Monday, February 15, 2016
Posted by el duque at 7:49 AM
We won one - Masahiro Tanaka's elbow didn't bark after his first throwing session since off-season surgery. That's a huge, though transitory, victory. Lost amid the excitement of being the only MLB team to not sign a free agent this winter was the Yankee news that Tanaka had gone under the scalpel... yet another another reason for Food Stamps Hal to have considered signing a Price or Greinke. Ah, but why say those names, they are just this year's Yoan Moncada. (YOAAAAAN MONCADA... SLOOOOOWLY, I TURN... STEP BY STEP...)
We lost one - or Scranton did. We didn't sign Ike Davis to some piddling, middling deal. I thought we would. He's the kind of reclamation project Brian Cashman usually snags - a former top prospect, now tarnished (and cheap.) Also, he is the son of former Yankee bullpen lug nut Ron Davis. I always figured he'd end up with us. It's no big loss, but when Tex gets hurt - (and we all know Tex will get hurt) - we have Who on first. (Technically, it's Dustin Ackley.) Jeez... It's either Who or I Dunno...
Then there was a tie: Mookie Betts, the reincarnation of Kenny Lofton, drove a golf cart into a water trap. No biggie. And the Redsock Nation will tsk-tsk about Mookie being Mookie, about the madcap joys of youth, all that crapola they trowel out when one of their players just peed in the punch bowl. But the guy drove his golf cart into a pond. I've known guys who do things like that, and some are fine, and some have one cog always turning in reverse. How do roll your cart into a pond? Beats me. Today, beneath the joyful smirk of every Redsock fan, there lurks a silent terror that 2016 might have a tweak in the matrix.
Soon, the Dice of God will start rolling every day. Right now, our only injured player is Greg Bird. By the Ides of March, there will be others. They could be 20-year-olds slated for Charleston. They could be A-Rod and Tex. Guys get hurt. That's baseball. That's the Dice of God.
Boston has yet to feel that kick in the groin. But they have a team much like ours, based on thirtyfivesomethings, guys who can tweak a gonad while taking a crap. The Dice of God have already taken Bird from us. But the truth is, we are deeper at Triple A than we've been in the past. We have young replacements at most positions - we're knee deep in the OF - except pitching, (And nobody can withstand injuries to a pitching staff.)
Boston has energized its 2016 fan base. They signed David Price, traded for Craig Kimbrel, and are marketing their young stars - Xander Bogartes, Jackie Bradely Jr. and - of course - Kenny Lofton Betts. If all goes to plan, they could run away with the AL East. Then again, the Dice of God are about to roll.
And their golf cart could still end up a water trap.