Blog Entry

So Long Jacoby Ellsbury?

Posted on: December 17, 2009 4:58 pm
Edited on: December 29, 2009 5:28 pm

If Jacoby Ellsbury is what it took to get this deal done then I'd drive him to the airport! Or maybe I'm overstating it here. Maybe I'd just get him a cab. Either way I would trade him in a second." - Tony Massarotti

The Felger and Massarotti Collin-tary with Kevin Collins                                                                                      

Over the past several days trade talks between the Red Sox and Padres have heated up involving first basemen Adrian Gonzalez. A possible deal would likely include some combination of Clay Buchholz, Jacoby Ellsbury and additional prospects (Casey Kelly, Lars Anderson, Ryan Westmoreland etc...) from the Red Sox organization. The possibility of Ellsbury leaving town has most of Red Sox Nation up in arms, but Tony explains why it would be in the team's best interest.

"I don't love this trade, but I would do it. It's not that Ellsbury is fast or flashy or fun to watch. Those aren’t reasons to not trade a guy. Who comes into the league and is a good on base guy? It just doesn't work like that it takes time. He needs to prove to pitchers that he can drive the ball and hurt them. If he doesn't do that then pitchers are just going to pound the strike zone on him because they won't fear him. Especially on the inner half the plate he is seeing hard inside strikes that are hard pitches to handle. He's not going to walk because he has to protect the plate against pitchers pounding the strike zone. Once he proves to the league that he can drive the ball and turn on an inside fastball then those pitchers have that in the back of their mind. They begin to nibble which then leads to more walks and him becoming a more selective, complete, on base oriented leadoff hitter."

"I just believe that the 40 homer guy is worth Ellsbury. Do you realize that Adrian Gonzalez has hit basically two thirds of his home runs on the road? Do you realize what he would do in this ballpark? As far as the pressure of Boston, they don't need him to hit third or fourth. The Red Sox are fortunate enough to have guys who can hit third or fourth. The Red Sox just need him to hit fifth. If Jacoby Ellsbury is what it took to get this deal done then I'd drive him to the airport! Or maybe I'm overstating it here. Maybe I'd just get him a cab. Either way I would trade him in a second. I don't feel strongly about Ellsbury. In the major leagues I think he's a dime a dozen type guy. I will trade speed for power any day of the week. You’re going to have to give up two budding major league players not prospects to get Gonzalez. The Red Sox aren't stupid. They know they are going to have to give up two guys like Buchholz and Ellsbury to get their man."

The Collin-tary: In order to get Adrian Gonzalez a possible Red Sox package would likely have to include Clay Buchholz and Jacoby Ellsbury. I would like to see Theo Epstein try to work with his former assistant GM Jed Hoyer to formulate a deal with Buccholz as its centerpiece. Perhaps the deal would have to wait until July's trade deadline or maybe Epstein would have to include three or more prospects along with Buchholz to get the deal done. If the Red Sox were to lose Ellsbury they would be losing arguably their best outfielder in an already weakened outfield without Jason Bay. Furthermore, 37 year old Mike Cameron would be the everyday centerfielder for the team over the next two seasons.
      It's safe to say Cameron has lost two or three steps defensively due to age, and he is a lifetime .250 hitter. Cameron also strikes out 159 times per season on average (more than one K per game). If the Red Sox were to qualify for the playoffs, as they tend to do these days, Cameron is a career .174 hitter in the post season. He also has a whopping one home run and 29 strikeouts in 27 career playoff games. In case Red Sox fans have forgotten, Ellsbury hit .360 in the 07' playoffs and was an important part of the team winning the World Series. 
      If Ellsbury is traded the Red Sox would lose gold glove defense in center, speed on the base paths (70 SB in 09'), a lifetime .297 hitter, and their leadoff man. All of these things can't instantly be replaced within the organization. It's not that Ellsbury is too good a player to trade. It's that there is no way for the Red Sox to replace him in the outfield or at the top of the lineup. 

How far will the Patriots go in the playoffs? What team would be the best first round matchup for the Patriots?


Since: Dec 29, 2006
Posted on: January 1, 2010 5:01 am

So Long Jacoby Ellsbury?

I agree with the move if we sign Holiday. This also would mean Martinez will have to catch 140 games. Lowell would still have to be moved, or Youk would be the Leftfielder, if we don't sign Holiday. They are thin in the outfield as it is. What gripes me is if you are willing to move Bucholtz, why didn't you offer Ellsbury and Bucholtz to the Phillies for Cliff Lee?

Since: Oct 23, 2009
Posted on: December 19, 2009 5:29 pm

So Long Jacoby Ellsbury?

Just think about the last decade worth of MVP's in both leagues, not one is a pure speed guy like Ellsbury.  While you can make the case for Ichiro, he represents a statistical outlier.  If you want impact players you need power hitters.  Trade Ellsbury without even blinking an eye.

Since: Dec 18, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 5:48 pm

So Long Jacoby Ellsbury?

Have absolutely no problem trading Buchholz, but keep Ellsbury. His threat on the bases is invaluable. Trading Boden and Barr along with Buchholz I could accept.

Since: Dec 18, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 4:48 pm

So Long Jacoby Ellsbury?

Well, we need young legs and I believe Jacoby is a winner. He can hit .300 and does everything else well. We have not seen his full up-side. Keep him and work a deal for Gonzales with JD Drew in it. I like JD but not enough to keep him ther way the team is built.
The real answer is combine the above with a signing of Bay!
What is money if you can't win!!

Since: Dec 5, 2009
Posted on: December 18, 2009 12:24 pm

So Long Jacoby Ellsbury?

It looks iike with Cameron signing the chances of Jason Bay coming back to the team are non existant. I would not onoy trade Ellsbury because we need Gonzalez's power, but we need to make another move as well. Allthough I'm not sure where Holliday or another big bat would fit in now with the aquisition of Cameron and Hermida. Even if the Sox get Gonzalez they are still in deep trouble because they will have to give up two young players at the minnimum and will still be a big bat behind the Yankees. Why couldn't they just have resigned Bay??? Then tried to trade for Gonzalez? Lackey is nice and all, but doesn't fix the fatal flaw on this team.

Since: Nov 6, 2009
Posted on: December 17, 2009 9:04 pm

So Long Jacoby Ellsbury?

Although losing Jacoby would hurt, adding a dynamic hitter would be worth it.  Jacoby ranks as an average CF defensively and would be better fit in a corner spot,, but his power does not justify that.  Mike Cameron is still one of the top defensive fielders even at age 37.  If they were to keep both Ellbury and Cameron, there is a big case to be made for Cameron to play center.   Although 70SB's are a help, I don't think there is as much value as people put on the stat.  Lastly, Although he has a career 297 BA, his OBP is only .350.  That is not up to the standards of what the red sox are looking for or need out of the top spot.  A 40 HR hitter is something the lineup needs more than anything as we saw evident by their playoff performance.  They need a hitter that will always be feared.  Losing Bay has made that even more of a pressing need.

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