As a long-time Sox fan, dating back to the Williams, Doerr, Pesky, DiMaggio era, I’m so thrilled and excited that this year’s edition was able to pull off the improbable with last night’s climatic win to advance to the World Series. These guys are not the ‘Idiots’ of 2004 but they sure do have their share of characters, and lovable characters they are. So congrats to the Sox and good luck in THE series.
Now if I may, allow me to share but one of my reflections this morning after coming down from the ‘high’ that the ALCS provided.
Back in 2004 and 2005, I dreamed of one-day seeing Pedroia at 2B and Hanley Ramirez at SS which, I believed, would solidify the Red Sox infield for years to come. But it was not to be. And yet I still bemoan the trade that sent Ramirez, along with Anibal Sanchez to the Marlins for Beckett and Lowell. To this day I still believe what I believed then. I thought they could have gotten Lowell, who the Marlins where eager to dump because of salary restraints, without giving up either Ramirez or Sanchez. As for Beckett, in spite of his 2007 season performance that contributed to a world championship, I was never on-board with the decision to acquire him.
That being said, I bring this up because I fear the Sox are repeating history. I have, for the past couple of years, dreamt of the day when the Sox infield would be made up of Pedroia at 2B, Iglesias at SS, and Bogaerts at 3B.
In spite of Iglesias’ apparent mishandling of a groundball hit to the right of 2B in a key situation, a ball that most SS would not have even gotten to, and in spite of the many naysayers who deride his hitting ability, I say that this guy is destined to be one of the better SS for years to come. He may not become a year-in-year-out .300 hitter, but it will not surprise me one bit if he develops into a steady .260-.280 hitter. I have no doubt that his work ethic and poise in combination with his extraordinary fielding skills shall one day warrant participation in the All Star Game.
And when that day arrives I’ll at least have the satisfaction of knowing that I was as much against letting this exceptional player get away, (for a middle-of-the-road pitcher) as I was against letting Hanley Ramirez get away.
In most fans’ lexicon, it might not have the melodic ring of ‘Tinkers to Evers to Chance’, but stored away with my ‘dreamt keystone combo’ of Ramirez SS/Pedroia 2B, is a special niche for the ‘dreamt infield’ of Bogaerts, Iglesias, and Pedroia.