OAKLAND, CA: Andrew Bailey #40 of the Oakland Athletics pitches against the Seattle Mariners in the ninth inning during an MLB baseball game at O.co Coliseum in Oakland, California. The Athletics won the game 8-5. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

Andrew Bailey Traded From A's To Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox finally found their replacement for Jonathan Papelbon, trading Josh Reddick and two prospects to the Oakland A's for Andrew Bailey and Ryan Sweeney.

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4 Total Updates since December 28, 2011
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JB Knox: Andrew Bailey Scouting Report

You'll remember that the Boston Red Sox recently traded for Oakland Athletics closer Andrew Bailey. This was big news, because the Red Sox were in need of a closer, and Bailey's a young and capable fit. This was also mysterious news, because while Bailey has generated numbers, nobody has actually seen him pitch, since the public is barred from attending A's games and the franchise has a TV contract with C-SPAN2.

Enter JB Knox of 1313 Sports, who does the best he can to provide a thorough Bailey scouting report. There's a lot in there, but what grabbed my attention:

What concerns me here is that he is relying on his 4-Seam Fastball a lot more and that is a direct correlation the elbow and forearm pain he has been suffering from. His secondary pitches are his Cutter and his Curveball. Both of these pitchers put serious strain on the inside of the elbow and down to the forearm due to the pressure required from the middle-finger on the outside seems of the baseball. A 4-Seam fastball generally is held with zero palm on the ball as if the ball is a Yo-Yo.

In 2009, Bailey threw 47% four-seam fastballs, and struck out 28% of batters. Then his elbow acted up. In 2010, he checked in at 69% and 22%. In 2011, he checked in at 75% and 24%. Bailey's still been good the last couple years, but he hasn't been what he was as a rookie. That's a thing.

But in the end, I guess all the Red Sox really care about is whether Bailey will remain an effective pitcher. He's been an effective pitcher recently, so that bodes well. Baseball can be simple.

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With Bullpen Set, Red Sox Can Shift To Real Issues

The trade for Andrew Bailey gives the Red Sox another option in the ninth inning, and Jonathan Papelbon might not be missed much. But Ben Cherington's work has just begun.

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Miles Head, Raul Alcantara Go To Oakland In Andrew Bailey Trade

From what I've seen, not too many people are impressed by Oakland's return in Wednesday's Andrew Bailey trade. Josh Reddick is probably a step up from Ryan Sweeney, and he's under team control for a lot longer, but the two prospects - Miles Head and Raul Alcantara - aren't big-time prospects. Why don't we check in with John Sickels to see if either of these guys might be underrated, shall we?

On Head:

Head features above-average power potential, but will have to prove that his swing and plate discipline will work against advanced pitching. He lacks the speed to play an outfield corner, and spent 2011 at first base. He has experience at third and may move back to the hot corner, where his arm will play well but his range may not.

On Alcantara:

Alcantara is a classic projection prospect. He already throws 90-95 MPH and should sustain his peak velocities more readily as he matures physically. His curveball and changeup are inconsistent, but they exist, which is more than a lot of pitchers his age can say. He throws strikes and keeps the ball down, collecting grounders at a decent clip and avoiding homers.

Click through for more detail. Sickels gives each player a C+ prospect grade, with the potential to contribute in the majors, but far greater potential to do little of consequence.

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Boston Red Sox Acquire Andrew Bailey From Oakland A's

The Boston Red Sox finally found their replacement for Jonathan Papelbon, trading Josh Reddick and two prospects to the Oakland A's for Andrew Bailey and Ryan Sweeney.

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