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Kevin Youkilis has played his last game as a member of the Red Sox. After much speculation and ever increasing rumors all this week, the Sox have finalized a deal to send the former All-Star 3B to the Chicago White Sox. In return, Boston will receive pitcher Zach Stewart, utility man Brent Lillibridge and will have to pay for a portion of Youk’s contract.
The relationship between Youkilis and the clubhouse (more specifically Bobby Valentine) has become a strain on the team and a field day for the Boston media. That combined with the emergence of Will Middlebrooks had had the organization determined to send the 3B elsewhere as soon as possible.
While he hasn’t played like his old self this season by hitting .225 with 4 HR and 13 RBI in 41 games, Youk has been a part of the most significant times in this team’s history. He has played his whole career in Boston beginning in 2004 and was here for both World Series championships in ’04 and ’07. He’s a Gold Glove winner and three time All Star.
While a lot of people (including myself) will be glad to see this clubhouse distraction leave town, their is no denying his contributions to this team on the field. With his departure, Will Middlebrooks now has a guaranteed everyday role in the lineup at 3B and manager Bobby Valentine has one less nuisance to deal with.