May 7, 2006


Mo playing time leads to Mo success for Pena (Steve Buckley, May 7, 2006, Boston Herald)

It’s been more than a month since the Red Sox traded right-hander Bronson Arroyo to the Cincinnati Reds for outfielder Wily Mo Pena.

Debate over the trade continues to be waged, and a goodly number of Sox fans remain convinced that general manager Theo Epstein gave up too much for too little. [...]

With a chance to log consistent time in center field until Coco Crisp returns from his injury, Pena has been playing surprisingly well. He has a .328 average and three home runs after going 2-for-4 with two runs and two RBI in last night’s 9-3 win over Baltimore. He’s hit safely in nine of his last 10 games, going 15-for-40 (.375) with two homers and eight RBI.

Hardly surprising given how well he was playing last year before he got hurt. The only adjustment he still needs to make is to the outside breaking ball and Manny and Ortiz have that covered. They're probably a better team with him in center, Coco in right, and Trot in a different city.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 7, 2006 8:05 AM

Somebody named their kid after a cereal?

Posted by: Sandy P at May 7, 2006 11:27 AM

Trot is still better defensively than Wily Mo, and Trot probably still hits righties better than Wily Mo (Trot has a .955 OPS over the last 3 years against righties. Wily Mo has a .740 OPS in the same period against righties, compared to an .883 OPS against lefties. It's true Wily Mo is hitting righties well so far this year, 1.15 OPS in 37 at bats, but that's small statistics.)

Your idea is more likely to be the arrangement in 2007. Trot's contract expires at the end of this year, and if Wily Mo keeps hitting and improves his fielding, they won't need Nixon back.

Posted by: pj at May 7, 2006 12:34 PM

Here's an even better idea: How 'bout if we trade Coco Crisp for Andy Marte?

Posted by: pj at May 7, 2006 1:16 PM

Marte's doing nothing and couldn't beat out Lowell.

Posted by: oj at May 7, 2006 2:32 PM

Wily Mo's numbers from when he was kept on the roster only because of contractual obligation are meaningless.

Posted by: oj at May 7, 2006 2:41 PM

Odd, a few months ago Marte was "the best offensive prospect in baseball," according to a respected Internet authority.

Just checked his stats: .718 OPS in AAA. Maybe Theo really is a genius. Or maybe it's still too soon to tell.

Posted by: pj at May 7, 2006 4:29 PM

Yes, he's an excellent hitting prospect. I'd rather have him in RF than Trot.

Posted by: oj at May 7, 2006 4:44 PM

The best thing Crisp has done is get hurt. That's allowed the Sox to play Youkilis, a much better leadoff hitter.

If Crisp isn't the most overrated player in baseball, he's close. Somehow he's parlayed a career .757 OPS into a big contract and a bigger rep.

Maybe it's that name. Anyway, I don't like the Sox, so I hope they take Orrin's suggestion and replace Nixon (career .856 OPS) with Crisp. I don't mind the Sox losing a hundred OPS points from one of their lineup slots.

And if we could get the Yankees to do similarly idiotic things, the Jays might take the division.

Posted by: Casey Abell at May 8, 2006 8:38 AM

Crisp was .810 last year to Damon's .805, so the Yankees beat them to it, no?

Posted by: oj at May 8, 2006 8:44 AM

Damon's putting up an .864 OPS this year while Crisp is doing a great job occupying bench space. But that's probably Coco's best position.

Posted by: Casey Abell at May 8, 2006 10:25 AM

and Coco's at .843 for a fraction of the cost. Which would you rather have three years from now? Your argument is inane.

Posted by: oj at May 8, 2006 11:14 AM