Monday, January 8, 2007

You gotta touch the stove to see if it's hot

My Uncle Henry used to say that. Sadly, he passed this past year. What a character: he was my families version of Bill Lee. A maverick without Lee's tendency to tick off anyone else, he went about his business in a way all his own. He also would say he was "going clock 55" when he was driving, ignoring the fact the only time he hit 55 was on his way to 75. Another favorite of his was when someone would see something beautiful or out of the ordinary and did not have a camera, he'd say "take a picture with your mind". I also remember when I was 11 and my brother was 6, we went out to eat with Henry. We went in the bathroom, and there was only one toilet. As we looked at each other, Henry said, "Go ahead: there's room enough in there for both your fire hoses." As you can imagine, at 11 that was High Comedy.

I see alot of Henry in my son Rakes: he marches to the beat of his own drummer, always in trouble with a glint in his eye and a crooked grin, kinda like he's winking at you. About 2 months ago he found his sisters lipstick. Faster than the 06 Sox bullpen could blow a lead, he had made the prettiest lipstick hand mural on the wall, and had even found time to grind a 2 ft patch into the carpet, as well as paint his torso. When my wife found him, he looked up at her, grinning, and said: "You not whip me hard, Otay Mommy?" You just can't stay mad at him. (Although we were able to stay mad longer at this little art project than usual).

The Red Sox front office has developed some sort of obsession with JD Drew over the past couple of years. I see a guy who refused to play in Philadelphia when they drafted him, went to St. Louis, and while a good player, never reached his potential. Then he went to Atlanta, where he had a career year. After one year, signed a $55 million dollar deal, and opted out when he could. The Red Sox then sign him to a $70 million dollar deal, but have yet to finalize it over health concerns. Drew has missed significant time over his career due to injuries, and has the reputation of a guy who won't play hurt and plays without any kind of passion toward the game.

Contrast that to the guy he'd be replacing: Trot Nixon, a first round draft pick, who while battling his own injury problems, played hurt, dove for anything in the NE part of the country, never complained, and was the ultimate teammate. An added plus, the man has the filthiest cap and batting helmet ever seen in MLB. I named my son Trot, so that should tell you what I think about the man.

But I'm just a fan. And I believe in Theo and the front office: they know baseball. And I hope, once the legal crap is worked out, that JD Drew plays a great RF for the Red Sox. I'm just worried that, in the end, they'll only be doing one thing.

Touching the stove to see if it's hot.

For their sake, and mine, I hope that stove is as cool as David Ortiz.

And Uncle Henry: We all miss you.


Stacy said...

The Sox should resign Trot. He'll play his hardest without complaining. JD is a big question mark as far as his injuries are concerned. Show some loyalty to a player who's been loyal to you.

We do miss you, Uncle Henry. Very, very much.

Tex said...

I love family stories and how they impact our lives. Ya know...I have a son who marches to the beat of his own drum...he can't help it...I did too.

Encourage them to march to their own want them to be individuals and not follow the crowd.

Great Post as usual Ted!

Ted D said...

Thank you Texas. We miss you at SG.

Tex said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tex said...

just letting you know I'm still alive Ted. had to go meet some friends tonight...but Im alive. I have to work sat too. :(

Peter N said...

I so agree with Stacy!! Save money, gain Trot-like defense, which WMP cannot do, and make us all happy! Stacey, it might be too late, but there are so many of us out here who agree with us....thanks sooooo much!!! Check out my Sox'll like. PeterN

Peter N said...

And Ted, I bookmarked your blog, so that you are a part of my daily "blog jog!" Thanks...great stuff, and your family sounds sooo great! Be happy...Peter