While there is ample reason to panic at this point - having gone from first place to 6 games out like 8 days and losing Frank Thomas and possibly Magglio Ordonez for the year and losing to the last place Royals 3 times in a week - I remain optimistic. The reason is we actually have a General Manager who cares about winning and is willing to stay true to his word, show good judgement and flash a little cojones. Consider the following:
After losing Thomas and Ordonex, GM Kenny Williams, goes and (re) picks up sleeper Carl Everett, to shore up the middle of the line-up. And after suffering through worsening pitching fortunes, gets #3 in ERA Freddie Garcia - then stuns us all to trade last year's All Star starting pitcher, Esteban Loiza, for finally settled Cuban hurler Jose Contreras (who's wife and kids made it to Key West after outrunning the Coast Guard on a speedboat for 3 hours). Both have performed spedidly, while Loiza got jeered in Yankee stadium after his loss a couple days ago. Then he goes the extra mile and (re)picks up always handy Roberto Alomar. Now he's considering the 4 man rotation if things get a little tighter before the Minnesota series. Gotta like that.