Saturday, November 22, 2008

Dustin Pedroia's Hometown

The San Francisco Chronicle has a great article on Dustin Pedroia's relationship with his hometown of Woodland, California. The A.L. MVP has been ducking the mayor who wants him to be grand marshal of the holiday parade but the town has found a way to honor him anyway by naming the new little league complex after him. It seems Red Sox Nation has descended on the small town:

"Man, they're all showing up down at the shop going, 'Hey, I was from Boston,' or, 'My son is living in Boston,' " he said. "My God, I didn't know there were this many people in the world who had an association with Boston. It's crazy."


MLB Wraps Up Maple Bat Study

Major League Baseball has finished its study on maple bats and now must decide what the next step is. The Players Association must agree to any actions taken so whether or not maple bats will be banned is still up in the air.


Friday, November 21, 2008

Lugo for Willis is Still a Possibility

SI's Jon Heyman is reporting that the Red Sox and Tigers are still talking deal to swap Julio Lugo and Dontrelle Willis.


Chuckle of the Day

This is from “Eight Men Out”, by Eliot Asinof, the story of the 1919 Chicago White Sox who threw the World Series that year.

Ring Lardner was writing in a different vein: “As for today’s game, they was a scribe downtown this AM saying that 2 men asked who was going to pitch today and the scribe said Cicotte and 1 of the men said you are crazy as Cicotte has such a sore arm that he can’t wash the back of his neck. So when we come out to the park this scribe told me about it and I said they wasn’t nothing in the rules of today’s game that required Cicotte to wash the back of his neck.

Eddie Cicotte & Babe Ruth

‘Well,’ said the other expert, ‘the man was just speaking figurative and meant that Eddie had a sore arm.’ ‘Well,’ I said, ‘if he has only one sore arm he can still wash the back of his neck as I only use 1 even when I am going to a party.’
‘The back of your neck looks like it,’ said the other expert. ‘Yes,’ I said. ‘But what is the different or not about Cicotte only having 1 sore arm as he only pitches with 1 arm.’ ‘Yes, you bum, but that is the arm the man said was sore.’

[sic],[sic], [sic], & [sic]


Another Reasons to Go After Tazawa

The Red Sox have shown interest in Junichi Tazawa for a few months and now have another reason to try to sign him. The Japanese amateur pitched a complete-game shutout in the quarterfinals of Japan's corporate league baseball championships today with major league scouts looking on.


Dice-K Will Try To Defend WBC Title

Matsuzaka is going to play for Japan in the World Baseball Classic this spring and will try to win another championship for his home country. Dice-K was the MVP of the WBC in 2006. He told reporters the following yesterday:

"I'll accept the offer if I'm asked to play," Matsuzaka said. "I'll pick up the pace of my training in December so that I won't have to scramble at the last minute."


Thursday, November 20, 2008

You Can Own Ted Williams' 1987 Suburban

An auction of Ted Williams items will take place this Saturday in West Swanzey, N.H. You can bid on Williams' 1987 Suburban complete with a super cool gold baseball hood ornament or you could own a stuffed antelope that Teddy Ballgame shot during a hunting trip in Africa along with a picture of him over the kill. I'm not sure if you will have to give the items back when they unfreeze Williams and bring him back to life.


Red Sox Sign Paul McAnulty

The Red Sox have signed first baseman/outfileder Paul McAnulty to a minor league deal. McAnulty hit .207 last season in 66 games with the Padres but he did walk 26 times and had an OBP of .341. He has a career .400 OBP in the minors so he could be a moneyball type player. He is not the guy who is going to be the 4th outfielder now that Coco is gone but he may get some time in the bigs when some injuries arise.


Pedroia Talks About Winning the MVP - Video

Watch Dustin Pedroia's press conference about winning the AL MVP:


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Analyzing the Coco Trade

After a year of wild speculation over what would happen with Coco, the end was swift and anti-climatic. The negotiations with the Royals were not leaked to the press so there was little pre-trade analysis on the deal.

When Coco arrived in Boston he had big shoes to fill in Damon's absence. Most fans expected him to be an instant success so they could forget about Damon's trip to the Bronx. He brought speed and great defense to the team early on, but then came the broken finger. In his first season in Boston he never really got in a grove and had multiple trips to the DL.

Ellsbury was called up when Coco was struggling at the plate late in '07 and quickly won over the fans. Crisp was a professional when he was benched and supported his teammate. Last off-season everyone believed he would be traded for a catcher or as part of a deal for Santana but he was still on the team when spring training rolled around. The platoon in the outfield worked for most of the season because of the steady parade of injuries. As the season came to a close Coco started to get hot and his trade value went up.

The Red Sox have a solid player in Jacoby Ellsbury and they needed to get him some more playing time as well unload some salary. It had reached the point where the Red Sox could not justify Coco's salary when he was playing less than half of the games. The timing of today's trade was surprising but the outcome is not. One of Theo's main goals this off-season was to improve the bullpen and with the acquisition of Ramon Ramirez they have done that. Ramirez give Tito another option in the 8th should Oki struggle or give him a bridge to Oki and Papelbon by pitching the 7th.

Coco never developed into the player the Red Sox thought he might become. He has great defensive skills and is a good fastball hitter. His speed gives him the ability to swipe some bases but he didn't get on enough in the lead-off spot. I think Coco will do better with a change of scenery and I think the Red Sox are a better team with Ellsbury in center. In the end I think fans will respect Coco for his contributions to the team and they will appreciate having another good arm in the pen.


