Results tagged ‘ Jason Varitek ’
No, I am not even talking about the Mike Lowell deal (which is not official, yet).
Yesterday, when I got home from work around 3pm, this email was sitting in my inbox:
know this is extremely late notice but the Red Sox have just invited all ARAMARK
employees to come on down to the yard sale today. You can enter through Gate
E. They are selling a number of different things ranging from $10-$700+.
Please forward this along to your distribution lists if
This, of course, was the first I ever heard of it. What notice! This would have been awesome to go to. However, apparently, the Red Sox weren’t too keen on promoting this event. I did a google search for “Yard Sale at Fenway Park” and didn’t really see much pertaining to 2009 except for this, a post Fenway neighborhood blog:
Dear Fenway Neighbors,
Please join us for a
great opportunity to finish up (or begin!) your holiday shopping at the
Great Fenway Park Yard Sale today at Fenway Park until 5pm!
Items for sale include unique Red Sox memorabilia and one-of-a-kind items from Fenway Park.
Please enter through Gate E and let them know you’re a Fenway neighbor.
Hope to see you there!!!
Interesting to find out how many people knew about this and how many people were there. However, apparently it was quite successful because today the Red Sox have agreed to a 5 year contract with form Los Angeles of Anaheim Angel John Lackey and have made an offer of $15.5 million to Cuban defector Aroldis Chapman and are close to a deal with perennial Gold Glove outfielder Mike Cameron.
While Lackey is a quality starting pitcher who has won quite a few big games in his career, I cannot say that I am truly enamored with this signing. This does make a strong rotation for 2010 with Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Clay Buccholz, Daisuke Matsuzaka, Tim Wakefield, and now Lackey. However, with this contract being reported as a 5 yr / $85 million contract, you have to wonder how this signing is going to affect the Josh Beckett negotiations. Beckett will become a free agent at the end of 2010. Beckett will command a contract AT LEAST the length and size of Lackey’s deal. With the Red Sox’ history of re-signing their own free agents (case in point Jason Bay right now; hence the news of an impending deal with Cameron), this has got to put up some red flags that this is Beckett’s last season in Fenway. Besides Varitek a few years ago, I can’t really remember a premier player that the Red Sox re-signed once the player filed for free agency. I hope this will not be the case, as Beckett still has quite a few years of top of the rotation pitching left in his career. Time will tell.
This has not only been a busy Monday for the Red Sox, but a busy Monday baseball wide. The big news of the day is the big Roy Halladay / Cliff Lee trade that is on the verge of being finalized. This is a 3 team trade in which Halladay goes to Philadelphia (pending a contract extension being signed), Cliff Lee heads off to Seattle, and a bunch of prospects will go to Toronto. This will be exciting to hear about the finalized deal.
A lot of times, the MLB “Hot Stove” season is a bit over-hyped and over-rated, but today has been an exciting day. It has made me tune back into the MLB Network today after their rude programming where they replayed the Bucky “Bleeping” Dent game. Gahhhhhhhh!
After the month of April who would have guessed this line would belong too? Normally, maybe him:
That would have been a good guess, but he only has played 2 games this April. Plus, he is normally not know for power.
How about this fella:
Again, not a bad guess. He has had several 20 homer seasons, but it is not him. He’s had a decent start, going deep 4 times so far.
Would you be surprised to find out that those numbers belong to:
Probably not, if you have been following the Red Sox closely this season. This is the big news with the Red Sox. When Nick Green has more HRs and a higher slugging percentage than David Ortiz over the first 22 games, then something is the matter.
What is WRONG with Big Papi?
- Past his prime, good years are behind him.
- Lack of protection in the order; missing Manny behind him.
- Wrist still hurts.
- All of the above.
- Nothing, give the guy a break!
I don’t know the answer myself, but I can say it is not from lack of protection in the order. People who think because Manny is no longer batting behind Ortiz that this is the reason are sort of clueless. I mean Ortiz is hitting between the 2008 MVP and the 3rd Place finisher for 2008 MVP! Anybody else have protection like that in MLB?
This is the first time since Ortiz joined the Red Sox that he has not at least 1 HR in a month where he has not been injured.
Dating back to last season, Big Papi has now gone 25 games (in which he as gotten at least 1 AB) with out a HR. That is the longest cold streak since he came to Boston.
