Talkin Sox with Dan

Where baseball fans gather for commonsensical, opinionated Red Sox banter.

Archive for the month “February, 2012”

Quick Notes on a Wednesday

So, we got some snow today.

I guess Kevin Youkilis was pretty surprised too. Whether it’s someone’s Facebook status or a conversation that I eavesdrop on while at work, I hate loathe when people enjoy, wish, or look forward to snow. Show me a person that likes snow, I’ll show you a person who doesn’t own a shovel. Back to sunny Florida.

  • Don’t blame me, Luke Scott. Blame the (lack of) Orioles’ fans. Fist bump to Peter Abraham.
  • Peter Gammons believes that the 2012 Rays can be even better than last year. I don’t disagree with him, but I’m still not sure they have the offensive juice needed to win throughout the dog days of the summer. They’ve got some serious muscle in their rotation. No doubt about that. Pitching wins in October, but you still need to get there. 7-20 don’t happen every September.
  • The Rays, Yankees, Red Sox, and hell, even the Blue Jays can raise their glasses to the news of an expanded playoff. I like it a lot. Each league will add an extra wild card team. The two wild card teams will face off in a one-game, loser-goes-home playoff game. Naturally, the winner goes on to play the Yankees–er, I mean one of the three division winners. In the meantime, I’m going to pretend that the league has made this decision based on their intention to place more of an importance on winning a teams’ respective division and not the extra cash that will undoubtedly be generated. All this means is that I need to start figuring out which scalper is going to receive my donation of $200 for a bleacher seat at Fenway.
  • This article makes me want to get together with a few buddies, grab an 18 pack, and have a useless discussion that lasts way too long.
  • New age analysis and statistics that go way beyond batting averages and home run totals certainly have a big place in today’s game. There’s no doubting it, and you’re not going to beat them (sabermetricians), so you might as well join them. Nevertheless, I put a lot of stock in guys who are around the game and its participants on a day-to-day basis. Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe has stated on multiple occasions that Carl Crawford seems to be a different guy this spring. Apparently, he seems much more comfortable in his own skin. Abraham is convinced that fans will see a much better version of Crawford in 2012. It’s obviously not hard to improve on what amounted to an abysmal inaugural season in Boston, but it is encouraging to hear praise from Abraham this early in the spring. He does not have a responsibility to place any sort of positive spin on Crawford’s outlook if he didn’t believe it to be true.

Jason Varitek Makes the Right Choice

It’s never easy to let go of something or someone that reminds us of ourselves. I don’t care if it is an old practice jersey from your days on the high school basketball team, a toy given as a present when Santa Claus was still real, or a blanket that was used when there was no work, no bills, and no responsibilities.

It is simple to see why cutting ties with Jason Varitek is not easy.

But it should be. In recent years, Varitek has not been good. If you wanted to make the argument that Varitek had a place on the 2012 Boston Red Sox, we would have a serious disagreement.

Varitek will make things official on Thursday at Fenway South. The writing has been on the wall for some time. Kelly Shoppach was inked to a one-year guaranteed contract earlier this winter. With Jarrod Saltalamacchia entrenched as the Opening Day catcher and the powerful bat of Ryan Lavarnway waiting in Pawtucket, Shoppach’s signing, for all intents and purposes, marked the end of the Varitek era in Boston.

Ben Cherington handled both the Varitek and Tim Wakefield situations with the cold, objective decision-making ability that is vital to the success of a quality general manager. And it couldn’t have been easy. Many fans would have loved to see both longtime Red Sox members back for one more season, a season that commemorates the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park. For all of the negative commentary that focuses on the Red Sox brass putting public relations first, they made two shrewd baseball decisions. The roster spot that Wakefield would have occupied outweighs the production the Sox would have received. The same holds true for the Captain.

Varitek couldn’t throw out Cecil Fielder attempting to steal third base on a bad jump with a left handed batter at the plate. His bat has evolved into an abject weakness, as it should–he’s 39 years old. Despite the fact that it is easy to provide sound reasoning as to why Varitek is both an offensive and defensive liability, it is clear how someone could argue that he is still valuable to not only the Red Sox, but any major league team.

The three-time All-Star knows how to call a game. He sees things that Saltalamacchia will not pick up on in 2012. He is a seasoned veteran that knows opposing hitters as well as he knows the pitchers he works with. And that’s pretty rare.

