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Mike Lowell is "on a mission"

Jan 8, 2010, 10:00 AM EDT

Thumbnail image for Mike Lowell headshot.jpgIf I had any skills I’d create some sort of interactive bingo card for the right-hand margin on which we’d put chips every time a player is reported this spring to (a) be in the best shape of his life; (b) be working on a new pitch that he thinks will make the difference; (c) have added some muscle to help his stamina; (d) have leaned up to increase his flexibility, etc.

Don’t get me wrong — I love these stories, if for no other reason than once they start appearing it means that baseball is right around the corner.  And of course, they speak to that eternal spring optimism that makes baseball the wonderful thing that it is. But are they meaningful? Not particularly.   This morning Rod Bradford has the latest entry in this eternal game. It’s about Mike Lowell, whose agent says that “this year he has been on a mission,” and that he’s been working out four or five times a week.

I like Mike Lowell so I hope that’s true. But at the same time, I’m assuming that he and the Red Sox have a pretty well-orchestrated plan to talk up how ready he is for the season, how quickly he’s healing and all of that. Indeed, I wouldn’t be shocked to hear something from the Sox soon talking about how, you know, they may just even keep him and play him a lot he’s so darn healthy.

After all, if they don’t, how else are they going to sucker someone into trading for him?

  1. aceshigh - Jan 8, 2010 at 10:11 AM

    Lowell is a great guy and I wish to hell the Sox had a place to put him.
    Does anyone else think that Lowell could be a more effective DH than Ortiz at this point?
    I know that cutting Ortiz is out of the question, but I honestly think Lowell would put up better numbers as a full-time DH over the course of this upcoming season than Ortiz will. Just a hunch.

  2. Matt M - Jan 8, 2010 at 10:22 AM

    Better than Ortiz? No. But good enough to give corner guys days off and DH against lefties with high splits? Absolutely. And if Youkilis or Beltre gets hurt, Lowell’s a great option. The only question is whether the Red Sox can pay a utility guy $12 mil.

  3. RedSoxLucas - Jan 8, 2010 at 10:28 AM

    There is actually no question as to whether the Sox should pay Lowell as a utility guy. The answer is YES!!! They were going to pay $9 million of his $12 million contract for the trade with the Rangers — might as well keep the bat, keep the insurance and eat the extra $3 million to actually have him play.

  4. Old Gator - Jan 8, 2010 at 10:38 AM

    He could surprise you all. Mike always has great comeback seasons; he’s the Richard Nixon of baseball.

  5. yankeh8r - Jan 8, 2010 at 10:58 AM

    Mike Lowell is great but his capacity has diminished at the corner – that being said I would rather keep him in the fold for possible DH if Ortiz struggles or goes down, PH when needed, and giving Beltre days off at 3rd or filling in if Beltre goes down – all this is better than trading him for some prospect who will probably never even play!

  6. Moses Green - Jan 8, 2010 at 11:18 AM

    Fortunately for the Red Sox, they won’t have Mike Lowell to kick around anymore.
    Let’s not forget the true lasting cultural relevance of Tricky Dick – the fact that one of his speeches gave the title to Steven Seagal’s magnum opus “Above the Law.”

  7. MAL - Jan 8, 2010 at 11:36 AM

    Mike Lowell is absolutely amazing and I am devastated that they are planning to get rid of him…just like that. 2 years ago, he took 20K less to stay with the Sox. I am a huge Sox fan but I am more than a Mike Lowell fan and I will root for him regardless of where he goes. I think he would be a better DH than Papi as well. They are just throwing him out like he is nothing. They want him gone so bad! It is ridiculous!! Mike has proven to me that he is an amazing person and he is an amazing player. The sox are the ones that let his injury sit and he has to take this for it. 😦 I hope he has an amazing year regardless of where he goes, especially if it is not with the Sox so he can prove to them that they made the wrong decision. Beltre is so overrated.

  8. Moses Green - Jan 8, 2010 at 11:46 AM

    So long MAL, have a gooood trip

  9. Zonebrick - Jan 8, 2010 at 1:27 PM

    If you seriously believe that obtaining Mike Lowell and $9M for Max Ramirez is a bad deal for the Rangers I have to question your aptitude for writing about baseball!

  10. Craig Calcaterra - Jan 8, 2010 at 1:30 PM

    When was that deal finalized again? I seem to forget the press conference with Lowell in the Rangers uniform and all of that?
    Oh yeah. The RANGERS thought it was a bad deal. They canceled the thing. Man.

  11. Zonebrick - Jan 8, 2010 at 2:46 PM

    Opening Day hasn’t arrived yet, we shall see…I can’t imagine why any team would prefer Ramirez to Lowell (if healthy obviously).

  12. IdahoMariner - Jan 8, 2010 at 7:02 PM

    he’s bragging about working out 4 or 5 times a week? I work out 4 or 5 times a week, and I have a full-time+ job and a two year old. WTF?! No wonder he looked slow out there all year.
    Maybe his defense and hitting would improve (and therefore the Sox wouldn’t have had to give Beltre his “pillow” deal (again, WTF?!) if he had worked out 4 or 5 or, dare I suggest, 6 times a week last year. Geeeeeezzuuuuuus.

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