Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here...
highlighting the big storyline. Because there's nothing quite as
satisfying as a good morning dump.
The Red Sox did not wait until closer to the trade deadline to
improve their bullpen. On Friday night they obtained lefthander Matt
Thornton from the White Sox in exchange for Double A outfielder Brandon
The White Sox, sources said, also included $750,000 in the deal to
cover some of the $3.47 million Thornton has remaining on his contract.
He is owed $2.47 million for this season. There is a team option for
2014 or a $1 million buyout.
The Sox needed relief help, specifically a lefthander, when Andrew
Miller suffered a foot injury in a game against the Angels last Saturday
and was lost for the season. That left Craig Breslow as the only
lefthander in the bullpen.
Miller will soon have surgery and was placed on the 60-day disabled list
to make room for Thornton on the 40-man roster. Thornton is expected to
join the Red Sox on Saturday.
Globe - Red Sox obtain LHP Thornton from White Sox
The Sox needed bullpen help, so they made a move. That's probably all this is -- a move. Thornton isn't riding in on a white horse to save the day.
But that's the surprising thing about this Sox season. They don't need anyone to save anything (except, well, games). They just needed another solid lefty to have available in the pen. He's pretty much a lefty specialist at this point (left handed batters are hitting .173 against him this year), but that's OK. He fills a need. Nothing more.
If you're expecting him to morph into something larger, don't. As Scott pointed out when the Thornton rumors started, "His K/9 has dropped for four straight years: 12.0, 9.5, 7.3, 6.8. Not a
good sign for someone who's supposed to be a hard-thrower." But he's a veteran who's pitched in the league for a long time, and someone that can be reasonably counted on in tough spots.
Not sure what more you're looking for in a bullpen arm at this point. When you consider what little they gave up to acquire him, there's not much here to gripe about. Probably won't guarantee that World Series appearance, but a good trade nonetheless.
Rest of the links:
Globe - Workman gets the call for Sunday | Pedroia's hit leads Red Sox past A's, 4-2 | CSNNE - Red Sox acquire LHP Matt Thornton from White Sox | Sox take down A's with clutch hitting | WEEI - Matt Thornton was the original Andrew Miller | Red Sox use small ball, John Lackey to pull out win over Athletics | Ben Cherington on Matt Thornton trade: ‘We found the one that we liked’ | Herald - John Lackey deals like ace | Deal for Matt Thornton gives ’pen shot in arm | No solid word on Clay Buchholz