This is going to be short because absolutely nothing happened this week. Nothing. I think this was the quietest week of the offseason. Then again, it’s always quiet right before Truck Day. That’s the big story right there; Truck Day is February 12! Right around the corner! Can’t wait. Seriously. Can not wait. It’s been a long winter and I’m ready to see some eighteen-wheelers head south.
It’s basically settled: the Padres will deal Gonzalez, not sign him to a new deal. I bet he’ll be out of San Diego by this season’s trade deadline.
Jermaine Dye is still unemployed. I wouldn’t mind at all if he became a last-minute acquisition. He’s not what he used to be, but he wouldn’t be starting and we could use the extra power.
I’ve mentioned this before, but it’s still true, so I’ll say it again: look for Theo to hammer out new deals for both V-Mart and Beckett this season. V-Mart is probably the least complicated of the two. .336 average, .405 on-base percentage, .507 slugging percentage, 41 RBIs in 56 games, and consistently brings it when batting third. V-Mart has an OPS of .837; that’s tenth among catchers with more than twenty-five hundred plate appearances through their seasons at age thirty. The nine guys ahead of him include five Hall of Famers and two who are headed there. That’s pretty much everything you need to know. Sign him. I’m thinking forty million for four years, or something like that. Maybe throw in some extra cash because of his added value as a first baseman/DH. By the way, he wants to stay in Boston.
The Beckett situation is a little trickier. I know what you’re thinking: just offer him a Lackey-type deal and be done with it. But it’s not that simple. He’ll probably get something more like Halladay’s deal with the Phillies because of his shoulder. Lackey has an issue too, but it’s with his elbow, and recovering from Tommy John surgery is very different from recovering from rotator cuff surgery. We built protection into Lackey’s contract and will look to do the same with Beckett’s. If Beckett has a problem with that, make no mistake: he will be allowed to walk. We will not take unnecessary risks with our investments; that much is certain. And if he walks, there’s always someone like Cliff Lee. That isn’t to say he won’t be missed. He will most definitely be missed. And measures should be taken to avoid a situation in which he will be missed. Besides, I wouldn’t necessarily be so sure that Beckett won’t agree to the protection. He loves playing in Boston. Lackey and Drew wanted to play in Boston badly enough that they agreed to their protections, no problem. We could reasonably expect Beckett to do the same.
Last but not least, Nomar Garciaparra’s announcement of his retirement is expected to be imminent. He says he’s determined to play this season if the right solution comes up, but the problem is that it probably won’t come up. When the announcement is made, I’ll be ready with a tribute. For now, suffice it to say that, for better or for worse, he was a legend in Boston and would be missed.
If you thought I didn’t want to talk about the Bruins last week, you can imagine how I feel about talking about them this week. We’re currently nursing a ten-game losing streak. Ten games. Four of those were overtime losses. Quite frankly, it’s just disgusting. At this rate, not only will we not make the playoffs, but we’ll finish the season in the dregs of the league. At least the Olympics are coming up, which should cure some of New England’s Bruins-induced hockey ailments for a little while.
Super Bowl tonight at 6:00PM! As a Pats fan, please allow me to say one thing: Who dat? Here’s to hoping the Saints take care of business. Get psyched.