Tim Wakefield, aka Father Time- as the media would have you believe, wants another year. See, Wake’s the definition of a utility player- the first to raise his hand and literally the last to leave the bullpen. He’s like our “Wonder Years” dad. You know. But happier and slightly less curmudgeonly. There with supportive words of wisdom and the occasional scowling wisecrack. Working quietly in the background. But highlighted in select episodes so that we’ll be guilted into telling our own fathers “thank you?” But, you know, not always integral to the front-and-center Fred Savage-Winnie plot today?
In other words, Tim Wakefield is a workhorse. Just one that may be working at spending his money next season, not getting ours…
“I just saw that (Jorge) Posada retired, you know it’s something that my wife and I need to talk about,” Wakefield said, according to FloridaToday.com. “I’d probably need to talk about it with my kids, too. Ultimately, I would like to obviously play for the Boston Red Sox for one more year and see where it goes.”
Anyone else imagine his voice all mopey when he says that?
Okay. Now imagine it in this voice!
With the Sox since 1995. I was eleven. MLB debut in 1992. I was six. 200 wins. 2,156 strikeouts. A bazillion smiles.
Despite suffering through one of his worst seasons of an otherwise solid and sometimes spectacular career, the Eau Gallie High graduate and Florida Tech baseball standout is convinced he can still help a team win.
And it’s not that repetitive denial that has-beens repeat on their Facebook and Twitter feeds. Wake DOES have stones left.
It’s just- do those stones fit into our ball park and our ALREADY cramped pen?
“There have been a number of clubs who have called, who have an interest in signing me but I’m kind of just weighing my options right now,” he said, obviously waiting and hoping that Boston will make an offer. “I think I can be a valuable asset to them as an insurance policy, you know a fifth or sixth starter or if something doesn’t pan out for some of the guys they have already penciled in to the rotation. You know that’s kind of been my job these last two years; I don’t have a problem doing that.”
Getting past the condescension of the author’s “obviously waiting” remark (I hate condescending reporters, don’t you?)… He knows his value. As an insurance policy.
If the choices for No. 5 starter come down to reclamation projects like Aaron Cook, Carlos Silva and Vicente Padilla, or a number of other untested or questionable choices (Junichi Tazawa is one), is Wakefield really so undesirable?
Bobby Valentine has already said he cannot imagine Wakefield competing for a job. That might sound cold, but whatever the Red Sox owe Wakefield (and a roster spot is not on the list), the newly hired Valentine owes him nothing.
He’s not asking to take the lead. He’s not asking for $$$. He’s not asking for fame. He’s just asking to keep playing baseball, with a humility that SOME people (ahem, Lackey. Papelbon. Probably Jacoby next year) could learn from…
And even at 45-he can still be a benefit. My thoughts? We hold onto him. Not make him part of our regular rotation. Not make him part of our bullpen. But keep him for a clutch moment when everyone’s arm is shot. Going to happen. Late this summer when the rotation is tired and we need a miracle. A hero. Someone with a good attitude. Because when Tim does rise from the ashes of everyone else’s failure- that’s when he pulls it out. That’s when he shines. And that’s when debates start about his robotness. Save him for when we need him. And let him retire in a Sox jersey. He’s earned it.
And seriously, Benny C. Call. Him. Back.
You NEVER forget to call your father. Bad things happen, Ben Cherington. Bad things. He’ll just show up at your doorstep. He’ll just show up. And demand to see your packing progress. And when you don’t have packing progress, he’ll compensate by packing your coffee. And you won’t be able to find it. And you’ll have to go to a gas station Monday morning. A GAS STATION. That’s $1.99 you’ll NEVER get back, Ben.
PS- and this is random- but I miss Mike Lowell. I miss Mike Lowell so much that it hurts sometimes.
Mike Lowell would NEVER have let Soxsplosion happen. No, sir. Not Mike Lowell…
I’m okay… I’m okay…
In less somber news (because that was somber, man), Curt Schilling is expressing his opinions again. This time about something waaay more relevant than his usual cup of bitters. He’s defending something video gamey that I’ve never heard of. Whatever, Curt. Did you know he owned a video game studio? Did you care?
