Friday, February 20, 2009
Failure to Pull the Trigger
Between local reports in the Post, ESPN tickers, and some random guy who walks up and down my hallway blowing an air-horn and screaming about the latest A-Roid news, I can't help but wonder what it would be like if February 16, 2004 never happened. Granted, I was beside myself at the time, not only because I was drunk, but because we had come as close as you can to emotionally raping the Red Sox.
And now, I wish it was nothing more than a "what if" trade.
But wishing eternal damnation on the man with highlighted hair is not the point of this post. After weeping for hours and hours under my bed, I started to wonder about other major trades and signings that failed collapsed at the last minute - ones that if consummated, would have altered the major league landscape.
1. Barry Bonds to the Atlanta Braves - 1992
Way back in '92, when Bonds was slowly assholing his way out of Pittsburgh, then Pirates General Manager Ted Simmons agreed to deal him to Atlanta for Alejandro Pena and prospects. But an hour or so before scheduling a press conference, Simmons called it off. Braves GM John Schuerholz felt slighted.
Imagine, if this trade was pulled off, our hilarious site would never have a title, and dozens upon dozens of fans would be lost.
Interesting Note: Schuerholz thinks if Bonds went to Atlanta, he never would have done steroids. Obviously he takes stock in the whole "geographical" influence.
2. Sammy Sosa, Kevin Appier, and John Wetteland sign with The Red Sox
During the 1994 player's strike, before the union tweaked free agency and killed the real Ken Griffey Jr., Red Sox GM Dan Duquette agreed to contracts with FA’s Sammy Sosa, Kevin Appier, and John Wetteland. But a when the strike finally ended, the rules were changed and all three contracts were voided. Appier went on to excel in above-average mediocrity, Wetteland won a ring with “The Good Guys”, and Sosa had a nice run with the Cubbies filled with bat-corking, steroid abuse and feigning the need for a translator during a congressional hearing even though he’d been speaking fluent English with the press for 10 years (BTW - one of the greatest TV moments of the past 50 years, mind you. Fuck JR, he deserved to get shot).
Interesting Note: If Boston had signed Sosa, he would have joined fellow Mitchell Report members Jose Canseco, Roger Clemens and Mo Vaughn on the ’95 Sox roster. Pshhh, what a bunch of cheaters, right? Right?
(sobs into Yankees jersey)
3. Florida trades Josh Beckett and Mike Lowell to Texas for Hank Blaylock and John Danks - 2002
This trade is interesting for several (self-important) reasons. 1) If Beckett goes to Texas, he doesn’t carry the 2007 Red Sox to a 2nd World Series ring in 4 years, and 2) Mike Lowell stays likeable – south of Greenwich – and retires without having to absorb the wrath of my death-stare through the TV screen. And it’s a mean motherfucking death stare, I tell you…well, not really, but the Korean lady at the corner store sure seems intimidated when I shoot it her way. That curt bitch…
4. The Red Sox send Manny Ramirez to The Rangers for Alex Rodriguez - 2004
Ah, the trade that, at the time, probably would’ve sent me running into opposite direction Beltway-traffic, but now seems like such a grand idea. To Yankee fans, obviously. Because if the Rod goes to Boston, there’s not a shot in Satan’s Asshole that the Red Sox win Game 4 of the 2004 ALCS. It’s a sweep, the Yankees win, I drink until the police fish me out of the Chesapeake, and the curse continues. But noooooo, the Yanks had to be big shots and trade for him and then re-sign him and then not have him secretly murdered while he was sleeping after going on TV and admitting to steroids while dressed like a repressed homosexual...
5. Griffey Jr. to the Mets - 1999
Oh, the love affair in Queens that never came to fruition. If I cover my ears for long enough, I can imagine the sound of the hokey chants, the nonsense screaming, the retarded calls to WFAN professing New York City's new dominate baseball team...oh wait, that did happen in 2000. Whatever. But maybe if Griffey signed, he could have helped bolster the offense during the Subway Series the following October. Who knows how far the Mets could have gone with Piazza and Griffey in the middle of the lineup? But The Kid wasn't having it, and he utilized his no-trade clause to stay off the Van Wyck. I assume when the news broke, high school upper-classmen AK spent the night in hysterics, locked tightly in his bedroom, comforted only by the soothing voice of Edgardo Alfonzo's book-on-tape version of "Watership Down".