For what it is worth, I am fast coming to the conclusion that the Sox are between a rock and a hard-place. While I would like to take another run at it, I am beginning to believe with the FO’s “mind set” about certain players, the dearth of high quality FAs, the age of the team, the extremely high cost of FA talent, the FO’s commitment to build the franchise for the long-term with home grown talent and the team’s very real financial discipline (they won’t overspend the cap) will all lead to the conclusion that they can’t “reload” for a WS drive in 2006 and that instead they should “BLOW IT UP” and start over again.
Here are the “facts” as I see them. First, I believe that the Sox do not want to retain the services of Manny because of his contract. Second, I believe that the Sox will not re-sign Damon because of his age, the length of the deal he is seeking and the money involved. Third and fourth, the Sox believe there is a very real risk that Schilling and Foulke may never reach their prior performance levels. Given these conditions, I believe that the FO will conclude that the team cannot win in 2006. IMO, we should not kid ourselves. If the Sox dump Manny and don’t resign Damon there isn’t enough available pitching talent to build a balanced team that has the talent to make a concerted run at the title. With these conditions in place another run at the WS title represents a “bridge too far” so let’s be prepared for a rebuilding year or two.
Given these assumptions, the only conclusion that I came to is the Sox should “blow it up” and put their long-term strategy in place now. I believe that most of us can agree that the stated long-term strategy of the Sox is to build a winning franchise by growing talent within. If SoSH can accept this position, then I will ask you all to chip in and help me design a team that will compete in 2007 or 2008.
Here is my first pass at clearing shop.
TRADE: David Wells goes to the west coast for a prospect.
TRADE: Manny Ramirez goes to the Mets for Aaron Heilman and prospects and fillers like Mike Cameron—for those of you that know the Mets farm system please rape it. There are way too many SoSHers who are willing to give Manny away for a bucket of balls. As many know, I would demand David Wright for Manny, but I know many think that 40-130 isn’t of much value.
TRADE: Doug Mirabelli for a prospect. We really don’t know how much potential Kelly Shoppach has, so now is the time to find out.
FREE AGENTS: Seek draft picks whenever possible: Mike Stanton, Johnny Damon, Tony Graffanino, Gabe Kapler, John Olerud, Kevin Millar, Dave Berg, Bill Mueller, Matt Mantei, Mike Myers, Mike Timlin, Roberto Petagine
ARBITRATION ELIGIBLE: Sign Bronson Arroyo and trade for a prospect--shitcan the rest: Chad Bradford, Jeremi Gonzalez, Chad Harville, Wade Miller, Adam Hyzdu, and Shawn Wooten
ESSENTIAL TO SIGN: Theo Epstein and Ray Miller (someone who can teach)
25-Platoon mate with Nixon
Edited by SoxFanSince57, 31 October 2005 - 10:38 PM.