The Red Sox made a trade with the Texas Rangers during the Winter Meetings. They sent Mike Lowell and $9 million to Texas for a Triple A kid named Max Ramirez who was coming off a bad season.
It was the baseball version of an ugly breakup. The Sox wanted Lowell gone and didn’t really care what it took to accomplish that.
The trade was rescinded when Lowell showed up in Texas with a torn thumb ligament. Otherwise he was gone.
You can debate whether they were right, but at some point the Sox decided they wanted to move forward without Lowell. John Henry pays Epstein and Terry Francona good money to make those sorts of decisions and that’s what they decided.
Nothing has changed. Epstein and Francona didn’t get together for lunch in March and decide they really liked Lowell after all. It just so happens he’s still on the roster.
Lowell was only healthy enough to get 21 at-bats in spring training and had one RBI. The Red Sox were willing to trade him for the same terms they gave Texas and no team stepped forward.
So the notion that there’s now a choice to be made between David Ortiz and Lowell is not really accurate. The Red Sox made their choice four months ago. Lowell could get some at-bats against lefties, but the Sox would trade him again today if they could.
The worthwhile debate is whether Jeremy Hermida would be a better DH than David Ortiz.
Ortiz deserves more than three games and 11 at-bats to prove himself. But should the next man in line be Hermida?