January 2008

Stuff

Dan:

  • Pretty happy with the way the Santana deal worked out. He goes to the National League, out of our hair, and stays away from the Yankees. Nothing changes. And, most of all, we’ll have Ellsbury leading off next summer. That’s going to be fun.
  • The Yankees are banking their hopes for 2008 on three unproven pitching prospects. (Smile) We all know they’ll have a great offense. But beyond those three unproven prospects, their starting staff is a thoroughly unintimidating "ace" in Wang, and a 35-year-old Pettitte who has been extremely inconsistent for four years (and he’s off the juice). Oh yeah, and then they have the ghost of Mike Mussina. Plus, Rivera isn’t getting any younger, and they’ve weakened their bullpen by removing Joba Chamberlain and slotting him into the rotation.
  • My brother is a (p)ansy.
  • The only team I fear going into this year is the Detroit Tigers.
  • Two weeks before pitchers and catchers report. Are you starting to feel the excitement?
  • Hoping Coco Crisp can bring a decent middle reliever in return. You have to think there’s a National League team ready to contend that could use his glove.

Santana Decision Looms

Dan:

According to SI’s John Heyman, the Twins could make a final decision on where to send Johan Santana at any moment. And, he reports, the Mets are currently leading the Red Sox in the Santana Sweepstakes.

At this point, it seems that no matter how it goes down, the Johan Santana saga will end up on a postive note for the Red Sox. If they get him, well, the benefits of adding baseball’s best pitcher to baseball’s best pitching staff are pretty obvious. And, as it now appears the Yankees are all but completely out of it, if they don’t get him, then Santana goes to the Mets in the National League and won’t bother the Sox. (Heck, even if they meet in the World Series, the Mets staff with Santana is still vastly inferior.)

Now, I really don’t understand the Twins thinking here if it is true that they value the Mets’ package of prospects more than the Sox package. While the Mets are offering some highly touted prospects, those prospects are still a long way from being Big League ready. They won’t help the Twins anytime soon, and, as we all know, anything can happen to prospects during their long travels on Development Road. Prospects are a gamble; more often than not they don’t work out. The Twins of 2012 could end up great. Or they could end up with nothing to show for this and back at Square One . . . ala the Contraction Candidate Twins.

Meanwhile, the Red Sox are offering Jon Lester — a highly-touted lefty pitching prospect who has already pitched in the bigs. Heck, he’s pitched in the World Series . . . and pitched great; Coco Crisp, who is a Gold-Glove caliber centerfielder, a young player, and very cheap; Jed Lowrie, a phenomenal shortstop prospect who many say is ready to play in the major leagues now; and an excellent pitching prospect in Justin Masterson, who might be ready to make his major league debut sometime next season. Good prospects; much closer to big league ready, and, therefore, much less of a gamble.

Given the situation, I don’t understand why the Red Sox have left their offer of Jacoby Ellsbury out on the table. They shouldn’t offer him at this point. As I already stated, if they don’t get Santana, he goes to the National League and the Sox aren’t any worse off. If they deal the Lester Package, they replace a decent, young lefty with the game’s best pitcher, upgrade centerfield from Coco to Jacoby, and really end up only dealing two very promising prospects. That improves the team significantly this year. If they deal the Ellsbury Package, you bring in the game’s best pitcher and have a very crowded rotation come Spring Training. You also go from Ellsbury in center back to Coco. Given how Ellsbury played, defensively this is pretty much a wash, but offensively this is a very significant hit. You improve your pitching, but take a hit in your lineup. Overall, the team is improved, but not as much and not the way you’d most like as you would with the Lester deal.

Should Santana go to the Mets, look for the Sox to try to deal Coco soon. The problem is many teams have already filled their centerfield gaps, so the market for Crisp is less than it would have been two months ago. I again question why the Sox didn’t make more of a play for Dan Haren a while back, and at least kick the tires a little on Erik Bedard.

Ah well. I am so sick of all the empty news stories about nothing happening on the Johan Santana front that I’ll be happy when this is all done, regardless of where he ends up.

Unless the Yankees shock everyone, of course.

Sox The New Yanks? Get Real.

Dan:

A note to all those people who dismiss the Red Sox recent success as they are simply the new Yankees:

The AP recently reported that the Yankees officially had a $218 million payroll last year. The Red Sox had a $155 million payroll. Math is not my strength, but I believe that is a difference of $63 MILLION.

We spend because we have to spend. But we still have a ways to go before we reach Yankee territory.

The Tom Brady Bunch

SIXSTATES.net – New England Travel & Adventure

Dan:

Still dead calm on the baseball front. I’m now ignoring anything about Johan Santana. (Have you ever seen so many headlines about no news in your life?)

In the meantime, check out this unbelievably funny ESPN clip about Tom Brady being the fourth Brady brother in the Brady Bunch. (You just HAD to know a Brady Bunch skit would happen sooner or later.)

