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Chat transcript with the Globe's Gordon Edes

May 27, 2005

Gordon_Edes:greetings from the apple, and another round of Armageddon...Hope you're all doing better than Keith Foulke is
JR:Q: If Foulke continues to struggle, how much longer do you think the Sox will stick with him?
Gordon_Edes:well, you may have noticed that in atlanta, bobby cox decided to take danny kolb out of the closer's role until he gets straightened out, and is going with a committee. So far, Terry Francona has pledged to stick with Foulke, but with the Sox bullpen last in the league with a 5.08 ERA, and Foulke's ERA at 6.95, they
Gordon_Edes:'will be forced to do something if that continues. Mantei and a committee?
xanadu714:Q: Gordon, with Payton unhappy with his role, and Gabe Kapler apparently unhappy in Japan, is there any chance of reacquiring Gabe & moving Payton. This team desperately needs some speed.
Gordon_Edes:not so sure that kapler would give the sox any more speed than payton does (paging Dave Roberts, who incidentally had 4 hits yesterday for the Padres), but I can tell you Kapler would dearly love to come back. The only way that woiuld happen is if Yomuiri releases him from his contract there. Maybe the Sox could give them a little financial incentive to do so, but I've gotten no indications that the team is ready to give up on Payton, or is trying to move him
jimmy_robinson:Q: what are you feelings on recently released danny graves? is he someone the sox should try to pursue especially wih the way the bulpen has been underachieving?
Gordon_Edes:I have a lot of respect for Danny Graves, who was widely popular with his teammates, but he was awful this spring with the Reds. His velocity is way down, he was getting hammered, and while he insists he's OK physically, even his closest friends on the team believe otherwise. The Sox shoiuld pass on this one.
Ted_in_Connecticut:Q: Hi Gordon, I know its almost 2 months away, but if today were the trading deadline, what would be the top priorities for the Sox - proven starting pitching, or more offensively productive infielders?
Gordon_Edes:For me, Ted, it would be pitching, although getting schilling back would be the equivalent of a blockbuster deal. I think the need is in the bullpen.
millarmustgo___:Q: When is Olerud going to play first? Or Youk? Or Billy Jo Robidoux? Anyone other than that waste of space Kevin Millar?
Gordon_Edes:why stop with billy jo, mmg? Mo Vaughn? Cecil Fielder? Sam Horn? A lot of people had Millar buried at the break last season, but he had a big second half and withstood a challenge from mientkiewicz. Olerud raises some intriguing possibilities, but unless he really swings the bat from the git-go, or Millar continues slumping, I think Olerud will be used much as Minky was. Millar is a streaky hitter, and this is two years in a row he's had a mediocre first half, but there is time for him to turn it around
Lippett:Q: I expect a fire sale in Cincinnati soon. Should/ will the Red Sox go after Sean Casey as a long term solution at 1B or stick with Millar and Olerud and wait 'til the offseason?
Gordon_Edes:funny you should ask, lippett. I was just in cincinnati this week to do a story on sean casey. he still has another year left on his contract, at 8.5m per, but like you I think the reds will be unloading bodies soon and casey I imagine will be out there. He's not a power guy, but he's a high average guy whose left-handed swing could surely be adapted for the Fens. My guess is that unless the Sox really tank it, they will go with what they have, but Casey is an intriguing possibility. They'll be here June 13
jonesey:Q: Overbay, Huff, Dunn? Any of these realistic possiblities to solve the first base problem?
Gordon_Edes:Jonesey, first it has to be determined that the Sox view first base as a problem. You unlooad Millar, you're really messing with the internal workings of this clubhouse; he's part of the core group that has been so successful here. I think the end of May is way too early to decide this guy is cooked. Shoot, I thought he had three hits yesterday, didn't he?
donnybrook:Q: The last line of the Red Sox notebook in today's Globe read that Kevin Youkilis was taking grounders at second. Will the Sox play him there?
Gordon_Edes:DB, I wasn't in Toronto, but that would seem to be a real stretch to me. Frankly, I can't imagine it. I think to learn to play 2B would require a full spring training
