You can’t turn on talk radio, read a blog or retreat to your Scott Williamson Memorabilia Room (don’t act like you don’t have one) without getting some perspective on what the Sox should do for 2010. Recently, Denton and I sat down to discuss this very issue as well. But rather than rely on facts, stats or the laws of gravity, we just quaffed beers, crank-called a couple girls we knew in high school and argued over points of little or no consequence. Unfortunately for you, these points were transcribed for your reading displeasure. Here’s the first:
Bring Me The Head/Contract of Johnny Damon
Red: Jason Bay isn’t coming back.
Denton: You know this?
Red: I do. It’s fait accompli. Just accept it.
Denton: I respectfully disagree.
Red: It’s okay. I’ve got the answer. We take Johnny Damon back.
Denton: Possibly the dumbest thing you’ve suggested since that Foghat tattoo.
Red: Hear me out. The guy obviously misses Boston and is still bummed out about being persona non grata in these parts. I think he’d jump at the chance to return and get back in our good graces.
Denton: The only time I want to see Johnny Damon in a Red Sox uniform is when I’m watching highlights of the 2004 season. The guy was dead to me once he donned the pinstripes and started cashing checks signed by Steinbrenner. There’s no coming back from the dark side.
Red: Hell, I’ve rooted for dinks like David Wells, David Cone and Ramiro Mendoza once they dropped the pinstripes. Why would I hold out on the prodigal son if he wanted to come back? Especially when he’d be filling a need for us. And his numbers aren’t all that far off from Bay’s. In 2009, he hit .282 to Bay’s .267. Granted, Bay had 12 more home runs, but in terms of hits (Bay 142, Damon 155) and OBP (Bay .384, Damon .365) they weren’t that far apart. We also know that Damon can play here, and that he’d have something to prove to both the Yankees and Sox fans. Also, he might be willing to come here for fewer dollars and a sack of Hostess Fruit Pies for those very reasons. Plug him in for 2010 and wait and see if we can land a Carl Crawford in 2011.
Denton: Stop. The last thing the Red Sox need going into 2010 is an aging outfielder and slap-hitting batter. In his 4 years with the Yankees, Damon’s average has dropped a full 10 points and his strikeouts have risen in considerably less at-bats. Short of going on the juice, if he isn’t already, nothing is going to make his numbers better next year. Not to mention, does anybody really want to see Damon playing left field at Fenway? He had five errors this season, Bay had none. Even Manny only had four. Imagine him trying to make the throw from left field? Christ, he’d have to run it in and hand it to the cut-off man.
Red: You don’t appreciate what the guy could also bring in terms of personality to a team that many could argue was something of a blank slate in 2009?
Denton: Personality? On-field deficiencies aside, the guy is a moron. We’ve all seen him hem and haw his way through interviews; it’s a wonder he finds his way to the ballpark every night. Can’t you just see him staring at Heidi’s chest trying to formulate an answer to a question he didn’t even understand?
Red: You’re not seeing the big picture. Remember, with Damon comes Mrs. Damon. Maybe some crafty NESN producer teams her with Heidi to create the greatest hour of programming ever. Maybe she decides to mess around with some nerdy blogger just to liven things up. You never know.
Denton: Are you nuts? If you’re gonna think that way, why stop with Damon? What about Pedro? I’m sure Mark Bellhorn’s available.
Red: If the front office doesn’t do the sensible thing and re-sign A-Gon, I’d bring Nomar back in a heartbeat. Hell, did you see Pedro pitch the other night in the NLCS? Get his ass back as well. We know Tek will take the 3 mill and come back and Wakey is still the best bargain in baseball. Pull a Blues Brothers and get the band back together.
Denton: Where’s Curt Leskanic when you need him?
Red: The Mechanic? Like any good wrestler, I like to think he inhabits “parts unknown.”