Monday, July 10, 2006

The Long Hot Day

Rehashing yesterday's disappointing 19 inning loss at this point is somewhat pointless. The two guys that could have won the game for the Sox (Papelbon not giving up the 2 out HR in the 9th and Ortiz flying out on a 3-0 count with the bases loaded earlier in the game) can both be excused. The namesakes of this blog have been the secret sauce for this team so far and if anyone deserves a mulligan, they do.

That said, the Sox are in a very good place right now. Not only are they in first place leading the Yankees by three games, they are four games better than they were last year at this time. There are also a lot fewer question marks. To be honest, I could see the Sox not making ANY moves prior to the trade deadline.

With the infusion of youth and the relative healthiness of the everyday players, the Sox are in better shape than any other team in the AL with the exception of maybe the White Sox. With Hansen, Delcarmen, Lester, and Papelbon coming on like the studs we had all hoped they would be, what upgrades could you make right now? Would I like to replace Seanez in the bullpen? Absolutely. Would I like to see the Sox trade Clement for another no. 4 starter, even if it means eating 1/2 to 3/4 of his salary? Absolutely. But even if they don't, they should still be fine.

The one thing I could see the Sox going out and getting for the second half of the season is a big bat off the bench. A veteran guy like they had in Ellis Burkes two years ago. Right now, the Sox are a little weak when it comes to pinch hitters late in the game. I know Wily Mo might be an option but he's still young and largely unproven. I have full confidence that Epstein will pull some rabbit out of his hat like he's been known to do in the past. I'm sure we'll also pick up another reliever considering the fact that you can never have enough help in your bullpen, especially as starters begin to wear down late in the seaon.

On a complete side note... the Sheryl Crow/Dave Matthews show the other night was awesome. Great sound, perfect night, one of the better concerts at Fenway if I don't say so myself (I've been to three out of the four). Can't wait to see who they get for next year -- maybe U2? That would be awesome.

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