'Twas the Night Before Christmas

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the Nation,
Not a rumor was stirring, still a state of trepidation;
Red Stockings were hung with the greatest collapse last year,
Now the hope is Bobby V makes chicken and beer disappear

Theo Epstein was nestled all smug in his bed,
His Craw-Lackey deals nearly left us for dead;
And Werner in his ascot, and John thinking salary cap,
Stealing the rights to Rudolph, after not paying Pap

When out on the web there arose such a clatter,
Did Ben get a closer? There's 500 tweets on the matter,
Away to Fenway we flew in a dash,
Tore open the laptop, camera ready to flash

Who’s breaking the story? Who's the source in the know?
Is it Madson’s big payday? Did the Sox spend some dough?
When, what to our wondering eyes should appear,
But our old friend Manny, with a smile ear-to-ear

For just $1 million, and no more of his schtick
We knew in a moment, it was Larry’s latest trick
Then more rapid than building the park called JetBlue,
Bobby whistled, and shouted, knowing clearly who’s who

"Now Dauber! now, D-Lowe! now, Nomar and Nixon!
On, Pedro! El Guapo! on, Rickey and Damon!"
Bobby knows his Red Sox through and through
(But he hasn’t been in Baseball since 2002)

‘Greatest Team Ever,’ Herald headlines won’t say
Sox hope not to repeat 'Team Disarray Fades Away'
But maybe God has different plans, A-Gon will tell all
Carl may learn how to hit, or at least return Bobby’s call

And then, in a twinkling, he strolled to the mound,
The prancing and pawing of this tough talking hound,
He turned into his windup, beer belly twisting around,
Down toward home plate, the ball took off with a bound;

He spoke only to Bobby, then just put in his work,
Sure he dropped a few pounds, but he still acts like a jerk,
His eyes—how they twinkled! His dimples how merry!
After a few beers in the dugout—his nose like a cherry!

He threw just like in '07, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment, Beckett had the old kick;
His heater’s mid-nineties, the curve ball has bite,
Mark him down for a win every fifth night!

And Lester and Buchholz came in fit, trim, and healthy
Lackey’s chillin’ at home, thanks to Theo he's wealthy
Dustin showed up before sunrise, Youk looks ready to play
But ‘Tek and Tim Wakefield have long since gone away

Ells keeps getting better, before he says his goodbye
Gonzo feels more at home, but he’s still pretty shy
Papi had the old stroke back, when he hit ‘em they flew,
They all batted around, the unnamed rightfielder, too!

The crowd sprang to their feet, to the team gave a whistle,
Salty circled the bases, Bard threw another missile;
A new year is upon us and the Olde Towne ballclub,
"No more fat, drunk, and lazy! PENNANT FEVER GRIPS HUB!"

...with apologies as always to Clement Clarke Moore and Henry Livingston, Jr.
Merry Christmas, Boston Dirt Dogs

BDD is a feature of Boston.com. All posts are by Steve Silva unless otherwise indicated.

Boston Globe:

Red Sox end losing streak > Shaughnessy: Debunking myths about the 2014 Red Sox > Cherington: Everyone needs to get better

Boston Herald:

Ortiz, Red Sox bats break out to end losing streak > Buchholz still bewildered > Memory loss haunting Red Sox

ProJo:

Lester was once a good hitter, now heading toward dubious record > Travis Shaw brings hot bat to Pawtucket > Ranaudo shines > Betts not a candidate for Boston, yet

NY Post:

St. Louis lets Ozzie Smith bid Jeter goodbye > Yanks prevail in extras again > Nonsense leads off in MLB broadcasts > Beltran elbow on mend

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