Friday, February 16, 2007

I know you might have a hard time believing this, but I do in fact have friends. And from time to time, these friends talk to me. Occasionally, they talk to me about this blog. Today, a friend of mine reminded me that this blog is entitled Sedition in Red Sox Nation, and yet I haven't blogged about the Red Sox in quite some time. Rest assured that will change over the next several months. Spring training is just around the corner, now. So I will be renewing my attacks on Red Sox fans and the Olde Towne Team in earnest. But don't worry, there will be plenty of time to rip on Ainge, Jim Rome and Mark Cuban as the basketball season limps to its end.

First up, today is the single most important day if you are a washed up baby boomer who masquerades as a lifelong Red Sox fan. Even the movements of the truck that carries the Red Sox equipment from Boston to Fort Myers becomes an occasion to wax very nearly, but not quite, poetic. I had no idea the trials and tribulations of a van full of stuff could make for such a ripping good yarn. So when do the Red Sox owners decide to slap a GPS tracking device on there to allow the faithful to track the station to station movements of Theo's guitar and Julio Lugo's unmentionables? Knowing them, I'm sure Red Sox Nation will be taxed for the privilege.

For those of you who are determined to venture to Fort Myers to get an early glimpse of the 2007 World Series Champion Boston Red Sox, you simply must read this. Who better than the experts at the Globe to help the Red Sox fans navigate the urban jungle in Fort Myers. Even better, is this little introduction to the Fort Myers that only Gordon Edes knows. Truly it is a movable feast, or it would be if it were Paris and Gordon Edes were Hemingway.

I guess I'm just not the kind of guy who draws the strength to gut it through the rest of an unpleasant winter from the hope born from the knowledge that the pitchers and catchers have reported. I also don't believe that a fat rodent can accurately predict the coming of spring by seeing his shadow. But then again, baseball season in Boston is the worst time of year for me.

Larry Lucchino's mouthpiece is all fired up for Dice K. He thinks 16-18 wins are likely, given the Red Sox lineup and provided he stays healthy. I think we all know that's the floor for him. The ceiling...34-0 0.10 ERA 1,000 Ks 3 BBs 5 terminal illness cured and the solution to the war on terror. There is no way he could disappoint. After all, Julio Lugo and JD Drew might deliver. Then again, they might handle Boston in much the same fashion as Edgar Renteria. Only time will tell.

Of course, it's no big deal for the CHB if his prediction on Dice K is off a bit, or all the way for that matter. Outside of myself and a few other lone gunmen in the blogosphere most people will simply forget that he even made it. Then the CHB can revert to his favorite hobby - attacking Theo Epstein for not showing him the proper respect.

I have another friend who is a Cubs fan. He's been complaining about Carlos Zambrano. Since he follows the team more closely than I do, I take his word for things like that. He is unimpressed with the 16 win season Zambrano turned in last year. According to him, most of Zambrano's wins came when the Cubs were well out of the playoff hunt, and, for that matter, out of the fourth place in the NL Central race.

I can see where he wants to get paid. Doesn't everyone? But does he have the leverage he thinks he has? Yeah, Ted Lilly got paid, Gill Meche got paid. But are the Cubs wrong to wait and see with Big Z (on another note, what guy refers to himself in the 3rd person as Big Z? Off the top of my head the only one I can think of is Zap Brannigan from the animated series Futurama. Probably time for a new nickname, if that's the other example)? Plus Carlos called Barry Zito a great pitcher. With judgement like that, I don't see him getting $15 million per year from the Cubs. Sorry about that dreadful rhyme a couple of sentences ago, but I'm too lazy to fix it.

The Cubs have pitching woes. The next couple of seasons might be a total loss, based on what's available in the free agent market, the geometrically growing going rate for bad pitchers and the depletion of pitching prospects thanks to Dusty Baker's management. I know Sweet Lou is no spring chicken, but it might be time to tie down what you can, build up an offense and hope that the organization and Jeff Samardzija have made wise choices. I wish them luck.

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