Bloody Sox

Red Sox Rants — and other random opinions about sports

Archive for the month “November, 2009”

The long wait

This time of year is hardest for baseball fans, or at least it is for me. Spring training doesn’t start for three more months. Teams are still feeling each other out on trades. And free agents are drooling over improbable paydays.

And we fans are left to wait.

About the only thing we can do is speculate, as Chad Finn does here, over on Boston.com. Chad is predicting the opening day lineup for the Red Sox next April. Other than Adrian Gonzalez batting third and playing first base, it is a fairly conservative prediction. I agree with Chad that Jason Bay is likely to sign elsewhere. And, certainly if a big name player is going to be acquired in a trade, then Clay Buchholz is going to be part of the package.

But I don’t think the Sox will be acquiring Gonzalez. I think new San Diego GM Jed Hoyer would look bad trading the team’s star player to his old employer. Or, to put it another way, Hoyer will be asking for more prospects than Theo Epstein will be willing to part with. And that kind of restraint could be a good thing. The Red Sox farm system seems terribly low on Major-League-ready talent, and a blockbuster deal like this would only set player development back even farther.

But there is one player no one is mentioning, who I think could be moved in a deal like this: Dustin Pedroia. Pedey is a good player. He’s from California. He’d bring some star-power to help replace that lost by the departure of Gonzalez. And he has a reasonable contract. The Sox would hate to lose him, I’m sure, but you’ve got to give up something for a player like Gonzalez. I could see a deal that lands Gonzalez for Buchholz, Pedroia, Mike Lowell and $10,000,000 (to offset Lowell’s salary).

Then the Sox opening day lineup might look like this:

  • Jacoby Ellsbury (CF)
  • J.D. Drew (RF)
  • Adrian Gonzalez (1st)
  • Kevin Youkilis (3rd)
  • Victor Martinez (C)
  • Xavier Nady/Jeremy Hermidia (LF)
  • David Ortiz (DH)
  • Placido Polanco (2nd)
  • Alex Gonzalez (SS)

Not gonna happen? Well, I’m just speculating.

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Some salve for the wound

Red Sox fans can take solace in the fact that the Yankees’ unfair advantage has not gone unnoticed by one of baseball’s top writers, here. Truly, you have to wonder what Derek Jeter feels about this championship deep down in his heart. What do all the Yankees feel? Relief, probably. But it is hard to see how they can be proud when they have such an unfair advantage over every other team in the sport.

That which will not be mentioned!

Time to avoid the sports pages and web sites discussing baseball for a few days, or maybe weeks. That which will not be mentioned has occurred and the best thing Red Sox fans — or at least this Red Sox fan — can do is to just ignore it. Pretend it didn’t happen. When Sports Center comes on, stick your fingers in your ears, close your eyes and chant, “Oh four, oh four, oh four” over and over a again until it is safe to get back to watching football previews for the upcoming weekend. Today and probably tomorrow will be the worst. Stories may go on for a few minutes, but with the weekend almost here, football will quickly push aside this latest tragedy, and we’ll get back to updates on Tom Brady’s knee, Eli Manning’s heel, the showdown between the Cowboys and Eagles, and other important gridiron concerns. (But beware, there will be a resurgence of the story when the inevitable ticker-tape period takes place, probably on Monday or maybe Saturday.)

Then, in a couple of weeks, the off-season will begin in earnest, and we can begin discussing Theo Epstein’s mission as he ramps up for 2010, with the hope of ensuring this kind of travesty does not happen again.

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