Josh Beckett agrees.

“He’d call a pitch and I’d shake and he’d throw the same pitch down. I knew he saw something I didn’t see. Obviously he’s closer to the plate and the batter and everything. I knew then I could have conviction in that, that he saw something that he really wanted to do that with.”

There is no point in denying the truth: Varitek provides the guys who toe the rubber with a peace of mind about the pitch they are about to make more than Saltalamacchia or Shoppach will. And there is something to be said for that. Clay Buchholz may not be afraid to throw his changeup in a hitters’ count because Varitek made that decision for him. Beckett may snap his curve ball downward with more authority because he has a sincere trust when ‘Tek is on the receiving end of the pitch. It’s a fair argument, but it also comes with a counterpoint.

The 2011 Red Sox team was too comfortable. Varitek has served as less of a legitimate contributor and more of a caddy to Beckett in recent years. Varitek isn’t stupid. He knows that he hasn’t been the offensive and defensive stalwart he had been in the past. At the same time, Varitek knows (and it’s true) he could still contribute on the major league level–even as a soon-to-be 40 year old.

That’s what makes it so hard.

On Thursday, Varitek, like Wakefield did a couple of weeks ago, will stand up in front of former teammates, members of the media, and admirers to announce that he will no longer play baseball. It must be tough to make the right choice.

And for fans, it is certainly not easy.

As we discard items from our past, it often hurts. The practice jersey from high school may make its way into the trash. The toy from Christmas past will likely make an appearance in a yard sale one day. But before we let go of the blanket that was with us for so long, when things were just too good, we may tear away a piece, just to save–just in case.

Jason Varitek to Retire

Jason Varitek will announce his retirement on Thursday, as many expected. TSWD will have more on this tomorrow.

I’m Still an Ortiz Guy at Heart

David Ortiz isn’t the hit machine he was during the ’04-’07 seasons. He is no longer is going to flirt with the 50 home run plateau. The clutch hits that seemed to happen so often have certainly slowed down. His longtime partner in crime, Manny Ramirez, was disposed of in the middle of the 2008 season. He’ll be serving a 50-game suspension before hitting for the Athletics. Things have changed. Ortiz isn’t the same guy he was during the middle segment of the previous decade. He’s just not.

But he’s still pretty damn good.

Two World Series rings, numerous top five finishes for the AL MVP, too-many-to-count All-Star selections, and without looking, I’m sure the guy’s taken home a Silver Slugger Award or eight. He is 36 years old and has made more money than a young, skinny David Arias probably ever dreamed of making. There isn’t a ton a left to accomplish for the big fella. Somehow, Ortiz seems as motivated as ever.

In a piece in this morning’s Globe, the often maligned Dan Shaughnessy described an encounter with Ortiz yesterday afternoon outside of the Red Sox clubhouse at Jet Blue Park. Without delving too deep into the details, Ortiz was upset with a comment he thought Shaughnessy said in an episode of Globe 10.0 (it was actually Kevin Paul Dupont, but that’s not important). Ortiz was juxtaposed to Jim Rice who experienced a dramatic drop in performance after turning 36 years old. The longtime designated hitter had apparently taken exception to that comparison.

In an attempt to provide some consolation to the hulking Ortiz, Shaughnessy reminded him that Dupont is one of the Globe’s hockey writers.

Didn’t matter.

“Well, [expletive] him. I am still here for a reason, right? Anybody can have a bad season. I work my ass off to get better every year. I always come hungry and I try to make things happen. Nobody but God is going to get me out of the game.”

Say what you want about Ortiz. Tell me he is selfish, sensitive, and overpaid. Hell, I made many of those accusations a couple of weeks ago. I’ve been critical of Ortiz. For a myriad of reasons, I believe that Ortiz is actually an albatross on the Red Sox. You want him off the books, but you need him. You don’t really want him here, but he doesn’t want to leave. He is a huge man that needs to be handled delicately.

It amazes me that a player so accomplished, so distinguished, always finds a way to remain motivated. Again, you can say what you want about the guy, but you will never be able to say that he doesn’t care. He cares so deeply it almost hurts.

And as fans, isn’t that all we can really ask for?

