The Boston Red Sox announced the trade of veteran Kevin Youkilis to the Chicago White Sox following the team’s game on Sunday. The trade rumor has grown over the past week and a deal for him to leave was imminent. Youkilis did not seem to fit into new manager Bobby Valentine’s plans from practically day one. Valentine said in April that Youkilis did not seem to be the same player he was for eight previous seasons.
Youkilis’ departure is just another change being played out by Red Sox management. Youkilis was told of his departure just before an at bat against the Atlanta Braves. They decided to either pinch run for him if he got a hit his last at bat, or let him take his position at third the following inning and then replace him.
It really did not matter, all they wanted was for him to hear the cheers, thanks and get hugs and handshakes from his teammates.
Valentine since he arrived has felt the Sox were getting to old and young talent had to start taking over. With Youkilis gone, the only remaining player from the 2004 World Series team is David Ortiz, the designated hitter. Only six other players remain from the champions of 2007. What is happening is a young process rather than a purge of old players.
Boston is now four games above .500 with their win on Sunday and just two games out of a playoff spot. The Sox are 9-2 in their last eleven games and are averaging over 6 runs per game in that stretch.