I’ve been fortunate that in my lifetime, I’ve had the chance to see some very dominant Red Sox pitchers at the top of their respective games: Roger Clemens (before he got tangled up in ‘roids and underage country singers), Pedro Martinez, and, of course, Pat Rapp.
These days, it’s Josh Beckett, or as I prefer to call him, Commander Kick Ass of the F@#k Yeah Brigade. The man’s contract is set to expire at the end of the 2010 season, and I, for one, am desperate to see him locked up. So I’m pretty jazzed by all this talk that Beckett could be signed, sealed and delivered by Opening Day, to the tune of four-years at 68 million dollars and, presumably, access to every female dorm at Greater Boston-area colleges.
We all know how these contract negotiations go. If they drag on, they suck a little bit of the fun out of the season. Guy pitches lights out one game, we’re up all night painting “Sign Beckett Now!” signs. Guy shits the bed the next time out, we’re flooding talk radio with a hundred reasons why we outta trade that bum before he gets any older on our dime. It’s an unnecessary distraction that takes our eyes off the prize, which is crushing our enemies, seeing them driven before us, and hearing the lamentations of their women.
Honestly, I’m the kind of sentimental twit who has no place in a baseball front office; if Chuck Rainey had two sick grandmas he was caring for at home, the guy would still be on my roster. But in addition to his 2007 heroics, which placed him among the holy trinity of Curt Schilling and Dave Roberts, Beckett is one of the elite pitchers in the game. They don’t grow on trees, and we can count the ones we’ve had over the past twenty years on one hand. So if all this stuff gets done before a single official pitch is thrown in 2010, all the better.