Give the Red Sox credit. When life hands them lemons, they make lemonade ... and they go to the state more famous for oranges to do it. They struck once in late 2005 when they traded Hanley Ramirez to get themselves Josh Beckett, and Beckett helped them to a World Series championship in 2007. Now, in the winter of 2008, Epstein has responded to their failed pursuit of Mark Teixeira by going to the Marlins and trying to get Ramirez back.
Epstein offered the Marlins a deal which included Clay Buchholz and Jacoby Ellsbury, and was supposedly planning on putting Hanley in center field while keeping Jed Lowrie at short. Considering Ramirez isn't the most fluid defensive shortstop in the world, that wouldn't be a bad position switch, and it's a creative way to add Ramirez's bat into Boston's lineup.
Problem: Even though trading Ramirez would be a good way to shed salary for Florida, the Marlins are hoping to build around Hanley when they move into their new stadium, and can hopefully afford him more easily. He's too good a talent to give away for the normal haul of prospects, so the Marlins ultimately turned Epstein down. But you can't blame Theo for trying. And the fact that he got the Marlins' brief attention shows that he's willing to shoot for the moon, and that he has the prospects to pull off a blockbuster somewhere else if he so chooses.
Theo Epstein is One Creative GM; Red Sox Make Play for Hanley Ramirez originally appeared on MLB FanHouse on Tue, 30 Dec 2008 06:00:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.