Lowell to Rangers not done yet

The Red Sox and Rangers are deep in negotiations about a deal that would send Mike Lowell and cash — as in a substantial portion of Lowell’s $12 million salary — to Texas for Minor League catcher Max Ramirez. But Rangers general manager Jon Daniels emphasized several times Thursday morning that the deal has not been completed.

Here is a transcript from the discussion Daniels had with the media.

“Both clubs understand where the other one is and what we’re looking to do. At the same time, we’re also both looking at alternatives and what our options are as we kind of go through the process. “I don’t really have anything specific to give you guys but I think some of the reports of how close it is might be a little bit overstated.”

Specific obstacle to complete the deal, “I think there is always different layers to these things but both clubs are kind of evaluating. I think the general parameters are understood but both clubs need to decide whether it’s the right fit.”

Any chance of Lowell physical before deal is done? “Premature for me to say that.”

How long to decide? “I don’t know, I don’t want to put a time-table on it.”

Reports on money, six to total, “There’s a financial component to it but I’m not going to address that specifically.”

Agreement on how to handle finances, “I’ll just say that the general parameters of the deal are relatively understood. Both clubs know what’s on the table and we’ll continue to talk here and work through it.”

Holdup? “We’re not at that stage. But in any deal, a review of the medicals is part of it.”

“As Boston has, there’s a lot of moving parts. Sometimes it’s beneficial to take a half-step back and evaluate things.”

One team or another as further down the road? “Both clubs are looking at it.”

Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein departed Indianapolis on Thursday morning and was unavailable for comment.


BOOF BONSER???? Theo is shopping at Bargain Busters again…. wow…………….

Bonser was out all 2009 with shoulder surgery so his health will be a concern and in 2008 he was a starter but was moved to the BP . I read he has been working hard to come back healthy , he is also arbritration eligible this year

Wow, Boof Bonser! He’ll be moving to Boston with his wife Buffy and son Biff!
Cmon, Theo. We’re not the AL Central! Boof F—ing Bonser!

I’m with you Arnie.. You know my husband is a FOR REAL TRUE bargain shopper, I think Theo has been getting tips from him.. Maybe they have both been going to Bealls Discounts!!!!

Boof will be renamed “Poof” He’ll be gone that quick. Where is Ryan Rupe??? Ramiro Mendoza?? LOL! Theo–you must be joking!

A message from Elmer Epstein.
Hewwo evwyone…ha…ha…ha…
Wasn’t that a weally good dweal. I’m weappy pwoud we got Boof Bonzo although evewyone is calling it the Bonzo the cwown deal. Ha ha ha. Next on my wist. Woger Cwemens. Awn’t I swart.
Now I’ll twade Mike Lowell away, a weal team pwayer to get junk. I’m smaht!

I, for one, will be really sorry if Mike Lowell gets traded. I admire his grit and determination. If ever there was someone you’d want on your team it’s Mike Lowell. Via con Dios, Mike!!

Unless this is a precursor to a big move, we will eternally dwell in the fantasyland of 2 WS championships and one game short of WS.

Vault, welcome to Dave’s world, where Elmer Epstein lives. Enjoy.😉
Andy, I don’t see 2 WS championships as fantasy. That was quite real! The fantasy, in my mind, is the idea that we can do little to nothing, and WS championships will continue to come our way. If that is what you are referring to, you are certainly right!
I can certainly understand Lowell getting traded, and I can even understand the idea of him being traded for minor leaguers. But note the plural–LEAGUERS. I am surprised that we are talking about the Rangers, as they have a 3B. I still am surprised that Lowell is not going to go to an NL team. But if we are trading for Max Ramirez (other than another SENOR EZ for Trixie to root for)😉, I can’t see why we are taking on another CATCHER. This one is baffling to me, to say the least, and Ellen may be right that there could be a third team in the mix (perhaps SD might be in here somewhere). On the surface, though, this is quite baffling. I hope Theo is thorough on his homework here, and is not becoming Elmer Fudd Redux again.

Boof Bonser…if that is not a BAD name for a pitcher! About on the same level as pitcher Homer Bailey…
Bonser never impressed me. Again, I hope this is simply assembling pieces for a larger trade. I cannot see Bonser surviving at Fenway, let alone the AL East in general.

It should be Goof Gonser…

Ellen, in the AL East, I think that will be a fitting name for him.

