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Not everyone likes cheap Sox

Not everyone likes cheap Sox

Not everyone likes cheap Sox

Let me start by saying I’ll be the first to applaud Ben Cherington’s ability to make serious improvements in the Sox team without over spending. Too often in baseball synonymous with overspending just because it’s a sport without a salary cap. There’s a notion that just because you can spend as much money as you want, you need to overspend to keep up. That’s not true. Look at the Rays and the Brewers. Heck, even the Rangers and Cardinals weren’t in the top 10 in total team payroll on opening day 2011. 

Having said that though, it understandably irks some Sox fans to hear that the team is looking to spend as little money as possible this offseason.  Again, if you can save money I’m all for it, but shouldn’t you choose a year that doesn’t follow arguably one of the greatest collapses in sports history? How does this interaction with fans sound to you, albeit a little exaggerated:

Ownership: “Hey fans. Wow, what a rough end to the season that was. We had to clean house with coaching and even had to let our prodigal GM go to the Cubs, but we’re promising now that we’ll do everything in our power to bring this team back to the top and make fans forget about last year.”

 

Fans: “Wow, this sounds amazing. I’m really excited to see some big changes with players. What did you have in mind?”

Ownership: “Well, we’ve really focused our efforts on Nick Punto and Kelly Shoppach.”

Fans: “Hmm…ok. Well how about some big names like Fielder or Wilson? Or maybe Yoenis Cespedes to take over in right field? Someone to really come in and make an impact?”

Ownership: “Well, actually we thought this would be a good year to cut back on our spending. After losing 18 of our final 24 games, we’re not really in the spending mood. What, with the economy and all, plus, John Henry has been making some serious acquisitions with his Liverpool soccer team over in England, we’re kind of on a budget.”

Fans: “Wait, so how much did you make off the team last year?”

Ownership: “…a lot…”

Fans: “And how much is John spending on Liverpool?”

Ownership: “…a lot…”

Fans: “And how much are you spending on improving this team?”

Ownership: “…not a lot…”

Fans: “Okay, just wanted to make sure everyone was clear on that…”

 

I don’t know, to me it just reflects poorly on the team to all of a sudden be really money shy after such a negative season. Even if we focus on things other than the collapse, people want to see money spent to right the ship. The thought is that more money brings more success, so if you want to spend more money then you want to be more successful. It’s somewhat flawed logic, but it may be necessary to show the fan base that the team isn’t willing to let something as terrifying as last season happen again.

Now, my prediction, which will be done in a much more official and at length manner closer to opening day, is that the team won’t need to spend the money to improve on last season. A healthy Buchholz and Youk plus an improved Crawford and Salty spell much success to me. Plus under the radar acquisitions of 

Regardless though, maybe coming right out and saying the team is looking to save money this season wasn’t the best move. At least make it so the team is rumored in chases of a big name player or two. Make it sound like the team is a serious contender for Cespedes or another free agent. Don’t come right out and say that a one year deal for Roy Oswalt is too expensive. Do something to show the fans that we aren’t just sitting back and hoping for improvements within, even though that may be the more intelligent move

By MikeSteiner
Wednesday, 4 Jan 2012

 

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