Wednesday, November 26, 2008


It's a simple question. Why haven't the Red Sox made a move on the best free agent pitcher out there?

Are they worried they can't afford him? Probably not. They have all that Manny Ramirez money freed up. They traded Coco Crisp's $5 million per season for Ramon Ramirez's $400,000. Maybe they're worried that low cost players like Youkilis, Papelbon, Pedroia, and Lester will be free agents down the line, and money will be needed to pay for them. But by then, wouldn't the hefty contracts of JD Drew, Mike Lowell, David Ortiz, and Julio Lugo have expired?

And how good is CC Sabathia? We know him best from his dismal postseason outings. But those always come after he's been abused and overworked in the regular season. He's pitched 494 innings the last two years. But the Red Sox would probably keep him to 200 innings a season, allowing him to save something for the playoffs.

In the last three seasons, he's 48-28, with a 3.03 ERA, 632 strikeouts, and a 1.14 WHIP. He's 28 and in the prime of his career.

Could you imagine the rotation the Sox would possess if they signed this guy? Sabathia, Lester, Beckett, Matsuzaka, Wakefield. That's unstoppable, particularly in the postseason.

If the Sox spend big money on a free agent this off-season, it should be Sabathia. I know the offense was frustratingly inconsistent, but with better pitching that problem doesn't matter. Furthermore, better starters mean fewer innings for subpar relievers, which was a major downfall of the 2008 bullpen.

At the very least, they should try to get him.


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