To paraphrase Dr. Emmett Brown, "Oh my God, it is beautiful."
It can't end! It can't be over! There must be more! The Red Sox
want deserve more for the loss of Theo Epstein to the Cubs than just two hard throwing minor league pitchers. They need... uh... a car! They'll take the '84 Ford Escort parked across from Wrigley, but because there's a nice stereo in it, the Cubs will need something back. Understandable. Maybe there's a nice piece of art work on the walls of the baseball ops department in Fenway that Theo misses. Theo can't possibly do yeoman's work in Chicago without that framed poster of Jim Morrison hanging over the commode down the hallway. Toss that back to Chicago, but that's way too nice to go on its own. The Sox should get... an old box of CDs! The Best of Winger (a one song single) will rock hard enough to make up for that lost print . But you can't just ship The Best of Winger back without sending something in return. A coaster... or maybe a really nice book of matches... [to be continued]
The Red Sox did finally receive the last of their haul for allowing former GM Theo Epstein to skip town a year early. OTM's own Ben Buchanan covered the acquisition of single A pitcher Aaron Kurcz yesterday, but if that wasn't in depth enough for you, well, what's your prob, dude? I suppose you could read Brian MacPherson who did a piece on the get'n of Kurcz in the virtual (and probably actual) pages of the Providence Journal. And if that isn't enough on a single A pitcher whom you've never heard of before, well heck, Alex Speier has five more paragraphs on the same topic for WEEI.com with your name on it.
From the "I wish I'd thought of that" file, Red of Surviving Grady has a list of shows he'd like to see on NESN this summer. The headliner for me was You Just Got Kicked In The Nuts By Johnny Pesky. I'd watch that if my house was on fire.
Over at Baseball Prospectus, prospect guru and man-about-town Kevin Goldstein wrote a Florida Scouting Notebook ($$) which includes Red Sox super prospect Jose Iglesias who may not be a super prospect or even a prospect depending on who you talk to. (For the record, Marc and I spoke extensively with Steven Goldman on yesterday's OTM Podcast about the matter.) Mr. Goldstein's sources seem to be split on the matter, though one did mention that Iglesias is noticeably bigger and stronger this year than last, a statement I've read elsewhere though exactly where escapes me now. In any case, if Iglesias can become a semi-competent hitter at the big league level his defense would make him an above average player. Something to hope for.
Mike Andrews, writing for ESPN Boston, runs down the impressive middle infield talent the Red Sox have accumulated in the minor leagues. This is, if nothing else, a way to get your Iglesias fix for free.
Do you have concerns about Ryan Lavarnway's catching skills? You're not the only one. But the good news is Lavarnway has latched on to one of the most important points that set professionals apart from amateurs: taking care of yourself like it's your job to do so. Rob Bradford at WEEI.com gives you the details.
At the Fan Graphs, Steve Slowinski decided to take a look at what BABIP really is. Hint: not pudding. The truth of the matter, as Mr. Slowinski notes, is that there's is far more to it than just luck and using BABIP as a synonym for luck is either laziness or ignorance. In any case, it's a very nice look at the components that make up BABIP.
The previously mentioned Mr. MacPherson of the Providence Journal also has an interesting piece on Kevin Youkilis, Bobby V, and lineups.
Good news if you're a fan of the Yankees failing. As Jeff Sullivan of Baseball Nation points out, It seems newest Yankee acquisition Michael Pineda isn't throwing as hard as he was when he was in Seattle last season. Maybe he misses the fabulous coffee. Or, as Hardball Talk's Craig Calcaterra notes, maybe it's just because it's still only spring training. In any case, it's always nice for the other side to have something to freak out over.
Finally, if you have $40 burning a hole in your back pocket, this is pretty awesome.