Stop Crying Over Spilled Milk: Jason Bay Wasn't a Big Loss For Boston

Anthony EmersonAnalyst IJanuary 3, 2010

ARLINGTON, TX - JULY 22:  Jason Bay #44 of the Boston Red Sox strikes out for the final out of the eighth inning against the Texas Rangers at Rangers Ballpark July 22, 2009 in Arlington, Texas.  The Rangers won 3-1.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

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Recently, former Boston Red Sox outfielder Jason Bay signed a new contract with the New York Mets for four years and $66 million.

Why the Mets wanted to overpay for an average hitter, I don't know.

Jason Bay was instantly beloved by the Fenway Faithful after being acquired on Trade Deadline 2008, which saw the Public Enemy No. 1 in Boston, Manny Ramirez, leave for Los Angeles.

But, what many Red Sox fans don't understand is that the Red Sox can live without Jason Bay. Sure, his power numbers in '09 were good (36 home runs, 119 RBI) but his average was only .267. In the '09 ALDS, Bay hit just .125, getting just one hit.

Mike Cameron, the presumed next of kin in left field, isn't all that different than Bay offensively, and better defensively.

Cameron has certainly lost a step or two over the years, but the 37-year-old still hit a respectable .250 last year with 24 home runs and 70 RBI. Sure, it's not .267 with 36 homers and 119 RBI, but Cameron had six less strikeouts (156) than Bay (162). Not an astronomical difference, but still it proves that Mike Cameron is a lot like Jason Bay, just a few years older.

Plus, if the Red Sox sign Matt Holliday (something that is becoming less and less likely as time goes on), Holliday is an even better player than Bay and Cameron.

Many people point out that Holliday "struggled" during his only American League stint. There are two things wrong with those statements: 1) Holliday still hit .286 and 2) Holliday played in a goliath of a stadium in Oakland, a stadium fit more for the Oakland Raiders than the Oakland Athletics.

So, if Cameron/Holliday are at least decent with the Red Sox, Jason Bay won't be a huge loss, like a boatload of Red Sox fans are saying.

But that's only my opinion. What's yours Red Sox Nation?


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