There really must be SOMETHING going on.. Now the Rangers are talking about getting Dionner Navarro… Either they had no faith in this prospect Max Ramirez (btw, are we trying to become the team wiht the most players named Ramirez??) or they have need elsewhere and are using Lowell as bait now that the Sox have promised 3/4 of his 2010 salary.

I’ll bet Lowell ends up somewhere else.

The Braves traded reliever Rafael Soriano to the Rays. Theo may have missed the boat on this one–Soriano would have been a better pick-up than Gonzalez, in this humble peon’s opinion. GO SOX!

Why do people get all worked up over signings like Bonser, Hulett, etc….I mean its like if Theo doesn’t do something large fast then the season is already over?! Since when is a GM required to make deals before the year turns around??

Jeez, every team makes these kinda of small signings for overall organization depth.

I like Lowell as much as any Sox fan, but Beltre is the better player. His bat was hiding in Safeco Field and if you look at his AWAY number you will see that he is as good as Lowell with the bat even on a down year (check 2008 AWAY numbers and you will see that he was very good). With the glove its no contest. Our left side infield defense last year was atrocious and a Beltre-Scutaro combo over there will do wonders for run prevention

I’d like to see the Sox sign Holliday for LF and some rotation/pen depth and I thik this club will be solid

Looking at the Sox positionally (assuming a Holliday signing here for LF and a swap of Beltre and Lowell). I’m using WAR from 09 as an overall player metric.

C (Improved) – Full year of Martinez (4.9) at the plate with an occasional Tek (1.3) thrown in with matchups

1B (Same) – Youkilis (5.6) has proven that he is a consistent bat

2B (Same) – Pedroia (5.2)’s numbers last year are probably what we will get throughout his career, which is fine.

3B (Improved) – Beltre’s 09 (2.4) was cut short due to injuries but it did not seem to affect his defensive play. Again his splits Home/Away are drastically different due to Safeco. Even with a poor year fior his standards he ended up a better player than Lowell (1.2)

SS (Improved) – Scutaro (4.5) is probably unlikely to repeat his 09 performance yet even his past year (2.5) or his projected (2.6) is better than the other options (Gonzalez – 1.2, Green (0.4), Lowrei (0.0).

RF (Same) – Drew (4.7) is underrated in my book as I’ve stated on here. 4th best AL RFer by fangraphs metrics

CF (Same) – Ellsbury (1.9) did not have a great year but some of the things he offers such as his speed intangibles when he’s on base are hard to measure in stats. I might even expect a slight iprovement here due to some power development and better fielding metrics.

LF (Improved) – Holliday (5.7) is a better baseball player than Bay (3.5) and a year younger. I like Bay but in a chance to get a little quicker, better defense and not have a huge power drop-off….Holliday’s the man to sign

DH (Same) – We can predict an Ortiz (0.7) decline but he showed after the ASB last year that he’s got a bit left. Not the huge monster power presence as in the past but a servicable DH nonetheless.

Here’s how I would trot out that lineup

CF – Ellsbury (L)
2B – Pedroia (R)
C – Martinez (S)
1B – Youkilis (R)
LF – Holliday (R)
DH – Ortiz (L)
3B – Beltre (R)
RF – Drew (L)
SS – Sccutaro (R)

How does a signing of Boof Bonser elucidate the idea that we are not going to sign any more FAs??….and I’ll have to disagree with you about Beltre/Lowell

Beltre is thought of around the league as one of the best if not THE best defensive 3B in the game. I’ve already used the 09 Wins Above Replacement Players stats – Beltre 2.4 to Lowell 1.2 in 09. If you want to go UZR then Beltre’s 21.0 blows away Lowell -14.4 of last year. Texas even knows this as the reports are satating that they want Lowell for DH/1B duties.

If you want to go back to 08 for overall player metrics – Beltre (4.1) beats Lowell’s (3.2)

Then add the fact that Lowell is 35 vs Beltre’s 30. Or if you like go back to 08 and look at Beltre AWAY from Safeco (15 HR, 54 RBI, 0.862 OPS)

“Lowell’s defensive numbers are actually slightly BETTER than Beltre’s, in roughly the same number of games”

