So in the end, Yoan Moncada will keep the red socks from those snazzy Cuban uniforms we’ve seen in international play. And all hail the Boston Red Sox.

Yet again, the Red Sox have pulled off a move that will make their summers brighter, their fans happier and keep them in position to push for another World Series title.

And because it is absolutely mandatory under Baseball Law that every move one of them makes is measured against the other, here is where we must pause for a question.

Um, hello, Yankees?

Anybody home?

Not only did Boston acquire a five-tool, 19-year-old infielder who has been the talk of baseball all winter, the Yankees whiffed (again) in the single biggest area they absolutely must get better.

Acquiring young talent.

Already, there is less hope for the Yankees heading into 2015 and beyond than there was for Fifty Shades of Grey to win best picture at the Oscars on Sunday night. Now, that’s the phrase that pretty much describes the look of the current Yankees, where surely one day soon Grecian Formula and Rogaine will be as much a part of the clubhouse spread as baked fish and grilled chicken.

And where Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover surely must be going through the minds of even the most passionate, pinstripe-wearing villagers in the Bronx.

No, Moncada wasn’t cheap, his final tab checking in at $31.5 million, according to’s Jesse Sanchez, who has been the lead dog on Moncada developments since day one. And because the Red Sox were over their international bonus pool allotment, they must pay 100 percent tax on the deal. So signing Moncada really will cost them roughly $60 million.

Or, you know, pocket change for that team from the Bronx.

Yoo hoo, Yankees…hello?

There is a good reason why the Red Sox have won a World Series more recently (2013) than the Yankees (2009), and Moncada is the latest example.

Boston, under general manager Ben Cherington and current ownership, is razor-sharp, artistically creative and nimble enough to work multiple paths at once.

The Yankees, under GM Brian Cashman and the Steinbrenner family without George, spend most of their time figuring ways to pay less luxury tax and scheming for angles to avoid paying Alex Rodriguez bonus money on a contract they stupidly agreed to extend back in 2007.

Time was, the Yankees were players in the winter. Now, they’re the new Not Ready for Prime Time Players, with a little too much Emily Litella sprinkled in. Max Scherzer? Never mind. Jon Lester? Never mind. Moncada?

Never mind.

Look, the disclaimer on all of these expensive imports, whether domestic through the draft or international through more exotic means, is that none of them come with guarantees. The Nationals are still trying to win their first ring with Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper. The Dodgers are still trying to make sure Yasiel Puig shows up on time for all 162 games.

But the name of the game in an era of shrewd front offices that are only getting smarter is intelligent decisions, and though the Red Sox surely have swung and missed on their share (just like everyone else), they have shown in recent years to be experts in recalibrating.

When they fell to last place in the AL East during the lost summer of Bobby Valentine, they took a fire hose to both the manager’s office and the roster, and stormed back to win the World Series in 2013.

Now, after again finishing last in the AL East last summer at 71-91 (2014 team motto: All of the Losses of 2012, None of the Chicken and Beer), they’re again positioned to make significant hay in the division. Smartest thing they did last year was conduct an internal autopsy in July, deal away most of their rotation and jump-start the rebuilding process toward 2015.

Now, here they are in Fort Myers with the best hitting Panda in the land at third base (Pablo Sandoval), an interesting (and, yes, creative) experiment in left (Hanley Ramirez), a Cuban outfielder signed last year (Rusney Castillo), another key bat they acquired from St. Louis (Allen Craig), a young starter they also acquired in the St. Louis deal (Joe Kelly) and another young starter scooped up from Detroit (Rick Porcello) in a deal for another key player they traded for last summer (Yoenis Cespedes).

And now, here comes Moncada. He’s 6’2″, 205 pounds and a switch-hitter whose legend in Cuba is right there with those of Puig and Jorge Soler.

“He’s a plus-plus runner with above-average raw power from both sides of the plate and the tools/skills to stick in the infield, possibly at shortstop,” Kiley McDaniel, the lead prospect writer for FanGraphs, wrote in October. “Moncada is the quick-twitch type with big bat speed that clubs covet, and his track record of hitting at big tournaments and in Cuba’s professional leagues is excellent considering his age.”

This is what the Red Sox have been up to since, oh, last July or so.

The Yankees?

Well, they’ve been bickering with A-Rod and looking for the best bulk-rate price on caulk as they work to fill in the cracks of a roster when foundational problems are screaming for bigger things.

Yes, Moncada is going to need some seasoning, and we might not see him in Boston until late summer or 2016.

Up in Tampa, meanwhile, seasoning is the stuff aging warhorses like Carlos Beltran, CC Sabathia and Mark Teixeira shake out of a bottle onto their Early Bird Special meals.


Scott Miller covers Major League Baseball as a national columnist for Bleacher Report. He has over two decades of experience covering MLB, including 14 years as a national baseball columnist at

Follow Scott on Twitter and talk baseball @ScottMillerBbl. 

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