Looking for something to discuss and get my mind off a possible Indians World Series. So, I now want to think about the Red Sox coming back. How do they do it? What would Francona need to do?
If you visit the Red Sox Nation sites much of the talk is about what Francona needs to do with the lineup. I'd like to have a similar discussion and think it would be easier to have it among the more reasonable fans of LGT. That, and I want to avoid the impression of trolling.
As the chatter goes, there are three guys on the Red Sox bench that have the potential to turn things around:
*Ellsbury, the fleet-footed rookie that made a big splash in September
*Kielty, the pedestrian waiver pickup
*Cora, utility player extraordinaire that teases with fine performances in his backup role.
That leaves three players you can potentially remove:
*Coco, the bat-waving defensive wiz that makes RSN sometimes think that Damon's arm was not so bad
*Drew, Scot Boras's $55 million boondoggle that makes Kielty look like a savior
*Pedroia, the odds-on Rookie of the Year (though stumbling in the playoffs) and David Eckstein clone, though he is far better defensively and offensively than that scrappy Caucasian.
Replace Coco with Ellsbury - you will not get any worse and the upside is great.
Replace Drew with Kielty - this is based on lefty-right matchup facing CC
Keep Pedroia in the lineup - they need that token "scrappy white guy" [NOTE BELOW]
The twist in my vote is that I do not have Ellsbury lead off. That is too much pressure to put on the kid and Youkilis would be a better since he has the ability to set the tone.
Looking at the options and how the players are performing, it is very tough to be in Francona's shoes right now. It's not like he is the one striking out and hitting into the double plays.
[NOTE] Trying to be as far from racist here - because when you always associate white (and never non-white) infielders as "scrappy", you are saying that non-white infielders can never be scrappy. Depending on your definition, some race is being slighted.