The table is being set for a team in the AL East to jump out to a quick lead as the Red Sox appear to be having health issues. Curt Schilling is on the 60 day DL and Josh Beckett is out with back spasms and not expected to be ready by the start of the season. In my mind, the only team not prepared to take advantage of that is the Orioles. Tampa and Toronto, on paper anyway, are better than they were last year. Will '08 be the year of a leadership change?
Through the process of suspensions, and absent any appeals, I"m thinking that the opening day lineup could be: Damon (DH), Jeter, Abreu, A-Rod, Giambi, Cano, Posada, Matsui, and Brett Gardner (CF). If Melkey opts to appeal his suspension than he gets the start at Center and Gardner sits. Due to how heavy the left side of the batter's box looks to be, perhaps Damon would get a start in Center and Ensberg gets a nod at DH. For the most part though, I think it is set. Any thoughts on Opening Day lineups?
The pitching staff is still a question mark in my mind as outside of (gulp) Kyle Farnsworth and LaTroy Hawkins, few have shown much consistency thus far.
I am highly disappointed that Miranda and Tabata did not make a better showing this Spring; both of whom have been reassigned to Minor League Camp. Steven White also optioned to SWB.
It just doesn't feel right that Tampa has gotten so much coverage in the national media during training camp.
Political Bite and the "Don't say you weren't warned" for the week: At the start of '07, when Nancy P. and the Dem Presidential hopefuls were talking about raising taxes on the rich, 57 and I had several conversations and thought based on available evidence that they weren't talking about just CEOs and the Bill Gates of the world but were probably going to be taking aim at anyone earning greater than $250k. As recently as my brother's birthday dinner, I lowered my aim and said they were going to include households that earned over $100k as the definition of "rich". Well, I was wrong!! This past week, Senators Obama and Clinton supported, endorsed, and voted for a bill raising taxes on everyone earning more than $31,100. No, the comma is not a typo and I'm not missing a zero. $31,100 is their new definition of the rich that "need to pay their fair share". Wow.