He has had two 19 game homerless streaks, 1 occured last season and the other occured in 2007.
So, what is the problem? Will he ever get out of this funk? Will he be the Papi of 2004 – 2006? So many questions, so little answers.
I think the problem is in Papi’s head. I recall hear him complain about lack of protection (isn’t that a bit insulting to Kevin Youkilis) in the batting order. However, Sean McAdams (I believe) has stated numerous times that the two seasons Manny packed it in during September, Ortiz had the best OPS (this coming from listening to talk radio, I haven’t research these numbers myself) during the month of September. So he wasn’t missing Manny then.
However, now that Ortiz doesn’t have it in the back of his head that Manny will be back, I think he is using it as an excuse (for a lack of a better term) when it is more of a combination that Ortiz may be thinking too much and having some erosion of his skills. Ortiz also mentioned a while back that he isn’t getting any fastballs to hit. I seem to recall plenty of fastballs in the mid to upper 80s that he is not catching up to.
Hopefully, it is more of a mental funk than a physical / skill erosion problem. The Red Sox are going to NEED Ortiz, especially when Youkilis, Bay, and Lowell cools down from their hot starts.
C’mon Big Papi, work it out.
P.S. This could have been about Josh Beckett too. Since the Abreu incident, Beckett has not been himself.
Think about this. The highest paid player on your team doesn’t play versus left-handed pitchers. Could you imagine Albert Pujols sitting or
Manny Ramirez sitting (well, yes I can imagine him sitting, that’s not a good example) or A-Rod sitting? Or, how about Ryan Howard, Carl Crawford, or Ichiro Suzuki? However, when you are this guy:
You don’t start versus left-handed pitchers anymore. Against the first two LHP opposing starters the Red Sox have faced, Scott Kazmir and Joe Saunders, manager Terry Francona has opted to start Rocco Baldelli instead of J.D. Drew. The 14 Million Dollar question is why?
I can see once in a while, to get Rocco some at bats, that he’d replace Drew, Ellsbury, or even Ortiz against some LHP. But 2 LHPs in a row Drew sits for Baldelli?
J.D. Drew is a career .260 hitter versus LHP. Last year, he hit .284 versus lefties but in 2007 he hit .224 against southpaws. In his career versus Kazmir, he was 1-7 with a triple a walk and 3 strikeouts. I can see sitting him versus Kazmir, who is notoriously tough (career .212 BA against vs LH batters) on lefties. In his career versus Saunders, he is 1-5 with a double and a walk. Not a large sample against either pitcher, but Saunders is not tougher on lefties like Kazmir is.
If you compare Drew to Ortiz, Big Papi is a career .268 hitter versus LHP. Last year, though, he hit a paltry .221 against lefties, obviously his injured wrist played a factor in this. In 2007, Ortiz hit .308 versus LHP. In the years 2003 through 2006, Ortiz hit .216, .250, .302, and .278 against LHP.
Now, I’m not saying that Ortiz should sit instead of Drew against lefties, not at all. I’m just using Ortiz as a comparison, as their numbers versus lefties aren’t far apart. However, I would have to think that it is very rare that a team’s highest paid player becomes a platoon player. In Drew’s defense, I do not think he should be sitting versus lefties, however, if his at bat versus Brian Fuentes to end Sunday’s game is any indication, maybe Francona knows what he is doing.
It was nice to see the Red Sox and Angels come together in fellowship on this Easter Day:
Should make for an interesting series when the Sox return back to Anaheim in May. Hopefully, they won’t let as many opportunities to score slip away then, like they did this week. And, hopefully they’ll be able to slow down the Angels on the basepaths. It was nice to see Varitek throw out Figgins trying to steal second, though.
Now it is onto Oakland, before returning back to Fenway for the RED HOT Orioles. I think the Sox will take 2 of 3 from Oakland in this series, but I am not looking forward to those 10 PM start times. Oh well.
It’s only one game in the scheme of it all. However, it is always great to get out of the gate with a win. The best part of the day, was that Josh Beckett was DOMINANT! Will be nice to have the real Josh Beckett this season, provide he remains healthy. Nice looking line:
7 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 10 Ks. All on only 93 pitches thrown.
