You know. We've been told for years that Manny is a soft player, unwilling to play through pain and that his MBM antics result in him missing many games per season. "Being" is, of course, dealing with hamstring issues at the moment, and could easily beg out of the lineup. However, he has missed only one game in recent days, in light of the David Ortiz injury, and has also OPS'd 1.254 over the last two weeks. Hitting and driving in runs is what Manny Being Manny is all about, really. And the fact of the matter is, despite what some CHB's might tell you, he's one of the hardest-working players on the roster and does not exactly relish his time off. He's also become delightfully quotable this season, reassuring us as of late that when Papi is ready, he will not make Ortiz move to LF.
The other side of our now-dynamic duo? Our new #3 hitter and 1 year + RF, JD Drew. Drew was a bit of a disappointment last season, having been expected to give the Sox some power along with excellent on-base skills and the ability to play Fenway's RF. Well, according to most Sox fans for most of the season, two out of three was bad, and Drew was seen as a contract disappointment along with Julio Lugo.
No longer. With Papi out, Drew has been punishing AL pitchers to the tune of a 1.130 OPS over the last month (eh, 28 days). And while I've seen people point out his apparently-lucky .347 BABIP over that timespan, and the likelihood that we'll see some drop-off, I can't disagree. There will be "some" drop-off, but what I think some people are not taking into consideration is that Drew has a career BABIP of .320. He's above-average in that respect anyway, kind of the way Manuel is (.337 BABIP lifetime). So, in that respect, we shouldn't expect the unexpected 1 to our current 1-2 punch in the lineup to just fade out anytime soon.
The only question will be, when Papi comes back, how best to accommodate the resurgent bat of our RF? This is a question we will happily over-dissect when the time comes.