I just want to sweep away any lingering memories from yesterday’s double losses to the Royals and focus on tonight’s game. The magical A’s are in town, and it’s kinda like a family reunion of sorts. Jed Lowrie’s in the house. And Josh Reddick. And Sweet Covelli Crisp.

I’ve always been an unabashed Coco fan, and I still look back on his brief Boston tenure as a sort of curiosity. Before the guy even played a single game for us, Cocopalooza was in effect. He was shilling for Dunkin’ Donuts and his name was launching a thousand T-shirts and he had us asking, “Johnny who?” as he slipped in to replace the bona fide cult hero that was Professor Damon.

Then the season started. And he broke his finger, missing the next 42 games. And when he got back… things never really seemed to gel. Just some curiously average play punctuated by some f@#king spectacular catches–shit I’d only previously seen in Spielberg movies. We got nothing that even touched his 2005 season with the Indians, where he hit .300 with 178 hits, 69 RBIs and 16 home runs (in his three seasons with the Sox combined, in fact, he only hit 5 more home runs than he nailed in ’05). By the 2007 postseason, fans were clamoring for Coco’s ass to meet bench so that Jacoby the Young–heir apparent to Covelli’s centerfield perch–could get in the game. And their wish was soon granted.

I figured he’d be trade bait before the 2008 season, but he stuck around, putting up some fairly decent numbers in a reduced and revolving role. He didn’t pull a Valentin and wail about his lot in life; he just went out and played and did his job, before he was ultimately shipped to Kansas City for relief pitcher Ramón Ramírez.

If I have to remember him for any one thing, it’ll be that human Hindenberg he pulled to snare the final out of the 2007 ALCS, barrel-assing into the corner triangle and sacrificing everything he had to close it out.

I’ll always stand and give Coco a hand. But then I’m all business. It’s the battle of the 12 win teams tonight and I’d like to see a little “street justice” after dropping a series to the Royals. Oh, and write this down: hero of the game will be Stephen Drew.

Nah, just joking. It’ll be Napoli of course.