Is Tampa Actually Going To Win This Thing?

Bad news for the Sox:

After injuring his left wrist during the Red Sox’ victory over the
Baltimore Orioles on Saturday night, Ortiz learned yesterday he has
tendon sheath damage that will keep him sidelined indefinitely.
According to a source, Ortiz’ wrist will be immobilized for roughly the
next month to determine whether the injury can heal on its own.

The Sox do have depth on their roster. I guess you move Manny to DH, and play Drew, Crisp, and Ellsbury for the time being. But Big Papi is Big Papi. The AL East race just got a whole lot tighter, if that’s possible.

43 comments… add one
  • It’s not out of the realm of possibility that Tampa plays the Cubs (who have the best record in baseball) in the World Series.
    What’s that Hank Steinbrenner said about “restoring order in the universe”?
    He must have meant to say “in the bizarro universe.”

    SoxFan June 3, 2008, 7:17 am
  • Uh-oh.
    Now if the Sox also lose Manny for the next three weeks too, SFs will have something to complain about, per the Jorge/A-Rod “rules” well-discussed here.
    What about Bonds? If it meant the difference in saving the season, do you sign him? He is a perfect fit to replace Ortiz (who *might* be back in 6-8 weeks).

    A YF June 3, 2008, 7:52 am
  • Tampa is not a pretender, they’ve always had a great offense and their pitching is finally good enough to keep them contending. The pitching is young, so I don’t know how they’ll fare in the 2nd half of the season, but they’re certainly talented enough.
    A YF, I’m not sure about Bonds. My first reaction (and gut reaction) was “No! Never!”, but if it means the difference in saving the season then I’m stumped. The problem is: what would they do once Ortiz is back from the DL? Swap both of them in and out? Let Bonds share some of right field, put Ortiz at 1B a little more often?

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 8:26 am
  • That’s the thing, Atheose – there’s no guarantee Ortiz will be back. The cast and wait is the only hope, from what I’ve heard. And even then, a wrist injury is the worst possible for a power hitter. Sheffield hasn’t been the same since his injury.
    On Tampa, I agree completely. And let’s not forget David Price in A+ for his first pro season:
    18 IP, 0 ER, 8 H, 2 BB, 19 K
    The Rays could be very, very good for the next few seasons, if not more.

    A YF June 3, 2008, 8:49 am
  • Ive been worried about Tampa since the year started. Thats why this post really bugged me (no offense paul):
    They have all the elements of a championship team. Great SP, a rounded offense, and excellent defense. They play with lots of energy and have building confidence. If they continue to gel and win games in their last ABs, they will be a force to be reckoned with. Unlike most of the youth on our two teams, their youth has experience….

    Sam-YF June 3, 2008, 8:57 am
  • Last year after starting a game Kazmir said something along the lines of “It’s really tough for us because we don’t get a lot of fans here. It’s tough to win when the crowd has more fans of the other team than yours.”
    This is starting to turn around for them, too. I was at the game two weeks ago when Wang started against Jackson (the one that went into extras), and the Yankees fans barely outnumbered the Rays fans (whereas they usually have them beat 3-1). The YF’s only got really loud once or twice, and the rest of the time it was the home crowd cheering the loudest. I want the Sox to win the division, but I must admit it’s nice to see a team like the Rays do well for once. I wish them all the best in getting the Wild Card (knock on wood).

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 9:04 am
  • Let me put it this way: if the Yankees aren’t going to win the East, I’d rather the Rays win it than the Sox.
    And I would absolutely love a Rays/Cubs World Series. Good feelings either way.

    AndrewYF June 3, 2008, 9:20 am
  • Agreed, Andrew. Rays-Cubs would be a fantastic WS.

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 9:25 am
  • I’m looking forward to seeing what Brandon Moss and Chris Carter can do with a little playing time. Failing that, well, what th’hell, sign Bonds. He rips in Fenway, and he can always get a little extra rest for his legs during breaks for court appearances. By the time he gets sent up the river, Papi should be back.

    Jim in CT (SF) June 3, 2008, 9:32 am
  • Well, this just blows. First we lose Ortiz for at least a month, maybe more, maybe the season, maybe forever…
    Than I read that Hazel Mae is leaving NESN.
    Sad day indeed.
    No god damn Bonds, screw that, I would rather give up on the season.
    Trot’s bagging groceries down at the Shop n’ Save, but he’s doing it with grit!!! Give him a call.

