AL East Round Up: Big Surprises Edition

6 of 6

Boston Red Sox

Credit: Christopher Evans Boston Herald

BIG SURPRISE: Ben Charington

Here’s one GM who keeps surprising me. He is not afraid to sign the big boys to the big money. (Probably because he has the blessing of ownership. *cough* Rogers *cough*) Then, when things aren’t working out, he is able to unload big boys for big hauls. Remember the Nick Punto deal that sent Carl Crawford, Adrian Gonzalez et al to Los Angeles? To unload that kind of money can’t be easy. Then, when the Red Sox season was clearly going into the toilet this year, he did it again.

It was kind of funny how the idea of trading Jon Lester wasn’t such a hot button topic until I mentioned it. I (somewhat) jokingly said I’d give up Jose Bautista to get Lester. Before I go on, I am NOT saying that I had anything to do with the Red Sox trading Jon Lester. Don’t be silly. Obviously, their season dictated such a move. Anyway, what happened was almost of the caliber I mentioned. Getting Yoenis Cespedes from Oakland was nothing short of a steal.

It is especially a Red Sox friendly deal when you consider who the first team Lester’s agent will be negotiating with in November. Lester has already said he wants to go back to the Red Sox. Imagine. The Red Sox got Cespedes and then over the winter will get Lester back. I know, it is not a guarantee, but…come on. It’s close.

Of course, Charington did more than the Lester deal. He got rid of John Lackey and Jake Peavy (!) who was having an abysmal year. Big, heavy contracts were given up for quality players that cost a fraction of the price. And, adding Allen Craig and Cespedes to the lineup is a major boost. A Celebratory Brett Lawrie High Five to Charington. The Red Sox will ride out this season and be in a good spot to do what they need to to be right back in it next season.