I guess Pittsburgh Pirates GM Neal Huntington and Red Sox GM Theo Epstein figured they worked so well last year at the trading dealine (The Red Sox acquired Jason Bay from the Pirates in exhange for Craig Hansen and Brandon Moss at last year’s July 31st trading deadline), why not work together again this year?
According to multiple sources the Boston Red Sox have acquired 1B Adam LaRoche from the Pittsburgh Pirates for minor-league SS Argenis Diaz and RHP Hunter Strickland. I was hoping for Victor Martinez but A. it’s still early and B. LaRoche was acquired for solely depth in the lineup.
Is LaRoche the answer to the question why has the Red Sox’s batting average, OBP, and OPS gone down every month since April? Probably not. But LaRoche will give the Red Sox insurance just in case Lowell goes down again and a guy who can hit a HR off the bench.
When Lowell went down last year, the Red Sox moved Kevin Youkilis to third and put Mark Kotsay at first. I like Kotsay, but if you gave me the choice I would rather have LaRoche in the lineup.
LaRoche was batting .247 with 12 HR’s and 40 RBI in 87 games for the Pirates. The Red Sox will be banking on the fact that LaRoche is a notorious second half player. While LaRoche is a .252 lifetime hitter with a .773 OPS in the first half, he is a .296 lifetime hitter with a .901 OPS in the second half.
The two players the Red Sox gave up are nothing special. Diaz is a plus defender, but doesn’t hit much. He projects to be a backup middle infielder. Strickland is a right-handed pitcher who projects to be a reliever at best.