Dustin Pedroia picked up right where he left off. A home run in his first AB. Kevin Youkilis with 2 hits. Everybody seeming to chip in today. Jason Varitek with a HR. Mike Lowell and RBI double. Jason Bay an RBI. JD Drew with an RBI as well and he didn’t leave the game with an injury which is always a plus.
The only real blemish on the day was Hideki Okijima’s performance. Remember two years ago, what happened to Okijima on Opening Day in KC. If the same patterns follows, we’ll be happy with him come August.
As for me, I was at the ballgame. It is always great to be at the park, especially on Opening Day. Even when it is a cold day. I didn’t see any of the pre-game festivities, as I was underneath the RF grandstands, selling programs. However, I did get to see a lot of the game, since the product I was selling during the game wasn’t a hot item to sell today.
Game two tomorrow night, should be another good one. Jon Lester against Scott Kazmir, two of the top lefties in MLB.
Let’s build a streak!
Wooooooohooooooooooooo! FINALLY!!!!!! OPENING DAY IS HERE. However, the forecast is for rain, which is scheduled to begin around game time. Doh!!!!!!!! Let’s hope it can hold off for 3 or 4 hours. How disappointing.
However, what wasn’t disappointing was yesterday’s beautiful day that I spent at the olde (really OLD) ball park. I went to Fenway yesterday for 2 reasons.
1) Pick up my uniform:
Oops. That’s not my uniform. I wish.
2) Try and meet up with Julia of Julia’s Rants and other bloggers she was trying to get to meet outside Fenway. Unfortunately, I did not make it in time to meet up. When I was finally finished picking up my uniform, I called Julia and she and Scott from I’m Not a Headline Guy were on top of the Prudential Building. Here is a picture of them:
No, really, they are up there. I was on the phone with her exactly at that moment, as I was standing behind the Red Sox dugout.
Since I was at the ballpark, I’d figure I might as well take in the Red Sox workout. It was a gorgeous day for baseball; warm and not a cloud in the sky. Since I brought my camera, I figured I might as well take a few (or 20 or 30) pictures. Here are some of them:
The view from the RF boxes next to the visitor’s bullpen:
Big Papi & Kevin Youkilis:
Evan Longoria: (thanks to Rays Renegade for the ID)
Theo Epstein (well, the back of his head, anyway):
Mike Lowell (talking with Longoria (l.) and Pat Burrell (r.) thanks to Rays Renegade again on ID of Rays players)
Finally ~ View from the Budweiser section in upper RF:
It was quite a blast. It seemed like I had the whole park to myself. There were a couple of tours going on. Also, there were some other Red Sox employees who had their children there, but the greatest perk of working at the park is being able to be there without any fans.
EDIT: I forgot to mention that I noticed the lower (field level) and upper box (red) seats seem to have brand new seats in there. The actual seat parts have padding. I sat in one, and it was pretty comfortable. However, the only problem is that back rest seems to be the same height. So, now with a cushion there, the
back rest is on the lower part of your back which probably won’t be as comfortable as the game goes on. I think these new seats are only in the infield box seat sections. It looks like the RF boxes, grandstand (blue seats) and bleachers have the same crummy seats.
As I was leaving, I almost walked right into a Tampa Bay Ray coming out of the Red Sox clubhouse. I am not sure who it was though. Maybe B.J. Upton, (did he travel up north with the team while being on the DL?) but I am not sure at all. He was just wearing some shorts and a T-shirt and not a name tag.
All and all, it was a great day. Quite the opposite of what I am looking at through my window as I type this. I better bring my galoshes with me, as I am on my way to the ball park just after I finish posting this.
Josh Beckett vs James Shield. Should be a great game!
Red Sox Jersey courtesy of MLB Stores
All others property of Red Sox Ramblings
It is great, that the Red Sox finally resigned Jason Varitek. However, what is even better, is now that we can stop reading and writing about this Red Sox – Varitek contract saga.
Finally, now we can focus on spring training and the upcoming 2009 Season.
It’s that time of year. The time to look into the future and see what lies ahead. So, let me put on my swami headgear, take out some sort of crystal thing, and this magic little 8 ball thing:
Okay, now we are ready for our 2009 Predictions:
- The New England Patriots will not win the Super Bowl. (Okay, now that I got my obligatory bad joke out of the way, we can continue.)
