we know he can pitch in Boston relatively well, and there's not a real upgrade out there on the market. I also think we have to bring Papelbon back, I don't think Bard has the chops to be a future closer, and I don't think Weiland is ready. I give Papelbon a three year deal that pays him 12/13/14 with a mutual option for 15 in year four. I think that's more than fair, but if Paps rebuffs me, I move on with Weiland as our closer.


Red Sox Trades

I want to make a couple of trades. Out of Character, I'm going to assume that Prince Fielder and Albert Pujols are not going to end up in Milwaukee, so I'm going to make an offer to the Brewers, Kevin Youkilis for Shaun Marcum. Marcum has already proven that he can pitch well in the East, and he's young enough that if we wanted to extend him we wouldn't end up paying for bad years. The second trade I make is to send Alex Hassan, Jose Iglesias, and Alex Wilson to San Diego for Chase Headley. Iglesias may not ever have the bat to perform in Boston, but his defense would be more valuable to a pitching and defense first city like Seattle or San Diego, and with Headley being a Free Agent soon, SD's new GM will likely be listening on him. Hassan is a casualty of Boston's OF prospect depth, and Wilson is yet another pitcher for SD to add to their ridiculous bullpen.


Outside Free Agents

With Marcum in the fold for the Sox, the five-man rotation is set for 2011. For depth though I bring in two low-risk high-reward pitchers on minor league deals: Brandon Webb and Justin Duchscherer. Along with Felix Doubront, those pitchers would be the # 6, 7, 8 starter options, with Alfredo Aceves being the spot starter and emergency #9 option in the rotation. When we consider our pitcher's health last year, all of these players may be called on to pitch. I also bring in George Sherill as our lefty specialist for the next two years, with a club option for one more year. Finally, if we can get him as a 4th outfielder, I give some money to Scott Hairston, who has an .813 OPS vs left handed pitching for his career. While not being the greatest defender in right field, Hairston is a good defender for his career in center and left, which is good news for our 142 million dollar platoon player. I think Reddick has earned a place as the starting RFer, and Hairston should be able to play there every now and then in a pinch.


The Red Sox Roster

This would be my Opening Day Lineup:

C Jarrod Saltalamacchia

1B Adrian Gonzalez

2B Dustin Pedroia

SS Marco Scutaro

3B Chase Headley

LF Carl Crawford

CF Jacoby Ellsbury

RF Josh Reddick

DH David Ortiz


...and the bench:

C/DH Ryan Lavarnway

UTIF Jed Lowrie

UTIF Mike Aviles

UTOF Scott Hairston


...the pitching rotation:

SP1 Jon Lester

SP2 Shaun Marcum

SP3 Josh Beckett

SP4 Clay Buchholz

SP5 Erik Bedard


...the bullpen:

RP Alfredo Aceves

RP Mat Albers

RP Franklin Morales

RP Bobby Jenks

RP Daniel Bard

RP George Sherill

CL Jonathan Papelbon.


Kyle Weiland goes to Pawtucket and begins working the 9th inning exclusively, coming up to Boston in event of injury/ineffectiveness in the bullpen.

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