Who are these guys?
During spring training, the biggest issue you heard or read about the 2010 Boston Red Sox is that they are too boring. There were no stories. No Manny being Manny incidents. No team friction. No cowboys like Kevin Millar. The only real issues were whether Mike Lowell would be traded, and if anyone was excited by the run-prevention approach.
Then the season started and it looked as if the Red Sox could be over-matched by the 1962 Mets. During that dark stretch, Adrian Beltre took out Jacoby Ellsbury with a hit that would make Jack Lambert proud. But that made room for Darnell McDonald — well, we know what happened on his first Red Sox at bat.
Now we have the most improbable of all stories, Daniel Nava. Going into yesterday’s game against the Phillies, all I knew about the guy is that he is the epitome of the underdog and he has a thing for ESPN’s Erin Andrews. (Someone’s going to have to explain to me the allure of this woman. I mean, she’s certainly not bad looking, but she’s no Joey Heatherton.)*
Anyway, all Nava does is hit a grand slam on the very first major league pitch he’s thrown!
And the Sox continued to roll over the Phillies. Now all they need to do is figure out how to consistently beat crappy teams like the Orioles and Indians. But that’s another story. For now, I’ll just revel in the feel-good story of the year.
Daniel Nava, my new favorite Red Sox — at least until the next call-up from Pawtucket.
*How often do you find Joey Heatherton and Jack Lambert mentioned in the same blog post… pretty impressive, huh?