- The Pittsburgh Steelers will win the Super Bowl.
- The Boston Celtics will win the NBA Championship….again!!
- The Boston Bruins will lose in the 1st round of the NHL Playoffs. (I really hope that is not true, but I only go by history.)
- Some race horse will win the Kentucky Derby and then the Preakness. Then for weeks we will hear about how great this horse is and it will be hyped up as the first winner of the Triple Crown since Affirmed in 1978. Then in the Belmont, the horse will finish in 8th place or something stupid. This seems like an annual ritual.
- Tiger Woods will win the first golf tournament he plays when he returns from his knee injury.
Now, let’s get to the baseball stuff:
- Jason Varitek will sign a 2-year contract with the Red Sox.
- The Dominican Republic will win the World Baseball Classic.
- Manny Ramirez signs with the San Francisco Giants. The city of LA has never done a complete 180 on anything faster.
- David Price will become the 1st pitcher to win the Rookie of the Year and the Cy Young in the same season.
- A.J. Burnett will make 18 starts this season, however, J.D. Drew will spend more days on the DL than Burnett.
- C.C. Sabathia will be the AL All-Star Game starter while the NL will send Pedro Martinez to the hill.
- After throwing a complete game in the 10 inning All-Star Game, leading the AL to a 3-2 victory, Sabathia’s shoulder falls apart lifting the All-Star Game trophy MVP.
- Ryan Howard, Mark Reynolds, and Adam Dunn combine for only 400 strike outs between them.
- Curt Schilling signs with the Tampa Rays in mid-May, and goes 8-0 down the stretch to help the Rays surpass the Yanks for the AL Wild Card.
- The Dodgers win the AL West over the Giants after Manny sits out the final month with a “calf strain”, code for “I’m not happy with only getting a 2-year, $50 million contract.”
- The Red Sox win their 3rd World Series Championship of the Century. (Hey, this wouldn’t be a Red Sox blog without this prediction, am I right?)
Now, that those are finally finished, I must say I enjoyed watching the MLB Network and their broadcast of Don Larsen’s perfect game. I am looking forward to more of their stuff. However, I do hope they cut back on showing Viagra ads when I am watching the channel with my son. He is 4, and doesn’t really notice that stuff yet, but……Please MLB, keep those for after bed time. I know they pay the bills for you, but just do it. Okay? Great!
Greetings all my loyal readers (stops counting after getting to the first finger of the first hand.) I apologize for the lack of posts lately, but a lot of factors converged at an epicenter that prevented me from the creative flow and motivation to write. But, I will not bore you with those details. I will just wish everyone a Happy New Year and hope that 2009 starts of better than 2008 ended. For some of you Yankee fans, I think the start of 2009 cannot get off on a better foot for you.
In Red Sox news, it sure has been a quiet hot stove season. With the Patriots looking at the post-season from the outside, it is nice we have 2 winter sports team who have returned to glory to keep us from killing ourselves during this hot stove borefest. Anyway, a flurry of activity picked up with regards to Mark Teixeira a while back. However, nothing came of that. The Sox did sign two players recently. Brad Penny and Josh Bard are now in the Sox’ fold, Bard for his second stint.
We all remember Bard was part of that HUGE deal, that brought Doug Mirabelli back to Boston with the State Police escort to catch Tim Wakefield in a CRUCIAL May game. I love a sentence dripping with sarcasm. Anyway, that is probably one of the few blunders that the Red Sox front office have made in the Theo era.
As with Penny, I read an interesting and inciteful post from the Yawkey St. Yaker about why the Sox may have brought Penny here. It makes sense. I would love to see the Red Sox try to bring in one other guy, as I think Penny may be more injury prone than J.D. Drew and A.J. Burnett combined. And, although this guy has been shelved quite a few times over the past few seasons with arm injuries, if he is healthy, I think Mark Mulder provides more of an upside than Brad Penny. I think lefties can pitch well in Fenway Park. I remember the days of John Tudor and Bruce Hurst, lefties who fared pretty well in front of the Green Monster.
