Thursday, February 22, 2007

Countdown 39

Thirty nine days until the season starts and only six days until the first spring training game, I’m starting to get very excited for baseball. Dice-k is even scheduled to pitch two innings against Boston College tomorrow and the first half of the game will be on NESN. With all that in mind there has been a lot of off the field news going on in Boston sports.

I can’t hold back, I really have a problem with the Sox not signing Curt Schilling. He said that if they didn’t get a deal done he was going to file for free agency, but he didn’t want a pay raise wanted the same money for one more year.

Simple enough right? Just sit down with Curt, who doesn’t have an agent so you aren’t dealing with someone like Scott Boras trying to rape you, get this deal done. I understand the Red Sox saying they want to wait and see how he pitches this season but it seems like a no brainier from me.

In a time when mid-level pitchers like Gil Meche are getting 50-plus million dollar contracts. On weei the other day they were talking about how Gil Meche keeps getting brought up in all the pitching talks. Well that’s because he is a mid-level starter, a number three guy in my opinion, and he got a huge deal. Why wouldn’t you lock up Schilling for the extra year?

Even if he starts to regress at worst you are going to have a number three starter to go along with Beckett and Dice-K. If Schilling goes out and wins 12-15 games this year his value in the free agent market will sky rocket. It doesn’t seem like it’s worth the waiting to see if you want to sign him after this season. At worst you have another Wakefield who can go out and win 12 games.

Could this end up like the Pedro deal and be a smart move on Theo’s part, absolutely. Schilling could easily get hurt, he could pitch terrible and it could out fine, the Sox could free up some money to sign a younger free agent pitcher like Zambrano. I have faith in Theo but this isn’t really on par with their recent financial moves.

Signing Schilling seems like a low risk move but we’ll have to wait and see how it pans out. For now all this news does is create a media mess. Every time Schilling pitches we’ll here “this is why the Red Sox should have signed him” or “this is why the Red Sox should not have signed him”. While I don’t agree with the decision I would like to watch the 2007 season with out having to deal with this contract crap every time Schilling takes the mound.

Everything always seems to get blow out of proportion this time of year with the Red Sox and this Schilling thing is not going to be any different. I hope Theo is right, I disagree with the decision but I hope I’m wrong.

Dice-K pitched a 100 pitch bullpen session yesterday guy does not mess around. The most concerning thing about Dice-K was the fact that he’s never pitched in the majors before but now I think it’s the fact that the translators he has are awful.

They take forever to tell us what he is saying and they are terrible English speakers, so when they start to translate they leave out articles and have bad grammar so you can’t understand them. They spent over 100 million dollars in contract and posting fees to get him but they can’t find a serviceable translator. Although at least they got rid of the first guy that didn’t seem to know what was going on, what Dice-K was saying or what the members of the press were saying.

Are you excited that he’s pitching Friday night at 6pm against BC on NESN…I am.

On to Manny, ‘Manny Being Manny’ right, we haven’t heard that before have we. Ok so Manny isn’t going to show up to spring training until the mandatory reporting date of March 1st. Big news right…maybe not that big of a deal. To be quite honest as long as Manny shows up and puts up the numbers he puts up he can come to camp on March 1st as long as he wants.

Manny doesn’t like the media but the media loves Manny especially when he is pulling ‘Manny being Manny’ stuff. Maybe he shouldn’t have gotten Julian Tavarez to be his PR guy but his mother is sick so lets give him the benefit of the doubt this time.

He’s a total whack job, he’s nuts and he is completely ridiculous but I think that’s why I love him so much. He’s unlike any player in the league, he has the temperament of a child, which at times can totally be a pain in the ass, but he’s also the best hitter in the major leagues seems to enjoy playing the game.

He’s wanted out of Boston a couple times but it hasn’t happened. People dog him for being spacey and not always playing hard but like I said he’s a child, you have to ride out his temper tantrums but it works out in the end. He has been one of the best hitters in the game and has been instrumental in the Sox success. Ask yourself this question. Have you ever turned a game off when Manny was at the plate? Didn’t think so.

Manny has permission to arrive late from the Red Sox, so it doesn’t really matter if he goes to a car show in Atlantic City or if he stays with his mom. As long as Manny is batting in the four-hole behind Big Papi on opening day I am alright with him showing up late.

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