Everyone's Crazy for Crisp
(Didn't It Start Out This Way for Edgar?)
(BDD Photo Illustration / Orlando from Lynn)
Coco Reaction Roundup
"'Coco is a guy we had identified quite a ways back,' Epstein's assistant, Jed Hoyer, said last night. 'In September we were kind of concerned the secret was out and we weren't going to be able to get him. It was clear we were going to have a tough negotiation with Johnny, and Coco was the top guy on our list.'"
"'Coco Crisp is not Johnny Damon,' [Theo] Epstein said. 'He's his own player, and he brings his own strengths. Johnny was an outstanding, elite leadoff hitter and center fielder. It'd be unfair to ask Coco to fill those shoes.'
"'As far as Crisp playing center field, we're excited. We have excellent scouting reports and objective data on his ability to be a plus center fielder across the board.'" -- 1.29.06, Chris Snow, Boston Globe
Gammons: 'From Theo to Coco'
"If one takes the 2006 projections in the Bill James guide, Crisp's OPS will be .790 with 13 homers; Damon's .786 with 12 homers; Loretta's is .769, compared to the combined .729 Boston had at second in 2005, and it was only above .700 because of Graffanino and Cora the last two months. Youkilis' OPS projects to be .837 with 14 homers; Millar's .802 with 13; Lowell's 782 with 16 homers (projected in Florida's park); and Mueller's .786 with 12 homers (projected in Fenway). Even Gonzalez's projected numbers against Renteria aren't so bad -- .691 with 13 homers for Gonzalez vs. .749 with 10 for Renteria. And by the defensive evaluation system used by one AL team, Gonzalez was one of the top three defensive shortstops, along with Pittsburgh's Jack Wilson and Houston's Adam Everett. Even Dustan Mohr had a .907 OPS vs. left-handed pitchers, albeit playing half his games at Coors Lite.
"If Lowell comes back to 80 percent of his 2003-2004 numbers, Trot Nixon is in the shape he is rumored to be, and Manny is Manny, then the Red Sox actually could be just as good an offensive team as they were." -- 1.28.06, Peter Gammons, ESPN.com Insider (by subscription)
"'Almost every person we talked to [during their investigation of Crisp's off-field makeup] really thought he would thrive in our environment,' Hoyer said, adding a bit later: 'He's . . . got a certain energy and swagger we think will translate very well to Fenway.'
"If Crisp's self-analysis is accurate, Hoyer is right.
"'I love the game,'" he said. 'I play hard. I'm not afraid to run into a wall and get hurt. You know, go all-out. I think that's the type of player they love in Boston.'" -- 1.29.06, Art Martone, Providence Journal