Tuesday, December 23, 2003


Beantown blogger Ben Jacobs (of Universal Baseball Blog, Inc.) looks cold, harsh reality in the face, and surprises himself by still seeing a "a pretty good team" in Boston--even without A-Rod.

Good for him, and I hope the rest of the baseball community wakes up. Maybe in a couple of days he'll realise that on paper this has the potential to be a historically great team--even without A-Rod.

I think it's fair to come clean that even though I've been hard on Epstein and Henry of late for these moronic procedings, I've got to give them credit. They didn't let A-Rod completely dominate their offseason and miss out on making real, tangible moves to improve the ball club. Although Boston already had two really good closers on the roster, Foulke is the best of the non-Gagne best. And Martinez-Schilling is the best one-two since, well, Johnson-Schilling. (Although Oakland and now New York still have Boston beat 1-3, 1-4, and 1-5.)

Anyways, back to Ben. Given all the pixels I've spent on hyping Ramirez of late, I really liked this part:

So, the Red Sox aren't entirely thrilled by the prospect of having Ramirez on the team, so what? Is that going to make Ramirez a worse hitter? From what I understand, the one thing that Ramirez loves more than anything is hitting. He spends a ton of time working on his hitting and the only situation that would probably make him truly happy is the one in which he is allowed to just hit to his heart's content and not worry about anything else at all.... Manny Ramirez is a hitter. It's what he does and it's what he loves to do. He takes great pride in it, and he's not going to do a worse job at it just because you or anybody else doesn't like him.

Jeez, sound like anyone familar, Boston fans?

Ramirez is no less the source of Boston's "woes" than A-Rod is in Texas. He's no bargain at $20M, but if A-Rod is worth $25M, Manny earns every million over the course of the season.

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