It’s okay if the Sox don’t make the playoffs
How embarrassing that the Red Sox have to rely on the Yankees to beat Tampa Bay in order to preserve the Red Sox playoff hopes!
I’ve reached the point where I’m rooting against the Red Sox this season. This is a bad team that does not deserve to make the playoffs. And, in my opinion, there is a silver lining — at least a potential one — if this $170 million payroll goes home in October: It should make the front office re-examine its reliance on signing over-priced, over-valued free agents.
Name the last free agent the Red Sox signed who was fun to watch play the game. (Adrian Gonzalez, Curt Schilling, Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell don’t count because they arrived via trade.) Here are some of your choices:
- John Lackey
- Carl Crawford*
- Matt Clement
- Bobby Jenks
- Julio Lugo
- Edgar Renteria
- Mike Cameron
- J. D. Drew
That crew of under-achievers cost the Red Sox over $400 million in salary and posting fees (if my mind math is accurate). Think about that! The last free agent signing by Theo Epstein who was worth what he was paid was Keith Foulke. And before him David Ortiz. (I’m excepting smaller contracts like Marco Scutaro.) That’s a long dry-spell for a boy wonder. Actually, it is abysmal performance for a front office that prides itself on talent evaluation and do-diligence. In fact, it is beginning to remind me of the bad-old Dan Duquette days.
So, a re-evaluation of the proper philosophy for building a team is in order and maybe missing the playoffs is just the kind of wake-up call that is needed.
Of course, if the Sox do limp into the playoffs, I’ll be rooting for them all the way. But it would surprise me if they won more than one post-season game, not with the pitching staff they’re putting out on the field day in and day out.
*For the record, I’m not ready to write off Carl Crawford after one season. He’ll never live up to that stupid, insane contract. But I think he will be better in the years to come than he was this year.