Boston Red Sox

Boston Red Sox

Boston Red Sox

Apr 23, 2023; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Brayan Bello (66) delivers against the Milwaukee Brewers in the first inning at American Family Field. Credit: Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

  • Admittedly, we don’t know what the Red Sox are going to be this year. With last night’s loss to Baltimore, the Sox are now 12-12 in this young season. That might be better than you expected to date. It’s still nowhere near good enough for a franchise with the Red Sox’ standing and history.

    Prior to yesterday’s game, the Sox demoted right-hander Brayan Bello to Triple-A Worcester, a move that caught many by surprise. The Red Sox have placed an awful lot of emphasis on the development of their young players and prospects in recent years, so much so that chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom traded away catcher Christian Vazquez at last year’s trading deadline with the Sox in a theoretical playoff race.

    The move reverberated throughout the Red Sox clubhouse and was still echoing weeks later when the Sox’ season ended.

    Here’s what Alex Cora said yesterday when asked about Bello’s demotion. The exchange is with Alex Speier of the Boston Globe.

  • Now, if the Bello demotion seems odd to you, that’s understandable. You’re probably thinking, “Are the Red Sox committed to developing players or not?” But last year, coming off an appearance in the American League Championship Series, the Sox seemed more interested in continuing to develop their young players than they did in taking the next step and making a run at the World Series. The clubhouse seemed terribly disenchanted from the start, Sox players openly wondering why they hadn’t made additions in the immediate aftermath of lockout that owners had implemented during labor talks.

    Then the Sox went out and stunk.

    After the season, let’s not forget what Alex Cora said with regard to organizational “urgency,” which was his was of saying that the team sent the wrong message to players and fans alike:

  • So, what will become of Bello? Good question. In 7.1 innings this year, he has allowed 13 hits and three walks while posting a 9.82 ERA. Opponents have batted .406 against him with an OPS of 1.072. He has also allowed two home runs, including this one over the weekend:

  • In the end, here’s the point: by sending Bello to Triple-A, the Red Sox are making the statement that winning at the major league level still matters. (At the end of the day, isn’t it more important than anything else?) Further, they are sending the message that players aren’t going to be babied and that they must earn their way to the majors, then must keep their right to stay there. If Bello ultimately fails as a result of this demotion, he wasn’t going to be much of a major league pitcher, anyway.

    One final thing: if the Sox are willing to be aggressive with Bello, one cannot help but wonder if they could similarly be aggressive with other younger players.


    Think they would do the same with Tristan Casas?

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