Red Sox Magic Number - 89
The Yankees split a double header with the Reds to lower the Red Sox magic number from 90 to 89. I am very happy about that because 90 is the number of feet from home to first base and the past two starts it seems like the Red Sox starters thought they were obligated to just give away that 90 feet - even with the bases loaded! Yesterday John Lackey gave up three runs on a wild pitch, hit batter and walk with the bases loaded. The day before Alfredo Aceves walked the world and gave up two runs on walks with the bases loaded in losing to the Padres. Like I said - the Red Sox starters seemed determined to give up those 90 feet as often as possible. With the number now at 89 and with the John Lackey experience at least another week away - hopefully Boston won't be giving up such soft runs.
John Lackey has really become a lightning rod in Boston. Nobody wants him in the rotation at this point. Everyone wants him to come up with a phantom injury so that Andrew Miller or Tim Wakefield can take his starts. Both of those guys give the team a better chance to win and that's the bottom line.
Almost as big a lightning rod in Boston is JD Drew who has never been fully accepted in Boston. It looks like he may be cooked. It should be recalled that Drew was a big upgrade over fan favorite Trot Nixon who was done in Boston at age 32 but who tried to hold on for two very forgettable years in Cleveland before calling it a day. The problem is at $14 million per year Drew was expected not only to be a big upgrade over Trot Nixon but also be the next Dwight Evans. What I found strange is that at age 35 Drew is showing signs of being all done while back in 1987 at age 35 Dwight Evans posted career highs in HR (34) and RBI (123). I will just leave it at 1987 was the year of the "juiced" baseballs and I think expecting players to perform at the highest levels in their mid and late 30's is a thing of the past.
OK - so why the picture of Dino Radja? Well tonight being the NBA Draft and it being touted as one of the worst drafts talent-wise in years made me think of the 1989 NBA Draft which is recognized as one of the worst of all-time. The best thing that came from that draft as far as I'm concerned was the Celtics taking Dino Radja in the 2nd round. At the local YMCA's I later was given the nickname of "Dino" because my Radja-like offensive repertoire including an almost unstoppable jump hook.