Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Coming into the 2010 season this season held quite a bit of promise. We had some questions offensively, but bringing in a big free agent pitcher and some very strong defenders, it figured to even out. The season started off slowly, but it started to turn around in May, when Big Papi decided to start hitting again. Then the injury bug hit the team hard. 5 of their 9 opening day starters have spent some time on the DL this year, and now 4 of them are out for the remainder of the season. I applaud Theo Epstein for not going out around the trade deadline and dealing young talent for a rental player. This season was doomed fairly early on, and at some point you need to stand pat and give the kids a try. Suffering the losses of their two best hitters in Youkilis and Pedroia is a huge blow, but hopefully they can fully recover from these injuries and it won't bother them in the coming years.
Next season poses quite a few questions already. Is Big Papi going to be offered another contract? How about Victor Martinez and Adrian Beltre? Are Ellsbury and Cameron going to be healthy enough to play a full season? Will their TEAM be healthy next year? Can John Lackey and Josh Beckett live up to their contracts? And many more intriguing aspects. I haven't completely shipped this season in, but sitting 8 games back heading into September, things are very dire. Hats off to the Rays this year, having a good year before their talent is likely broken up. Unfortunate that this type of stuff has to happen in baseball. A team has been putting a lot of resources and gone through many losing seasons building up young talent, only to finally put it together for a few seasons and then watch them all leave via free agency. Hopefully the next commissioner will figure out some sort of salary cap, or maybe a more harsh luxery tax to help even out the playing field.