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The Red Sox: not really serious about Josh Hamilton

Nov 16, 2012, 8:30 AM EDT

josh hamilton getty Getty Images

The chatter out there about the Red Sox being interested in Josh Hamilton makes no sense to me. After all, what explains the big trade with the Dodgers over the summer other than massive dissatisfaction with the results of signing guys to $100M+ contracts?  I’ve been chalking it up to bored media and whatever it is in the air that has caused virtually every free agent and trade candidate to be linked to the Sox in some way.

Rob Bradford reports that, yeah, it’s probably something like that, because the Red Sox are really not all that into Hamilton:

According to a baseball source, reports of the Red Sox’ interest in free agent outfielder Josh Hamilton have been “overblown.”

While the Red Sox are in the market for a pair of outfielders this offseason, Hamilton — considered by most as the premier free agent on the market — doesn’t appear to be near the top of the team’s list of players it hopes to target. While the Sox have talked to the 31-year-old’s agent, Michael Moye, the communication was the same kind of due diligence done for a multitude of free agents.

Tires: kicked.  Cut of jib: inspected. That’s about it.

  1. uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2012 at 8:40 AM

    Why would the Red Sox be “really” into a left handed batter that has perhaps one of the sweetest swings in all of baseball. Considering they have 2 spots in the outfield to fill. And considering that in all likelihood they will be looking for a NEW Center Fielder after the 2013 season.

    So he has a couple of “issues”. It’s not like the Red Sox haven’t signed players in the past that had some issues, Manny being Manny for example helped them with 2 World Series Titles.

    Just my opinion.

    • panolapony - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:34 AM

      Ranger fan here, from Day 1 1972. You will regret signing him, if you do. He is the biggest head case EVER in MLB, which is saying a LOT. Many crazies over the years, but Hamilton smoked his $4 Million signing bonus in a crack pipe in less than 3 years. Do you know what that does to your brain? I watched every Ranger game, and from June 1 onward, he was too busy negotiating his Movie Deal to be concerned about baseball. He had ZERO interest in playing. He swung and missed at 3 consecutive slow curves, a foot outside and in the dirt, that he actually would have been better off closing his eyes and trying to hit that way. He was worse than Alfonso Soriano for the last 4 months of the year, and made more excuses than a politician. His teammates rolled their eyes in disgust. He is a quitter, not a grinder, and so egotistical he does not even use the film room to study opposing pitchers. He is the LAST guy you want on your team, believe me. They asked a high ranking Ranger team official in August about the possibility of resigning Hamilton, and his quote was “Not even if he would play for free”.

      If THAT doesn’t tell you all you need to know about this crackhead alky, good luck for the next 5-10 years, and don’t say you haven’t been warned.

    • j0esixpack - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:54 AM

      This is probably classic posturing by the Sox to potentially drive up the price for a rival – the Yankees and many other teams with deep pockets do the same thing for players on the market.

      But of course no one is going to buy that the Sox are actually interested in Hamilton.

      In the right situation he could produce well – but that right situation sure isn’t Boston.

      He needs a team in a market/spotlight small enough not to place too much pressure on him – but big enough to have adequate resources and quality complimentary players (and role models) to push him to do his best.

      There’s plenty of other guys the Sox can sign or trade for that would be lower risk/higher reward and a much better fit for the team and market.

  2. Francisco (FC) - Nov 16, 2012 at 8:44 AM

    The Red Sox: not really serious about Josh Hamilton

    The Red Sox: not really serious about competing in the AL East.

    • uyf1950 - Nov 16, 2012 at 8:52 AM

      This is just my opinion. But it is possible that the Red Sox main interest for the next couple of years is securing high “protected” draft choices and saving much of that money from unloading Gonzalez, Crawford and Beckett’s contracts. Let’s not forget that recently it was announced that “Red Sox owner John Henry’s investment firm was shutting down because of all the money it lost”. That probably cost him a few bucks. He may need to replenish his personal finances.

