While I am not the first one here at Couch Guy to write about the Red Sox signing J.D. Martinez, I wanted to throw in my two cents here. If you’ve been living under a rock, the Red Sox and J.D. Martinez finally came to terms on a 5 year $110 million dollar deal. While some people love this deal, I am not one of them. In fact, I outright think it’s a mistake. Let me explain with a few reasons.
First off let’s start off with Martinez himself. I have never been a fan of him as he’s only had two really good seasons. He struggled the entire time he was with the Astros and didn’t find success until he came to Detroit. Even when he was there, he only played more than 130 games once. So this is a guy that has consistently been hurt and is now starting to get past his prime as he’s already 30. Plus I don’t buy into his 45 homeruns last season. 29 of those came with Arizona (a hitter’s ballpark) and he was playing for a contract. He just smells like a guy whose playing for the money and may not try as hard as he’s been paid.
Next up is the Red Sox front office. When will they learn? Over the past ten years, the Red Sox have handed out many huge contracts and most have them haven’t worked. Carl Crawford, Pablo Sandoval, and Rusney Castillo were all utter disasters and David Price has not worked out yet. John Lackey and Hanley Ramirez weren’t disasters but they didn’t live up to expectations either. This signing puts Boston over the luxury tax with $232 million and essentially out of next years’ sweepstakes of Bryce Harper and Manny Machado. Basically since Theo Epstein left, the Sox have not a good job with handing out huge contracts. Why would Martinez be the exception?
Finally, how does this effect the Red Sox on the field? Yes the Red Sox just added a lot of power to the lineup but not to make a huge difference. Before this signing, I pegged the Red Sox around 87 wins for the season. Now with Martinez, I have them around 91. So yes they got better, but they are still the 2nd best team in the AL East to the Yankees. Martinez will also take time away from Jackie Bradley Jr. Hanley Ramirez, and mainly Mitch Moreland. Now I know that those players are not franchise players but they will expect playing time. So this now creates uncertainty for playing time for players. We already know the Sox have a toxic locker room and it may have gotten worse. So to me, the negatives outweigh the positives with this signing. I’ve been wrong many times before and hopefully I’m wrong again here. But I got to go with my gut and I don’t feel good about this.
-Steve Santoro (SVS_1993)