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  1. I think Boras will be very disapointed. It’s quite obvious that spike in HR was a fluke, the HR/FB % was a major all time high for Jacoby in 2011. The speed is declining, health concerns, Fenway inflated BA. Away from Fenway he’s a .285/15 hitter who walks 7% of the time. Not enough power to hit 3-5, and enough OBP to hit 1 or 2? Can he steal 40 bases at 31, 32?

    No GM is going to give him more than 4 years, unless he comes out and hits 30hr again with another mid teens hr/fb, then I’ll eat my words.

    Comment by Bill — November 12, 2012 @ 11:44 am

  2. By my estimation, I’d order the value as:

    Holliday
    Kemp
    Crawford
    Ellsbury
    Choo
    Cabrera

    In terms of when they hit their contracts and their track record. I think that teams mainly consider consistency as hitters, upside, and age. For a big signing, I think teams have to imagine a magical run of years where the player approaches their ceiling. Otherwise they’d probably never shell out the kind of money they do.

    Ellsbury has 2 out of 3, having shown big upside at a reasonable age. Choo and Cabrera, even in their peak seasons, haven’t hit that kind of upside and weren’t consistent. Crawford didn’t have tantalizing upside but the consistency was there. Kemp is higher due to higher power upside and being a bit younger. Holliday was very consistent at a high level. Crawford is probably the best comp, having shown less hitting upside but more consistency when he hit free agency.

    As for valuation though, I thought Crawford got overpaid at the time. Ellsbury will probably also be overpaid, unless his big power spike was for real. I’ll guess he gets something close to or higher than Crawford due to inflation but I wouldn’t sign either of them at that price.

    Comment by B N — November 12, 2012 @ 11:53 am

  3. I don’t think Ellsbury comes anywhere close to 7 years or $20 million per year without another HUGE season in 2013. I’m thinking like 3 years, $45 million if he has a typical .340ish wOBA season, and I think the team that gives him that contract will be roundly criticized within baseball.

    Comment by Sparkles Peterson — November 12, 2012 @ 12:16 pm

  4. The fourth outcome is Japan.

    Comment by samuelraphael — November 12, 2012 @ 12:17 pm

  5. I think there is another option that hasn’t been considered and that’s play the season out, as is, and if he plays well, attempt to re-sign him next offseason. Your analysis, detailed though it is, seems to assume that if the Sox don’t sign him or trade him now, they won’t be able to re-sign him next offseason. I fail to see why that’s the case. The Sox just shed 11 bajillion dollars from their payroll and can support baseball’s 2nd highest payroll. They’ll be able to match or beat anyone else’s offer if they choose to so there’s no reason to believe that they have as few options as you suggest.

    In my mind, allowing him to play out the season is the way to go. I doubt that he’s going to want to sign a contract coming off of last season’s debacle and his trade value right now is so low that the team would be selling low if they traded him. So the Sox can play out the season and try to sign him if they want to based on how this season goes. There’s no reason to pay Boras prices if 2012 ends up being the rule rather than the exception.

    Comment by chuckb — November 12, 2012 @ 1:25 pm

  6. Why do you have a hard time defending the third option? The Sox have repeatedly said they intend to contend in 2013, so it makes sense they’d want to keep what is say a 2-5 WAR player on essentially a one-year deal. Seems like an ideal asset for a contender with a lot of payroll flexibility and a likely replacement who will be ready in 2014 (Jackie Bradley, Jr.). You may disagree that they’re contenders and that they instead should rebuild and trade him for prospects, but that isn’t what they’ve said so far (nor acted, as most non-contenders do not sign a 36-year-old backup catcher to a 2-year $6+ million deal).

    Comment by PeaDub — November 12, 2012 @ 2:13 pm

  7. 4. Keep Him This Year and Try to Sign Him

    Boras is pretty well known for taking guys to free agency whenever possible, and I’m guessing that he’s in no hurry to have Ellsbury sign at the nadir of his value. If the Red Sox want to keep him, then they’ll almost certainly have to wait until after 2013 to sign him.

    Also, 1.5 WAR in 1/2 a season doesn’t ‘just stink.’ It’s above average production.

    Comment by Darren — November 12, 2012 @ 4:01 pm

  8. Newark Bears!

    Comment by Well-Beered Englishman — November 12, 2012 @ 4:30 pm

  9. There is no doubt Ellsbury hated breathing the same air with the team in ’11. No way he is getting over his experience in Boston even with the major offenders gone. Since he’s not worth much in trade as a rental after a bad year, the Sox clearly are going to keep him for to get the upside of a contract year, and the draft pick.

    Personally, I loved his MVP year and his bad attitude,but whoever thinks he is going to be an elite player going forward on either side of the ball needs to be separated from his money.

    Comment by james wilson — November 12, 2012 @ 9:16 pm

  10. Another, and I think best, option for the Sox:

    Keep him to start next year, let him play the first few months and hopefully raise his value due to good performance on the field, and then trade him during the season probably at the deadline. Downside to this is of course the chance that he doesn’t perform well. I would rather take on that risk because the added value from Ellsbury performing well could increase the return in a trade by an amount that outweighs what the Sox would lose in trade value due to poor performance.

    Comment by MustBunique — November 13, 2012 @ 10:56 am

  11. You bet you will eat your words, here we go again knocking Ellsbury, One his injuries were caused by others, He did exactly what the team wanted him to and healed, . two it seems to me that I herd the same things about Damon while he was with the sox and then look at his career, after the sox did not sign him because of the so called sport reporters who put the crap about Ellsbury in your heads. KEEP ELLSBURY AND GET OFF HIS BACK, The guy gives a 100 percent and No he has not slowed down, and I think his performance will show that. So try again. Just because you may not like him or his agent. please set that aside and realize that when the soxs lost in 2011 Jacoby was on a roll. And again the pitching was the problem. So stop blamming the so call injuries on Jacoby and Leave him alone. He is not your problem he is the solution along with better pitching. Thank you.

    Comment by mike — November 28, 2012 @ 11:39 am

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