The Red Sox have agreed to sign outfielder Cody Ross, according to a plethora of sources. I don’t know who was the first to break it, may have Ken Rosenthal on twitter, but that’s not what’s really important. What’s important is that I am 1-for-1 in my offseason predictions and, when the Sox sign Roy Oswalt, I’ll be 2-for-2.
Joking aside, it’s honestly hard not to like this move for Boston. I know, anyone who has written about them has had the same feeling about Boston’s roster moves so far this offseason. It’s not a simple case of sipping the kool-aid. No one is, after this or any of the other moves, predicting the World Series for the Red Sox. If they are, they’re getting ahead of themselves. This team still needs to work on some things.
But it should be noted that, while the higher ups in the front office have imposed a “budget” on to their new GM, Cherington continues to make smart personnel decisions for his team. Yes, I realize that he has still yet to find another starting pitcher, which was a glaring hole on this team, but he has filled other spots. The bullpen was on par with the starting pitching in terms of overall effectiveness and he went out and acquired two nice, young, arms that will turn a weakness into a strength. And he did so without mortgaging the core of the team or its future. No matter how much you may like Jed Lowrie or Josh Reddick, neither one of them are essential to this team’s success right now.
The same can be said for Ross and the outfield position. It’s somewhat of a stretch to say the outfield or lineup was a weakness but the fact that both are lefty-heavy shouldn’t be ignored. Darnell McDonald was a long shot at best for the role (platoon/fourth OF) and they traded away Reddick who probably would have assumed that role. So, Cherington went out and got the guy he wanted for the right price — 1 year, $3M plus incentives, according to ESPN Boston’s Gordon Edes. As for what Ross brings to the team, he’s got a solid bat that can put up better numbers against left-handers. Not to mention that his offensive numbers should increase in hitter-friendly Fenway Park. Couple that with good defensive and Ross should complement to an otherwise all lefty outfield perfectly.
While we can now cross right-handed hitting outfielder off the shopping list, there’s still another item that remains; in large print capital letters. Yes, starting pitching still remains. Don’t worry though, with the money saved from trading Scutaro, Ben Cherington will go out and get Oswalt or maybe a guy like Wandy Rodriguez; I’m partial to Oswalt but that’s for my own selfish reasons (having correct predicitions). Then we can all go back to talking about the World Series again, like the beginning of last year. In any event, we’ll get to see video of Ross’ postseason heroics. Hopefully as an appetizer of things to come.