Rob Bradford over at WEEI had a brief conversation with Lowell, the Sox seldom-used hitter, and I get the sense the Mikey isn't feeling much love for the Sox these days.
A sampling of his quotes (and trust me, you're going to want to read these):
"I don't come in for defense. I'm always pinch-run for. Your level of importance feels diminished when I feel like I can do so much more. I just don't know if the place where I can do so much more is here."
"The fact we're not playing well adds to the frustration... We're not playing that well... I think if my hip was bothering me all the time I think I would be frustrated, but there would be justification in me not playing."
"The situation that is frustrating to me is that I think everybody wanted to see if I was healthier than last year, and I've got to believe that's pretty apparent, and I don't think my numbers merit not doing anything."
"The fact I feel good and I have instances where I have had good games and you can't follow it up and you can't get hot for two or three weeks, it can only add to your frustration... I feel really good this year and that also adds to the frustration. I don't think it's animosity, but just frustration."
"The fact [Ortiz] hits two home runs and the next day he plays, even if there is a lefty, that's actually what I think should happen because when guys are doing good you ride the wave. That being said, it also adds to my frustration when I go 4-for-4 and I don't play the next day because that could be the beginning of a two- or three-week stretch where you play really well."
"I've never been a lefty specialist, and I've never been told it's going to be my job and that's why it's hard for me to accept it because I feel like I can do so much more. What that means for this team, I don't know. That's not the situation I constructed. That doesn't add or take away from my frustration. It is what it is."
And my favorite part of the entire article:
Lowell has gotten in 20 games, some of them consisting of no more than one at-bat. One -- Saturday's appearance -- lasted one pitch, a 101 mph fastball from Detroit's Joel Zumaya that the pinch-hitter deposited into left field for a base hit before being pinch-run for. ("I played for seven seconds," he said. "That was pretty cool.")
Obviously, Mikey has all kinds of points here. Bottom Line, he hasn't been given a chance to really prove himself, and those few opportunities he has received, he's come through. Unfortunately, there's literally no spot for him on this roster, barring injury. To quote Mikey, "It is what it is."
I had written, earlier in the season, about the Sox getting Mikey some playing time to showcase him for a potential deal. Obviously we don't know how his hip will hold up in the field, but I think he's shown enough at the plate to warrant some attention from other teams. Plenty of teams could use a solid hitter, including the Sox, which is why I just don't see him going anywhere.
I don't have an answer to this dilemma. With the exception of last year, Beltre has been pretty healthy throughout his career (same can be said for Youkilis), so I don't know that Lowell's going to stumble into any openings on the corners. His best hope is for Papi to have a nervous breakdown.
Unless we find ourselves still playing .500 ball come July, I suggest Mikey get real comfortable on the pine. If we do continue to suck? Then ship him off to Kansas City for some barbecue or anywhere else for any other spare parts you can get.