Can you back this claim up?? Please because that’s down right ludicrous

Beltre is the better player? Um, no, not exactly. His main advantage is that he is younger. His stats are roughly equivalent to Lowell’s, but it remains to be seen if he would put up those numbers in Fenway. Lowell’s defensive numbers are actually slightly BETTER than Beltre’s, in roughly the same number of games, while hitting .290 last year. We’ll see if Beltre (or anyone else) puts up the numbers again that Lowell did in 07, when he won the WS MVP. I don’t expect the Red Sox to hold on to Lowell for that reason alone, but it is a feather in his cap that Beltre has yet to earn. Perhaps in time he will–with us, or with anyone else.
As far as “criticizing every move the GM makes”, that is what this blog is here for, and people can agree or disagree with the GM or with one another. So bring your salt, pepper, and hot sauce.
As far as why we get worked up over Bonser, etc., it is because we do not want to be tinkering around the edges when the Yankees, who are the defending WS champions now, are looking to get better. We’d better be willing to do likewise–and Bonser ain’t it.

arnie:”Wow, Boof Bonser! He’ll be moving to Boston with his wife Buffy and son Biff!

Ya forgot about his dog Bowser and cat Bluff. What a great name for a baseball player. Hope he makes it, I can see the fun the broadcast crew will have with his name if everything else going on is boring. lol

2009 Boston Red Sox 3B 107 105 895.0 265 82 174 9 14 — — — 2.57 .966

Career Totals 1478 — — 3948 1155 2691 102 304 — — — — .974

2009 Seattle Mariners 3B 111 110 988.1 341 103 224 14 19 — — — 2.98 .959

Career Totals 1672 — — 4718 1324 3189 205 296 — — — — .957

Your metric may say one thing, but it demonstrates clearly that stats can tell you anything you want them to say, Vault.
Sorry, but this one is easy, for both 09 and career stats.


J.D. Drew and underrated doesn’t even belong in the same sentence.

Personally I think this is a precursor of a bigger trade to happen. Gonzalez from S.D.??? Cabrera from Detroit????

Remember when Boston traded away Renteria to Atlanta?? They picked up the bulk of his salary, only to get Marte ( one of Atlanta’s big prospects–basically what the Red Sox did is buy Marte from Atl. ) turned that around and dealt away Marte and others for Crisp. Personally I think that is what Theo is doing with this trade. There is a bigger picture happening here. I have my doubts that Beltre is the answer at third for the Red Sox in 2010 and beyond.

One area you hit on and I agree with you..is the bullpen. I still think the Red Sox need to add another (2) arms or so in that pen.

Beltre may be THOUGH OF as one of the best in the game. The stats, let alone anything else, do not bear that out, Vault. .974 Fielding % is better than .959 fielding %. Bottom line. Next case.


I can only speak for myself but when I write about Boof and others, it’s just having some good fun! It’s fun to talk about, just my thoughts anyway.

That is supposed to be THOUGHT OF. Nice one, Gringorio.

I can’t imagine Theo dumping Lowell, picking up 3/4 of his salary in order to sign Beltre, who is arguably a poorer player than Lowell-that isn’t what’s happening here. There has to be something bigger following this because this deal makes no sense to do.

I must have been watching a different Sox team if JD Drew is THAT good. Underrated??
While it’s true that baseball is probably the only sport where being an accountant actually helps, you cannot use stats alone to evaluate a player. And to pick ONE stat and use that to make your point about an entire lineup is a bit of a stretch. Some players just have a feel for the game, an instinct that can be seen while they are playing but doesn’t get into the line score. I would take Mike Lowell over Beltre for that instinct, even if the stats did not show that Mike is the better player.
That’s what makes this blog fun, we get to play Keyboard GM.

Hi everyone!! For all the regulars (you know who you are) I have an unusual request. Would you all please email me with your home addresses, its Christmas card time and I think that this year I’m sending out cards.. I’m getting in the spirit and don’t want to waste it. If you feel uneasy about doing that, pls send me your email address (I probably already have gotten it but anyway) and I can send an ecard your way!!!


gsjays, I just saw your post about the Bonser household pets,,,, hilarious!

oops.. please email me at ellencullum@bellsouth.net..
Just me being a blonde again…

Ellen – I’ll send you my address!

Also – THANK YOU!! To all who stopped by my blog today (http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/archives/2009/12/an_american_hero.html) to wish our own Mike/shakenbake congrats on his retirement after 26 years of service in the United States Air Force. If you haven’t got the chance to yet, please stop by and offer Mike up a toast.



