Sunday will mark the one-year anniversary of the trade that transformed two teams.
Last August 25, in the midst of a disappointing and dysfunctional season, the Boston Red Sox cut loose a collection of highly paid, under performing, quick to excuse making stars and shipped them off to the one place crazy enough to take them. Hollywood.
The Los Angeles Dodgers welcomed Josh Beckett, Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Nick Punto and their quarter of a billiondollars in contracts with open arms and overflowing wallets.
The collection of Red Sox castoffs have helped the Dodgers to first place in the NL West. Well, all of them except Josh Beckett. He's been out since May. Sound familiar? Hey, it's not the Sox problem anymore. Enjoy the chicken and beer.
In the trade, Boston shed the cash burden and received pitching prospects Rubby De La Rosa and Allen Webster along with James Loney and minor-league hitters Ivan DeJesus and Jerry Sands. Only De La Rosa and Webster remain.
By freeing up it's payroll, it allowed the Red Sox to sign a collection of characters that not only fixed a toxic clubhouse, but could win. Shane Victorinio, Mike Napoli, Jonny Gomes, Stephen Drew, Mike Carp, Ryan Dempster and Koji Uehara have all played key roles in the Sox success this season.
The Red Sox and the Dodgers will reunite Friday at Chavez Ravine and, if all goes well and the stars align, it could be a preview of this year’s World Series.