The Red Sox are spending money this off-season. Trust me on this. They have lots of it, and they’re hungry after last season. Ignore, like really really ignore, anything you hear about Liverpool or anything else precluding them from tending appropriately to the Big League club. That comforts me. The Red Sox are set to bring in some fun new talent to supplement what is already a terrific roster.
What concerns me is how inter-related their prospective moves are this off-season. Let’s assume that Boston will acquire one of Justin Upton, Carl Crawford and Jayson Werth before the season begins. Let’s also assume they re-sign Adrian Beltre or trade for Adrian Gonzalez.
Now let’s speculate on priorities. Carl Crawford is the best position player on the free agent market, and I am getting the sense that Boston wants him. Also, and this isn’t really any secret, I believe they want Adrian Gonzalez. Now, Crawford wants SERIOUS money and it’s not like Jed Hoyer is going to just give Gonzalez away – not with his intimate knowledge of Boston’s trade assets and organizational philosophy.
These moves could take time. And as time goes on, other players will come off the market. I worry about Boston being able to come through with quality fall-back options if their priorities take too long to materialize or don’t materialize at all. The point may be obvious, but it would be different if they needed to spend big money on, say, a starter and a position player. They’re in no way related to one another.
It’s not hard to conceive of a scenario in which a long and difficult negotiation with Crawford and/or Gonzalez falls through, while Beltre, JUpton and Werth all land elsewhere in the interim. It’s the doomsday scenario for Boston, and one I am positive they will do everything to guard against. Nonetheless, I worry about it.