Sunday, August 01, 2004

The baseball world is now abuzz with the unexpected and stunning question: if the Red Sox and Cubs are both involved in a blockbuster trade, can they both wind up on the short end of the deal?

Bear in mind that there are two other teams involved.

For what it's worth, initial fan reaction here to the trade, in which the Cubs got shortstop Nomar Garciaparra from the Red Sox, was outrage. Personally, I'm not sure that's justified. Nomar has only two months left on his contract, after which he was already nearly certain to leave. And he'll play them out hobbled -- lingering injuries have impaired his range, and had him sitting out games (including, infamously around here, an extra-inning game against the Yankees where he didn't pinch hit). In return for giving that up, they got two strong defensive players with lousy offense, which is at least a minor plus for a team that's been hemmorhaging unearned runs. But it's certainly not great.

That said, the Cubs' GM has to be enjoying his press. Quoth one Phil Rogers:

The trade that is bringing the 31-year-old Garciaparra, a five-time All-Star and .386 hitter this July, isn't just too good to be true. It's so good that Cubs general manager Jim Hendry needs your prayers. He must have sold his soul to beat the curse.

1908, Phil. 1908. It isn't often that a Red Sox fan gets to say that.


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