Red Sox sign Masataka Yoshida

A Bad Man

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Does that likely mean Kike at leadoff? Feels less than ideal, but guess not a huge deal
Could be. AC also mentioned Arroyo, but Kiké seems most likely. I suppose you could put Devers at 3 and Yoshida at 5 if you wanted to try a lefty at leadoff, but you really want Devers at 2.

AC might elect to go L/L at the top, too. Who knows.
 

Harry Hooper

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I expect to see a lefty batting leadoff this season given Cora's supply. McAdam has some notes on Casas leading off today:

"We'll see how it goes,'' said Cora with an impish grin. "We've got a lot of lefties, a lot. And they're really good. We haven't even talked about (Alex Verdugo) in that spot, and he did it in '20. We'll see how it goes. My main goal is to keep (Rafael Devers) and (Masataka) Yoshida split up and try to keep Raffy in the second spot. That would be good...Maybe we'll see (Casas) there a few times. Same with Yoshida, same with Dugie. I'm pretty sure Raffy's never going to lead off, but you never know. He'll probably hit second or fourth, maybe some third against lefties. It all depends.''

To Cora's way of thinking, slotting in Devers and Yoshida represents the first piece of the puzzle. Once those two are set -- often, it would seem, with Devers second and Yoshida in the cleanup spot -- he can add other players around the two.
BSJ
 

nvalvo

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Story could be a choice to lead off if he's back in the second half.

2B Story R
3B Devers L
DH Turner R
LF Yoshida L
CF Duvall R
RF Verdugo L
SS Kiké R
C McGuire/Wong L/R
1B Casas L

That's a pretty attractive lineup.
 

dhappy42

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Story could be a choice to lead off if he's back in the second half.

2B Story R
3B Devers L
DH Turner R
LF Yoshida L
CF Duvall R
RF Verdugo L
SS Kiké R
C McGuire/Wong L/R
1B Casas L

That's a pretty attractive lineup.
Not a bad lineup at all. I read (forget where) the Red Sox are projected to have the 4th-best offense in the AL. Unfortunately, the three better offenses are also in the AL East. The success or failure of this season, IMHO, will come down to pitching.
 

A Bad Man

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Seems like Cora has been throwing Verdugo's name around a fair amount, akin to Cora challenging Kiké in '21. Maybe (vs. R):

RF Verdugo L
3B Devers L
DH Turner R
LF Yoshida L
CF Duvall R
1B Casas L
SS Kiké R
C McGuire L
2B Arroyo R

And (vs. L):

LF Yoshida L
SS Kiké R
3B Devers L
1B Turner R
CF Duvall R
RF Verdugo L
DH Dalbec R
2B Arroyo R
C Wong/Alfaro R
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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About a half an hour ago during the NESN broadcast Monaco and Merloni were discussing the topic of Cora not committing to Yoshida as his lead off hitter and followed up by saying that he will be leading off tomorrow.
I think tomorrow is Yoshida's last game before heading to the WBC. He might be hitting leadoff simply to get his PAs in early and then get out of town. There's not a ton to read into with spring training lineups, especially when half the players are prospects or scrubs.
 

Auger34

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Story could be a choice to lead off if he's back in the second half.

2B Story R
3B Devers L
DH Turner R
LF Yoshida L
CF Duvall R
RF Verdugo L
SS Kiké R
C McGuire/Wong L/R
1B Casas L

That's a pretty attractive lineup.
Where does this lineup rank in the AL?
 

PhabPhour20

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I read (forget where) the Red Sox are projected to have the 4th-best offense in the AL. Unfortunately, the three better offenses are also in the AL East.
Which is why I am super thankful for the new balanced schedule. 24 fewer games against those guys this year. I know this isn't a gambling sub, but I was super happy to grab the Sox regular season wins over 77.5. I feel like we are still operating under the idea that we have 76 games against the East.
 

JM3

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Not a bad lineup at all. I read (forget where) the Red Sox are projected to have the 4th-best offense in the AL. Unfortunately, the three better offenses are also in the AL East. The success or failure of this season, IMHO, will come down to pitching.
The 3 AL teams that would probably be projected ahead of the Red Sox offensively are the Blue Jays, Yankees & Astros.

