Final Thoughts and Moving On

Some final notes on the Jason Bay deal.

Sean McAdam on Sports Tonight said the following:

 – The Red Sox Front Office received and solicited feedback from the players on Manny.  Most of the veteran players said it was time for a change.  They weren’t sure they could count on Manny or trust Manny.

 – Jason Bay will be playing his first meaningful game of his career at the MLB level Friday night.

 – McAdam says Bay will hit 5th in the line-up if for no other reason than to limit the comparison to Manny Ramirez as a # 4 hitter.  At least for the time being.  Either Lowell or Youkilis will hit clean-up in the meantime.

 – The inclusion of Brandon Moss and Craig Hansen was interesting.  They both had value, but to move Manny, were necessary to include.

Sports Tonight showed a clip from David Ortiz commenting on Manny Ramirez.

Ortiz Quote:  "Always I had people asking me questions about Manny, you know, like I’m Manny Part 2.  You know, he wore me out, I mean, you know, because I know everyone is going to ask ‘hey David, what do you think about what Manny’s thinking?’  I don’t [expletive deleted] know, you know?"

 – Super (or former Super) agent Scott Boros represents both Ramirez and Bay (and Hansen).  McAdam believes Boros convinced Manny to agree to refuse arbitration to any team that got him thus making sure Manny would not accept arbitration, and thus a mega payday, for the acquiring team.

 – The Florida Marlins were in on a deal but wanted the Red Sox to add an additional $2 million dollars on top of the Red Sox paying all of Manny’s salary.  The Red Sox said no and the Marlins eventually said goodbye.

 – By making this deal, the Dodgers essentially gave up Andy LaRoche and Adam Morris for a FREE Manny and 2 compensation draft picks (sandwich between round 1 and 2) in the 2009 draft.  A steal for the Dodgers which makes you wonder why other teams out there didn’t get involved.  Why?  (caution, Andy opinion) Because they knew that Manny is potentially the biggest headache in baseball.

 – In answering how desperate Theo Epstein was to move Manny, McAdam said there was a "mandate" from the veteran players to move Manny in order to avoid a sinking ship even if they couldn’t get full value for Manny.

Final thoughts:

Are the Red Sox a better team after this deal?  Well, not to anger anyone, that is a difficult question to answer.  With a Manny Ramirez actually trying hard, the Red Sox are a worse team than they were at 3:59pm Thursday.  By far.  So on paper, the Red Sox lose big.

But, Manny wasn’t going to try hard.  Or at best, the risk of Manny tanking was too great to ignore.  Jason Bay and the $10mm the Red Sox paid (approx. $7.5mm for Manny’s contract for the next 2 months and the $2.0mm they owe Bay) and Hansen and Moss were what it took to rid themselves of a malcontent.

With Bay, the Red Sox have a good hitter who finally has protection.  Consider he hit behind Ryan Doumit and in front of Doug Mientkiewicz in Pitt.  Some protection, eh (Bay is Canadian, so I threw in the local talk).  Now he gets Ortiz, Youkilis, Lowe, Drew or Pedroia protecting him.  A better selection, no?

The age of Manny has passed.  On to the Back Bay Basher.  I guess Fenway isn’t in the Back Bay, but rather the Fens.  But Back Bay Basher sounds better.