The Red Sox today announced that Pablo Sandoval would be heading to the DL with an inner ear infection. What’s interesting is that this move comes at time when SandOval’s stock is exceptionally low.

Pablo’s hitting a robust .212, and recently had one of the ugliest at-bats in modern history last week when he swung madly at three pitches to snuff a possible Sox comeback and seal a 1-0 loss to the Phillies. Not to mention that last night, Farrell pinch-hit for him knowing that the only person who could replace him in the field was… Christian Vazquez, who hadn’t played a day of third base in the bigs.

Needless to say, there’s a lot of speculation as to whether this DL stint is just a warm-up to Sandoval’s permanent disappearance from the team, whether it’s by DFA, employing a tainted ham or just having Mike Timlin clock him over the head, tie him up in a burlap sack, and leave him in a warehouse in Charlestown.

Cutting ties with Panda makes so much sense, you can pretty much figure that ownership won’t do it. One of the worst signings in team history, the guy was brought here for one reason — to sell panda hats. Perhaps also to fill the all-important role of jolly big guy when David Ortiz retired. Sadly, his sole highlight to date remains swinging a bat and demolishing his belt. Let’s visit that one again.