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  • October 25th, 2011

    October 25, 2011:
    Welcome to the Ben Cherington Era…

    Posted by Christine E. at 5:45 pm in Baseball,Random Thoughts,Red Sox Comments (2)

    So Theo, as of 3:00pm today, is President of Baseball Operations for the Cubs. I knew the chances of him going to the Cubbies were very good back in August, when the Cubs fired their General Manager. And I am not sure that if the Sox hadn’t had the “epic-est” collapse in all of baseball history, the end result would have been any different. Theo needed another challenge, and what greater challenge is there than trying to get the Cubs a World Series win?? They haven’t even BEEN to the World Series since the Sox beat them in 1918…They are like the Red Sox, times 10, as far as hard luck stories…

    And now Ben Cherington, who has been Theo’s assistant GM since 2009, and served as Co-GM with Jed Hoyer (who is more than likely going to be GM of the Cubs) when Theo left the team for 6 weeks in late 2005-early 2006, will take the helm of the Boston Red Sox. And, Holy Buckets, does he have his work cut out for him.

    First and foremost, he needs to get this team a manager–and one who can capably walk in some pretty big footsteps that were Tito Francona’s. John Farrell would be perfect–Hell, That Clay Person is terrified of him–but he has a 3- year deal with the Blue Jays, and unless the Sox offer him a REALLY sweet deal, I don’t see him breaking that commitment…

    Fortunately, Ben has quite a bit of talent as his disposal, but how to get that talent motivated will probably be his greatest challenge. He also needs to decide if Jonathan Papelbon, Jason Varitek, David Ortiz, and Tim Wakefield, among others, will be returning to the fold for the 2012 campaign.

    My prediction is that the Sox will re-sign Papelbon for 4 years, $55 million, Big Papi for 2 years, $17 million with a team option for 3rd year, and Tim Wakefield for a year, with some incentive-laden contract. But as far as Jason Varitek, I think he may have played his last game in a Red Sox uniform. His poor play at the end, coupled with the fact that, as captain of the Red Sox, did nothing to help halt the slide in September, may be the tipping point. Of course, if the Sox need a backup catcher, and cannot get one better, they will sign him for another year, probably with another incentive-laden contract…

    Now, this is coming from the person who thought the Sox would win 108 games this year, so take my predictions with a grain of salt…

    Over the weekend, Bud Selig stated that if the Sox and the Cubs cannot work out the compensation package for Theo by November 1, he will. And, how exactly will that work, Bud? “Cubbies: you give up X, Sox: you give up Y…” OK…..

    If you missed the coverage of the Theo Epstein/Ben Cherington coming out parties today, Comcast SportsNet will air a special from 8:30-10:00pm tonight, which will replay both events, as well as coverage from CSN’s Red Sox Insider Sean McAdam, Jessica Moran, Mike Giardi, Gary Tanguay, Lou Merloni, and CSN Chicago reporters…

    And then you can see for yourself what we all heard just a few hours ago from our brand spanking new GM: John Lackey is going to have Tommy John surgery, and will be be out until 2013..Whooo Hoo! Addition by subtraction in its best form….And I think it was a nice touch to have the new guy share that tasty tidbit–he got rid of Lackey, at least for the near future—I like him already…

    Finally, I leave you with this Op-Ed Piece that Theo wrote that appeared in today’s Boston Globe, Farewell, Red Sox Nation. Well done, Theo….

    Coming up: An off-Day for the World Series, of which I have yet to watch a minute of–Guess I had better hurry. The Rangers lead the Cards 3-2, as the teams head back to St Louis for Game 6 of the Series, which will take place tomorrow night. Colby Lewis will take the mound for Texas, opposed by St Louis starter Jaime Garcia. 1st pitch 8:05pm.

    Oh, and in case you were wondering—there are 163 days to Opening Day, which is freakish late next year: April 5th… YUK…

    2 Responses to “October 25, 2011:
    Welcome to the Ben Cherington Era…”

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