The Nats Blog sat down with one of the top Red Sox Blogs out there, Boston Dirt Dogs, to talk about the upcoming series between our two clubs. Here is what Steve from Boston Dirt Dogs had to say.
The Nats Blog: I come from a long line of Red Sox Fans. My grandfather and uncle both never lived to see a Boston World Series title, but they were die- hard fans of the team their entire lives. This was a common family tradition for Red Sox fans. There was a certain character to Red Sox nation before 2004, do you feel it has changed since the club has won two World Series?
Boston Dirt Dogs: Only three players left from the '04 team: Varitek, Wakefield, Ortiz... so yes, much has changed. The '04 team was rich in personality. From Pedro to Manny to Johnny Damon to Kevin Millar to Derek Lowe to Trot Nixon... to Curt Schilling... they were a team filled with characters, yet they still had character. The feeling at Fenway during the '04 comebacks against the Yankees in the ALCS will never be matched again. Now, Fenway has $325 box seats, is filled with corporate power brokers, and buzz is pretty much gone from the ballpark, unless the Sox start a rally. Guys like Jason Bay andJ.D. Drew mirror the personality of Sox GM Theo Epstein. It's a pretty boring team, but hey, they still win.
The Nats Blog: David Ortiz started the season in pretty awful fashion, but he has turned things around a bit in the month of June. How much longer do you think the club can get out of Big Papi?
Boston Dirt Dogs: Ortiz should be the DH through 2010 when his contract is up, then he'll probably sign for less money and stay on for another year or two after that. I don't believe he's washed up, or that he's really 45 years old.
The Nats Blog: Even with Daisuke going to the DL, the Sox still have a plethora of starting pitchers with Smoltz coming back, Justin Masterson currently working out of the bullpen, and Clay Buchholz pitching well in Triple-A. Do you think they will be trying to move one of their starters at the deadline to try and pick up some more hitting?
Boston Dirt Dogs: I'd like to see them get another hitter, maybe someone who could play some third base as Mike Lowell is a bit banged up. I don't see them moving any of the top tier pitchers, maybe a Michael Bowden. Smoltz could break down at any time and Buchholz could implode at the major league level again... stop me if you hear this but you can't have too much pitching.
The Nats Blog: What do the Sox need to do to beat the Nationals this weekend?
Boston Dirt Dogs: Show up with at least eight guys... or send the PawSox down there to make things interesting. Think Celtics vs. Washington Generals. This should be a cakewalk, and feel like a home series for Sox fans.
The Nats Blog: Do you believe this is a World Championship club?
Boston Dirt Dogs: It's awfully hard to get back to the Series, but this team is deep and the bullpen is solid, so yes, they can make it back. I worry about the Yankees and their lineup. Otherwise, the AL is filled with junk.
The Nats Blog: Favorite Red Sox memory?
Boston Dirt Dogs:Being fortunate enough to be on the field after David Ortiz homered in the bottom of the 12th on Oct. 18, 2004, Game 5 ALCS. And being there for Game 4, when Dave Roberts stole the base heard 'round the world.