According to multiple reports, the Red Sox are about to trade third baseman Mike Lowell to the Rangers in exchange for young catcher Max Ramirez. While not 100% done it appears more and more likely that we are approaching the final days of Mike Lowell’s tenure as a Boston Red Sox. A throw-in when he was acquired from the Marlins along with Josh Beckett back in 2005, Lowell quickly established himself as a fan favorite in Boston as fans began to understand just how good of a player he is. He exemplified the work hard mantra that the Red Sox embraced and time and time again he came through with an exceptional defensive play or a timely hit. Certainly his bat and glove will be missed but, in some ways, it is presence on the field, in the community and, from all I’ve heard, in the clubhouse that will be missed the most. It sounds like cliché to say but the truth is they don’t make players like him anymore. He clearly loves playing the game and I, along with many Red Sox fans, loved watching him play it. Does the trade make the Red Sox better next year? Probably not, unless there is another move in the works (Beltre, Gonzalez). Does the trade make the Red Sox better in the future? Yes. Ramirez is a well-regarded prospect and could well become the every-day catcher in a few years. So do I agree with the trade? Yes. Am I sad to see Lowell go? You betcha. You know, I was at the first game Trot Nixon played in Boston after he left the team and I will never forget the ovation he got from the Boston fans. Mike Lowell deserves the same for all he has done for this team and this community.
Belichick has had enough…of something. Many of you have probably heard the news by now that four members of the Pats – Randy Moss, Gary Guyton, Adalius Thomas and Derrick Burgess – were sent home from practice yesterday for showing up late to an 8:00 meeting. For Belichick to do something so dramatic means that he is getting really frustrated with the team and wanted to send a strong message. The season is not over and the super bowl dreams are not dashed…yet. However, if this team doesn’t turn it around and start playing a lot better (especially late in games) we will not be playing in January. They clearly have the talent (you don’t jump out to huge leads against good teams without talent) but they don’t have the killer instinct that you need to put teams away. This is not the Patriots of old – the group of relative unknowns banding together against the world. A team where the whole really was greater than the sum of parts. That has been reversed and, despite the individual talent, they can’t seem put it together as a team for a full 60 minutes. Hopefully the message Belichick sent will be well-received and we will see a different team on Sunday. Another loss and you can feel free to start making non-football plans for weekends in January.