The Boston news and sports media can't stop talking about the Red Sox. This is understandable. So let me get it off my chest:
Congratulations! Great season! Way to hang in there in the ALCS! Great Series! A well-deserved championship, proving that season-long consistency beats teams that depend on long winning streaks to outweigh long losing streaks.
But what I've really had enough of -- already! -- is the Boston media's fixation on the alleged "choice" between "keep Mike Lowell" versus "get A-Rod".
It is a totally false choice. The Boston media is totally off-base. (Not that that surprises me.)
Alex Rodriguez was a shortstop before he joined the Yankees. He moved to third base to accomodate the fact that the Yankees already had a star shortstop and team captain in Derek Jeter. A-Rod just 32 years old, and over the past four seasons he's put in innings at shortstop when Jeter needed an occasional rest. He's still perfectly capable of playing shortstop full-time for any major league club, and playing it very well. There is no question that adding A-Rod at shortstop would improve any team at that position, including the Red Sox.
So the Red Sox's choice is not "keep Lowell" versus "get A-Rod". It is "get A-Rod" versus "don't get A-Rod".
The Sox can get A-Rod and keep Lowell. If they do it and retain other key players, they will go from being a championship team to a potentially awesome dynasty team.
The Sox know this. Theo Epstein knows this. It's just the Boston media, and the fans who rely on them for their information, who don't.
If the Sox choose not to get A-Rod, it won't mean that they decided to keep Lowell. It will mean that they decided that increasing their payroll by $30 Million/year to get A-Rod isn't worth it, even if it improves them at shortstop and makes them a potentially awesome dynasty team.
And I would tend to agree.
1. Pete Lyons10/31/2007 09:34:34 AM
I've been saying the same to friends of mine. As much as I hated Alex in the pinstripes I would love the offensive upgrade over Lugo.
2. Lars Olufsen10/31/2007 10:16:53 AM
I don't know too much about pro baseball, but in Denmark - where soccer (or "real football") is the fave sport - there is also something called integrity. It is not always popular to sign star players from your opponents rosters. It is sometimes more appreciated if you nurse young players coming up through the minor ranks to be your own star players.
There IS no "I" in "team", and sometimes, bringing in some overpriced primadonna doesn't necessarily improve the overall performance (ie David Beckham and LA Galaxy - albeit from a business perspective, that still looks to be a sweet deal for the Galaxy owners).
Is there any glory in being a "dynasty", when you can point at every single player and name the Major League club that originally scouted the player. Doesn't that reduce the TEAM SPORT to a sport of individuals standing side by side?
Looking at the SOX and their overcoming 86 years of drought, it looks like it has changed the feelings of a lot of fans. From loving their losing team for 86 years - standing faithfully together in the cold at Fenway - to suddenly wanting to be a dynasty because they won in 2004 and 2007 ... Are they really willing to "sell their souls"? They should huddle up, roll up their sleeves, and take pride in just being the Boston Red Sox.
After all ... being a fan is about loyalty and allegience - not about winning!
Congrats SOX on a fine season. Forget about A-Rod ... after all, he really is a Yankee - not a Red Sock - and even I now enough about attitude in baseball to see the difference!!!
3. Curt Stone10/31/2007 01:41:24 PM
A buddy of mine mentioned that Lugo has a 4 yr deal worth 9 million a year. Not sure it's accurate, but, Red Sox would have to eat that deal to bring ARod in. Even with that said, why in the world would you consider replacing a player who got you to the World Series and won it for you(MVP)? Remember Scott Broshias and Gregg Nettles? World Champs with a great glove, clutch hitting and power. That's all you need at third base. Pitching, Pitching and Pitching. End of story.
4. Bob Balaban10/31/2007 07:48:21 PM
Maybe the Sox can't afford both of them?
5. Danny Lawrence11/01/2007 10:22:21 PM
@Lars, in fact the Red Sox are a mix of "home grown" and acquired talent. In fact almost half of their starting line up in Game 1 of the World Series (Catcher Varitek, 1B Youkilis, 2B Pedroia and CF Ellsbury) were home grown and DH David Ortiz, while not home grown was picked up after being released by another team.
And A-Rod isn't a Yankee, any more than he was a Seattle Mariner or a Texas Ranger (his 2 prior stops in the big leagues), if I had to categorize him I'd call him a mercenary.
6. Richard Schwartz11/02/2007 12:28:15 AM
@2 Lars: There was a study done once (unfortunately, I can't find it on google any more) that correlated baseball team success against total team salary, and against salary distribution. They found that a narrow and equitable distribution (i.e., most players' salaries are about the same, with most variances in proportion to player's statistical contribution) has a stronger correlation with success than total salary does. I wish I could find the report on this again!
@3 Curt: The Sox paid $50 million just for the right to talk to Matsuzaka. I doubt that $9 million would stand in their way if they wanted A-Rod. Besides, they'd find another team that wants Lugo at a discount, and get them to pick up a share of his contract.
@4 Bob: The Sox paid $50 million just for the right to talk to Dice-K. They can afford anyone they want.
7. Curt Stone11/02/2007 07:42:25 AM
It would be interesting if the Red Sox would be willing to pay what ARod will command. It's one thing to spend that kind of money on a starting pitcher. As teams have found out, paying big money for ARod does not bring championships.
8. Richard Schwartz11/02/2007 08:14:54 AM
@7 Curt: The baseball men have found out, but have the owners learned? Brian Cashman still has his job, even though he brought A-Rod to New York, couldn't win with him, and couldn't keep him. Joe Torre doesn't.
9. dave shields11/02/2007 11:00:11 AM
to learn the answer to the question you asked in a recent comment,
Thanks for taking the time to ask it,
10. Curt Stone11/03/2007 02:39:02 PM
I believe Cashman made a brillant deal because the Rangers were still paying some of that big contract. I'm going to miss his bat but the Yankees have made the right choice. Look at this ridiculous news coming out now.
Arod's an Ahole.
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