I recently came to the realization that Jed Lowrie is the real deal. I haven't seen anything out of him recently that makes me question that. He has excelled in every facet of the game and looks like he could be our shortstop of the future.
On a side note, I've always liked Lowrie but I never knew what he'd amount to. I always kind of thought he'd be a frindge Major Leaguer, maybe a career back-up. Even with his short time in the Majors, he has proved me wrong -- and I hope he continues to do so.
With that said, Lowrie needs to be the every day shortstop starting in 2009 at the absolute latest. I'd love to see him play out the rest of the season, but when Julio Lugo gets back I'm sure he'll get his spot in the lineup (unfortunately). With Lowrie at short, this Red Sox team is getting younger and better.
And with Jason Varitek approaching free agency, the Red Sox could get even younger. Rumors (for a long time now) are that the Red Sox are interested in essentially any catching prospect the Rangers are willing to dish out: Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Max Ramirez or Taylor Teagarden. The Rangers want to hold on to Teagarden, so the Red Sox could potentially trade for Saltalamacchia, replacing an uncommon "Varitek" name behind the dish for the even more unique "Saltalamacchia."
I'm not really sure what's going to happen to Varitek. Is he going to come back for a year or two? Can the Red Sox continue to afford to keep Varitek's bat in the lineup? Can they do that now? Are the Red Sox going to completely part ways with their captain? It's all up in the air, but I'd like to see the Sox acquire one of those catchers to at least be ready for the future. George Kottaras isn't the answer, Dusty Brown might be, but everyone else is a long way off. Saltalamacchia could come right in fill that lineup spot.
Imagine a lineup like this:
M. Ramirez/Saltalamacchia, C
I'll steal a line from the dumbest of all blondes in recent years: "That's hot."