Sox Acquire Adam LaRoche

In Uncategorized on July 22, 2009 at 1:39 pm
LaRoche chatting with some old Braves teammates, Chipper and Andruw Jones

LaRoche chatting with some old Braves teammates, Chipper and Andruw Jones is reporting that the Sox have just acquired lefty first baseman Adam LaRoche from the Pittsburgh Pirates. In return, the Sox will send Sea Dogs shortstop Argenis Diaz and Greenville pitcher Hunter Strickland to Pittsburgh.

Frankly, I’m just not sure this is the deal the Sox needed right now.

Let’s take a look at LaRoche’s numbers so far this year:

  • Avg: .247
  • HR: 12
  • RBI: 40
  • Runs: 46
  • SB: 2
  • Not exactly the torrid bat the Sox should be looking for, with their stagnant offense and newly-minted second place status. To LaRoche’s credit, he’s known as a second-half hitter, and he brings a lefty bat to a lineup that has labored against righthanded pitching this season.  A career .269 hitter, LaRoche can get the job done at the plate, hitting 20 or more homers in each of the last four years. I remain unconvinced, however, that .247, 12, and 40 is what the Sox need to get over the AL East hump. The good news is that LaRoche is currently in the middle of an affordable one-year, $7.05 million dollar contract and, if unsigned, will be a free agent after the season. Even better, he’s a type-B free agent, which means the Sox will get a draft pick in compensation if he leaves at the end of the year. Knowing this – and considering the fact that LaRoche will provide suitable Mike Lowell insurance in case the hobbled third baseman has to miss any more significant time – the reasons for this deal become a little more clear.

    The question that remains, as far as I can tell, is this:

    Who do the Sox send down to make room for LaRoche?

    Could it be Kotsay? The only problem with that is the fact that he plays multiple positions and guys like that are hugely valuable down the stretch. Will it be Masterson, even with all the promise he’s shown? Bard? Let’s hope not.

    I’m sure these and other questions will be answered throughout the day. So stay tuned.

    But, since it looks like LaRoche will in fact be donning the Fenway home whites shortly, I thought I’d share this tidbit I found while researching the Sox newest addition:

    In the winter of 2006, the Atlanta Braves swapped LaRoche to the Pirates for an aging bullpen pitcher. LaRoche was offended by the trade in which he felt undervalued, so come 2007, he was looking for revenge. One afternoon late in June, after a day game against the Marlins in Florida, LaRoche noticed that the Marlin’s next opponent – the Braves – had sent their gear along ahead of the players who were flying in later that night. Atlanta’s uniforms and other clothing hung ready in assigned lockers in the visitor’s clubhouse. LaRoche, thinking that he’d never get a better opportunity for some payback, jumped at this chance for retribution.

    So what’d he do?

    LaRoche found some scissors and cut the crotch out of every pair of boxers in the Braves lockers, leaving a note as he left:

    “Let it all hang out, fellas.”

    Welcome to Boston, Adam. You’ll fit right in.


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