February 23rd, 2007
While I am certainly not surprised the Red Sox decided to hold off on re-signing Curt Schilling to a 1-year. $13 million dollar contract, I just think it’s a very bad idea…Yes, I do understand the motivation behind the decision: he’s older, and he is looking more like El Guapo than himself these days (not that Curt was ever build like Casey Fossum) and they want to see how he fares this year before committing money and resources (not to mention a roster spot) to a 41 year old pitcher.
But they are forgetting something: This is CURT SCHILLING we are talking about…
The same Curt Schilling who sewed his ankle together, risking permanent injury, to help take the Red Sox to the World Series in 2004. The Curt Schilling who, despite the fact that he was not fully healed from said injury in 2004, moved from a starter to a CLOSER in 2005, and managed to help get the team into the post season. The Curt Schilling who rebounded from that less than stellar season to go 15-7 in 31 starts, with a 3.97 ERA in 2006, even tho the Sox were decimated by injuries and finished in 3rd.
That being said: I severely dislike the fact that he chose to campaign for this additional year in the press. As of a few weeks ago, everyone thought he was going to retire at the end of this season; THEN, all of a sudden, he decides that he wants to play another year, and the Sox have until the end of Spring Training to sign him, or he will become a free agent and will be open to signing anywhere…Great..because you don’t think they Skanks would throw $15 million at him, just to break the back of the Sox? They have paid more for less….
Bottom line: Couldn’t the Red Sox have scraped up the $13 mil to keep him? They overpaid for J.D. Drew…
103 pitches!: In a move that is fairly surprising, Daisuke and Jason Varitek had quite a bullpen session yesterday, with the pitcher throwing 103 pitches–and ‘Tek catching every last one of them…Holy Buckets! That is more pitches than some pitchers throw in a whole game! A bit much? Pitching coach John Farrell disagrees: “Keep in mind, he threw 100 pitches today, but it was at a pace where he took some time in between pitches. I don’t think he overworked over overtaxed himself physically.”
Apparently, this was a regular occurrence for Daisuke when he did his bullpen sessions in Japan–it is reported that one of the bullpen sessions there was over 300 pitches! I hope he does pull the same stuff as Bryn Hyung Kim used to do, pitch so much on his off days (despite being told not to by the coaching staff and trainers) that he was too tired/ or injured to be effective.
Daisuke’s battery mate had nothing but good things to say: “He’s at a point where he needs to extend what he needs to do, and if that’s the point, we’ll accommodate him….I think probably the thing that caught my attention the most was, he’s in there 80-90 pitches deep, and he’s still going from the stretch, still checking runners, still taking it like a real game situation…Every single pitch had a purpose. You almost wanted to videotape it and show it to our young guys in minor league camp, about how to get the most out of your practice, and he certainly does.”
Have I mentioned how I cannot WAIT to see this guy pitch???!
So, for now, the story around town is that Manny will NOT be in AC tomorrow for the classic car show–and the team and most of his teammates are adopting a “wait and see” attitude with regard to the whole deal. I think they will be ok if he doesn’t go and reports on the 1st ready to go. But if he shows up at that car show tomorrow, I think all bets are off–for just about everyone–except the people who think this behavior is ok, as long as he hits. I reallyREALLY hope that number is dwindling….
Do NOT ever start with this: Ichiro may leave the Mariners and become a free agent when his contract expires at the end of this year. And then Daisuke says: “If I could be on the same team with him (Ichiro), there would be nobody I could count on more.” Ah huh….Please Please PLEASE, can there not be all this discussion about how great it would be to have Ichiro play for the Red Sox? The man is only out for himself, and the personal stats he can accrue–as evidenced by the 2004 campaign when he broke the record for most hits in a season. There were a number of times that he would hit to get a base,(several I saw fro myself when the Sox played the Mariners) rather than try to sacrifice himself to advance a runner–Apparently, to him, his record was more important than winning ball games. And that is not the type of player who would be a good fit in Boston–AT ALL….
5 More Days: The 1st baseball (albeit only an exhibition) game of the 2007 campaign will happen on Wednesday, when the Sox play the the Twins!