Craig Breslow Already Risking Becoming Chaim Bloom 2.0

Nov 7, 2023; Scottsdale, AZ, USA; Boston Red Six chief baseball officer Craig Breslow speaks to the
Nov 7, 2023; Scottsdale, AZ, USA; Boston Red Six chief baseball officer Craig Breslow speaks to the / Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

At the introductory press conference for chief baseball officer Craig Breslow in November, Boston Red Sox chairman Tom Werner assured Red Sox Nation that his ownership group would be "full-throttle" this offseason as the club was dead set on being competitive in 2024.

"We know that we have to be competitive next year. So we’re going to be competitive next year. We’re going to have to be full-throttle in every possible way."

Boston Red Sox Chairman Tom Werner

Unfortunately for Red Sox fans, it appears Werner and fans of the team have very different definitions of "full-throttle". Werner's remarks sparked optimism for a fanbase that has grown impatient with the team's decreased spending and fringe roster moves that they had become so accustomed to under Chaim Bloom. So far, it has been much of the same from the Red Sox front office under Breslow.

Red Sox fans aren't the only ones who have taken notice of the team's failure so far to fulfill the team's pledge. Ken Rosenthal, writing for The Athletic on Wednesday, didn't hold back in his assessment of how the Breslow era has compared to that of his predecessor Bloom.

"New chief baseball officer Craig Breslow has made a series of nifty moves on the margins, but if that's the kind of makeover the Red Sox wanted, they could have stuck with Chaim Bloom. The Sox still need significant help in their rotation, and they just got outbid by the Royals for righty Seth Lugo, who on Tuesday agreed to a three-year, $45 million. "

Ken Rosenthal

Yes, it is still mid-December and the Red Sox don't play their first spring training game until Feb. 23, but that hasn't stopped other clubs from bolstering their rosters to contend for a championship. Back in Boston, the team is getting outbid by the Kansas City Royals. Boston ranks as the third-most valuable franchise in the MLB, Kansas City ranks 27th. Forget even contending for a championship, the Red Sox have finished last in the division in three of the last four seasons. Yet, the lack of urgency remains.

If you want to see a "full-throttle" offseason, look at the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers signed two-way megastar Shohei Ohtani to the largest contract in sports history on Saturday, appear to be on the goal line of a trade for stud pitcher Tyler Glasnow, and met with free agent Japanese sensation Yoshinobu Yamamoto on Tuesday (with Ohtani present for a sales pitch).

Boston's arch-rival, the New York Yankees, have added outfielder Juan Soto for pennies. Soto appears already on track for Cooperstown at only 25 years old, and the Yankees are very much in on the Yamamoto sweepstakes as well.

That's full-throttle.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox have countered with Cooper Criswell and Roberto Perez.

Breslow's most noteworthy move has been shipping outfielder Alex Verdugo to the Bronx in exchange for three relief prospects, a trade widely regarded as a salary dump on the part of the Red Sox. Outfielder Tyler O'Neill was a low-risk, high-upside acquisition, but it is miles away from qualifying as a big splash.

If this wasn't Breslow's first offseason running a front office and he had a proven track record, then he would deserve more latitude, but he doesn't have a proven track record. In Breslow's defense, ownership should bear tremendous responsibility too. Until he breaks open the checkbook for a big ticket free agent, John Henry's hands aren't clean either.

Somewhere, Theo Epstein is shaking his head in disgust.

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