Well the free agency period has begun for baseball and four key starters from the 2006 season have filed for free agency. The saddest one to see file is by far Trot Nixon. I've felt that his time in Boston would be done after this year for awhile now, but seeing it start to slowly happen is strange to see as a fan.
Trot has embodied what it's meant to be a Red Sox, and has worn no other uniform during his entire career. Trot has been oft injured the past few seasons, and his production numbers have been on a steady decline. We've seen the Celtics do it in the past and have seen the Patriots do it the past few seasons. When a player is on the downslope it's a smart decision for the franchise to begin looking for an alternative. We did it with Pedro & Johnny so I see no reason why it won't happen with Trot.
Seeing Kapler leave is sad as well, but he's become an over glorified bench player. He's of the same "dirt dog" mold of Nixon, but is replaceable, and I think his time with the Red Sox is unfortunately over.
Seeing Gonzo and Lorretta file surprises me a little bit. I would assume if Mark left we'd try to slide in the young and talented Dustin Pedroia, however I don't see who we could bring in for Gonzo. He played the best defense of any Red Sox I've ever seen. He made routine plays looks easy, and if he doesn't get a gold glove this year it will be a shame. I think both guys fit in well, and Loretta made me see visions of Bill Mueller with the professional and respectful way he approached the game.
Put your cooking glove on folks, the Hot Stove is officially on for the next few months.