Okay, I don't know anything.
Now that I got the inevitable criticism of what I am going to say out of the way, here goes:
- I heard Doug Mirabelli for a bit on the radio yesterday and he made elegant sense. Yes, he wanted to be a starting catcher for several years when he was younger and worked on his offense to get into the lineup. Now, however, he has a different perspective, wants to be on a team with the kind of players the Sox have, has deep roots into the community (his wife is close friends with some of the other Sox wives), and he puts value on those things, not necessarily on the money. He understands his value and his role and is content with it . . .
- So, my argument is that Pedro will be, too. He is not going to the Mets because they are not a good team and may not be for a couple of years (Leiter is gone, right?). Pedro is not going to spend any of the last few years with a struggling ball club -- he wants to be a first-ballot entry and going 14-10 with the Mets (or worse) won't help -- the critics will resurrect that ole chestnut, "if he is so good, then why wasn't he good with a bad team?"
- Pedro is not going to the Yankees because a) he has pissed off a few people there beyond their ability to overlook it; b) he is not going to replace Clemens or Pettitte, he is a 6-7 inning pitcher and that's great (aren't most starters now?) but not great enough for George. George wants Pavano, maybe someone from Oakland, maybe Radke. Pedro is too much persona non grata in NY -- and he must have figured out by now that the Yankees fans will crucify him if he is not great all the time. Too much risk there.
- Pedro stays with the Sox, who also get Pavano because they want him and because he will be appreciated here and paid well -- and WIN.
- Jason Varitek will stay as well. He is too smart to do a Ted Washington or a Damien Woody -- wrong sport, okay, but look what happened when they took the money and gave up working for a winner!
- Cabrera is gone. Young guy, first big payoff opportunity. He'll take it.
So, fire away at my unrealistic assessment. I perhaps give these guys more credit for intelligence and wanting to win than I should, but there needs to be some balance to the cynicism around these days, and that is my mission in life.