I keep hearing from friends, co-workers, and the local media about how the Red Sox needed to sign Mark Teixeira. So, being the fan that I am, I decided to dig back through numbers for last season, as well as what is projected for the upcoming season. And, just as I thought, we didn't need him. Would it have been nice? Sure. However, he is not an elite talent, so why pay him like one.
Now for those numbers I was speaking of. Last season, the Sox finished second in team .OPS and after the departure of Manny Ramirez, they slipped all the way to fourth! This happened with Jason Varitek turning in arguably the worst offensive season of any catcher in baseball, David Ortiz having his worst season in a Sox uniform and getting next to nothing from a shortstop, not to mention Mike Lowell missing a significant amount of time. Now, you can call me the eternal optimist if you like, but I am willing to wager a substantial amount that this lineup is even better next year by nothing more then default. Not to mention they still finished in the top five in defensive efficiency according to baseball prospectus, were one of the best base running teams in all of baseball according to Bill James online and oh just happen to have one of the best rotations and a top three closer in the game today. So again I ask, what exactly did we need?
As for the Yankees, they will be better, but I find this interesting. For all the talk about how great this lineup will be now, has anyone, fan, media member, etc. taken the time to actually break it down? Derek Jeter, Jorge Posada, Robinson Cano, Nick Swisher, and Hideki Matsui all posted wOBA under .350. The league average is .335. So nearly half of their everyday lineup was the equivalent of average. Sounds to me like a team going more off of reputation then results. One last thing I have not heard mentioned with all these deals with regards to the Yankees signings: between Tex, C.C. Sabathia, and A.J. Burnett, they committed twenty years in total. Nineteen of those twenty will be spent with all the players over the age of 30 and thirteen will be spent with players over the age of 32. Not to mention that A-Rod is 34 next season.