Anyway, the Red Sox still have a bit of work ahead of them to start the 2009 year off. The biggest hole in their line-up, obviously, is at starting catcher. So, I guess it is time that we start the Jason Varitek pool. When will the Sox resign him? How many years will it be? What will the average annual salary be? Maybe I can get Mark to hand out a prize for the winner of this pool, what do you say Mark? Haha.
I hope everyone has a happy and safe New Year’s tonight. We are under 2 months before pitchers and catchers report.
I’ve recovered from Thanksgiving, Black Friday, My Birthday (Nov 29, and yes I do accept belated gifts), and Cyber Monday. Phew!
Now, it is that time of year again. The Hall of Fame Ballot has been published.
There are only 23 players on this year’s ballot. That is the smallest amount ever. 10 of those players are appearing on the ballot for the first time. Those 10 players are highlighted by Ricky Henderson who is a SURE THING to be voted in.
Of the players who are back on the ballot again, there is Bert Blyleven, Andre Dawson, Dale Murphy, Mark McGwire, and Jim Rice, who is entering his 15th and final year on the HOF Ballot and is the subject of today’s blog entry.
Jim Rice was one of the most dominant and feared hitters of his era (1974 – 1989), yet he has been unable to garner the necessary 75% of the BBWAA votes to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame. Why is that?
Obviously, that answer is subjective. However, it can probably be a combination of various things.
Firstly, Rice does not have any “Magic Numbers” in his career statistics. He did not hit 400 HRs (which was pretty much the magic HR total before the steroid era pushed it up to 500) nor did he collect 3,000 career hits. Now, what do these Magic Numbers truly mean? They mean you were either an super extraordinary player or you were a good play who played a long, long time. There can be lots of arguments with regards to using this as a standard of Hall of Fame enshrinement; I mean just compare Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron. However, it is pretty much an unwritten rule that reaching these milestones will garner Hall of Fame induction.
Secondly, when you compare Rice’s numbers to other Hall of Famers, there are some things that don’t add up for him. However, should players be compared to other Hall of Fame players who played in a different era? The game is constantly evolving; nowadays, more rapidly than ever before. Not only that, but how many of the writers who vote for the Hall of Fame and are doing these type of comparisons, but have never seen Jim Rice play. You figure, if I am 37, that means I wasn’t even 3 years old when Rice made his major league debut and I was enjoying my last summer of freedom after graduating high school and getting ready to head off to Nichols College when he played his final game on August 3, 1989. What were some of these other sportswriters doing back then? Now, all they have to go by to determine if he is worthy is by comparing numbers.
Lastly, and this is a weak reason, but there has always been some chatter that Rice was not friendly to the media during his career. Was this truly the case? Who knows? If it was the case, would voting writers hold a grudge and not vote for somebody because of this? I highly doubt it. Maybe 1 or 2 writers, but that would make a minimal difference, since Rice has always been short of reaching 75% by way more than 1 or 2 votes.
Why should Jim Rice be a Hall of Famer?
First of all, like I wrote above, he was one of the most feared hitters of his era. Ask Jim Palmer (actually, don’t ask him as he held Rice to a .219 average but he did give up the most HRs to Rice of any pitcher who faced him. So, ask him anyway! Haha), ask Ron Guidry, ask Dennis Martinez, ask Jack Morris, ask Steve Stone, ask Storm Davis, ask Rick Stutcliffe, ask Scott McGregor, ask Sparky Lyle, ask Jim Beattie, ask Doyle Alexander, ask Rollie Fingers, well, ask any pitcher from that time. I’m sure as a BBWAA member you’d be able to ask any of these pitchers, guys who actually faced Jim Rice.
Second, if Gary Carter is a Hall of Famer, than Jim Rice is a no-brainer. Carter is a career .262 hitter, 2,092 career hits, 324 HRs, 1225 RBIs in 19 seasons. His Mets defeated Rice’s Red Sox in the 1986 World Series. That is the only thing Carter has over Rice. Why is Carter in the hall? Now, let me be clear hear. I am not say Carter does not belong in the Hall of Fame. I am only saying that if you compare Jim Rice to Gary Carter, aside from position, Rice trumps Carter in most, if not all, offensive stats and is just as deserving to be in the Hall of Fame as Carter is.