Greatest YouTube Sox Video

SixStates.net – New England Travel & Adventure

Dan:

It’s perhaps the darkest, loneliest time of year for baseball fans. Too early to talk about Spring Training and projected lineups, no trades or rumors to discuss, nothing to really blog about. So instead, I offer you this: Perhaps one of the greatest Red Sox videos in YouTube history. A ballsy Sox fan at Yankee Stadium handing out New England Clam Chowder. It is free for Sox fans; Yankee fans can’t have any. This is hilarious stuff.

The Short, Sweet Life Of The Jim Rice Petition

Dan:

It was nice for the six days it lasted. Once we posted our petition to get Jim Rice’s Number 14 retired this year, we heard from people who were equally fired up – if not more so – to see Jim Rice honored by the Red Sox. Unfortunately, this passion was soon undermined by the inept website that is petitionsonline.com.

Soon after we posted the petition, we received an email from the "support" people with the website, saying the petition needed an author’s name, as it couldn’t be anonymous. The problem was – it HAD an author’s name. We immediately asked the site about this . . . and never heard anything back. Multiple emails to multiple site addresses went unanswered, and then the petition was suddenly taken down.

A week and a half after I started asking them about the issue, I still haven’t heard a response from the website. I know people who have had luck using the site; but I wouldn’t want to take another chance starting a petition only to see it randomly be taken down and receive ZERO SUPPORT from the website. So we won’t be starting another one.

How Embarassing

PETITION TO RETIRE JIM RICE’S #14

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Dan:

Yikes. I was stoked when I saw on MLBlog’s front page that Screech had posted his first blog entry of 2008. In my excitement, I quickly went to his blog, planning to ask him about the p0rn video he is promoting and his disastrous appearance on Celebrity Fit Camp. Turns out it is actually the blog for Screech the mascot of the Washington Nationals . . . not Screech from Saved By The Bell. Oops.

Get Your Red Sox Caskets Here

PETITION TO RETIRE JIM RICE’S #14

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Dan:

You love baseball. But do you love it enough to be buried in an officially licensed Major League casket featuring your favorite team’s colors and logo?

That’s right, the latest sign that the sports world has gone crazy (and what is possibly the seventh sign of the apocalypse), is that you can now purchase and be buried in the casket of your favorite team. If you’re interested in making the purchase (or finding out more), you can check out the article about it on CNNSI.com.

Personally, if I ever get buried in a Red Sox casket . . . please kill me.

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PETITION TO RETIRE JIM RICE’S #14

PETITION TO RETIRE RICE’S 14

SIGN THE PETITION NOW

Dan:

In light of the Baseball Writers of America’s recent failure to vote Jim Rice into the Hall of Fame, we have taken up an online petition to have the Boston Red Sox make an exception to their policy that a player has to be inducted into the Hall of Fame to have their number retired, and to retire Jim Rice’s Number 14 this year – the 30th Anniversary of Rice’s historic 1978 MVP season. You can read our petition below. Please click on the link to sign the petition and help get Jim Rice’s Number 14 retired this year! Help spread the word by telling everyone you know.

SIGN THE PETITION NOW

The Case:

We, the undersigned, request that the Boston Red Sox retire Jim Rice’s Number 14. To do this, we request that the Boston Red Sox – due to the overwhelming demand from Red Sox fans – change or make an exception to their policy that a player has to be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in order to have their number retired.

The case for Jim Rice as one of THE greatest Red Sox players of all time is quite clear: From 1975 to 1985, Rice led the American League in home runs, RBIs, runs scored, slugging and extra base hits. (Aside from home runs, the only one close to him in any of those categories was Hall of Famer George Brett.) Rice spearheaded the Red Sox to three seasons – 1975, 1978, 1986 – that are among the greatest in team history. Rice’s historic MVP season in 1978 was one of the great offensive displays in baseball history (prior to the steroid era). In all, over the course of his career Jim Rice received more MVP votes than any eligible player in baseball history who is not in the Baseball Hall of Fame.

It would be fitting if during the 2008 baseball season – the 30th Anniversary of his historic 1978 MVP season – the Boston Red Sox give Number 14 its due place among other Red Sox immortals. We request that the Boston Red Sox make an exception to their number retirement policy and retire Jim Rice’s Number 14.

SIGN THE PETITION NOW

For Now . . .

Dan:

Taking a break from my personal, ongoing tantrem over Jim Rice not getting into the Hall (more on that at a later date, and some BIG Jim Rice news coming tomorrow) . . . I just read that Congress has pushed back the Clemens and Co. hearings until February 13. I wonder how much of that is just because there is chaos right now. Hopefully by next month they’ll have enough clear info to really push Clemens for answers.

BTW, that taped phone call turned out to be quite a joke, didn’t it? Clemens’ passionless demeanor made him sound like he was reading from a script (which he probably was). Where were the screaming accusations that McNamee was a liar? Anybody who was truly innocent would have been completely different. When McNamee asked "What do you want me to do?" Clemens should have immediately yelled back to "tell the truth" or "stop spreading lies about me." Instead, it was radio silence – which again doesn’t happen if you’re innocent –  because Clemens’ lawyers were most likely waiving at him to stop that thread because he was in danger of witness tampering.

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