Under new leadership, the Boston Red Sox will have plenty of new faces in 2020.
In any professional setting, people expect turnover. In the Red Sox case, they’ve switched up their leadership situation and should expect additional turnover within the 40 man roster. As it stands, the Sox have trimmed that roster down to a mere 34 in preparation for the future moves of Chaim Bloom.
While there’s plenty of sentimental value attached to the current list of Red Sox free agents, it’s quite possible to expect none of them to re-sign in Boston. Rick Porcello, Andrew Cashner, Brock Holt, Mitch Moreland, Steve Pearce, Gorkys Hernandez, Erasmo Ramirez, and Chris Owings highlight the list of pending players that will test the open market within the coming weeks. At a quick glance, there’s a case to be made for none of these mentioned names to be retained with a new plan in place in Boston.
Brock Holt will be the most controversial player throughout the fanbase. Holt’s on-field personality, and play, has captivated the hearts’ of Red Sox nation, but a clear plan to save money may ultimately lead to his departure. One projection has the talented utility man signing a 2 year / $8 million deal with the Arizona Diamondbacks with former Red Sox front office leader, Mike Hazen and former bench coach, Torey Lovullo. The positional versatility of Holt may be unmatched, but the production may be comparable to Marco Hernandez. As an arbitration candidate, Hernandez is slated to make an estimated $700,000 which is a significant amount of savings for the Boston Red Sox. Yes, it’s highly unpopular but there’s clear monetary savings for similar production.
Rick Porcello and Andrew Cashner both had highly disappointing seasons with the Boston Red Sox and are likely candidates to find new homes next season. Porcello posted a career-worst 5.52 ERA, while Cashner failed to produce after becoming a midseason trade acquisition, posting a 6.20 ERA in Boston. While both pitchers are buy-low candidates, the production simply doesn’t justify much of a monetary commitment by management. The Red Sox will have a hole to fill within the starting rotation, but expect that to come from an external source throughout the course of the offseason.
Veteran first basemen, Mitch Moreland and Steve Pearce, battled through various injuries last season which may result in the Red Sox seeking to get younger at the position. After a once-in-a-lifetime postseason campaign, Pearce was injured to the point of contemplating retirement in the upcoming season. It’s hard to fault the Red Sox for rewarding the World Series MVP with a solid contract, but the lack of production will be chalked up to one of many poor financial decisions made last year. Additionally, Moreland was a breakout candidate early in the season, but was relegated to platoon duties due to the emergence of Michael Chavis. After making $6.5 million last season, Chaim Bloom and the Red Sox may seek to give opportunities to Chavis, Bobby Dalbec, and Sam Travis in 2020.
There’s little question that Chaim Bloom is going to leave his mark on the Red Sox 40 man roster, which may leave all pending free agents finding new homes next season. Add in Heath Hembree and Sandy Leon, non-tender candidates that many Red Sox writers have identified and there will be plenty of new faces in Boston next season. After a disappointing campaign last season, new blood might be exactly what the doctor ordered.