21 Jul 2015
Bananarama couldn’t have know that their 1983 hit would be the anthem for the 2015 Red Sox.
It is time to be sellers, not that there is much to sell. Hanley Ramirez is a train-wreck of a left-fielder but can still hit a bit. Pablo Sandoval has performed about how you’d expect from a player who cares so little for his fitness. The rotation has been a nightmare (Porcello at $20m a year for the next 4 seasons, oh boy!). The only real marketable pieces are Koji Uehara and perhaps a contending team in need of some power in Mike Napoli or leadership in Shane Victorino but the Red Sox would assume most of the salary hit.
It is hard to pinpoint just what went wrong with this team, aside from the fact that both the Ramirez and Sandoval signings felt like the signing of Carl Crawford a few years back.
John Henry needs to look at the approach the Red Sox have taken as they are heading for their 3rd last place finish in 4 seasons. Ben Cherington, Larry Lucchino and everyone else needs to be evaluated and some tough choices are needed. Doesn’t it feel like winning, while important, is getting tangled up with other things like ratings and marketing deals? I have no direct proof, but signing two flawed players in Ramirez and Sandoval wreaks of some bean counter/entertainment person asking to buy a reason for fans to tune in. Except that, winning is what causes fans to tune in, not gimmicks or overpriced hacks.
Despite the sinking ship, there are a few glimmers of hope, not for this season, but for beyond. Xander Bogaerts has become what we all expected, Mookie Betts has been solid, Blake Swihart has started to hit a bit and Eduardo Rodriguez has surprised. Now if you look at the above mentioned individual stats, none will overwhelm you or even impress you, but they are all very young (23 or younger) and could develop into the future cornerstones of this franchise. Ugh.