I still can't believe how many people are so afraid of trading Red Sox outfielder, Jacoby Ellsbury, for Johan Santana. The same pitcher who has one two Cy Youngs, has an unbelievable changeup, and is also a lefty. At 28, Santana is en route to become one of the best left handed pitchers ever. Yet, so many people refuse to give up a young outfielder, who has never played one full year in the major leagues.
Do people complain today about the fact that Beckett acquired by giving up talented, Hanley Ramirez? That guy is unbelievable, but I don't hear anyone say, "Man, I can't believe we gave up Ramirez." Guess what, folks? Santana is even better than Beckett.
"Red Sox Nation" is full of so many bandwagon fans that I guarantee most fans will forget about Ellsbury in two years. They're more concerned about wearing as much Red Sox apparel as possible, chanting "Yankees suck" whenever possible, and explain how diehard they are. Oh, and don't forget about the pink hat. I know Ted Williams would be proud from his cryonic suspension.
Look, Jacoby has the potential to become a special player. Yet, it's purely potential. As an avid sports fan, I've seen so many players be amazing for a short period of time and everyone is bowing down to them. Then, they become stiffs. Maybe, I'll eat my words ten years from now, but how can you not complete this trade? You're getting a proven player who has consistently been in a small circle of pitchers that are considered the very best.
There was a poll the other night on a Boston sports show asking whether you were willing to give up Ellsbury. The result was an amazing 91% said "No", the other 9% said "Yes". I found that shocking, but what can one expect? I hope Theo pulls off this deal and if he gives up Ellsbury, so what? I'll applaud him for making the smart move. The right move that sets this team up for another championship.
Building a champion can't be purely about emotions. If it was, then Nomar would have played with the Sox through 2004 and they might have never won it all a couple years ago. Look at Bill Belichick. He and Scott Pioli build the Pats the same way. All I know is no one will be complaining when Santana dominates in a Red Sox uniform.