Next, let us compare Jim Rice to other players of his ERA. Jim Rice played from August 19, 1974 through August 3, 1989. In those 15 seasons, 13 full seasons, his contemporaries were players such as Mike Schmidt, George Brett, Dave Winfield, Reggie Jackson, Gary Carter, Fred Lynn, Andre Dawson, George Foster, Carlton Fisk, Don Baylor, Eddie Murray, Greg Luzinski, Robin Yount, Dale Murphy. All of these players were active for AT LEAST 12 seasons during Jim Rice’s career or the Rice era.
Only 2 players hit more career HRs during the Rice era than Jim’s 382. Mike Schmidt hit 529 in that span while Dave Kingman hit 383 HRs. Only Robin Yount and George Brett accumulated more than Rice’s 2,452 hits with 2,602 and 2,523, respectively. Only Mike Schmidt had more RBIs, 1,540 to 1,451 during the Rice era. Jim Rice led all players in the Rice ERA in RBI’s per game, as he average .69 RBIs which is slightly better than Mike Schmidt’s .68 RBIs per game. His Batting Average of .298 ranked 8th in the Rice era behind Rod Carew, George Brett, Al Oliver, Bill Madlock, Paul Molitor, and Cecil Cooper. His Slugging Percentage of .502 was 3rd in the era behind only Mike Schmidt and George Brett.
For this comparison, you could conclude that Rice was the 2nd or 3rd best hitter during this era. I think, undoubtedly, Mike Schmidt is the dominate hitter of this era. You could rank Rice ahead of or behind George Brett. Aside from that, there is nobody else who compares. However, you have to take into consideration that Dave Winfield, Reggie Jackson, and Eddie Murray played 14, 13, and 12 of the seasons of the Rice ERA. I will concede that Reggie Jackson more than surpasses Jim Rice (although Rice did have a better career average and slugging percentage and ALMOST more career hits even though Jackson played 6 more seasons), but you CANNOT say that Dave Winfield or Eddie Murray surpass Jim Rice. The only reason they are in the Hall of Fame, is because they hit the one or both of the MAGIC NUMBERS.
Dave Winfield is a Hall of Famer. He played 22 seasons to Rice’s 15. Winfield finished with a .283 batting average, 3,110 hits, 465 HRs, and 1,833 RBIs. Rice retired at age 36. Winfield’s numbers at age 36 (he retired at 43) were: .287 batting average, 2,421 hits, 357 HRs, and 1,438 RBIs. Looks pretty similar, eh? Winfield never accumulated 200 hits in a season, while Rice did that 4 times. In his remaining 6 seasons, Winfield batted over .271 once (at .290) and averaged 18 HRs and 66 RBIs during that time. Not really HoF type numbers, but lasting those last 6 seasons, got him to the magic numbers. Winfield never won an MVP and placed in the Top 5 of MVP voting 3 times, but was a 12 time All-Star game selection. Jim Rice won 1 MVP and placed in the Top 5 6 times, but was only selected to 8 All-Star games.
Eddie Murray is a Hall of Famer. He played 21 seasons to Rice’s 15. Murray finished with a .287 batting average, 3,255 hits, 504 HRs, and 1,917 RBIs. Murray played his first full season of 160 games at the age of 21 while Rice only got 24 games at age 21 with his first full season at 22. Rice retired at age 36. Here are Murray’s numbers at 36 (he retired at 41): .290 batting average, 2,646 hits, 414 HRs, and 1,562 RBIs. Almost similar, but slightly better since that covers 16 full seasons while Rice only had 13 full seasons. In his remaining 5 seasons, Murray batted over .260 twice (.323 and .285) and averaged 18 HRs and 71 RBIs. Not really HoF type number again. However, like Winfield, Murray played long enough to reach the magice numbers of 500 HRs and 3,000 hits. Again, like Winfield, Murray never had a 200 hit season nor won an MVP. However, like Rice he finished in Top 5 MVP voting 6 times, and was selected to 8 All-Star games.
So why are Winfield and Murray Hall of Famers? You could argue that Rice was more of a feared hitter and a better hitter than both Winfield and Murray, but does that mean Winfield and Murray are only get rewarded for lasting 22 and 21 seasons? Is having a long career more important than how you performed over that career? It does seem that the combination of having a LONG career so that you can reach the MAGIC NUMBERS is the best way to guarantee yourself a plaque in Cooperstown. While injuries took their toll on Rice, forcing him to retire at 36, Winfield and Murray were able to continue playing the game at less than there full selves, but still good enough to remain useful to a team to get themselves the career numbers needed.
