The Red Sox are not unique in baseball as every team has experienced that franchise moment when they realize a generational player is now on the roster. The track is usually well documented as the success in the minor league food chain results in glowing reports that something unique and special is soon on the way.
In 1996, I was a semi-regular to Pawtucket Red Sox (PawSox) games in Triple-A. That is when I first saw Nomar Garciaparra and if there is baseball love the infatuation started there. Nomar wasn’t good or great, but at a level beyond that. A veritable hitting machine that was deposited in Boston for a late-season baseball toe-dipping.
By 2002, Garciaparra was firmly established as an elite MLB player and with that came all the financial rewards expected. However, there was a change in direction as a new sheriff was in town with the Henry ownership group and the contractual situation remained in flux.
By 2004, the situation was a festering boil to the sensitive Garciaparra. The consensus was Boston had no intention of re-signing Nomar based on his demands and injury-related eroding skills.
The impasse was resolved and the issue terminated at the trading deadline when Garciaparra was shipped to the Chicago Cubs in a unique and complicated four-team transaction. The Red Sox may have lost a potential future Hall of Fame player, but the tale of the tape is the shattering of a curse. Would that have happened if Nomar remained? All conjecture, but the deal had to be made as it resembled more of a divorce settlement than a baseball trade.