What to Expect in the MLB Offseason

Big Numbers Will Be Impressive, but Little Production Will Be More

Patrick Semansky / Associated Press

Patrick Semansky / Associated Press

When Crawford signed for $142 million in Boston, the media had a firestorm. The storm re-ignited when Sandoval and Ramirez showed up in Beantown. But what stoked and fueled the fire was the lack of production.

Crawford’s .255 was shocking, but so too was the complete lack of production from both Sandoval and Ramirez. Sandoval finished with a .245/.292/.366 slash line; all three were the lowest of his career, including the only time he had an OBP below .300 and a slugging percentage under .400.

As Sandoval struggled, Ramirez did too, hitting .249, the lowest mark of his career in seasons in which he played more than 100 games, including an OBP of .291, the only time he had an OBP below .300. Hard to imagine that just nine months ago we all thought those two would make Boston’s lineup one of the most feared in baseball.

Granted, the Boston lineup was potent, but with $183 million locked up in Ramirez and Sandoval, the Red Sox were unable to afford pitchers to patch up a struggling rotation.

The Chicago White Sox shelled out $132 million in deals in the 2014 offseason, putting them in position to contend for the AL Central, only to finish 76-86, 19 games out of first place. Melky Cabrera, one of the multitude of Chicago signings, managed to hit just .273, his lowest mark since 2010.

As the signatures hit the dotted line, the numbers associated with it will continue to rise, but the production may not necessarily be coming with it.

The MLB offseason will be a whirlwind of highs and lows, but the important thing is to remember that regardless of who signs where, the World Series is won on the field and not in conference rooms.

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