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The plot thickens with Bay

Posted by Peter Abraham, Globe Staff  January 21, 2010 11:37 PM

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Remember back in June and July when the idea that Jason Bay would stay with the Red Sox seemed like a foregone conclusion?

Obviously that never came to pass as Bay turned down the Sox and signed with the Mets. One report indicated the Red Sox were concerned with Bay's shoulder. Then Peter Gammons revealed that an agreed-upon deal with the Sox was pulled for medical reasons.

Now, WEEI advances the story some more by speaking to Bay. The outfielder said the Sox pulled their offer because of concerns with his knees. Then the team came back with different proposals that all included medical contingencies. Finally Bay decided to move on, insisting all the while that he felt fine.

If the Sox indeed got strong medical advice from their doctors, they were responsible to follow it. If Bay has a healthy and productive tenure with the Mets, the Sox and their doctors were wrong. If Bay breaks down, they were right. That's pretty much what it comes down to.

Bay passed his physical with the Mets and GM Omar Minaya has said he is convinced Bay is healthy. But given their widespread medical issues in recent years, it's tough to put much stock in that. Only time will tell.

Regardless of the outcome, we again have a case where a prominent player has left the Red Sox on bad terms. When is the last time a good player left the organization with a smile? It might be Yaz in 1983. It just never seems to end well.

Why can't a player just leave? For whatever reason, there's always some drama.

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