Red Sox cutting ties with Lugo

July, 17, 2009
7/17/09
3:25
PM ET
The Red Sox are in the process of cutting ties with Julio Lugo, and Steve Buckley got Lugo on the phone:
 Lugo
    "When you see a good looking girl, you get married and sometimes things don't work out," Lugo said. "I gave it my best and unfortunately things didn't work out. This is the best for both parties. I wanted it to work out but it didn't."

    The Red Sox signed Lugo to a four-year deal on December 13, 2006. That deal was worth $9 million per year. The team now has 10 days to assign Lugo's contract to a minor league club or to another major league club through a trade or through waivers.

    According to a baseball source, at least three teams have indicated some interest in Lugo. The teams are the Mets, Cardinals and Cubs, according to the source.

    "I'm not satisfied with the way it worked out," said Lugo, explaining that the Red Sox "treated me good" during his time with the club. "I wanted to play. I wanted to play good. I wanted to play right here with the Red Sox.

    "I'm not happy that that didn't happen. "But when things don't work out, it's best to move on."

    This season Lugo struggled coming back from a knee injury that required surgery in March. He was batting .284 on the season and struggled to cover his ground in the field. Lugo played in just four of the last 25 games the Sox played before the All-Star Break.

I suppose that Lugo will now serve as yet another example of the spoiled professional athlete who stopped trying immediately upon getting his big payday. Is that really what happened to Lugo, though? At least by his account, his performance in 2007 was due to a stomach parasite he picked up while vacationing in Europe. No, I've never heard of anyone picking up a parasite in Europe, but then again that would be a strange story to invent. In 2008, he never really got the bat going, but was playing decently enough in the field before suffering a quadriceps injury in July that cost him the rest of the season. And in 2009, a knee injury has turned him into the worst defensive shortstop in the majors.

You might argue that the Red Sox overpaid in the first place, but then again the Red Sox can afford to overpay. If four years and $36 million didn't make sense at the time, what about three years and $28 million? To the Red Sox, that's mostly a distinction without a difference. And when the Sox signed Lugo, he'd been worth roughly $35 million over the previous three seasons.

Lugo's right: It just didn't work out. And let's give the Red Sox credit for accepting the sunk cost and moving on.

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