So Sick of Roy Oswalt

Update — 2:50PM Roy Oswalt is not a member of the Boston Red Sox. He isn’t a Cardinal or a Ranger either. It sounds like he may lean towards signing on with a team in the middle of the season. Can’t wait.

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If I have to post about Roy Oswalt again this offseason, I’ll be damned if I have to include another photo of him. The shot of Carl Crawford and Bobby Valentine coming together earlier this week in Fort Myers is much more appealing. (“Hey! You owe me five!”).

Jim Bowden of ESPN tweeted yesterday that Oswalt’s decision on where he will play in 2012 could come as early as today. Close to a month ago, I wrote that Oswalt was likely heading to St. Louis. So much for that.

At this point, it’s nearly impossible to guess to where this guy is going to end up. Texas, St. Louis, and Boston have all expressed interest at one time or another. The former two have roster and financial restrictions that have served as roadblocks in terms of acquiring Oswalt. An Oswalt-Red Sox marriage almost makes too much sense.

Bowden’s tweet certainly infers that Oswalt has several different options to choose from. I’m not so sure that’s the case, but who knows? It is not clear if GM Ben Cherington and the Red Sox even have an offer on the table to Oswalt. However, when the veteran right handed starting pitcher opens his front door today in Mississippi, the Red Sox may be in the only team waiting on the doorstep. Either way, we’ll keep you posted.

Tuesday’s Notes

109 years ago today, Tom Yawkey was born. 30 years and four days later, he bought the Red Sox.

As for today’s news on all things Red Sox…

  • It only took four months, but the Red Sox finally received their compensation from the Cubs for letting former GM Theo Epstein out of the final year of his contract. It’s not Starlin Castro. I’m 100 percent sure it is not Matt Garza, and when I last checked, John Lackey was still under contract with the Red Sox. Chris Carpenter is a 26 year old right handed relief pitcher who throws hard but lacks Greg Maddux-like control to say the least. A former third round pick, Carpenter had a cup of coffee with the big club last season on the south side of Chicago. However, he pitched primarily in Double-A and Triple-A. Sounds good to me. Glad it’s done. Let’s all move on with life…unless the Cubs want Lackey. No? Alright, just checkin’.
  • Carl Crawford believes that he will like playing under new manager Bobby Valentine. The Globe’s Peter Abraham thinks that Valentine will do Crawford a ton of good. At this point, I’ll hang my hat on anything when it comes to this guy. Unless he rebounds this season, Crawford will take over as the new J.D. Drew, a player who is haunted by a massive contract that overshadows his performance on the field.  The guy desperately wants to succeed. He works hard and tries even harder. Count me as someone who will be rooting hard for CC when he gets back from his wrist injury.
  • Crawford, a soft spoken guy, didn’t really like John Henry’s comments concerning his position against inking the speedy free agent last winter. Whatever. It doesn’t really seem like it’s going to be an issue. I’m sure my boss regrets hiring me, so no sweat.
  • I hope we can all collectively move on from the clubhouse issues that allegedly plagued the 2011 Red Sox. Jon Lester owned up to whatever mistakes were made. Josh Beckett was about as contrite as you’re going to see him. I’m beyond tired of hearing people who call into the sports talk radio shows in our neck of the woods and say they want an apology because the Red Sox wasted the fans’ money. Get real and stop wasting my time. Let’s just play baseball.
  • Dice-K and Valentine played catch together today. I had a toaster strudel for breakfast. Thrilling on both counts.
  • As expected, Valentine has already begun to stress fundamentals. In past years, pitchers went through drills in Spring Training by simulating the throws to the respective bases rather than using baseballs. This was designed to preserve the arms of pitchers participating in the drills. This spring? Not so much. Hands were not empty during today’s workouts. Pitcher participating used real baseballs. Valentine’s reasoning was simple: “If we’re going to practice something, I’d like to have it as close to game-real as possible. Otherwise, why bother?” I dig it.

Thanking Tim, While Being Reminded of Reality

AP Photo Courtesy of David Goldman

Tim Wakefield announced his retirement Friday at the Red Sox Spring Training complex in Fort Myers.

Wakefield has had an excellent career, and he has made an identifiable mark on the Red Sox record books. I’m not going to spend a ton of time rehashing the milestones that Wakefield has reached during his memorable 17-year haul with the Sox.

If you still need a breakdown of Wakefield’s statistical accomplishments throughout his career, I’d start here.

