Tuesday, March 21, 2006

IN APPRECIATION OF ALL SOX COLORED RED

That wailing, crying, rending of garments and gnashing of the teeth that emanated from the Northeastern dorms as the news was announced that starting pitcher Bronson Arroyo was traded to the Cincinnati Reds for the future in right field at Fenway Park, Willy Mo Pena, is just the latest scene in the Greek tragedy known as the Boston Red Sox. Bronson the rock star joins fellow idiots Kevin Millar, Johnny Damon, Mark Bellhorn, and Pedro Martinez who have already been exiled from Paradise. Taking a page from the Gridiron Gods, Bill Belichick and Scott Pioli, the theatrically inclined Theo Epstein has closed the curtain on the goofballs, mascots, and divas that once filled the Boston clubhouse. In their stead have rolled the young, the proud, the impressionable who can molded into the sleek new model to sell to the impressionable consumers bursting with confidence and the quiet, can-do ability formerly only found in Foxborough: Coco Crisp, Alex Gonzalez, Willy Mo Pena, Jonathan Papelbon, Jon Lester, Craig Hansen, Manny Delcarmen, David Murphy, and Kevin Youkilis.

This is the end of the line for the Dan Duquette/John Harrington/Yawkey Trust/Yawkey Family days of the Boston Red Sox. Like the Kraft family exiling the last vestiges of the Sullivan Family and their handprints on the franchise, the Red Sox are a new and exciting creature. The 25 players and 25 cabs philosophy is dead and buried. Idiot holdovers David Wells, Trot Nixon and Manny Ramirez are counting the days until they too are escorted out of Eden. This team bears the markings of Theo and the Triumvirate only. This is a new age of the Red Sox, an ending of the Yawkey Dynasty and the beginning of new empire, ripe with progressive thought, new ideas, and bold young leaders not afraid to venture headlong into the unknown.

The Red Sox of tomorrow will be the boldest version yet. Young veterans mixed in with hungry, talented prospects and tossed about and dashed with zest like a gourmet salad. The team adapted the New England Patriots blueprint for baseball and stand ready on the horizon, waiting, waiting, waiting to strike. Bronson Arroyo being traded to Cincinnati for Willy Mo Pena is yet the latest strike from the Fenway front office forming the team into a collection of young, moderately-priced athletic baseball players who can work together as a true group of teammates rather than a collection of over-priced superstars intent on promoting themselves over the team.

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