Chaim Bloom Leads Red Sox Into The 2020s
To the Red Sox, the hiring of Dave Dombrowski represented what chairman Tom Werner called "the right man for the time” in August 2015, bringing aboard a president of baseball operations with the stomach to make massive investments (in dollars and prospects) to supplement a tremendous young core.
But by this September, circumstances had changed. The once-inexpensive core had become expensive and with diminishing years of control remaining. The Red Sox face a future not of addition and retention but hard choices about which players to keep and which to deal.
Against that backdrop, Dombrowski—with just over a year left on his contract—was fired, leading to the hire of Chaim Bloom, formerly the Rays' senior vice president of baseball operations, as the team’s new chief baseball officer.
"(Bloom) has demonstrated the ability to take a comprehensive approach to building a successful team at the major league level and he understands what Red Sox fans want . . . and that is a sustainable baseball operation throughout the entire organization," Red Sox CEO Sam Kennedy said.
For Red Sox owners, the idea of sustainability suggested a need to improve farm system depth, particularly with the pitching staff. Bloom’s involvement in all aspects of a Rays organization that led the American League with a 3.65 ERA in 2019—vastly outperforming the far more expensive Red Sox staff (4.70)—commanded attention.
"They develop pitching,” principal owner John Henry said.
Boston believes that Bloom’s background in player development, familiarity with both traditional teaching methods along with analytical methods, and involvement in a Rays team that was among the most aggressive in the game in making trades meant to upgrade all spots on the roster can help the team align its long-term and short-term ambitions.
"The farm system going forward will be a huge emphasis, as it has been in the past,” Bloom said. ". . . I know a lot of what we accomplished in Tampa Bay was due to having great people and putting those people in a position to succeed by empowering them and challenging them.
"That’s something I think can work anywhere.”
— The Red Sox promoted Mike Rikard from vice president of amateur scouting to VP of scouting, broadening his role across departments. The team elevated Paul Toboni from assistant scouting director to the director of the department.
— Righthander Kutter Crawford, who went 5-8 with a 3.57 ERA and 10.2 strikeouts per nine innings at high Class A and Double-A in 2019, had Tommy John surgery in October and will miss the 2020 season.