On to part three of this series. If you haven't read part one, you can click here and if you haven't read part two, you can click here. Again, here's a refresher of the guidelines that apply with these trade value rankings.
1. The value of one's contract: These rankings aren't set forth to assess how good someone is. Rather, we are trying to take a look at asset value. Pablo Sandoval is a better player than Sean Coyle at the moment, but Sandoval's contract ties down the Red Sox for a considerable amount of time and long term money. Coyle is a decent major league prospect under team control, but would likely garner more in return than Sandoval in his contract.
2. Everyone is in a vacuum: We aren't looking at someone's value relative to the rest of the team, except for the whole ranking thing. Just which player brings the greatest return.
3. Age: Xander Bogaerts and Mookie Betts perfectly encapsulates the value of someone's prime years. A player in their prime or heading into their prime is much more valuable than someone who is near the tail end of their career (David Ortiz for example).
4. Positional depth: There is a reason why the Red Sox wanted to keep Bogaerts at shortstop for as long as possible. Shortstop is a position where there are fewer elite offensive threats. That positional scarcity, as a result, increases Bogaerts' value. It is a lot tougher to find someone who can hit and handle shortstop than it is to find a player that can hit and handle first base. Top major league starters will always be more valuable than top major league relievers. The idea of positional scarcity is duly reflected in the calculation of Wins Above Replacement.
The list that follows is an amalgam of my personal opinion and insight from extensive conversations with multiple scouts, agents and writers around the league regarding player value. Oh, because David Price is not on the 40-man roster as of publication, he's not going to be on here. So without further ado...
Group 10: The Ultimate Billy Beane Player
20. Deven Marrero (SS)
The former first round pick made his major league debut last season and struggled at the plate in a limited sample size, hitting .226/.269/.283 with one home run and three RBI in 53 at bats. The glove, however, is what brought Marrero to this point. The plus glove at a premium position, by itself, will make Marrero a regular major leaguer, at the very least on a bench. Ben Buchanan pointed out to me that Marrero basically fits the Billy Beane profile to a tee, which means he'll somehow turn out to be a 15 home run hitter for the A's in four years.
Group 11: Hard-Throwing Relievers
19. Matt Barnes (RHP), 18. Pat Light (RHP)
The Red Sox flipped Barnes back and forth a few times between the rotation and the bullpen last season, potentially hampering his development. With the Red Sox, Barnes sported a 5.44 ERA and 1.65 WHIP in 56 innings pitched. Barnes has the raw stuff that should play well in the bullpen, where Dombrowski will start him in spring training. If Barnes pitches his to his potential out of the bullpen and a full season focused on becoming a reliever helps his development, the 25-year-old has the potential to be an impact reliever.
Group 12: Well, the Retirement Tour Must Have Some Value
17. David Ortiz (DH)
If, some wacko world, the Red Sox decided to trade David Ortiz, the profits from the merchandise alone might make the deal worth it. Ortiz, in reality, is retiring after the season, which severely restricts his value as a trade entity. And while Ortiz has been excellent over the last few years, it's hard to ignore the fact that he's 40 years old and could wake up one day and suddenly forget how to hit a baseball. That, however, likely won't happen and Ortiz will somehow find a way to hit 50 home runs and knock in 200 runs.
Group 13: "THE MAYOR OF DING DONG CITY" - Jared Carrabis
16. Travis Shaw (1B/3B)
The "Mayor of Ding Dong City," as Jared Carrabis affectionately coined, came on strong at the end of last season and displayed immense power. In 65 games and 226 at bats, Shaw hit 13 home runs and 10 doubles. While that level of production likely isn't sustainable for Shaw, it's not unreasonable to think that Shaw could be a starting first baseman for a team down the road. Something to watch out with Shaw in the early part of the season is how he recovers from the shoulder injury that ended his season in the Puerto Rican winter league.
Group 14: The Swiss Army Knife
15. Brock Holt (1B/2B/3B/SS/OF)
It's hard not to love Brock Holt. He plays the game hard, has an amazing head of hair and is an incredibly likable player, but he isn't Ben Zobrist. That doesn't mean that Holt is a damn great player to have on a team because he is. After a strong first half that earned him an All-Star bid, Holt performance regressed and his 2015 numbers ended pretty close to where he finished in 2014. Holt's ability to play above-average defense at any position, the ability to provide strong production at the plate and the fact that he's under team control through the 2019 season makes him a rather valuable asset.
Group 15: High-Five City
14. Koji Uehara (RHP)
Koji is still Koji and Koji is a very good reliever. Given all of the rage about strong back ends of the bullpens nowadays, Uehara will be a valuable piece for the Red Sox as part of the three-headed dragon with Junichi Tazawa and Craig Kimbrel. There is concern with the fact that Uehara is 40 years old, but given that he's locked up for one year, Uehara would return a pretty significant prospect package based on his track record as one of the better relievers in baseball over the last few seasons.
Group 16: His First Name is Actually Christopher
13. Brian Johnson (LHP)
Johnson pitched incredibly well for Pawtucket last season and earned a chance to make his major league debut for the Red Sox in Houston. That was the last game he pitched in 2015, with his season ending due to an elbow injury, that, luckily, did not require Tommy John surgery. Statistics in Pawtucket don't necessarily translate to the major leagues and Johnson's ceiling still is likely of that of a very solid back-of-rotation starter.
Group 17: Coming Off of Tommy John
12. Christian Vazquez (C)
Vazquez returns from Tommy John surgery this season and his glove alone makes him an impact player. Vazquez's arm ability to call a game and his pitch framing likely places him among the top defensive catchers in the game. While Vazquez probably will not ever be a great hitter, but the defense by itself makes him an incredibly valuable asset at the catching position.
Group 18: A Damn Good Reliever
11. Junichi Tazawa (RHP)
Tazawa will seemingly never be a closer for a major league team, but that doesn't mean he's not a valuable reliever. Armed with a very good fastball and a strong breaking ball arsenal, Tazawa is armed with more weapons than the typical reliever and has been one of the better set-up men in baseball over the last few seasons. While Tazawa burned out at the end of last season, the addition of Kimbrel and the move of Uehara into the set-up role will likely loosen up the workload on Tazawa, who at 29 years old, presents himself as one of the most valuable relieving assets in the Red Sox bullpen.
For the last part of this series, make sure to check back next week!