Sunday, August 01, 2004

Baseball: Nomar No-more

I'm having a hard time sorting all of this out.

Let me start out by saying that the Matt of a few years ago would be really fired up one way or the other about the Sox trading away his favorite player. But in the whirlwind of a baby, new job, marriage, home ownership and just getting older there's less time in my life and room in my brain / heart for baseball these days. I simply can't follow it the same way anymore. Too much going on. I got right back into it last year during the playoffs, but after the crushing loss to the Evil Empire in the ALCS, it's just not the same for me anymore.

From my somewhat not-fully-informed-this-season standpoint, I don't think the Sox got enough back for Nomar. Trading away one of the Big Three (really Four, now) Shortstops for two guys each hitting .246 doesn't exactly knock me out. Matt Clement or Bret Boone might've made me feel a little better.

Cabrera had a nice season (last year) but he's a free agent, we coulda just signed him if Nomar left. Mientkiewicz (you better believe I copy-and-pasted that one) has a slick glove, but we already have two first basemen. And is leather at first really what's gonna push this team past the Yankees?

Maybe Nomar's damaged goods, maybe his situation's been a distraction in the clubhouse. One could argue he needed to be dealt, I suppose. Sports Guy's been down on Nomar all season, see here and here, but no official reaction to the trade from him yet. He's obviously been paying more attention than I have, so I'll be curious what he thinks.

There's just a natural disappointment when one of the guys you think will play his whole career for your team, doesn't. I'm not pissed at the Sox (yet), but I don't have tremendous sympathy for Nomar either. I mean, he did turn down $60 million to put himself in this position.

So, another one of my jerseys becomes a relic of a bygone era (my Nomar road jersey will look nice in the closet next to my Mo Vaughn and Bledsoe jerseys... and please, don't even remind me that I own a Ken Caminiti jersey...) What am I gonna wear when the Sox come to Detroit next week?

The other bygone era is the one where I have the disposable income to be dropping $140 a pop on jerseys. On the plus side, because of that era I already own a blank Cubs home jersey...

UPDATE 8/03: Bill Simmons finally has a column up on the trade.


Anonymous said...

Actually, the sox' defense has been atrocious this year, they didn't have 2 first basemen, they had 2 guys that played first. (Even nomar's defense has been bad.)

I'm not saying this makes them better, but i can just about guarantee that if this team makes the playoffs, they are going to need the "extra leather" they just picked up.

Giving up extra outs in a playoff games against the Yankees, Rangers, A's or Angels would mean a fast exit.


Mr Furious said...

Yeah, I know the defense has been bad. I think it needed addressing. But I just don't feel they got fair value for Nomar. It seems like the Sox got pressured to make a deal and settled for what they could get.

Shortstop - Pokey Reese is on the team already and one of the best defensive players up the middle there is. Yeah, he's got a bad thumb right now, but he'd come around. I would like Cabrera if he was already signed, but you're trading for another free agent. Could've stuck with Nomar, gotten two draft picks if he left and then signed Cabrera. I guess your odds of signing Cabrera improve slightly as an incumbent...

First Base - John Olerud is sitting at his house after getting cut by the Mariners. A great glove man and perfectly capable of hitting .246 in this lineup. On the plus side, Mientkiewicz is young(ish), signed and might emerge to be pretty good in a park like Fenway.

I think a starting pitcher and/or a guy like Bret Boone would have had a much bigger impact than these two. In other words, the defense could have been addressed in other ways and Nomar could have brought back something better. Maybe I'm wrong. I guess we'll find out.