Are you missing James Loney? Come on, not even a tiny bit?
OK, so maybe not, which is not to say he was devoid of local supporters. Those were the ones who still loved his swing, that he averaged almost 90 RBI for three consecutive seasons and was a smooth-fielding first baseman.
To the rest of the Dodgers fans, however, he was a giant disappointment. A player who not only never developed but actually went backward. Who couldn’t hit left-handers and, for a first baseman, was infuriatingly short on power.
When he was traded to the Red Sox in the Adrian Gonzalezdeal — the only major leaguer the Dodgers included in the trade — tears did not abound amongst the faithful.
As he packed for Boston, Loney was hitting .254, with a .302 on-base and .344 slugging percentages.
In his first 91 at-bats with the Red Sox, he has actually been worse (.231/.268/.286). And for old time’s sake, has grounded into four double plays.
Loney was considered a throw-in with the Gonzalez deal, someone to keep first base warm until the Red Sox could address the position in the off-season. Loney, who is earning $6.4 million this year, can become a free agent at the end of the season. Only hang onto your Maserati — the Red Sox are apparently thinking of re-signing him.
Wrote the Boston Globe’s Nick Cafardo:
“While the Red Sox are considering re-signing Loney and he is receptive to coming back, he may draw attention elsewhere in a sparse first-base market. One team likely to kick the tires is Tampa Bay, which will likely not re-sign Carlos Pena, who has hit under .200 most of the season.”
Wow, wrap your arms around that one — a bidding war for James Loney. There’s something to miss.