If you need a bit more context, I suggest clicking here.

————

Wakefield will always be looked upon fondly by fans in New England because he spent the best part of two decades wearing a Red Sox uniform. To say that that is rare would be a huge understatement. He was a part of two World Series teams. There are not many people that can say that they own two WS rings with the Red Sox logo on them. He was never even close to being the most talented player on any Red Sox squad. At the same time, there are no ugly contract disputes or off the field blemishes that can sully Wake’s reputation in these parts. Fans are drawn to Wakefield because many see themselves in the 45 year old knuckleball pitcher. He was never paid much money, relatively speaking of course. Number 49 was never flashy. He was more blue collar than anything. He looks like a guy that could be behind you in line at Dunkin Donuts, ready to purchase a medium coffee, black. Simply speaking, as a fan, you can easily identify with Wake. He hunts, he fishes, he goes to work, does what he’s asked, and goes home to his family. Clearly, plenty of Wakefield jerseys have been sold over the years.

All of the praise that Wakefield has received over the course of the past few days is well-earned. His performance on the diamond has, at times, been magnificent. His longevity and perseverance will forever go unquestioned. The charitable work that Wake has done without the presence of cameras simply adds a shine his already-pristine reputation. I have to imagine that he will be seamlessly inducted into the Red Sox Hall of Fame.

————

Now that we have wiped up our drool, let’s check back in with reality. Wakefield’s decision to retire is mutually beneficial. By not accepting a minor league, non-guaranteed offer, Wakefield cemented his legacy and went out on his terms. It’s a dignifying choice. On the other hand, GM Ben Cherington and the Red Sox did the right thing. A reluctant invite to Fort Myers that included no guarantees essentially told Wakefield that you’re not welcome back this season. Kudos to Cherington for making a good, objective baseball decision despite the fact that it may upset many fans. It’s not like the 2012 Red Sox can be absorbing public relations hits on the regular. As a Red Sox fan, you should be encouraged by the decision to not bring Wakefield back on a one-year guaranteed contract. The fact that the team, for all intents and purposes, cut ties with Wakefield shows that baseball still matters more than selling merchandise to the crew on 4 Yawkey Way. Wake could have netted seven wins in 2012, giving him the most victories in franchise history. Safe to say that a few t-shirts would have been sold. Would I have liked to see Wakefield pitch one more summer and vault above Roger Clemens and his 192 wins as a Red Sox? Absolutely. But I know that his time had come and leaving this team was necessary.

I’m sick of personal catchers. I’m tired of giving up walks, past balls, and uncontested stolen bases. Wakefield’s departure certainly does not solve all of these issues, but it doesn’t hurt. This Red Sox team, more than ever, needs a heavy dose of the basics, a strict diet of fundamentals. I don’t care if it is Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Kelly Shoppach, Ryan Lavarnway, or even Gary Tuck behind the plate–it shouldn’t matter. Get on the mound, throw strikes, and execute your pitches. Make it difficult for opposing lineups to push across runs. When Wake toed the rubber, you knew that the Red Sox offense could not be off of their game. It’s safe to say that Wakefield was never a contender to lead the league in WHIP. Guys like Wakefield are valuable. They are durable and largely selfless. However, due to his trademark pitch, Wakefield was not the most economical player to have on a roster. In order for him to be on the mound, Wake needed a guy behind the plate who could consistently corral his pitch. When you think about it, what else is Doug Mirabelli really known for? For 17 seasons, in one capacity or another, the Red Sox needed Wakefield. This year, Wakefield needed the Red Sox more than they needed him. It was time to go.

Fans will debate whether or not the 2012 Boston Red Sox could have used Wake. The one thing, however, that cannot be argued was best summed up by Wakefield on Friday.

“Whatever I was asked to do, I always had my spikes on and was ready to go.”

Quick Announcement

I will be serving as a contributor to the Red Sox blog, BoSox Injection. It is a site that is associated with FanSided. Through FanSided, you can get news on any team from the Seattle Seahawks to the St. Louis Cardinals to the Boston Bruins.

BoSox Injection is a heavily updated site that will be home to a couple articles of mine per week. Thus far, I’ve written two pieces for BSI. The first one focused on the importance of settling with David Ortiz before an arbitration hearing. In that post, I take a stance against what the Globe’s Nick Cafardo wrote here.