Report: Coco Traded For Reliever

Kansas City Radio station WHB-810 is reporting that Coco Crisp has been traded to the Royals for reliever Ramon Ramirez. In 71 games Ramirez had an ERA of 2.64 with K.C. last season.

UPDATE: The deal has been confirmed.


Hot Stove Update

Several sources have the Red Sox in discussions for A. J. Burnett. Newsday, Daily News. The Yankees also have interest in Burnett and are reportedly making a 4 year offer.

The Daily News also reports that the Red Sox are still interested in Lowe.

If the Red Sox land either Burnett or Lowe then they will have some room to trade Buchholz to the Rangers for a catcher.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Mills and Hale Passed Over For Mariners' Job

Tito may have his right hand man and third base coach back for next season since the Mariners' job is going to A's bench coach Don Wakamatsu.


Red Sox Statement About the AL MVP

BOSTON -- The Boston Red Sox congratulate Dustin Pedroia on winning the American League Most Valuable Player Award in just his sophomore season in the Major Leagues. It is a well-deserved honor, and we are delighted that his outstanding season has been recognized in this way. The .326 batting average, 213 hits, 118 runs, 54 doubles, 17 home runs, 20 stolen bases do not tell the whole story of how valuable Dustin was to the team in 2008. He also played gritty Gold Glove defense, and served as the igniting spark plug in our clubhouse all year. We would also like to congratulate Kevin Youkilis on his third place finish in the MVP voting. Truly, both Dustin and Kevin played integral roles in our 2008 season. Finally, we take great pride in the fact that both Dustin and Kevin were drafted and developed by the Red Sox. It is a great tribute to our Baseball Operations, Scouting and Player Development staff.


Youk Comes in Third in AL MVP Voting

Kevin Youkilis came in third place for the American League MVP here's how his numbers broke down (from

Youkilis received two first-place votes, four second-place votes, four third-place votes, nine fourth-place votes and two fifth-place votes. He finished with 201 points, compared to 317 for Pedroia and 257 for Morneau.



Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia has won the American League MVP.


Help Pesky Get Back in the Dugout

There is a new petition up at Sawxheads for MLB to go back to letting Johnny Pesky sit on the bench. Last spring MLB enforced a rule about the number of uniformed coaches allowed to sit on the bench making Pesky have to watch the games from the clubhouse. MLB can make an exception for a hero of the sport. Please take a moment and sign the petition.


Ortiz Talks About the Season

Big Papi seems to be everywhere this off-season, here is his recent interview from NESN.


MVP Annoucemnent Comes Today

The American League MVP will be announced at 2 pm Eastern (11 am Pacific) today. There is a good chance for Pedroia and Youk to go 1st and 2nd in voting, not a bad right side of the infield.


Monday, November 17, 2008

That There is an RV

No its not Cousin Eddie from Christmas Vacation cruising into town on fumes, its the Rolling Green Monster; perhaps the coolest vehicle on wheels. David Millette bought a beat-up camper, painted it like the Green Monster and is about to embark on a journey across the country and into Fenway West territory to see all of Red Sox Nation. You can follow along with the trip on and look at the map and related blog updates from the trip. I hope to get a tour of this tribute to the Sox when it makes its way to the Pacific.


Do the Yankees Want To Be The Red Sox?

In yesterday's Herald Michael Silverman wrote that the Yankees may get two more former Red Sox stars:

It should require something closer to a two- to four-year deal worth $10-11 million a year to sign Varitek. He is coming off a four-year, $40 million deal.

Teams expected to be in on the bidding include the Tigers and Angels. Do not dismiss the chances of the Yankees going after Varitek as doubt remains about whether Posada’s shoulder, surgically repaired last season, will allow him to catch in 2009. . . .

Other whispers: The Yankees trading for Nick Swisher was a hedge in case they cannot sign Mark Teixeira (another Boras client). If they do not get Teixeira, then Swisher can play first and the Yankees will go after - sit down - Ramirez (another Boras client).

I would not be too surprised if Manny ever ended up in the Bronx but I just can't picture Tek playing for the Yankees.


Sunday, November 16, 2008

New Info Comes Out on the Manny Saga in Boston

ESPN is reporting that the Red Sox sent a letter to Manny, MLB, and Scott Boras in July saying that Ramirez would be suspended if he did not play in the next game. Manny quickly called team execs and said he would play.

According to multiple sources, Boston management had drafted an official letter of suspension for Ramirez, and delivered it to him at Fenway Park at around 11 p.m. on Friday night, July 25. For the second straight game, Ramirez had refused to play that evening, and the Red Sox lost 1-0 to the rival New York Yankees in front of a boisterous and sold-out home crowd.

The letter informed Ramirez that the suspension was to go into effect the next day, Saturday, July 26. It said Ramirez was being suspended without pay for being unwilling to play. Copies of the letter were also sent to Major League Baseball, the MLB Players Association and Ramirez's agent, Scott Boras.

Within two hours after Ramirez received the letter of suspension, the Red Sox received two calls, according to sources. The first call was from one of Ramirez's teammates. He told a member of Boston's front office that Ramirez would play in Saturday afternoon's game against the Yankees. Within minutes, the second call came in from Ramirez himself, who confirmed that he would be available for Saturday's game.

Why is this information just coming out now? Are some members of Red Sox management trying to hurt Manny's free agent value? This could certainly give some teams some pause before throwing crazy money at Ramirez but even with the new information about the suspension threat by the Red Sox, Manny can still hit and teams will need good hitters.



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