Personally, I think Jim Rice should be in the Hall of Fame. I think he isn’t because of what I wrote above, and also the fact that offensive numbers EXPLODED during the Steroid Era (maybe Rice should have taken some roids to hang on and over come his injury issues, like Mark McGwire) dwarfing a lot of the solid numbers of the players who dominated and were feared in the late 70s and early 80s. I think it is a joke is Rice does not end up in the Hall of Fame, yet Gary Carter is in there, especially since Jim Rice was just as great a player as Dave Winfield and Eddie Murray.
I rest my case.
PS. Sorry if this blog entry is too long. I try to keep them somewhat short, as I am sure folks don’t really want to read some War and Peace novel, but some something interesting, quick, and intersting.
In other Red Sox news, the Sox offered arbitration to Jason Varitek and Paul Byrd. You can read here why offering arbitration to Varitek is a no-lose situation for the Red Sox. Varitek and Byrd will have until Sunday, December 7th to accept or reject arbitration. If they accept, they are guaranteed to be Red Sox again in 2009.
ESPN is reporting that the Sox have signed Japanese pitcher Junichi Tazawa to a “term sheet” which means only passing a physical is impeding the official announcement of a deal.
HoF Ballot – Mark Newman/MLBlogs
Jim Rice – Photographed by: John Iacono (SI Vaults)
Gary Carter – http://www.garycarter.org
Dave Winfield – Unknown (off some random website I can’t remember)
Eddie Murray – Baltimore Sun (photo by Gene Sweeney Jr. / July 27, 2003)
Special Thanks: Baseball Reference (I love that website) / Play Index (used to research all of the stats listed above)
Well, since the Hot Stove flame seems like it is flickering and the off-season wheeling and dealing is moving a pace slower than this guy:
I figured I’d blog about something else.
This weekend, a Patriot QB did something no the other Patriot QB had ever done. (No, I’m not talking about marrying a pregnant girlfriend.) Matt Cassel threw for over 400 yards in two consecutive games. That is also more 400 yard games in a span of 2 games than Tom Brady has thrown in his career (or so I’ve hard, there is no snazzy Play-Index over at Football Reference like there is a Baseball Reference.) Cassel has really done a great job filling in for Brady during this injury. The Patriots still have a great shot of another championship. The Pats currently sit a game behind the Jets in the AFL East and tied with the Colts and Ravens in the Wild Card race at 7-4. Aside from this upcoming week against the Steelers, the remaining schedule is pretty easy. It looks like the Pats can easily finish the season at 12-4 or no worse than 11-5 which should easily clinch a playoff spot. However, the Patriots are no longer the sole winter team in Boston vying for our attention.
Although it is still early in their respective seasons, both the Celtics and Bruins are the top teams in their conferences. Usually nobody pays much attention to these two teams. However, since Kevin Garnett came to town, the Celtics have returned to being the force they were from a previous era:
Not only that, but the Bruins are actually fun to watch. They play fast, the play hard, they hit hard, and they score goals. I’ve never been much of a Bruin follower or a hockey watcher for that matter. Usually I’d start to tune into hockey come playoff time. There are less whistles and faster pace that is funner to watch during the playoffs. However, I actually did flick the channel over the Bruins game the other night against the Canadians. They were down 1-0 at that time, but came back to win in a shoot out. I can’t remember the last time I flipped to that channel.
So, at least in Boston, we have some sports to keep us occuppied during this baseball void.
Oh, and since this is a baseball themed blog specifically tailored to the Boston Red Sox, there was a bit of news today. Rob Bradford at WEEI.com is reporting that the Red Sox opened negotiations with Jason Varitek by offering him a 1-year deal. If the story is true, I don’t think that is an offer that is going to get a deal done. Maybe it is only a starting point, as according to Peter Gammons over at ESPN, it doesn’t appear that the fax machine dedicated to Varitek offers at the Boras office isn’t exactly ringing off the hook.
I do hope that the Sox and Tek can work out a deal, possibly a 2-yr deal with a mutual option for a 3rd year, as I can’t picture him in any other uniform but Red Sox.