The second and more recent piece is about the pressure that is now on GM Ben Cherington to make a significant move when the trade deadline rolls around this year. It is important for the Red Sox to use the financial flexibility they gained from trading dumping Marco Scutaro to the Rockies.

As always, you can count on TSWD to continue with news and analysis as the Red Sox begin Spring Training and work towards Opening Day.

The Importance of Dustin Pedroia

Photo courtesy of bostonherald.com

The 2012 version of the Boston Red Sox are heading into Spring Training with a myriad of questions. In just 12 short months, the Old Towne Team has gone from being projected as the Greatest Team Ever to being viewed as the Most Flawed Team Ever. Their starting shortstop, Marco Scutaro, will be playing second base in Colorado to open the year. The franchise’s best closer, Jonathan Papelbon, will be toeing the rubber in the ninth for the Phillies in 2012. The rear end of the Red Sox rotation possesses two gaping holes. Despite toting a payroll that will likely eclipse $180MM, the ownership group on Yawkey Way is being labeled as a collection of misers, too preoccupied with football in England to be focusing on baseball in New England. Oh, and there was a cataclysmic collapse last September that cost the Red Sox a playoff berth. More importantly, that wet-the-bed effort in the final month of the season forced the media and fans of Boston to question the level of dedication and effort being put forth by many members of that Red Sox team, specifically, the pitching staff. Trust me, there are plenty of items for Sox enthusiasts to worry about.

Dustin Pedroia, on the other hand, represents the exact opposite. When it comes to Pedroia, there is nothing to worry about. He is a stalwart. A stud. If you’re placing a bet on Pedroia to succeed, starting counting your doubloons now because he is a complete and total lock. The scrappy second baseman also happens to be the most important position player on a team that, despite popular opinion, is loaded with talent. Pedroia is good. That already we know. But how good?

Last season, Pedroia got on-base at a .387 clip. Career high. He drove in 91 runs. Career high. The guy even drew 86 walks. Career high. Because he not a burner, stolen bases is not a stat that writers who cover the Sox immediately turn to when analyzing Pedroia, but the second baseman swiped a smooth 26 bags in 2011. He is an intelligent base runner who is sneaky-quick.  The 26 bases he nabbed? Career high.

He did all of that with a screw inserted into his left foot. It was removed on September 30th of this past year. As if that wasn’t enough, in a mid-May contest against the Orioles, Pedroia injured his right knee making an off-balance throw to first base. For the majority of 2011, the former MVP had to mentally and physically deal with knowing that an inch-long piece of metal was in his left foot and play through what ended up being a badly bruised knee. In a recent offseason interview with weei.com’s Rob Bradford, Pedroia opened up about how he was feeling during the first part of 2011: “There was the point I bruised the knee cap in my right knee and I’m dealing with the foot and my knee and it was wearing on me. I was more frustrated because I couldn’t do what I wanted to do.” The injury to Pedroia’s knee ended up being relatively minor, but there was plenty of concern at the time. There was even talk of potentially needing surgery. He missed a pivotal game in the series finale with the Yankees on June 9th to have his knee examined in Boston. At the time, he was sporting a less-than-impressive.247/.361/.338 line. The results of the exam were positive–a simple bruise, no surgery needed, and Pedroia finally had a little peace of mind. He went 3-4 and added a walk the next night in Toronto. As a reminder, the veteran rebounded in superb fashion and finished the year with a show-and-tell worthy .307/.387/.474 line. Pedroia puts up numbers that earns him recognition league-wide, but his value to this Red Sox team transcends the traditional statistical categories.

According to Fan Graphs, in 2011, Pedroia accounted for 8 wins above what a replacement player would have offered. A replacement player is identified as someone at the AAA/AAAA level. Nick Punto would serve as a good example of a replacement for Pedroia. Let’s offer some context on the matter of WAR. Pedroia finished fourth among all Major League position players in WAR. Robinson Cano, Pedroia’s rival counterpart who is widely regarded as a superior player, had a 5.6 WAR in 2011, more than two wins above replacement behind the Sox second baseman. The overarching point here is that Pedroia is extremely valuable to his team. His impact on the diamond, relative to the rest of the players in Major League Baseball, has an immensely positive impact on the win column for the Red Sox. He is an integral cog in the Red Sox machine. This coming year will offer a new set of challenges that will undoubtedly test Pedroia’s ability to adapt defensively and provide offensive versatility.

