EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


July 30, 2009

Dead Sox: Sox need to loosen up and have fun ... like the Yankees

Sox need to loosen up and have fun ... like the Yankees

BOSTON — Where is Kevin Millar when you need him?

Come to think of it, instead of trading the farm to the Toronto Blue Jays for Roy Halladay, maybe the blockbuster move the Red Sox should make is Clay Buchholz to the Jays for backup first baseman Millar.

At least Millar would have something to say. At least Millar would give a few dozen hungry journalists something to write about in the toughest of times. At least Millar would add some life to a team that has the spunk of roadkill these days. And, at least Millar would try to inject some life into this morbid scene.

On a more serious note, the Red Sox are dead.

No, they aren't out of the anything when it comes to the division and post-season. In fact, it could be argued that they are still the team to beat because of their pitching staff and a few seasoned MVP candidates in the lineup — see Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis.

They're just dead.

The Red Sox clubhouse, you should know, is no haven for jokers and pranksters. Not anymore.

Josh Beckett, Jon Lester, Jason Varitek, Kevin Youkilis and Dustin Pedroia, to name a few, are all in the same category: all business, all of the time. A few of them will toss in a funny wisecrack from time to time, but combined they couldn't touch Millar.

Jason Bay is as nice and approachable a guy as there is on the team, but let's be honest: he is not the life of even his own party. And Tim Wakefield, another nice guy, would rather eat glass than purposely add spice to the Sox clubhouse when the media is around.

Where have the clubhouse clowns gone?

Well, David Ortiz simply isn't the face of the franchise any more. The guy used to be electric, on and off the field. Now he is about as exciting as his eighth-inning pinch-hit popup last night. He has become a non-entity.

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