    LocklandSF June 3, 2008, 9:36 am
  • Yeah, I’m hoping for Carter as well. I’d rather not win another game all year than sign Bonds.

    Brad June 3, 2008, 9:41 am
  • edit that: I’d rather the Red Sox not win another game all year. Clearly, I’m not part of the team:)

    Brad June 3, 2008, 9:42 am
  • Carter’s line from this year to date:
    57 G
    10 HR
    35 RBI
    .310 BA
    .366 OBP
    .526 SLG
    .891 OPS
    He’s definitely the “makes sense” call up for now. Then, have a rotation at DH of Manny, Casey, Youk, and Carter. Maybe Lowell sometimes too.

    Brad June 3, 2008, 9:46 am
  • I think the Red Sox will be fine. They have hitters to fill that void..Maybe not Ortiz like hitters, but hitters nonetheless.

    Brad June 3, 2008, 9:48 am
  • The Red Sox pitching has been strong enough lately to win games, even when our offense has been struggling. As long as the pitching continues to do well I think we can weather the storm. His bat certainly will be missed, though.

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 9:53 am
  • As it stands now, we are basically replacing Papi’s bat with Coco’s bat, that’s not fine.
    If Ortiz is out for any serious length of time, a real move will need to be made.

    LocklandSF June 3, 2008, 10:06 am
  • Losing a month of Ortiz, as I said last night, is survivable. He was terrible for a month, and the Sox survived. They have Carter, they have Brandon Moss, who has done well in his call-ups AND has been incredible at Pawtucket since his return from surgery. If he’s gone for a month, I don’t have much concern about the Sox holding their own. They then have him, Daisuke and Buchholz all rested down the stretch thanks to the injuries they’re suffering now. I’d much rather have them healthy in August/September than May/June.
    The Herald oversold their scoop last night by dangling surgery out there midgame, only to have Francona come back afterward and say surgery was “very unlikely.” I’m not opposed to the Bonds option, but it should be a season-long option only, not a stopgap.
    If Ortiz is out for the season, I think it’s safe to say his chances of having a Hall of Fame career are shot. They were slim to begin with, and they hinge on his being able to essentially put up eight straight monster seasons (the peak argument). He’s not getting any younger, and losing nearly a full year at age 32 would be pretty difficult to overcome as Ortiz enters his mid 30s.

    Paul SF June 3, 2008, 10:44 am
  • Ortiz won’t be back fully healthy, if we are lucky, until August. He gets the cast off in a month, and assuming all is well he’ll need rehab appearances and then time to get his timing back at the ML level. So we’re talking about a couple of months without Papi as we know him. A very conservative assumption is that, based on the description of the injury, Papi ain’t coming back at all this year. Bonds is a fine fit, nearly perfect in fact, other than the fact that he’s a narcissistic jerk and none of us fans like him. But we root for plenty of Grade D citizens without even knowing it, I imagine. To be Machiavellian about it, if Bonds is the difference between competing and not, I say sign the jerk. What affects chemistry more: signing Bonds or extended losing streaks?
    My standards aren’t that high: I rooted for Wade Boggs for many years, and he was a philandering egotist.
    On the other hand, is there a risk with Barry that he ends up suspended by baseball owing to his court troubles, though?

    SF June 3, 2008, 10:51 am
  • To clarify: I am not saying SIGN BONDS NOW, I am just saying that signing Bonds shouldn’t be off the table as an option, at all. He needs to be considered, depending on what the real severity of the injury is and how the substitutes fare over the next couple of weeks – I say at least give the team as currently constructed a little time before making a move. No panicking.

    SF June 3, 2008, 10:53 am
  • Just asking: If Bonds is suspended by MLB, does the signing team still have to pay him, or does that have to be a provision in the contract? They don’t, right?

    FenSheaParkway June 3, 2008, 11:08 am
  • Id imagine the team would have to pay a suspended player. I doubt that the players association would allow a contract to be signed that didnt include payment in such a matter.
    Id be very weary of the yankees signing Bonds. Im usually not a huge believer in the “clubhouse cancer” argument but I do believe that the circus that surrounds him and his selfishness hurts the team off the field. He’s an amazing bat but it comes at a great cost.