It has been well-documented that the Red Sox will enter Spring Training without an everyday shortstop. Mike Aviles can provide some pop at the plate, but his defense isn’t exactly award-winning. Punto can flash the leather a bit, but he is 34 years old. In the past two seasons, the longtime Twin and former Cardinal has played in a total of 151 games. GM Ben Cherington acquired Punto to serve strictly in a utility role. The dark horse candidate at shortstop is Jose Iglesias. Unless he puts together an eye-widening Spring Training, he will likely find himself in Triple-A to begin the year. In 2012, Pedroia will be anchoring a middle infield that will see multiple faces at shortstop. It is safe to say that Cherington would not have traded Scutaro to the Rockies if the Red Sox did not have the luxury of having a Gold Glove caliber veteran at second base. There is no doubt that Pedroia’s defensive prowess around the second base bag will have to be on display more than ever in 2012. The Red Sox are likely to also lean on his offensive flexibility.

In an ideal world, DP is a guy who slots seamlessly into the two-hole. Hitting behind Jacoby Ellsbury, Pedroia offers power, speed, and the ability to get on base. Not to mention, Number 15 is a right handed hitter who transitions nicely into Adrian Gonzalez, a left handed hitter who is molded for the three-hole. Like Kevin Youkilis, Pedroia is never cheated out of an at bat. Ever. If you’re a starting pitcher, good luck dealing with Ellsbury and Pedroia to begin a game. Pedroia was birthed to hit second in a powerhouse lineup. However, Carl Crawford is another guy who is best served hitting towards the top of the heap. The Red Sox have a lot of those guys. It doesn’t take Connie Mack to figure out that Crawford cannot be hitting in the latter half of the lineup. He just isn’t that guy. Bobby Valentine, I hope, will come to that realization when Crawford returns from his wrist surgery. I don’t care if it lefty-lefty at the top of the order–Crawford needs to be hitting second for his own psyche. Thankfully, Pedroia is an extremely flexible offensive weapon. Who is more likely to succeed if he is bounced around the lineup (between second and fifth): Pedroia or Crawford? DP. Easy choice. Valentine has said on multiple occasions that he does not necessarily believe in a “set lineup”. That’s fine by me. Nevertheless, as the manager, it is vital to provide stability for Crawford, while taking advantage of Pedroia’s ability to get on base and drive in runs. The guy is a total masher who can hit anywhere from the two-hole to the five-hole. He is the definition of being offensively versatile.

Pedroia will play the majority of 2012 at the age of 28. He is entering the prime of his career. He is extremely healthy entering Spring Training. No mental or physical preoccupations exist now that the screw has been extracted from his foot. Pedroia is ready to roll.

There are no questions to be asked. Just as we expected.

House Keeping

David Ortiz and the Red Sox avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year deal worth $14.575. He will receive a raise of around $2MM. The bottom line is that he is a designated hitter making over $14MM. Ortiz should take some satisfaction in that alone. GM Ben Cherington and the rest of the Red Sox front office can put this matter behind them, at least for a period of time. Let’s do the same…

-GM Billy Beane and the Oakland Athletics made a curious move yesterday by signing Cuban sensation Yoenis Cespedes to a four-year, $36MM deal. It is quite an expensive deal for a an extremely small market team. Beane, who recently signed an extension that will keep him as the General Manager of the A’s through 2019, will be counted on by ownership to spearhead a much-wanted move to San Jose. Cespedes could be the chip that provides the Athletics with some relevancy during the initial steps of this process.

-No news on Roy Oswalt. Frankly, as I’ve alluded to, I’m sick of even discussing it. He’s not good enough for me to consistently sift through useless information regarding his unwillingness to pitch in any environment that isn’t in the backyard of a cow farm.

-WEEI’s Alex Speier reported that the Red Sox and the Cubs have submitted their compensation arguments to Commissioner Bud Selig. According to Speier, there is no timetable on a decision. Other reports have indicated that a ruling could come as early as this week. The decision by Selig will stretch far beyond the Red Sox and Cubs in 2012. It will serve as a precedent for future cases similar to this one. I’m interested to see if Selig uses this as a way to dissuade front office members from leaving their positions before their contracts expire. Stay tuned.

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