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Saturday, December 24, 2005

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I stand by my statements. Iraq was a serious threat to the US at the time...

I guess I misjudged RSN's reaction to Damon's departure (if I am to judge you and Beth at Cursed to First as representative of the Nation-a somewhat unscientific conclusion). Of course, a major reason for that is that Johnny went to the hated rivals. Say he parted ways with the Sox to play in LA. I'm guessing there would be a lot less effigy burnings.

But I'll credit you with anticipating that Theo's departure did not necessarily mean a sea change in the front office's philosophy. They are indeed still tied to the idea of roster flexibility, and mixing short-term and long-term needs. The front office did not buckle to Damon's demands.

I should also say that I think the Damon contract is fine for the Yanks. They're overpaying on a yearly basis (and I'd much prefer a 3 year deal) but they're the Yanks. They can afford to overpay on the short-term. I don't think the contract will hamstring them in the future. Plus, they still have a 1st round draft pick (from the Gordon signing) which will be higher than the Sox picks, and have not had to trade any blue-chippers from the minors this off-season.

Call my absence whatever you want; bottom line, Damon's now a Yankee, for better or worse, and for the short term at least, it's likely to be better by a great deal. As for the summer of 2009, guess we can worry about that then.

Moving on, what about Gammons? At what point do we just start ignoring him? Could he have been more wrong?

Perhaps YF and I could get somebody with expertise in Flash to create some sort of wiz-bangy Gammons chart for our redesign, that would actively indicate how far off (or on) he is in his weekly column.

SF - Are you proposing that the comments above show you're usually right?

I'm not sure why it's reasonable to indict Gammons for comments made on the night of the Theo news. It was speculation, and then paraphrased by me. Gammons remains indispensible, IMHO, not that his is the authoritative word of god, or conflict free. (Murray Chass? Different story.) Anyway, SF is welcome to criticize him (as have I, and many times), and there's plenty of legitimate ammo. But he speaks for himself, and not the both of us, as that last comment might imply, intentionally or not. Gammons's HoF plaque is definitely well deserved, IMHO, and if we're not always in agreement, we find him hard from discredited. If we've indicated that in the past, consider this a big fat mea culpa.

Michelle and Johnny say Manny and his wife told them to go to New York. If I were a Sox fan, I would want to run Lucchino out of town on a rail. He has dismantled a great team, without a clear direction that I can see.

I grew up on Gammons. I used to love reading him. But as the years pass, and perhaps with the influence of the web's immediacy, it seems like he's pushed the rumor-mongering very close to the edge. With his weekly Globe column (and pre-internet), he used to compile a ton of stuff, probably exclusive, and rattle it all out Sunday, usually along with a longer section that was likely some sort of intelligent criticism. It was one of the best times of the week, those 15 minutes or so that it took to get through Gammons' work. But now, it seems like his Insider stuff is just blather. He throws out so much stuff that it's hard to tell what is real, what is spin, and what is a figment of his over-informationalized mind.

I mean no disrespect to PG - like YF says he's a deserving HOFer. Lately, though, I am very careful to repeat anything he says on this site as possible news.

maybe this is why Marte was available for Edgah.

"Andy Marte went 0-for-3 yesterday to drop his average in the Dominican Winter League to .220.
He has walked 16 times in 118 at-bats, but with two homers and five doubles, he's not showing his usual power. Maybe it has something to do with the mysterious elbow injury. Marte hit .275/.372/.506 as a 21-year-old in Triple-A last season, so while his performance in 57 at-bats in the majors and in the Dominican suggests he's not ready yet, he's one of baseball's best prospects."

John, why should we do what you suggest? Where is the proof that the Red Sox have been "dismantled", for the worse? If they had signed Damon to the same contract the Yankees did, you'd be completely laughing about how much Boras suckered them. If there's anything I think I have been correct about, it was about the Sox' organizational strategy remaining consistent even through the departure of Epstein.

Many of you have probably read this, but it's Bill Simmons' take on Damon. We share many sentiments, though he says it far more professionally.

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=simmons/051223

Comments of 2 of Simmons statemetns:

"And sure, I'm rooting against him next season and plan on booing him in person when I have the chance."

That is so bush league and so Boston. I like it much better when the Yankees have applauded players that helped them win titles when they returned on other teams (i.e. Tino at TB) The RS have a WS win after 86 years and he was a big part of it. And all they can think of is to boo him as thanks.

"and Larry Lucchino (the con artist who's currently running the Red Sox into the ground)"

Although SF states otherwise it is OBVIOUS that the RS are being dismantled... reminds me of the Marlins after 1997. And this from a very wealthy team that sells out every game.

SF, I said "team": compare the 2004 roster to the 2006 roster. The new team will definitely not win as many games, and yet it's not exactly building towards the future either.

Combine this with the gross mishandling of Golden Boy Theo, and as I said, if I were a Sox fan, I'd want to ride Lucchino out of town on a rail. You don't have to agree, but there are plenty of Sox fans who do.

The issue I have with the word "dismantled" is it's implication: that the Red Sox are being taken apart for duplicitous reasons. Perhaps that's my interpretation, or just projection. The "dismantling", and for a moment I will allow that word to pass, is to me a restructuring, and not at all insidious.

Simply put, "Ddsmantling" has a pejorative tone. I have been consistent in thinking what is happening is somewhat by design, and also well-intentioned, so I think it's a bad word. It's subjective, no doubt.

"That is so bush league and so Boston."

Okay, then how did you guys treat David Wells when he returned to the Bronx wearing red stockings?

It's hard for me, as a Bostonian, to separate arrogant attitudes like that from a city i'm actually quite fond of, and to keep the sentiment 'Yankees suck,' not 'New York sucks'. But then again, sometimes the best the crowd in the Bronx can do is say 'Boston sucks', so maybe that says enough. Who's bush league again?

Damon says one of the reasons he left Boston is because the team is being "dismantled," "like the Marlins."

All of sudden Johnny Damon is the second coming of Enrico Fermi?

Fermi's OBP was around .020

But the point of my comment, of course, was that at least some of the Sox players feel the team is being dismantled. That's always bad.

Manny told Damon to leave. Papi said letting Theo go was a disaster.

RE; Johnny Damon
As a YF I am conflicted over the Damon acquisition as JD has been THE ENEMY for four years. Nonetheless he is a great leadoff hitter and the type of ballplayer NY looks for, one who has performed in the big games. The biggest problem is NY was painfully made aware that defense matters in 2005. It makes your pitchers better. The diving outfield catch with two out and two on is equivalent to a two run homer. The great throw to third that cuts down the first to third runner can stifle a rally. And on and on. While JD has speed and hands he does not have an arm and that hurts for a team that has seen its team ERA go up every year since the last time they won the WS. Next year when some excellent CF players are available and Sheffield probably leaves, NY could go for a new CFer but putting Damon in right, the position where an arm is really valued is a problem. Moving Matsui to right is also not the answer here. JD is going to look great penciled in to the leadoff spot but defensively this move is suspect and defense was the squeaky wheel in 2005.

BobYF

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