Greg – really – you are using Fielding Perecentage to evaluate defense? That’s akin to using Batting Average to evaluate a hitter….please…..Lowell can’t get to the balls that Beltre can nor does he have the arm….Do you realize that the reason that some players actually have more errors than others is because they actually field more balls thus turn hits into outs?? Sorry but I’ll go with the actualy range stats and Beltre’s 14.3 UZR vs Lowell -10.4 – that’s a negative 10.4 is not even close. So the stats point to Beltre actually be the FAR better fielder…..

and I’ll stick with my Drew statement….I think he’s underrated based upon the crap he gets from Sox fans. Probably not worth his contract but a better hitter than given credit for and the stats prove that. How about a Bay OPS of 0.921 vs Drew’s of 0.914?? With Drew being by far the better fielder……

Beltre – also a 2 time Gold Glove winner in 07 and 08 at his position….so obviously more folks than I am aware that he is a superb defender at the hot corner.

Of course that is what I use, Vault. So should you, esp. if you want to be taken seriously. I do use BA to evluate a hitter. You are not going to be taken seriously here if you don’t (speaking for myself only). Lowell has a Gold Glove himself, he has a WS MVP, and he has higher stats this year, and as a whole PLAYING IN FENWAY PARK, where he plays regularly against the Yankees, Blue Jays, and Rays. Beltre cannot say that, and he cannot say that he will translate it into Fenway Park without actually doing it for an entire year. Statistics will only tell you so much, Vault. You would be wise to figure that out.
Besides, if Lowell cannot get to “the balls that Beltre can” because of lack of range, then it is all the better that he has fewer errors (9, to Beltre’s 14 in 09), playing against better competition, IN FENWAY. Beltre CANNOT say that.
YOU BET those are the stats I use.

You will learn very quickly as you continue to post on here, Vault, that for me (and I know I am not the only one), if you are talking offense, that I share the view articulated by Jim Rice, “OBP means nothing if you do not drive the guy in”. So BA and OBP, while important, are not as significant to me as OPS. (Ya gotta drive em in). A defensive comparison for me is this “range factor” that you talked about. It makes little difference to me if you get to the ball, if you make an error with that ball (It makes it easier for the unearned run to score). These other stats simply amplify those bottom line stats, like the much-maligned Fielding %.
Take care, Vault.

I agree with you as far as Drew’s talent. Few players have what he brings to the table. Personally….I just wish the guy could stay in the line-up because what ends up out there for as many as 45 games is not good. That’s a lot of games that Drew is needed and we can’t count on. I am not sold on Beltre but that may be what the Sox end up with so we’ll see what happens. Maybe he’ll tear Fenway up….who knows???? Like Bosox Brian says….I would rather see Youk at 3rd and Gonzalez at 1st but people in he!! want ice water too!!!! I know one thing….if Lowell leaves….Theo has something cooking. Time will tell. Anyways….thanks Mike Lowell for everything you’ve done in a Sox uniform. I hope you do great wherever you land!!!! Go Sox!!!!

Greg – I agree with you 100% on Mike Lowell! And considering that he would be another year removed from surgery you can only expect him to be back to his “old self”! Even last year, there were few players on the team that hustled and played like he did. Unlike a number of other players on the team, I never had to say to myself “automatic out” when Mikey came to the plate. I think Theo made a very premature move by trading Lowell ESPECIALLY since we will still be paying a large % of his salary. I will not be surprised to see him playing this season like he did in 2007 when he was the WS MVP! And can’t you see it now? He will make us pay when we play the Rangers. “In Theo we trust” is getting MUCH harder to believe in right now.

**************new thread***************

Hello everyone, sorry I haven’t been around. Trying to catch up with the current topics, regarding Lowell I’m sorry to see him leave, I think he still has some good hitting and fielding left in the tank, and of course I’m very grateful for his contribution towards the ’07 title and his overall effort, teamwork, grit, leadership, CHARITABLE CONTRIBUTIONS, ets. That said, I didn’t see him getting a new contract from the Sox after the current one was over at the end of this coming season. I think that Theo’s move to trade him follows the conclusion that now is when the Sox can get a better replacement for Lowell, not next year. The Rangers understand this urgency Theo has to unload Lowell, and uses it as leverage to get a very nice deal. I think it could be argued that Beltre is or is not a better overall player for Boston now than Lowell, but that isn’t the reason he’s being pursued. The fact is Beltre probably has at least four good years left, probably even close to six, and I’d bet Lowell won’t have more than two more good years. However, I still have some hope that the big deal looming here isn’t for Beltre, but for Cabrera or my paisano Gonzalez.

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