When Theo Epstein departed Boston for the windy city of Chicago, there was a mixed bag of emotion from Red Sox fans. But a general consensus was “at least he’s in the NL where he can’t hurt us as much.” Well, that may not be entirely true. Epstein and his entourage have signed free-agent pitcher Paul Maholm to a one-year deal worth $4.25 million with a club option for 2013. Maholm was reported to be on the Red Sox radar recently, which may have forced Epstein’s hand. This move is just the latest in what is now becoming all to familiar behavior of how Epstein is torturing the Red Sox.
First Theo left Boston with a mess that looks like a hurricane ripped through. Large contracts leading to poor performances that have now cash strapped a club that so desperately needs improvements in their starting pitching. But forget going after guys like Edwin Jackson or C.J. Wilson even though they would make sense as the number four or five guys. Their price tags are and were way too rich for the Red Sox who want to avoid paying the luxury tax as if it’s the plague.
Second, Theo departs for Chicago more than three months ago and still the Red Sox have no compensation for him. Talk about schooling your young prodigy. Epstein insists he’s not worth that much, in the form of two decent skilled prospects. It appears that Cherington believes him and isn’t too worried about any compensation because the great Theo told him not to worry about it. It’s embarrassing for the Red Sox and it’s embarrassing for Major League Baseball.
Third, Theo gets wind that Boston might be after Dale Sveum for their vacant manager position. Who scoops down and snags Sveum before Cherington can even blink? Yep, good old boy wonder, Theo Epstein. This one doesn’t bother me all that much as I wasn’t completely sold on Sveum, but none the less it’s another point of how Epstein still runs the Red Sox show.
The Rizzo deal. Last off season Epstein sent a handful of prospects to San Diego where his good buddy Jed Hoyer worked. Surprise, Theo goes to Chicago, Hoyer joins him and Anthony Rizzo gets traded to Chicago. The Red Sox do have Adrian Gonzalez but their prospect cupboard was sadly depleted because of it. I wonder if Jesse Ventura plans on doing an investigation on this potential conspiracy theory. It’s one big web and makes you wonder if there’s some dirty laundry underneath it all.
Finally we have the Paul Maholm signing. The 29-year old is coming off shoulder surgery but at just over $4 million for a one-year deal, that’s a helluva good signing. Talk about low-cost with potentially high reward. Wati, what? Where have we heard that before? Oh yes, it’s Cherington’s favorite line and he viewed Maholm as that type of investment.
The Cubs were reported to be interested in Maholm a month ago, but nothing seemed to come of it. That was until of course the Red Sox showed interest. Three days later, boom, Epstein signs Mahom and the Red Sox are force to continue to search for scraps elsewhere. This dog and pony show is getting old, really quickly.
I wonder if the Red Sox show interest in Prince Fielder if Epstein would pounce on him too? Hey it’s worth a shot if it means keeping Prince out of the AL where he can’t hurt us as much. But that’s what we thought about Theo in Chicago. I wonder what Larry L. thinks of all this?