I would be pretty surprised if the Orioles or Rays were projected ahead of the Red Sox & very surprised if they were projected ahead of the Astros. Red Sox were 3rd in the AL in runs (& in the AL East) last year, just ahead of the Astros.
 

snowmanny

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I would like the Red Sox to make up 72 runs on the Yankees but I am not convinced that happens.
Ed- also am unconvinced the Angels make up 112 on the Red Sox. Ed2 or 184 on the Yankees.
 

chawson

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I don't know if this the projection in question, but Fangraphs has the Sox as the 4th best scoring offense (4.51 runs per game) behind the Astros, Jays, and Angels.
Not to belabor the Pivetta discourse, but a big chunk of our so-so Fangraphs projection has to do with them projecting Pivetta to get 171 innings at a 4.42 FIP clip (one of the lowest marks on the team). If you were to swap those innings out with, say, Houck (whom they project for 26 innings as a starter) or Bello (103 innings), our overall projection (8th in the AL) looks like it could be a win or two better, which puts us more like 5th or 6th in the league.

We're dealing with projections, so it's academic by nature, but the equivalent would be if Fangraphs were to project Zach Thompson to throw the most innings for the Blue Jays, Bryse Wilson the most for the Brewers or Deivi Garcia the most for the Yankees. There's a million ways it could all play out, but that seems like one engine where we might exceed expectations.
 

pokey_reese

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Just golfed a ball out for a game-saving three run homer for Japan, that makes me think he might take great advantage of the Pesky Pole...
 

LogansDad

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I would just like to say that he will get well deserved praise for his home run, but that walk that led to the game winning double was an A+ professional at bat. Would have been real easy to get overzealous and chase some slop there.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

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While I really don’t care about the WBC, it has been awesome to see Yoshida do so well in games that are more competitive than ST games. He appears to be legit, and looks like the Sox got themselves a star.
 

AlNipper49

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I think that he'll be dressed today. Not sure if he'll be playing but it may be worth checking out the game just in case.

Nevermind - I think that I was wrong. Misread an email.
 
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j44thor

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He is arguably the WBC MVP regardless of what happens today unless Trea Turner really goes off.
At this point I'm expecting him to pitch a perfect inning to close out a Japan win throwing nothing but gyroballs.
 

BigSoxFan

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He is arguably the WBC MVP regardless of what happens today unless Trea Turner really goes off.
At this point I'm expecting him to pitch a perfect inning to close out a Japan win throwing nothing but gyroballs.
Turner has a higher OPS but it’s a really tight race. Both have been tremendous. Have to think it’ll depend on whose team wins tonight unless Ohtani or Trout go Superman or something tonight.
 

Yo La Tengo

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I would just like to say that he will get well deserved praise for his home run, but that walk that led to the game winning double was an A+ professional at bat. Would have been real easy to get overzealous and chase some slop there.
Totally agree about the walk. Huge situation, tons of pressure, and he was in complete control of the strike zone. Very impressive.
 

YTF

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Over Guapo Grande

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At about the 15-16 second mark this clip looks like something out of a Norman Rockwell painting. As Yoshida runs toward 1st, the other 5 guys in the frame all have their eyes fixed on the flight of the ball.
I love the symmetry at about the 28 second mark

62429
 

Manramsclan

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I agree with many others in this thread that it wasn't just the results he had in the WBC, but the process. The quality of his at-bats were A+. Laying off pitches just outside the zone, spitting at breaking stuff out of the zone and putting great swings on pitches in the zone. He looks like he has the skillset to be very successful hitter in the majors.

Additionally, all the reports about his subpar defense seem overblown. He looked more than competent. I m very excited to watch him this year.
 

nvalvo

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I hope this tournament quieted the outdated notion that the pitching isn’t as good in Japan. The pitching is different, yes. More splitters, fewer sliders. Maybe high velocity is a bit rarer. But there are a lot of great pitchers over there.
 

The Gray Eagle

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So his final WBC numbers are 9 for 22 with 2 HR, 13 RBi in 7 games. 4 BB, 1 K. .409/.531/.727 for a 1.258 OPS.
It's still too early to tell, but I think he might end up being a better hitter than Rick Lancelotti.
 

Manramsclan

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I hope this tournament quieted the outdated notion that the pitching isn’t as good in Japan. The pitching is different, yes. More splitters, fewer sliders. Maybe high velocity is a bit rarer. But there are a lot of great pitchers over there.
I agree and even the idea that high velocity is rarer may not be accurate either. So many of those Japanese pitchers threw 100! The Japan team threw way more 100mph pitchers than any other team in the WBC. I know those are only Japanese born players but many guys with fringe control and high velocity go over there too. Robert Suarez is a good recent example of a guy with high velo who went over there, improved and returned to throw his high 90s heat in MLB.