Penny – Heads or Tails?


Brad Penny.jpgAccording to some reports, and depending on how much weight you want to put in those – I never put any weight into them until I see our official release sent to me, we could be signing 30 year old pitcher Brad Penny.  Penny struggled last season with the Dodgers (to the tune of a 6.27 ERA), but his upside looks something like this: a 3.03 ERA in 2007, a 4.33 ERA in 2006, a 3.90 ERA in 2005, a 3.09 ERA and a 3.15 ERA in 2004 (while spliting the season between the Marlins and Dodgers).

Penny has some postseason experience, and although his performance was a bit shaky, he did earn a World Series Ring in 2003 with the Marlins, during which he had a 2.19 ERA in 12.1 innings pitched. 

How would you feel about all of this?

Bard.jpgAlso, on a far more substantiated and confirmed signing front, we have agreed to a contract with catcher Josh Bard.  As you may recall, Bard was with us briefly, before he and Cla (pronounced “Clay”) Meredith were sent to the Padres in the trade that brought Doug Mirabelli back to Boston.

Do you think Bard will have a bounce-back season this year?  Do you think he will get his confidence to catch the knuckleball?  How well exactly do you think he will do?  I want to hear your predictions for Bard’s batting average, home runs, RBI, and passed balls for 2009.

I’m curious as to what all of you think…dare I say, “a penny for your thoughts?” (sorry…that was really bad, I know.)

All the best from the Insider’s Home Office (gotta love the holiday break!),

“The Voice of the Nation”




  1. juliasrants

    I’m not so sure I like these new players. 1. Penny – I read reports that he was out last season because of tendinitis. Is that something that you can ever fully recover from and still be a successful pitcher? 2. Has Bard gotten over the problems with catching knuckleballers? Isn’t that why we traded him back in 2006? Is this pickup a sign to Varitek that the Sox aren’t going to resign him? I hope not! I’m taking a wait and see on these two. I really hope that I’m wrong and that we got 2 new players for a bargain.


  2. fenns1533

    I like the possibilities with Penny. If he can come back to anything like his ’07 form, Boston is getting a phenomenal bargain. And as you say, the risk is low.

    Bard for backup catcher? This one concerns me a bit, at least until we know whom he’s backing!

    If ‘Tek is coming back, I like this arrangement quite a bit. Bard’s presence would allow Boston to wait for prospects already in the system, bringing up one of them as a backup to replace Bard in ’10 (or even ’11 if needed), and take over the starting role a season or so later. And Bard, if he gets back into his offensive groove, should work well as a sub late in close games, in case ‘Tek’s own offensive struggles come back. Bard is weaker than ‘Tek defensively, in every category, but that’s not so deadly in a backup. ‘Tek, of course, would have to take Wake again as he did his first few years with the team. And then, down the road a little ways, we bring up one of our own when he’s good and ready, and don’t have to give up Masterson, Bowden, or Buchholz in order to get there.

    But if ‘Tek isn’t returning? If the Sox really plan to trade an arm and both legs for Salty or Teagarden, and make one of them starter, backed by Bard? That I don’t like at all. It sounds like a defensive nightmare! (That is in no way meant to malign the talents of either Rangers prospect, but extrapolate a full season’s worth of passed balls and errors from what either had in ’08, and it’s not a pretty picture. Either would be great as a backup for a year or two while learning the job, before taking over as starter later on, but neither is ready for that role next season!)

    ‘Tek and Bard? Sure. ‘Tek and (prospect to be named later) with Bard in a David Ross roll? Sure. Bard backing a prospect? That’s the stuff of a Yankees fan’s dreams.

  3. redbaronsoxfan

    I love it when this happens, ’cause it saves loads of typing: I completely agree with fenns1533…Especially agreed that Penny is a nice move.

    So what _is_ up with that Tek situation, anyway? 🙂

  4. fruitgirl

    I agree with the comments posted. Good bargain on Penney,and hopefully he will be a good egg and a hard worker for the Sox in 2009. Now,Bard is a big question mark. Boston wants Jason Varitek. If Bard is being brought in to help Tek,or to lure another team in for a trade for Bard and another player,then fine. But Bard can never replace a world-class, unmatched Guru like Tek. The Captain caught 4 no-hitters and won two World Series in 4 years! As you can see, the natives are getting restless,you should hear them at !!! We need some great news right now,nice about Penney/Bard…but GREAT NEWS. Have a happy and healthy New Year Red Sox Nation, fruitgirl is looking out for you!!!!

  5. aries

    My thoughts are worth more than a penny–it is the economy you know….

    Voice you get a C- for that one.

    Penny might work out but it is a gamble. Maybe with a new approach to pitching and taking better care of himself; diet and exercise he could improve. Whatever happened to B. Colon? Isn’t this more of the same! You asked!!!!

    Bard is not my choice for a back up for Tex. Give Jason what he wants. Use money to get a great backup catcher; young, promising and willing to learn from Tex. That isn’t Bard.
    Deal gets a C-.

    Check my comments under Texerria; I want what I want.
    Jason and a promising new catcher.


  6. lvbasebll

    Hopefully the brass is not shooting them selves in the foot,with holding out against Tek,and even thinking of trading Ellsbury.I’ve been a Redsox fan longer than most of you,and saw to many lead footed teams hit a ton,but fail to make the post season.Keep the young guys,and add to them,and for cryin’ out loud,draft a power hitter along with the pitching.We have one in farm system,that we got for willy mo,he’s left handed,but so what,if he can hit,he can hit lefty or righty.

  7. Kaybee

    As a Padres fan, I really hope Josh Bard does well for you guys. He was pretty good for us when he was healthy, and he really is a great guy. I don’t know about his status with the knuckleball, but you gotta think he’s learned how to catch it after his horrific experience with it before. I hope he plays well with you guys and can maybe get a championship!

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