    Sam-YF June 3, 2008, 11:13 am
  • I’d rather have the Sox miss the playoffs than sign Barry Bonds.

    Ron Newman June 3, 2008, 11:23 am
  • I think they could put a stipulation in the contract stating that if he’s suspended they wouldn’t have to pay him. I think the player’s association would allow it, especially since Bonds still has yet to be signed.
    Here’s an interesting thing to take note of: 2007 was one of the worst seasons of Bonds’ career, and he still OPS+’ed 170. David Ortiz’ career high OPS+? 171.

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 11:25 am
  • I hate Barry Bonds. Hate him. I had tears in my eyes when he broke Hank’s record, and not tears of joy. But right now I’m conflicted about him playing in Boston. He’s still a tremendous player, but I don’t want to see him in a Sox uniform.

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 11:32 am
  • From Will Carroll:
    “Reports from Boston are that Ortiz’s wrist injury is far more serious than originally thought. Images showed a torn ligament and will be casted. Early word is that he’ll miss at least a month and that surgery is “50/50″ at this stage. Rest could help or could do nothing. If you want to see a Red Sox fan throw himself off a roof, remind him that this could be a similar situation to Nomar Garciaparra’s back in 2001.”

    A YF June 3, 2008, 11:37 am
  • Right, A, like I mentioned in my 10:51 post I have to assume this is a serious injury: no activity for a month and THEN a reassessment, rehab can’t even start until early July and that’s if everything goes perfectly. I am just assuming Papi is out for the bulk of the year. And even if he returns with an injury like this there’s not telling whether or not he’ll be effective, gunshy, same as before, a shell of his former self, etc. Assume the worst, and hopefully get surprised – that’s the way to go for me.

    SF June 3, 2008, 11:51 am
  • If Papi is out for the year (and given the kind of injury this is, I think Sox fans have to fear the worst), why not check out trading for Junior Griffey as an option? He wants out of Cincy, it’s a chance for him to get a ring, and the Reds could use the prospects and dump his salary. He’ll get his 600th dinger any day now, so he’ll cease to be a ticket draw for them. This way, the Sox get another left-handed power bat (and unlike Bonds, Junior can still run at more than a slow jog) that they can use as a DH/LH platoon with Manny.

    Ayuh - SF June 3, 2008, 12:04 pm
  • I’d LOVE Griffey. That’s a fantastic option. Ayuh. How much do you think we’d have to give up? Lester/Buchholz/Masterson are likely untouchable.

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 12:07 pm
  • The Rays will not win the division nor make the playoffs. Write it down. I don’t know why everyone is so impressed with a team that has had a decade of #1 picks and just now, finally, starts fielding a good team?

    krueg June 3, 2008, 12:08 pm
  • it happens all the time Krueg. The 2005 White Sox had everything click perfectly that year. The Rays have had a lot of bad luck with their #1 picks, too. Hamilton’s downward spiral into addiction wasn’t exactly the Devil Rays’ fault.

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 12:14 pm
    I’m not sure where Will Carroll’s getting his info, other than the somewhat panicky initial article by the Herald. Right now it’s looking like the tendon sheath is torn – NOT the tendon itself – and he’ll get his cast off in two weeks rather than a month, and might actually be back on the field in a month. Season-ending surgery is extremely unlikely.
    Also, Chris Carter’s just been called up. Let’s see what he can do.

    Micah-SF June 3, 2008, 12:23 pm
  • Problem is, why would they trade Griffey before the deadline? And with him, they have to give up something of value because there would be other takers.
    Bonds only costs money and is available now.
    It would be interesting to see Carter get a shot.

    A YF June 3, 2008, 12:26 pm
  • Problem is, why would they trade Griffey before the deadline?
    The same reason anyone dumps a player before the deadline: they’re out of contention, want to dump his salary and get some young prospects. The Reds are only 5.5 from the wildcard right now, but probably won’t be in contention in July.
    I do agree that Bonds is cheaper and more effective though. Griffey is slumping pretty bad to start the season, but hopefully that’s due to him trying to hit #600. Bonds is still better though.

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 12:30 pm
  • “The Reds are only 5.5 from the wildcard right now, but probably won’t be in contention in July.”
    Sorry, but Jay Bruce is just starting to carry that team. And they needed the offense. If Junior gets hot too, the Reds will be able to keep it close in that division. The Cubs aren’t this good.

