Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Name That Tune

Here's the direction that Theo Epstein travels with his relentless pursuit of J.D. Drew and efforts to dispatch Manny Ramirez.

Yes, ponying up ridiculous sums for a corner outfielder with a checkered health past has opportunities. Maybe Partners Healthcare will sponsor J.D. Drew as the Partners Red Sox outfielder. Sure, that's the ticket, another marketing opportunity.

J.D. Drew, when healthy, and motivated, has skilz. Availability? That of course, is another question. Some have speculated that Drew's signing somehow links to Matsuzaka's via the Boras connection. Doubtful. Boras isn't a guy who leaves a nickel on the table. Should we hate him because he does his job well? Don't answer that.

As for trading Manny for prospects or the likes of Scott Linebrink, was Linebrink a little off last year, or is he in a downtrend? Is a guy with an average win share rating of ten, your kind of guy?

Eerily, this has the feeling of A Christmas Carol, with Theo playing the role of Ebenezer Scrooge. Certainly not parsimonious with the Red Sox Nation's dollars, but with the ghost of Christmas past (Johnny Damon) haunting him, he's now looking at the ghost of Christmas present (Manny), and very likely to confront the ghost of Christmas future (J.D. Drew).

I, for one, have regularly served as an apologist for Theo, based upon his early track record as Wunderkind. Sometimes I've felt like an apologist, not for his decision not to raid the farm last July, but for uncritically accepting his talent evaluation and organizational skills.

Aside from the bad hair, I'll never be confused with Einstein. But, if the scenario plays out where J.D. Drew's only familiarity with Eye of the Tiger is Rocky IV, and Manny remains Manny, then Theo won't become public enemy number one, just another quisling in the Nation.

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