Yesterday, the Boston Globe decided to send Amalie Benjamin out to Los Angeles the moment it became clear the trade was going down. Which meant that last night her Twitter feed was full of updates from L.A. on the arrivals of the players, how they were treated and how Adrian Gonzalez performed in his first game as a Dodger (for those interested, he started off his time there with a three-run home run and then proceeded to strike out twice followed by a ground out and a pop out). There was definitely something bittersweet in those tweets. All the players seem to be happy (Nick Punto tweeted a photo of he, Beckett and Gonzalez yucking it up on the private jet the Dodgers sent for them) and while that’s pretty much what you want there was a little nagging part of me saying “You could have still been happy in Boston”.
Amalie had a few choice quotes from Adrian that made me pause and think about things.
“We all live our lives and do things we wish we can take back at times.”
“The way things were spinned is unfortunate, but I guess looking back there was one thing I shouldn’t have done.”
She went on to add that Gonzalez wouldn’t be specific but that he did try to be more of an outspoken leader this year. I think it’s worth noting he was trying to be a clubhouse leader but admitting there is something he thinks he shouldn’t have done (texting the owners for a meeting to bitch about Bobby Valentine and then letting Kelly Shoppach take the fall for it, perhaps?) I suppose it explains why he has been so defensive with the media lately. I don’t think any of the players that the Red Sox traded are horrible people but I’d like to think that the lack of “Oh my God, I can’t believe he’s gone! He’ll be missed so much here!” quotes from their teammates could be an indication that EVERYONE knew it was time to shake things up.
Ben Cherington seems to be on a tremendous high right now as he exerted his GM power not only with the blockbuster trade but by suspending Alfredo Aceves for three games for “conduct detrimental to the team”. According to Mike Petraglia at WEEI.com:
Alfredo Aceves tore off his jersey while making his way from the bullpen back to the clubhouse in the moments after Boston’s 4-3 win over the Royals Friday night. The game was saved by Andrew Bailey one night after Aceves allowed six hits and five runs and blew his third save in five chances.
After Aceves dressed in the clubhouse, he stormed into the office of manager Bobby Valentine and slammed the door behind him.
According to one source, he requested a meeting with Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington and was denied at a time when Cherington was working to finalize the blockbuster trade sending Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford and Nick Punto to the Dodgers. On Saturday, Aceves was suspended for “conduct detrimental to the team” and was unavailable on a night the Red Sox were forced to use all seven relievers in the bullpen and lost, 10-9, to the Royals at Fenway Park.
This has a feel of “If you’re going to act like a child, we’re going to treat you like one” but also seems to send a clear message that Ben isn’t going to let anyone bully the manager (anymore?). Of course it’s almost the end of August so maybe it’s coming a little bit late for some but if this last 24-hour cycle has revealed anything it feels like Ben Cherington finally became the General Manager of the Boston Red Sox.