He Came, He Saw, But Will He Conquer? Adrian Gonzalez
Since the 2008 season The Red Sox have lacked something with the departure of Manny Ramirez. A true power hitter. They tried may players to help fill that void (Jason Bay and Adrian Betre, to name a few), one name kept popping up in trade rumors. It was Adrian Gonzalez. Spending the last five seasons in San Diego, Gonzalez's numbers have been truly eye openning. 2010 alone he was a .298 AVG with 31 HR and 101 RBI. Now I know what you're thinking, "31 Homers doesn't sound like much to me.". Conisder Petco Field's deep dimensions and the numbers are astounding.
Now in the past the Sox have brought in many big boppers from the NL that have failed. Billy Hatcher, Jack Clark, Cliff Floyd, and Andre Dawson have all donned a Red Sox uniform and didn't exactly live up to their respected hype. Why is Gonzalez different? Well, for one; his raw power. If you take a chart from Petco with Gonzalez's deep outs and place them in Fenway Park, he would have around 10-15 more home runs a year. Now place those in his stats from last year and they would look a little something like this .310 AVG 42 HR 110 RBI, figuratively. Does that grab your attention now?
We all know the adjustments from going to the AL from the NL takes some time for all players. It's a diffent style of game between the two leagues. Gonzalez may not be any different in this case. Also throw in the fact that he had off season shoulder surgery and it could be an even longer adjustment period for the newly acquired slugger.
Gonzalez seems to have the right mindset for taking on the challenge of the Boston media as well, of which is one of the harshest media outlets in America when it comes to the boys on Yawkey Way. He's taking it all in stride though, and is enjoying the coverage coming from a market where he didn't have a whole lot of it. Every interview he's laughing, joking, and smiling. Which is all well and good, but he also know he has to do the other part as well; perform. A task he's more than ready for.
With the season a week away it'll be nice to see what transpires throughout the season for the new slugger. Personally I wish him the best in his days as a Red Sox. He's got the makings, now it's time to take it to the next level.