Lugo as a cheap upgrade option
Today’s email carried a lot of questions about Julio Lugo among our standard massive load of spam/accusations of selling out/press releases. With the Red Sox giving up on him, should the M’s pick him up if he’s essentially free?
Maybe, but it’s not such a clear yes. Even assuming that his knee injury’s responsible for some of his 09 performance in limited playing time, he’s below-average defensively, he’s not driving the ball much any more, but he’d be a welcome on-base hitter in the lineup.
The really good thing is you don’t have to give up anything for him, where (as we’ve already seen) Jack Wilson, JJ Hardy, and the other trade targets command prices that at least are high enough that the team hasn’t made a move yet. That’s even more attractive when you consider that even if the M’s turn into sellers, a free shortstop upgrade helps them stay above water the rest of the year, when the weather’s nice and Safeco Field’s full.
Below-average glove and average bat is a lot better than what we’ve had so far this season. I know Cedeno’s been playing well lately, but even as a middle-infield caddy, Lugo’d make some sense for the M’s. The cost is certainly right.
Update for clarification: Lugo’s been “designated for assignment” which means he’s not on the Sox roster any more, and they have to now put him on waivers, where all the teams can claim him and take on his contract (or work out a deal), trade him, or release him. The reports are that the Red Sox are willing to eat the rest of his deal and maybe take a token minor leaguer back or a really nice pen.