Monday, August 10, 2009

Even The Christian Science Monitor is Second Guessing the Red Sox

The Christian Science Monitor of all places has an interesting, if flawed take on the Yankees sweep of the Red Sox.

Then again, the CSM is based here in Boston so I suppose I shouldn't be that surprised.

Mark Sappenfield argues the Red Sox are relying too heavily on prospects with limited big league experience and should have pursued Mark Teixeira more vigorously in the offseason. He writes:

But what the Yankees have driven home is that big money and big moves – done wisely – still matter. Little more than a week ago, the Red Sox had the opportunity to make a blockbuster deal for the Toronto Blue Jays' Roy Halladay, one of the top pitchers in the major leagues. The Blue Jays wanted Buchholz and Bard, according to reports. So the Sox walked away.

It was a sign, Blue Jays general manager J.P Ricciardi said, of changing times. "Teams value the kid you have in [the minor leagues] who has never done it more than the guy who has shown something in the big leagues," he told The Boston Globe. "That's what the thinking is now," That was the Red Sox' thinking. In the future, when Buchholz and Bard are cornerstones of the reborn Red Sox, it will perhaps be seen as a wise move. This weekend, however, the Yankees claimed the present.

This is typical second guessing. Let us remember that prior to this weekend series, the Red Sox and Yankees had met nine times and had won all nine games. Was Mark Teixeira a dumb investment for the Yankees when they lost all those games earlier this season.

Well, I'm not sure Ricciardi was going to trade Halladay anyway. Just ask the Philadelphia Phillies. But let's also suppose the Sox had traded for Halladay and given up Bard and Buchholz. Let's also suppose Halladay had pitched against the Yankees during this series and lost (as he did last week still wearing a Blue Jays uniform.) I'm sure Sappenfield would be criticizing the Sox for giving up two blue chip prospects and taking on Halladay's contract.

The point here is that Major League Baseball, especially when it comes the Red Sox-Yankees, is a results oriented business. You are only as good as your last victory and the Sox haven't won a game in a week.

But a week in baseball, as in politics, is a lifetime. When the Yankees visit Fenway Park from August 21-23 things in the AL East could be very different than they are now. We'll see.

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