Photo by Kelly O'Connor
Imagine being Jeremy Hermida today. You've just recently come off the DL after suffering a rib injury and a down season, and the next thing you know, you're driving away from the park on deadline day, with your name still penciled in on the lineup cards in the clubhouse behind you.
Here's where the usual platitudes are summoned: it's a business, not personal, etc. And I'm excited for the potential Ryan Kalish brings after tearing up the minor leagues this year. It's always a treat to see a young player's first big-league hit, especially when it comes in his first at bat. Kalish will clearly have to get used to playing the Monster, but that will come with time, and he could certainly have done worse than to get his first Major League RBI and score his first Major League run a few innings later.
I don't think it's arguing against the move to DFA Hermida and call up Kalish, though, to say I feel badly for Hermida on a personal level. He did his best for the Sox and behaved himself. I hope he finds a landing place soon.
Meanwhile, the only person I feel worse for? Mikey Lowell.
Otherwise, the moves by the Red Sox at the trade deadline today were distinctly nuts and bolts -- trading Ramon Ramirez to the Giants for right-handed relieving prospect Daniel Turpen and dealing prospects plus cash to the Rangers for Jarrod Saltalamacchia, who was immediately optioned to Pawtucket.
The question was raised about what this move might signal about VMart, but if it's a signal about anything, in my opinion it's about the likelihood of old, tired, broken Jason Varitek retaining a spot on our roster for many more seasons. I think Salty is meant to hold down / back up the catching position at Pawtucket while the more promising prospects are called up to the big club, but that's just my armchair theory.
For better or for worse, there were no big moves on a day the Sox looked like they were about to drop their second of as many games against the Tigers, after Friday night's big letdown following the seeming resurgence in Anaheim. As it turns out, they didn't -- slowly but surely they chipped away at Detroit's bullpen until finally, on his second at-bat with the bases loaded, David Ortiz delivered a bases-clearing double to walk off with the win.
A lot of people seemed to see Friday night's game as a microcosm of 2010, with a rally falling just short. I don't know how you can know what the 2010 season in microcosm looks like until you see the end of the 2010 season, but maybe that's just me. I'm not a naturally optimistic person by any means, but I am nowhere near ready to quit on this team. Until they are mathematically eliminated, I don't think you can count out the heart that's seen them remain players during this injury-riddled period.
The microcosm is the eye of the beholder, too: for me, both of these games, though each had a different outcome, were good examples of the attitude that has me keeping the faith about this year's team -- they may be beaten, but they hardly ever seem to be mentally out of it. They keep grinding, keep coming at you, keep making opponents work no matter how far behind they get. Between the talent they have waiting in the wings and the fact that they never stop fighting, I don't see how people can be so sure they'll ultimately fall short.
With reinforcements like Kalish, and bullpen help from lefty minor league callup Dustin Richardson (who also made an appearance today in the 7th inning), as well as Felix Doubront, who will be heading to the 'pen from his spot starter's role, not to mention Jacoby Ellsbury playing in Pawtucket and Dustin Pedroia chomping at the bit to get back, it's still way too early to make predictions for this season. And if they don't end up making it in the end, it's because too many people got hurt (including the Sox' reported trade target, David DeJesus), and couldn't get back in time--not because of the moves the team made or didn't make in an obviously tepid market at the deadline.