BigPapi:Q: If the Red Sox do not take the Yankees series this weekend or worst yet get swept, can they come back form this or are they in too much trouble?
Gordon_Edes:BP, c'mon man, after down 0-3 in October, you're fretting that this thing is over if they get swept this weekend? C'mon, Bomber fans had the Yansk written off when they were 11-19. A long way to go, my friend.
jimmy_robinson:Q: which pitching matchup for the redsox do you like best this weekend?
Gordon_Edes:Maybe tonight, Wakefield vs. RJ, because of how well Wake has pitched against the Yanks and the building pressure on the Unit, who gave up 12 hits in his last start and went whiffless in the start before. The more hysterical corners of the NY media are calling him The Big Useless, as Dan Shaughnessy noted in his column today
redsoxdj:Q: Gordon do you feel at all that the schedule thus far (no long home stands) seem to have an impact on the team's play
Gordon_Edes:RedSoxDJ, I definitely feel the schedule has been an issue--two one-series homestands already this season, including the three-game set last weekend against the Braves sandwiched between a West Coast swing and this week's trip. No one wants to hear it as an excuse, but a stretch in which you play 19 out of 28 on the road, as the Sox are, takes it tolls. Sure it evens out eventually, but it's been a rough stretch
davedawg:Q: What's your assessment of how Terry Francona is handling the pitching staff so far this season. It appears to me that at times he's unsure how long to leave starters in and tends to stick too long with certain guys and give the quick hook on others.
BostonDotCom:Hey folks ... keep the questions comin' ... we're going to try to steer this discussion more toward this weekend's series in New York, so if you've got any queries about that, fire away
Gordon_Edes:Wasn't it almost a year ago at this time that TF was barbecued for leaving Schill in too long against Toronto, the night he gave up the g-slam to Chris Gomez? I don't have an issue with hiow he's handled the starters; Wake, Arroyo and Clement gave him some terrific quality starts when Schilling and Wells first went down, and he got some nice efforts from Miller (until last night)
Krystyn:Q: Any way to effectively shut down A-Rod this weekend? Last thing we need is a monster series from him!
Gordon_Edes:So far, Krystyn, A-Rod has shown a tendency to shut himself down against the Sox. He comes into the weekend just 5 for 26 against the Sox this season, a .192 average, and has 1 home run and 8 whiffs. He also made a killer error, and ha screated, rightly or wrongly, this suspicion that the Sox are in his head and he tries way too hard when Boston is in the other dugout
Gordon_Edes:I'm surprised no one is asking me about Manny
FanInPhilly:Q: Will Olerud start at all this weekend?
Gordon_Edes:It wouldn't shock me a bit, maybe tomorrow, with the day game after the night game
golden_man:Q: Considering the length of Manny Ramirez' slump dates back to last summer, do you think this marks the beginning of the end to Manny's illustrious career?
Gordon_Edes:but we havent talked to francona yet
Gordon_Edes:G-man, let's consider your premise. Manny hit .297 in July, .290 in SAugust. .275 in September, and hit 17 HRs and knocked in 53 after the break. He hit .300 in the LCS against the Yanks, .412 against the Cards, when he was Series MVP. You sure you want to go back to last season? (IMORE).....
Gordon_Edes:That said, his slump this season is puzzling. This is by far the worst month of his career, a .182 average coming into the weekend, he's hitting just .125 against lefties, and he's at .129 with no one on base. (MORE)...
Gordon_Edes:Manny is inscrutable, so I don't know what's going on. We speculate that he's unhappy, this or that, but maybe he's just dealing with the first prolonged slump of his career. But the beginning of the end? I wouldn't go there if I were you.
BostonDotCom:Good answer ... last question, Gordon.
jimmy_robinson:Q: any chance we can get your predictions on the outcome of the games this weekend? ;);)
Gordon_Edes:I say the Sox take 2 out of 3, and temporarily put a halt to the panic
BostonDotCom:you heard it here first ... thanks Gordon, and thanks everyone for chatting!

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