2008-2009 Off Season Thoughts
Yes, that's right...NEXT year's off season. Rob Bradford of the Boston Herald wrote a thought-provoking piece in today's Boston Herald, having to do with a couple of the "what-ifs" that will be facing the Sox after the 2008 baseball season. Here's a little bit of it, and my comments will follow. The entire article is available when you click on the title, but read this and my comments first, please...
"Every offseason presents a whole new set of storylines. But next year’s might be Oscar worthy.
For the Red Sox, there is the impending free agency of catcher Jason Varitek and the task of replacing starter Curt Schilling.
But the player who will potentially headline the drama is Manny Ramirez [stats], staring at a club option of $20 million for each of the two years after 2008. Once thought to be a destination not to be concerned with because of the Red Sox’ front office’s previous run-ins with the left fielder, the notion of Ramirez sticking around for a ninth year could be a plausible scenario.
Who would have envisioned the slugger finishing up his latest championship parade, pointing to the retired Sox numbers along the outside of Fenway Park's wall and making it clear that he not only wanted to retire a Red Sox, but hoped to have his own number immortalized at Fenway?"
Peter here, and who'da thunk it? Manny at $20 million per year...that's a relative bargain these days. First of all, Schill will be retiring after next season, at least that's what it seems like right now, so no Boston decisions need to be made on that front. But the Captain, Jason Varitek? We need him back for the 09-10 seasons. Let's just hope...I can't envision him playing for ANY other team than ours. And neither can you! I guess when the Sox are doing well, in fact, better than ANY TEAM last year, Manny is all about his club. But when the club "wallows in the mire," to borrow a few words from Jim Morrison, THAT Manny seems to lose it. Just a little. Last year, when his severe oblique muscle injury allowed him to take his natural swing at the plate, we all saw him shine, and we rode his shoulders, along with Papi's and so many others, to a World Championship. And how sweet it was! The prospect of having him playing out there in Fenway Park's left field for an extra two years is a wonderful one in itself, and he'll be welcomed back with open arms and love in all our hearts. And if one day, years from now, the club decides to put his number up there with the cherished and hallowed ones, that would be equally wonderful. AND that would mean Manny will decide to remain with the club next year, of course, AND pick up his option for the two years after that. Just the thought of our clean up hitter sticking around THAT long is sweet indeed, and I hope I can score tickets for his Fenway finale....in 2010.
It's Sunday, the day before Christmas Eve day. I wish you all the best, every one of you, and I appreciate you stopping by. Any and all comments will be quickly responded to, and the entire Rob Bradford Herald article is right here! Just click on the title of this post. Be safe. Be well. And thanks...for everything!