Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Time for Something Bold

There's a little more than 30 hours left till the trading deadline tomorrow at 4 p.m., and I'm officially of the mind that Theo and his front office minions need to pull a Nomar-like move out of their hat and get rid of Manny Ramirez.

This situation has come to a head, and if it's possible, was exacerbated last night as Angels pitcher John Lackey was working on a no-hitter at Fenway. Manny hit a grounder that he could have beaten out for a single - that is, of course, if he had been running at more than a jogging speed. To their credit, the fans actually booed him. Appropriately, the true dirt dogs on this team - Pedroia and Youkilis - proceeded to put a halt to both the no-no and the shutout in the ninth, but the Sox still fell to the hottest team in the majors, 6-2. By the way, that hottest team also made news yesterday by picking up slugging 1B Mark Texiera for Casey Kotchman and a minor-league pitcher. With that one move, the Angels made a statement to the rest of the league that they're going for it.

The Sox now need to do the same. Their two AL postseason rivals - the Yankees and Angels - have both made moves in the past week while the Sox have been mum. While there are some obvious parallels to trading Nomar in July 2004 and trading Manny now, I'm not saying that Theo will get so lucky this time around. I think we all said a giant 'WTF?' when it was announced that we had traded our golden-boy shortstop for Dave Roberts and Doug Mientkiewicz, but we quickly forgot about that as that team went on a tear and ultimately ended 86 years of misery. This time around, Theo has to get more than that. Young prospects aren't going to do it alone. As of this morning, word is that the main players for Manny are rumored to be the Phillies (Pat Burrell), Dodgers and Mets (Carlos Beltran?). Pedro Martinez supposedly stumped for acquiring Manny by declaring him "a great human being."

Whatever happens in the next day or so, one thing is for certain: this Red Sox team needs to have some fresh air pumped into it. Manny is a lame duck every day now, and it's abundantly clear that his teammates are sick of the spectacle. Let him take his act to the National League, and let's give this team the chance it deserves to try to repeat.

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