    A YF June 3, 2008, 12:40 pm
  • I agree they have a chance, but there are plenty of other good teams in the division. I didn’t mean it in the sense that I don’t believe they can do it, but more along the lines of “there are 7 other teams ahead of them in the WC race”, which gives them a 14.3% chance of getting it. And their pitching ranks 13th in the NL, despite having the most strikeouts in the majors.
    They do seem strong right now with Bruce looking like Ted Williams 2.0, but there are any number of things that can happen between now and October.

    Atheose June 3, 2008, 12:49 pm
  • Micah raises a good point. Carroll simply says “reports from Boston,” which means nothing to me.
    But SF is right that it’s at least two months before Ortiz returns. Wait the first month, see how Carter/Moss/etc. do, then make a trade or sign Bonds if you have to.
    This team is good enough and deep enough to survie without Ortiz for two months; they might need some things to fall right if they lose him for the season.

    Paul SF June 3, 2008, 1:13 pm
  • I wouldn’t mind seeing Bonds on the Red Sox if Ortiz really is out for an extended period of time. I half-follow the Giants since they’re my local team and the reputation he has outside of the Bay Area is very lop-sided. I watched many batting practices where he and his teammates were joking around in a way that indicated he isn’t the clubhouse cancer that is sometimes reported. And he’s a heck of a ballplayer.
    Obviously, I’d rather have a healthy Papi but if that can’t be, I won’t mind seeing Bonds take up the slack.

    rootbeerfloat June 3, 2008, 1:36 pm
  • I think I would have to really consider not watching a single game that Bonds plays in a Red Sox uniform, thus completely ignoring the idea that the Red Sox would stoop to such an insulting level.

    Brad June 3, 2008, 1:49 pm
  • If the Sox sign Bonds, I’m switching to rooting for the Rays full-time.

    Kazz June 3, 2008, 2:06 pm
  • wow….
    let me start out by saying how sorry i am that papi is hurt…we never want to see anyone get hurt, but you’ve heard me say before that i’ve followed his career from his days in new britain conn. on the twins farm team located there, and i really like the guy a lot…
    on the other hand, i am enjoying the conversation along whether or not to acquire bonds…it’s a great study in human behavior, and how one’s standards can be greatly altered by desperation…i’m amazed that any sox fans, who take pride in their team’s clean image, even regulars here, who have professed past disdain for bonds, would even consider adding him to this team…you will have gone from having no active players mentioned in the mitchell report [theo did have a cute spin on whether gagne was known or not known to be using before he was acquired], to having mitchell’s poster child right smack in the middle of your lineup….it’s really amazing how some folks’ viewpoint about cheating can mellow so dramatically when faced with adversity…can clemens be far behind?…i’ll at least give the guys who’ve acquiesced a break for your honesty, but comeon, you’d be clobbering yank fans for the same sentiments…given the lack of success with our 1b/dh experiments, i would expect us to be in the bonds sweepstakes too…gotta do what you gotta do, i guess…
    before one of you asks me to “prove it”, just go back and check every single conversation on this site that referenced bonds, giambi, or sheffield…i guess cheating’s ok, when you’re the one doing it…
    hurry back papi, so this don’t get ugly…

    dc June 3, 2008, 2:20 pm
  • and, for those of you who never wanted bonds, and still don’t, i admire your willingness to stick to your guns, even if it might cost you the season…i guess it’s why no team went after him in the first place when sfran finally cut him loose…

    dc June 3, 2008, 2:25 pm
  • dc –
    You can’t count me among the dishonest here. I have never trashed Bonds on this site or any other. I have always felt that he was a lightning rod for the cheating that half the league was also doing. And the fact that no Red Sox were mentioned in the Mitchell Report seems to me to be due to the informers not having a Boston connection.
    Bonds is a hero among kids in this area. I have had countless conversations with Little Leaguers about Bonds and steroids and always talked about how any person is more than a single thing they’ve done right or wrong. I could go on and on about this but just need to say I am in no way being hypocritical about Bonds.

    rootbeerfloat June 3, 2008, 2:30 pm
  • Everyone:
    I moved this topic to a thread up top.

    SF June 3, 2008, 2:33 pm

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