Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Pedroia Wins AL MVP; Coco Traded to the Royals

The Hot Stove hasn't really heated up yet, but there's plenty of news and more than a few rumors floating around.

First things first: Dustin Pedroia capped off an incredible season by winning the AL MVP this week. All he's done in his first two years is win the Rookie of the Year award, a World Series title, a Gold Glove, and now the MVP. The naysayers - and he's had them all his life - will say that nobody stuck out in the MVP race, and there is a kernel of truth in that. But as somebody who watches entirely too much baseball, take it from me: this kid is as deserving as anybody. Consider the numbers, courtesy of WEEI's Rob Bradford:

Games: 157.

Runs: 118 (1st).

Hits: 213 (Tied for 1st).

Doubles: 54 (1st).

Batting average: .326 (2nd)

Stolen base percentage: 20 steals, one caught stealing (1st)

Total bases: 322 (4th)

Percentage of swings and misses on pitches faced: 8.1 (1st)

Multi-hit games: 61 (1st)

Games with 3 or more hits: 23 (1st)

Games with 4 or more hits: 7 (1st)

Pedroia beat out Twins 1B Justin Morneau and his own teammate, Kevin Youkilis, for the award.

Believe it or not, this numbskull (there's always one, isn't there? Remember the Pedro fiasco after his sick 1999 season?) inexplicably left Pedroia off his ballot completely. Hard to figure what he was thinking, but at least he admitted he screwed up.

Anyway, congrats to Pedey.

As far as the Hot Stove, we got a little kindling wood on the fire today as the Sox traded Coco Crisp to the Kansas City Royals for Ramon Ramirez, a pretty solid 8th inning set-up man type. Incredibly, the Sox actually unloaded payroll on the Royals, who were desperate for speed. Coco's Boston career got off to a rough start when he broke his finger sliding into a base early in the 2006 season, but I will always remember the amazing catches (none better than the theft he pulled on the Mets' David Wright (above) in 2007) he made throughout his time here. He also kept his mouth shut down the stretch, not whining about playing time, and in the end I think he's happy that he'll be playing every day. Hey Manny, that's how you work your way out of town. As for the Ramirez that we got, he had a 2.50 ERA in 70-plus innings last year and only gave up two home runs. Some are speculating that his arrival could mean the team is thinking about putting Justin Masterson back into the starting rotation (yes, please).

Other odds and ends: Lots of respected writers are saying the Sox will make a huge offer to try to get Mark Teixeira, and news broke today on most of the major sites that they have engaged in talks with free agent pitcher A.J. Burnett, who John Henry loves from his days running the Florida Marlins. Strap on your seat belts, boys and girls. We're going for a ride over the next couple of months.

nice....finally...thanks hrdball i didnt know about coco puff...remember the old days when kc was a they got coco & gathright in the of....scary....ooooh watch out for them in the al middie
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