2. Never Adequately Addressing the Shortstop Situation
Shortstop has been a mess for Boston all year, and it’s entirely Bloom’s fault.
First, he brutally botched the Xander Bogaerts negotiations last winter. His final offer was nowhere near the Padres’ offer, and Bogaerts walked. This came, of course, after Bloom and co. failed to extend Bogaerts in 2022 before he ever reached free agency.
Trevor Story was set to replace Bogaerts at short, until it was revealed in January that he needed modified Tommy John surgery and would miss the first half of the season. A tough blow, but there was still time to replace him. Carlos Correa was still available, for instance, as were some lower-tier free agents like Elvis Andrus and Jose Iglesias.
Instead, Bloom’s bright idea was to replace Story with an outfielder, specifically Enrique Hernandez. Hernandez had never been an everyday shortstop in the big leagues before, but apparently that didn’t bother Bloom.
Sure enough, Hernandez was a disaster. It was painfully obvious from the start that he couldn’t handle the position, and his offense cratered as well. Bloom did nothing substantial, however, and Hernandez wasn’t moved off the position until June, by which point he was completely broken and had cost Boston several wins with his bat and his glove.
Pablo Reyes has proven to be a decent pickup, but Hernandez never should’ve been asked to play shortstop in the first place, or at least should’ve been switched out much sooner. When Bloom finally did trade Hernandez, his value was at an all-time low, limiting the return.