The Red Sox lineup and pitching staff got an overhaul after last week’s trade deadline, and all that movement naturally affects the team’s statistics.
Three starting pitchers: Gone. A reliever: Gone. One outfielder replaced with the winner of the last two home run contests. And it seems like Triple A Pawtucket’s pitching staff has become a regular extension of the Red Sox bullpen.
With the dust starting to settle after the whirlwind trade deadline day, here’s a statistical before-and-after look at the team in the cellar of the AL East.
This shouldn’t be a shock. The Red Sox dealt their best pitcher, Jon Lester, their second-best pitcher, John Lackey, a reliable reliever, Andrew Miller, a struggling starter, Jake Peavy, and an unhappy starter, Felix Doubront. Those five threw had a combined 3.60 ERA. With the rest of the staff mixed in, it increased to 3.92 before jumping over the 4.00 mark after their exit. The Sox have worked Rubby De La Rosa, Allen Webster, and Anthony Ranaudo into the starting rotation — they’ve combined for 12 starts this season, seven of which have come since July 1 — and they recalled RHP Steven Wright from Pawtucket on Sunday. Clay Buchholz and Brandon Workman, who have a combined 27 starts this season, quickly became the Sox’ most senior members of the pitching staff. Joe Kelly, who came to Boston from St. Louis and starts for the Sox Wednesday against his former team, brings his 4.37 ERA into the fold.
Pitcher winning percentage
This took only a small hit because the Red Sox are a whopping 14 games back in the AL East and sitting 13 games below .500 at 49-62. All but Lester (10-7), Lackey (11-7), and closer Koji Uehara (5-2) had losing records before the trade deadline. Now Uehara and Ranaudo, who made his debut Aug. 1 against the Yankees and earned the win, are the Sox’ only pitchers with winning records, and Kelly sits at .500 with a 2-2 record. The Sox got rid of Peavy’s painful 1-9 record, and Buchholz (5-7), De La Rosa (3-4), and Craig Breslow (2-3) aren’t too far off, but there is a glaring lack of winning experience without Lester and Lackey.
Traded pitchers: 477/505.3
Remaining pitchers: 391/491.5
Lester, Lackey, Doubront, Miller, and Peavy combined for those 505.3 innings and 477 Ks. Thirteen, including five starters, combined for the 391 strikeouts in the more than 490 innings. If you add in Kelly’s year — he’s thrown 35 innings and struck out 25 — it bumps the total to 416Ks in 526.5 IPs.
A handful of lineup semi-regulars are missing after the trade deadline. Outfielder Jonny Gomes was hitting .234 with six home runs before he was gift-wrapped to go along with Lester to the A’s. Infielder Stephen Drew was hitting .176 in his 131 at-bats with four home runs before heading to the Bronx to join the Yankees. Mike Carp, another sub-.200 hitter for the Sox at .198, was picked up on waivers by the Rangers Sunday. And catcher A.J. Pierzynski, who was designated for assignment on July 9 before signing with the Cardinals on July 26, was hitting .254 with four homers. The Sox’ average jumped thanks in large part to the arrival of Yoenis Cespedes, who brought along his .254 average, 67 RBIs and 17 home runs, and the exit of the sub-.200 hitters. Pierzynski was replaced with Christian Vazquez, who was called up from Pawtucket and is hitting .250 with nine RBIs. Mookie Betts came back up from Pawtucket last week as outfielder Shane Victorino and catcher David Ross were both placed on the DL for back and foot injuries, respectively. Daniel Nava, who has 207 at-bats this season, is hovering at .251 while Xander Bogaerts is at .241. The Sox’ staples – David Ortiz (.252), Dustin Pedroia (.281), and Mike Napoli (.269) – have combined for 44 home runs. Brock Holt (.303) is Boston’s only player batting over .300.
Home runs by outfielders
This is the category that benefits most from the addition of Cespedes and his 17 home runs, which is more than Holt, Betts, Gomes, Victorino, Nava, and Jackie Bradley Jr. combined. Allen Craig, who plays outfield and first base, adds his seven home runs. The last home run from a Red Sox outfielder came from Victorino on July 25 at Toronto.
The Sox dumped four players — Drew, Gomes, Carp and Pierzynski — whose combined OPS was .625 for two players — Craig and Cespedes — whose combined OPS is a hair away from .700. Drew and Carp were both below .600, leaving Bradley Jr. (.589) as the only lineup regular with an OPS below .600. (Jonathan Herrera, who is on the 40-man roster, is also below .600 at .596.) Six players — Napoli, Pedroia, Holt, Ortiz, Vazquez, and Cespedes — have an OPS greater than .700.