Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The only prescription: More Theo

So Theo Epstein has come full circle and is back as GM of the Red Sox. This is an usually quick return. Didn't Larry Luchino learn anything from 90210 and Luke Perry's return? They almost got it right - a big to do was made over Theo leaving, and an unfamiliar cast of characters brought in. But they didn't let it simmer. Got to wait it out a couple of years, make us almost forget that Theo ever existed, and then BAM, bring him back, but only to find that the thing is so much in the shitter that the big return is meaningless anyway.

This does answer the question of who's going to be calling the shots in Boston. Maybe. I don't know if it's really settled. This thing has become such a saga that I wonder if it isn't one whole big WWE style swerve. Just watch, during the first time the Yankees come to town Theo will wait until the home plate ump's back is turned, sneak onto the field, and body slam Jason Varitek, thereby revealing that he turned heel, joined the Yanks, and returned only to sabotage Boston. Kind of like when Chyna and Triple H got back together after Chyna joined Kane, only for them both to turn on X-Pac and give Shane McMahon the European Championship. That's what the Red Sox are. They've become a modern day Degeneration X.

The Orioles avoided arbitration with Jay Gibbons by giving him a 4 year, $21 mil deal. I love that phrase as applied here in the news reports, "avoided arbitration." That's like saying, "Jim Smith avoided stepping in a puddle in the sidewalk today by walking in the street and getting struck by a car." This is a lousy move for the Orioles. Jay Gibbons is settling in very solidly as a corner OF who's good for 25 homers, 80 rbi, no walks, and injuries. At most he was going to get $5.3 mil in arbitration, so he wasn't in line for some out of whack salary. But now Baltimore is locked into him for 4 years. Remember, Gibbons is 29, so he isn't likely to get a lot better. The O's will regret the hell out of this contract. I'm envisioning a Tigers-Bobby Higginson "what on earth will we do with this guy" kind of thing. Maybe that's harsh, but this is another in a line of moves that I expect to maintain Baltimore's status as AL afterthought for a while longer.

Jackie Robinson's daughter Sharon has stated publicly that she doesn't want baseball to retire Roberto Clemente's number, as some Hispanic groups want. That's gracious, Sharon. How about letting somebody else argue that point for you next time? Because maybe he didn't break the color barrier, but Clemente was a great man in his own right, with the whole dying on the way to help earthquake victims thing. Truth is though, she's right. Jackie Robinson is a special situation. He opened the door for everybody. Clemente might have been the first Latino superstar, but he didn't blaze the trail that Jackie did. And if you retire for Clemente, then where does it stop? "Jim Abbott led the way for one handed pitchers throughout this country. He needs to be honored." "Let's not forget Bob Harris, the first player ever from the state of Wyoming. Without him, baseball wouldn't have seen the likes of Tom Browning, Mike Lansing, and Mike Deveraux." (That's right, Mike Deveraux - evidently Wyoming has at least one black family. Who knew?)

3 Comments:

Anonymous ASA said...

How long did it take you to find players born in Wyoming?

9:38 AM  
Blogger Eric B said...

It was a culmination of a year long research project devoted specifically to making that joke. I'm very dedicated. Actually, baseball-reference has a list of all players born in every state. What did people do before it?

12:52 PM  
Blogger The Mink said...

2 comments:

1. Jay Gibbons-I'm a birds fan and am usually the first to criticize their disastrous moves over the past 8 years. That being said I have no problem with this one. You are correct that Gibbons is nothing spectacular and I too have a problem with his lack of walks but continuity is also important and that is what they are finally trying to do over here by locking up some players long term (i.e. working on deals for roberts, mora and obviously have tejada (disgruntled perhaps) and that is a nice relatively young and reliable core. Gibbons also is the clubhouse leader and was very critical of Palmeiro last year. Do I think he is anything more than a 3rd outfielder? no but overpaying a little here is actually alright with me.

2. Funny that you saw that about Deveraux. For some reason, the fact that he was from Casper, Wyoming slipped into my sick little subconscious from all the years of seeing it on the scoreboard. Anyway in 2002, when my friend and I were counselors on a young israel west coast trip for some reason we stayed in Casper for 2 days. I alerted him of this tidbit and we looked thru the yellow pages and called all the deveraux's (5 if i recall) that lived in Casper. We had no luck, though some claimed to know him well and told us of their frequent barbecues with the other deveraux's. But we almost struck gold near the pool when a young attractive lady selling soft drinks overheard our discussion and said she was friends with him and had his cell #. She was ending her shift but said she'd call him and try to arrange a breakfast meeting btw the 3 of us. Sadly the breakfast never happened and all we have to tell is a stalkers tale.

4:13 PM  

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