      • Francisco (FC) - Nov 16, 2012 at 10:20 AM

        I was being facetious. Your theory is certainly a possibility.

  3. historiophiliac - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:28 AM

    So basically, they went to the wedding show and pretended they wanted to get married just so they could sample the wedding cakes?

  4. tcostant - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:28 AM

    Everyone is interested in Josh Hamilton if you don’t have to go 5 years, but the team that gives him a 6 year contract gets him. Watch out for the Brewers and the Reds.

  5. xpensivewinos - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:33 AM

    Improving a team is not accomplished by foolishly spending money simply to acquire big names.

    No way Hamilton will be worth what he’s going to make, just like Buerhle and Reyes aren’t worth what they’re making. Just like Beckett, Adrian and Crawford aren’t worth what they’re making…….

    HIgher priced does not necessarily mean better.

  6. icanspeel - Nov 16, 2012 at 9:41 AM

    I have a feeling Josh Hamilton will have a similar free agency as Prince Fielder last year.. Teams will inquire, then it will get later and later into free agency with no deal, then some team will emerge with some huge offer

  7. Walk - Nov 16, 2012 at 10:24 AM

    Something else to consider if he signs a long contract, say five years or more, he may end that contract playing first base. A lot of articles are talking about his value as a center fielder or a left fielder as far as his annual salary. Considering hamilton sees himself playing first base at some time in the future has to figure into that value and make it harder for a team to sign him. Kinda takes any team with a young or in their prime first baseman out on hamilton unless he is willing to sign a short term deal. Same for those needing a center fielder for more than a few years, imo he is probably going to get more time as a corner of than as a center fielder moving forward and this is really going to complicate his salary offers.

  8. Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:17 AM

    My impression was that it wasn’t signing guys to $100MM contracts that was the issue.. It was signing those two guys to $100MM contacts.

    Not to say that they’re necessarily going to give Hamilton Crawford’s contract. But he’d be more likely to deserve it.

  9. willclarkgameface - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    The only interest the Red Sox have in Josh Hamilton is to drive the price up on their AL East competition which is now just about every other team in the division. That and making sure that as the December 1st ticket sale approaches they can make sure that all of you people in Red Sox Nation know “hey fans…(shrug of the shoulders) we’re trying.” Lucchino wants you to give mad respect to the sellout streak. So fucking fake.

    The Red Sox aren’t going to sign this guy. They have zero interest. And they’re not trying. They aren’t doing anything. They appear to have been left in the dust. After years of being okay with playing second fiddle and not trying hard enough to win the division, they now see that ALL teams are ready to pounce in the AL East.

  10. Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:33 AM

    $100MM deals that have either turned out well it are looking like they will so far:

    Manny
    A-Rod (the first one)
    Holliday
    Pujols (the first one)
    Jeter
    Sabathia
    Miggy
    Helton
    Cliff Lee
    Beltran

    Ones that didn’t work or look like they’re on their way:

    A-Rod II
    Teixeira
    Crawford
    Santana
    Zito
    Brown
    Griffey
    Giambi
    Hampton

    • Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:37 AM

      (Continued because I such at phone)

      Howard
      Wells
      Soriano

      And plenty if too early to tell, though I’d bet most of then end up bad.

      Point being, $100MM contracts don’t always end up bad. And it’s 50/50 among position players.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Nov 16, 2012 at 11:43 AM

        Giambi

        from ’02 to ’08, Giambi put up a:
        .260/.404/.521/.925 line with a 143 OPS+

        In the years he was healthy (2/7 he played 83 games or less) he put up rWARs of:
        6.7, 5.0, 4.9, 3.8 and 2.6 (at 37)

        Yes he wasn’t the force he was in Oakland, but he also didn’t turn into Jeremy Giambi.

      • bougin89 - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:18 PM

        I get what you’re saying but for $100+ million I want better odds than 50/50.

      • Ari Collins - Nov 16, 2012 at 12:28 PM

        Yeah, he was no disaster, but averaging 3.5 wins a year made him still an overpay. Take him off your list if you want; helps my argument!

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