Gratificationby Matthew Namee
May 17, 2004
When I worked for Bill James, one of my regular jobs was to scour the minor leagues for players the Red Sox might steal from other teams. In the process, I became particularly attached to a handful of guys, players that I thought were as good as a lot of major-league regulars at their positions, but just weren't getting a shot.
Not once did the Sox get one of my pet players... until now. The first email I saw this morning was from Joe Dimino, reporting that Boston had acquired outfielder Henri Stanley from the Padres. In his minor league career entering this season, the 26-year-old Stanley was a .296/.389/.494 hitter. He also rarely grounds into double plays. I think he's at least *almost* as good as Johnny Damon, and possibly better.
Anyway, I can't tell you how cool it is to see the Sox make a deal like that. I'll be rooting for Stanley, of course (and probably commenting here if anything cool happens).
Matthew Namee cofounded The Hardball Times in 2004, when he was working as the assistant to baseball author and Red Sox executive Bill James. Matthew still lives in Kansas, where he is currently pursuing a law degree. He can be reached at mfnamee [at] gmail [dot] com.