Red Sox rumors: 'Ace' Shohei Ohtani is soon to be available

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My spouse -- The Lovely Cynthia -- dislikes baseball and, therefore, the Boston Red Sox but does have a bloodline connection to Chaim Bloom. One of Cynthia's uncles was Mitchell, a towering presence with a jovial personality -- a bon vivant for the blue-collar set. Mitchell -- a lifelong bachelor -- was perpetually between jobs, but his passion for yard sales occupied his free time, or tag sales as they are known in Western Massachusetts.

Mitchell was looking for hidden treasure, and his weekend prowling created a storehouse of gems that only a hoarder would appreciate. The gems did surface. One necklace he gave my wife proved valuable and was appraised slightly north of $1,000.

Mitchell was not a baseball fan but would feel a brotherhood connection to Chaim Bloom if he were alive today. Bloom is constantly scouring potential players in the grand tag sale of MLB. Other teams have discarded unheralded prospects, veterans on the mend for arm miseries, players attempting to squeeze one more year out to inflate their pensions, baseball cheap free agents, and anything else that may signal a potential bargain.

Like Mitchell, Bloom does find the occasional gem that further encourages him to pursue that method. When the gem surfaces, they are gone, like Hunter Renfroe and Kyle Schwarber. The old blind squirrel occasionally finds a nut.

Pitching is the key in baseball since it is the first line of defense. The Red Sox have not minted a scouting and development formula for that, so Bloom has gone into tag sale mode. The results are on display far too often.

Garrett Richards, James Paxton, Jake Diekman, Hirokazu Sawamura, and possibly Corey Kluber. The positive is they are all on the baseball cheap, so the losses are not in the dead money stratosphere of Pablo Sandoval.

Bloom does find valuable neckless in his tag sale sourires such as Michael Wacha, Matt Straham, and now Kenley Jansen. Jansen is unique in that he does not quite fit the pattern since Jansen has a long history of success and a substantial contract.

Boston has also experienced what the Seattle Mariners now face with Robbie Ray. Ray signed a five-year deal with the M's for $115M that produced a "meh" 2022 (12-12, 3.71) season, and now Ray is down for the count with Tommy John Surgery. Boston has experienced that level of risk with Chris Sale.

In the past, Boston has taken the plunge to get a legitimate ace: Pedro Martinez, Curt Schilling, and even Josh Beckett. You don't get that talent level at a yard sale. You may do a partial face plant with a Sale signing, but this is the Boston Red Sox, not the Royals or the A's.

A light at the end of the expenditure tunnel is Masataka Yoshida, who Bloom and management honored with a five-year and $90 million deal. Thankfully, this is not another Franchy Cordero, Marwin Gonzalez, or Enrique Hernández, and Boston may loosen the wallet and patch roster holes with something besides oatmeal.

The Red Sox "Ace" is now in LA: Shohei Ohtani

Using hindsight, I would have signed Justin Verlander this past off-season. The deal Verlander signed with the Mets was short on years (2) and heavy on money - $86 million plus. Now Verlander is on the shelf, showing my approach's inherent risks.

I have little confidence that the Red Sox will catch a break and Sale will provide that necessary ace to top the rotation. Brayan Bello, Tanner Houck, and Garrett Whitlock all have the potential to be a strong supporting cast, but the only name that jumps out on the free-agent list is Shohei Ohtani.

Ohtani will be the ultimate contract, and his dual talent's beauty has already been displayed. Ohtani missed his place in the rotation in 2019 after Tommy John Surgery but took his swings, hitting .286 with 18 home runs in 105 games. If the arm goes dead, there is still the bat, and it is one of the best.

The Red Sox of yore would be among the favorites in any bidding war for a talent like Ohtani, but that was then, and this is now. Management is less adventurous than in the past, so John Henry et al should dial into what Tom Yawkey would do. If Yawkey were still around and kicking and not canceled, Ohtani's prime landing spot would be Boston. And to repeat myself (not unusual), the dual capabilities that Ohtani brings to the roster minimize the risk factor. Time for the Red Sox to go all in on the Ohtani sweepstakes.

The salary requirements for Ohtani will be staggering compared to even Rafael Devers, and a typical number is by Buster Olney at $600 million or Forbes at just $500 million. No Uncle Mitchell on either. Ohtani, the pitcher, is certainly worth upwards of $30 million, and a similar amount is appropriate for Ohtani, the hitter.

Reality does bite, and I fully expect Boston to be from the outside watching and not participating in the circus that will commence with Ohtani being available. As I can state: "This is the freaking Boston Red Sox!" Do it.

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