Reading my favourite Globe journalist Eric Wilbur today I was a bit taken aback when I came across the following in his piece on how maybe it's time to start the Helton trade talks again;
''There’s not a whole lot of chance the Red Sox will look into re-signing Mike Lowell''
Maybe Eric knows something I don't, but, why? Lowell has been absolutely on fire. He has played his usual excellent third base and has been simply fantastic with the bat for the 2007 Red Sox. Lowell sat out last night but had driven in 20 runs in 23 games in April and smacked home runs in three consecutive games against Toronto last week which were all hammer blows against the reeling Jays. Furthermore, Lowell actually leads the Red Sox in batting with runners in scoring position with a whipping .400 average.
Mike Lowell - Red Sox third baseman
His heroics with, in particular, the bat, has been noted in the Sox clubhouse. Uber-Utility player Alex Cora had this to say about the veteran third baseman; "He's very important for us. We know they're going to pitch around some guys at the top of the lineup, and what he's doing right now is balancing everything out.''
Stepping back, Wilbur seems to be struggling mightily internally with the Helton question. In April he said;
''Helton just isn't the powerful force that he once was anymore, for whatever reason. He's still a nice hitter, but not one worth $90 million''
And yet now, with first base and third base actually providing a huge proportion of the Sox '07 offence, Wilbur is talking about revisiting those Helton trade talks? Perhaps it's a slow day in the office or perhaps Wilbur, of Polish heritage, had a few too many Żywiec's last night? At the end of the day, why wouldn't the Sox sign Lowell to a one or two year extension and take their time in selecting a younger, cheaper option for the future at third base?