On Monday, the Boston Red Sox held the introductory press conference for the new Chief Baseball Officer Chaim Bloom.
Based off watching footage of the press conference and doing some research about Bloom, I believe this is a fantastic hire by the Red Sox. Bloom seems like a terrific young baseball mind with high expectations for the future.
Bloom held several roles with the Tampa Bay Rays since 2005, the most recent being Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations. During his tenure with the Rays, he had a reputation of being able to develop young pitchers very well. He was also behind some of the most innovative tactics in today’s game, such as the more regular use of shifts and the “opener” approach (using a reliever as the starting pitcher).
I feel like Bloom is exactly what this organization needs right now. He is about the furthest thing possible from Dave Dombrowski, and that’s a good thing.
Don’t get me wrong, I like Dombrowski and I respect what he accomplished. He is a win-now executive and that’s exactly what he did. He helped to assemble one of the greatest teams I have ever seen in the 2018 Red Sox, but now the focus of the team must go towards the future and Dombrowski isn’t the guy to do that.
Obviously, we don’t know yet whether Bloom is the guy either, but based on what I’ve seen so far, I think this was a great move. Bloom is young (just 36 years old), he’s motivated, he’s brilliant, he got his degree from Yale and he’s very experienced in baseball operations. The Rays have consistently exceeded expectations in the past decade with near the lowest payroll in baseball. Bloom has been a significant part of that. If Bloom was able to find success in Tampa, it will be very exciting what he can accomplish in a big market like Boston.
The focus for this team should be to rebuild the farm system while continuing to put a competitive team on the field. The administration seems to be confident that Bloom is a guy who can do that. He also won’t have to do it alone. He is surrounded by a talented group of executives, including newly-named general manager Brian O’Hallorhan.
The Red Sox are in a very tough situation right now, coming off a year in which they significantly fell short of expectations. The ownership expressed that wish to cut payroll despite having multiple long-term expensive contracts. There is a dilemma of trying to win now while still being mindful of the future of the team. Bloom seems to have both things on his early agenda.
Unsurprisingly, Bloom was asked about the status of Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez in his press conference, and I respect him for politely side-stepping those questions. He hasn’t even had the job a full day. Of course he’s not going to have answers for that yet. Those are decisions that can’t be made overnight.
Bloom should not be crucified if he doesn’t get the franchise all figured out by next season. This is about the toughest situation an executive can walk into, but I have confidence that Bloom will handle things the right way and continue the profound success the organization has achieved.
I’m not going to say he’s the next Theo Epstein, but if he does have a similar impact on the franchise, I would not be surprised.
Kudos to John Henry, Tom Werner and Sam Kennedy for making this hire. I’m sure it will pay dividends for the future of the franchise. And best of luck to Chaim Bloom. I am looking forward to seeing where the organization is headed with him at the helm.
Danny Barletta is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. He tweets @dbars_12.