Jul 22, 2010, 12:17PM

Jacoby Ellsbury is Dead to Me

Boston ought to swap the lackadaisical outfielder, a guy who won't even stay with his teammates while injured.

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The Boston Red Sox are in a pickle this year. Eight of their key players have spent a significant amount of time on the disabled list (it’s nearly dumbfounding that J.D. Drew isn’t one of them) but the team remains a contender for the wild card. Barely. Manny Delcarmen is back in the bullpen (for better or worse), Clay Buchholz returned on July 21 and Josh Beckett is starting tomorrow night’s game in Seattle. However, outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury is nowhere to be found. Sure, he cracked four ribs, and normally I would sympathize with whomever had that affliction, but I’m not normally talking to a professional baseball player. Ellsbury’s job is to get banged up and play through pain. Red Sox principal owner John Henry is not paying him $496,500 to get massages and relax in Fort Meyers or a rehab center in Arizona. I’m a Sox fan, and for a couple of years Ellsbury—who swiped 70 bags last year, leading the bigs—was one of my three favorite players.  No longer.

While Ellsbury’s working prodigiously on his tan lines, Dustin Pedroia is hobbling through the infield to take ground balls. Sox general manager Theo Epstein values loyalty from his players, which apparently Ellsbury doesn’t have, considering his unwillingness to sign an extension (no doubt influenced by agent Scott Boras). There’s really only one solution in dealing with the pretty boy, and that’s trading him.

Currently, Ellsbury’s trade value is relatively low (languishing on the DL since the Stone Age will do that to you), but with a productive month at the end of the season he could be one of the more sought after outfielders during the hot stove months. (Then again, perhaps the market for wimps isn’t strong.) The Dodgers’ Matt Kemp has had a disappointing year so far in Los Angeles and, even though GM Ned Colletti has denied it, there are rumors about a possible change of scenery for the young center fielder. A simple swap of the players, in my opinion, wouldn’t entice the Dodgers enough to pull the trigger. Prospects would have to be added to sweeten the package, since Kemp has more upside than Ellsbury. Colletti is in desperate need of pitching, so maybe Michael Bowden or Felix Doubrant would help work out an arrangement.

There’s always the possibility of Mike Cameron remaining as Boston’s starting center fielder next year. This would necessitate Epstein nabbing either Carl Crawford or Jayson Werth this winter to take over in left field. How does DLsbury fit into this? Well, the Red Sox could potentially pitch him in a three-team deal that would bring a slugging corner infielder to Boston, or possibly an above average catcher. There are countless scenarios and landing spots for the crybaby, ahem, baseball player. I don’t really care where he’s exiled to; I just want to see Jacoby Ellsbury in another team’s uniform next year.

  • Books, you can have Bobby Junks for him. Our (c)loser has blown two big ones in the last four days. Bobby, please quit and buy your own personal Baskin-Robbins.

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  • Spoken like a passionate Red Sox fan, Booker. I feel your pain even if Jacoby doesn't feel any. Or maybe he does. I see three points here: 1)Who really has a grip on the physical injury? Answer - not the fans; only a handful on the club knows the story. It's of no value to clarify the situation about Jacoby to other clubs at this point. 2) Economics - Scott Boras is a jerk but a rather successful, aggressive agent jerk and clearly has Jacoby's ear. Not a bad situation for Jacoby and his future bank account. Excuse the cliche but Baseball is a business, not a game 3) Is Ellsbury salvagable for the Red Sox? Answer- NO. A change of venue would be beneficial to the Sox and Ellsbury. On a clean slate/ objective basis the Sox should be able to get somebody very decent for a guy who , over the next five years can hit .290, steal 65 bags and comport himself rather well in the field. As a Yankee fan I'd be interested in Ellsbury but there's not really a slot at this time and the Yanks, understandably, have a soft boycott working on Boras; they don't like to encourage the guy. But Ellsbury has real trade value.

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  • I don't know. I still kinda like the crybaby. Sure his OBP was underwhelming last year and sure he hasn't played AT ALL this year, but... he did steal 70 bases last year. I guess it's cause the Sox have never had a really fast player before. I just think that we should give him another chance.

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  • Boo-hoo, the Red Sox have an injured star. You think you've got it bad, buddy, look at what the Angels did last off-season: subtracted rather than added. You can't tell me Figgins and Lackey, if still wearing Halos uniforms, wouldn't have the team in spitting distance of the dreaded Rangers.

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  • Dude, Figgins is hitting like .220. I really don't think you guys are missing him. Joel Pineiro is holding his own, too. If you retained Lackey you wouldn't have him. Also, you wouldn't have much budget space if you resigned both of them or Kaled Cowart for that matter. The budget space leaves room for a major offseason acquisition, like Carl Crawford or Cliff Lee. Brandon Wood wouldn't have been starting for you though, but that also means you wouldn't have traded for Alberto Callaspo.

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