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Red Sox get shortstop Alex Gonzalez from Reds

Aug 14, 2009, 3:00 PM EST

General manager Theo Epstein and the Red Sox stayed busy this afternoon, sending Single-A infielder Kristopher Negron to the Reds to reacquire Alex Gonzalez three seasons after he was Boston’s starting shortstop. Gonzalez hit just .255/.299/.397 in 111 games with the Red Sox in 2006 and has been even worse this year, batting .210/.258/.296 in 68 games after missing all of last season with a knee injury.
Gonzalez has long been one of baseball’s worst hitters, as his .686 career OPS ranks seventh-lowest among all active players with at least 3,000 plate appearances. For quite a while his strong glove was enough to make him a decent enough all-around player despite the horrible bat, but now that aging and injuries have turned Gonzalez into a mediocre defender his usefulness is pretty iffy.
Boston has been starting Nick Green at shortstop since dumping Julio Lugo on the Cardinals only to watch Jed Lowrie land back on the disabled list with more wrist problems, so obviously the threshold for upgrading the position isn’t high. Gonzalez is probably better than Chris Woodward, who the Red Sox have used as a utility man since claiming him off waivers last week, but he’s unlikely to really be any better than Green.
Of course, the hope is that Lowrie will be able to come off the shelf soon and can stay healthy down the stretch, in which case Gonzalez will be nothing more than a utility man and the Red Sox will have simply dropped about a million bucks and a low-level prospect for the marginal difference between two sub par shortstops. Gonzalez also has a $6 million team option for 2010, but don’t expect Boston to pick it up.

  1. chad - Aug 14, 2009 at 4:10 PM

    “mediocre defender”
    He has been positive in UZR this year, how is he mediocre?

  2. Michael B Pasternack - Aug 14, 2009 at 4:25 PM

    As a Yankee fan I almost feel sorry for a great competitive team. We love to hate them, and no team can replace them in our hearts. This year, as we say at the cookout, “Stick a fork in them, their done”

  3. Anthony Owens - Aug 14, 2009 at 4:31 PM

    Wow only a Yankee fan can say a team is done with this much baseball left!!

  4. Capt.Quint - Aug 14, 2009 at 4:43 PM

    Mike B. P. You my friend………..are a complete idiot!

  5. mike z - Aug 14, 2009 at 6:24 PM

    i am in with stick a fork the sox are done from a true yankee fan

  6. mike z - Aug 14, 2009 at 6:26 PM

    i am in with stick a fork the sox are done from a true yankee fan

  7. bh0673 - Aug 15, 2009 at 7:47 AM

    I wouldn’t say stick a fork in them yet, 6 games is not insurmountable with 50 games left. Nest weekend could be a turning point if the Yankees can sweep up in Boston. One thing I will add is maybe Theo Epstein and the Red Sox have looked so good since 2004 because the Yankees have looked so bad. Between injuries and sticking with youth from within the Yankees have not been the powerhouse they were from 96-03. But as a Yankee fan I think it is premature to be saying the red Sox are done yet.

  8. Mark B - Aug 15, 2009 at 7:51 AM

    “Unlikely to be better than Green”? Green is probably the worst defensive shortstop in the league and, 3 years ago.. Gonzalez was the best I ever saw (and I saw Mark Belanger) so he would have had to come down a long way in 3 years to be compared to Green. He shall see..

  9. Michael B Pasternack - Aug 16, 2009 at 7:55 AM

    Ok Captain Quint, is 7 and half games enough to declare them done? How many games back with the way they are playing will it require for you to see the light? I suspect your number would be about 20. And I’m the idiot? Worry about Texas and forget the division.

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