How did the Sox do at the deadline

After being rumored to acquire Mike Cameron, Aubrey Huff, Adam Dunn, AJ Burnett, Jose Romero and the Dali Lama, the Red Sox got…nothing. Not even Scott Eyre. Okay, they did acquire Jose Cruz Jr. But that wasn’t technically a deadline deal since it took place on the 30th.
But I’d be lying (which, kids, is wrong) if I said that I wasn’t happy with how the Sox look after the deadline.
The Cruz trade was a solid one. The Red Sox gave up little — Kyle Bono is a good young pitching prospect, but he’s still just in A-ball. In his first year-and-a-half in the minor leagues, he has averaged 10.8 K/9, which is impressive but his 5.5 BB/9 are not just worrisome, but likely a career killer. Bono is the better of the two prospects the Sox traded which should probably tell you all you need to know about Kenny Perez.
Cruz should do a good job filling in for Trot Nixon while he’s out, and after Nixon’s return, he’ll make a decent enough platoon partner (.792 OPS against lefties from 2002-04).
The Sox ended up doing most of their dealing prior to the deadline, trading for Tony Graffanino, Alex Cora, and Chad Bradford earlier in July.
But here’s where Theo Epstein should really get a lot of credit: by offering trades to pretty much every team in baseball, and involving them in deals everyone thought would go down, he was able to completely freeze the trade market. Take this one quote from Jayson Stark’s column:
And several other teams report they were talking about potential deals with Boston that intrigued them enough and delayed them enough that it helped prevent them from getting other trades done before the deadline.
“The Red Sox,” said one GM, “were all over the board. I know there were quite a few teams that talked to them about deals they thought were going to get made, when it turned out they were way down the line for Boston, depending on how the Manny stuff turned out.”
Look, the Sox have one of the best teams in baseball already. When Curt Schilling goes back into the rotation, they will have in essence made the biggest mid-season acquisition of any team. It was in our favor for nothing to happen at the deadline. And that’s exactly what Theo Epstein accomplished with some under-the-radar maneuvering. After making a huge deadline deal last year, he was able to accomplish as much at this year’s deadline by doing just the opposite. And it looks like Manny is happy again.
The Sox are in great shape going forward if you ask me. They’ll get back Schilling and Wade Miller should be good once he returns. Jon Papelbon is going to improve the bullpen as will Manny Delcarmen, and hopefully Keith Foulke will be back to his old self upon return.
The Sox are going to be in great shape the last two months as our young pitchers spruce up the pen and important veterans come back from injuries. No other team will improve as much over the last two months as the Red Sox, and Theo Epstein deserves much credit for that.
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