Friday, December 09, 2005

FAIRWELL SWEET CRUELTY!

This is the way the Edgar era ends
This is the way the Edgar era ends
This is the way the Edgar era ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.

Mixing T.S. Eliot and Shakespeare, it sounds like my freshman Shakespeare term paper in college, where I learned the lesson that got me through four years as a liberal arts major with ease: always compare one work of literature with another that you know inside out. That way they think you did extra work as compared to relating it back to the only thing you really know. Sort of like those people who take every conversation endlessly around to on-base percentage (OBP) and on-base plus slugging (OPS). Now I may not be the most statistically analytical sabermetrician, but I do know that there are many different ways to manipulate data to make a point and eventually you have to play the game.

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HOT STOVE BURNT HAND:

So, in essence, the Red Sox paid $23 million for one year of Edgar Renteria and the Braves top young power-hitting infielder. Well, they could have paid $23 million for one season of A-Rod, so I guess there is always a silver lining. Seriously, the so-called maniacal Red Sox smear campaign against Theo continues unabated with not a noise but with action. Renteria? A Theo Mistake! Throw him under the bus! Clement? Trade his ass outta here!

Now I was a big Theo fan, so I certainly am not going to jump on the WEEI Edgar-bashing bandwagon, but I do appreciate the team trying to improve a mistake. Of course, had Theo still been the GM, I expect Edgar would have been out the door this year anyway. He simply did not adapt to the pressure-filled Boston situation. And that, although a surprise to me, is not unheard of in this day and age of free agency. Agents are not looking out for the best interests of the players they represent, they are not concerned in the least about them until they negotiate their next cut of the deal.

Anyway, the point I am making is that some players cannot cut it in a big market (uh, maybe Jeff Weaver for example), but that is no reason to keep them around for the entire length of their contract. Cut bait and move on, the Bill Belichick way. Steve Martin does not work out at Nose Tackle? Get rid of him. Need someone at the position to anchor the line? Do what it takes to get him (Ted Washington). He asks for a ridiculous contract? Let him go and sign a lower-cost alternative (Keith Traylor) and draft a nose tackle (Vince Wilfork). Need a younger and cheaper alternative to Keith Traylor at the back-up position to the young star? Away he goes and Dan Klecko, Ethan Kelley and Mike Wright step in.

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The trade I really liked was the Doug Mirabelli for Mark Loretta deal. Find a team dumping a good player for salary reasons and scoop him up for pennies on the dollar. Too bad there were not more deals like that out there.

The next steps? Find takers for Trot Nixon and Bronson Arroyo, add to the bullpen, get something breathing for David Wells, and then sign Juan Encarnacion. Comparable to Jacque Jones (and likely a lot cheaper), Encarnacion would look great playing centerfield while Adam Stern develops. As far as Andy Marte, why not put him at DH and move Big Papi to first base? What is so hard about that? Ortiz has soft hands around the bag and wants to play first base. Put Marte at DH, bat him ninth, and watch the balls dent the monster.

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