HuffPost released an interesting list today- the 10 worst contracts in baseball. Carl Crawford is #10. John Lackey is #6. Alex Rodriguez is #3.
There’s no way for the Yankees to get out from under a contract that will pay A-Rod $21 million during the season he turns 42. And then there’s the $30 million in home run bonuses he stands to earn. The Yankees print money, but yikes!
Jason Werth is #1? Really?
Manny Ramirez, Juice King, may be back in the MLB fold, as the A’s are rumored to crave juice… Be a part of the collective eye roll in 3, 2, 1… NOW.
MLB is reeealllyyyy struggling for news. So they popped up a craptastic piece about how we don’t always know who wins or loses pre-season. Wow with the ace reporting, skip. We allllll know which team this article aims to scrutinize passive aggressively.
Roy Oswalt, enjoying the attention, clearly, is going to milk it just a little bit longer before taking a deal with (probably) the Cardinals.
And here’s a theory about putting Jose Iglesias in the shortstop dance.
So. How’s your Monday?
I’d quit again, if I could.
Is a dramatic exit redundant when you’ve already put in your two weeks? I think it might be time to stage “I quit: The Musical.” I’m good on vocals, but I’m going to need a five string…
When Pedro says something, the gods themselves listen.
True story. Like, this one time, he was like, wow, I wish I had a grilled cheese sandwich. And these birds flocked from the trees and learned how to make a grilled cheese sandwich. Like how they made the dress in Cinderella. Except with, you know, toast and cheese and stuff.
That could have happened. You don’t know. You’re not here. North Carolina is a magical place.
Pedro said something amazing today.
“If there are any Red Sox management here, you cannot let ‘Tek go,” Martinez said at a charity dinner in his honor at the Liberty Hotel. “You have to keep him in Boston. He was our head, our captain. He should retire as a member of the Red Sox, and never leave.”
AND NEVER LEAVE.
This comes the same day we hear Tek’s been given a pity invite to spring training.
Yeah, well you know what, John Henry? He’s going to go to spring training. He’s going to train like you won’t believe. He’s going to train so well that you’ll beg him to come back to the roster. BEG HIM. Right Tek?
Um… Right Tek?
Um… So… Tek’s been awfully quiet through all of this…
Does that bother anyone else?
The Red Sox fairly have made clear to him that if he did come to camp, he’d serve mostly as “protection” in the event one of their two catchers, Jarrod Saltalamacchia or Kelly Shoppach, is hurt. Ryan Lavarnway is seen as Boston’s catcher of the future but is expected to start the year in Triple-A Pawtucket.
Then again… there’s another option.
Add in circulating rumors that he could be Pawtucketting... Really?
And, well, at least you’re in the news today, Tekky.
I’d kind of like to hear exactly what Tek thinks. Because, see, I’m kind of in favor of whatever Tek wants to do. I’m kind of hoping Tek wants to relocate to Boone, North Carolina and be my personal mentor. But, you know, whatever.
I do wish he’d say something.
I love you, Jason Varitek. Like, love-love. And I’d like you to live forever. Thanks. So. Um. Wake up. Stand up for yourself! Be assertive! And make sure that “C” is still attached to your jersey. I bet he sews “C”s to his pajamas. Tek, I bet you have manly pajamas.
My feelings can best be expressed through the following song by Wakey Wakey.
So, whatever YOU decide, Tek. I will support. Because you saved me life once. Or twice. Or. Um. All the time.
(WARNING. The following post contains multiple, gag-inducing pictures of a jackass)
“There’s no way I can play for the Yankees, but I know they’re going to come after me hard. It’s definitely not the most important thing to go out there for the top dollar, which the Yankees are going to offer me. It’s not what I need.” ~Johnny Rotten.
That was after winning a World Series. Remember? Oh, you know, I think he said something else after ANOTHER World Series… what was it… what was it… oh. Right.
“This is the greatest organization I’ve ever played for.” “Winning a world championship in New York is the most amazing thing I’ve experienced.” “I’ve always been a Yankee.” “No matter what happens in my career, I’ll always have this.”
See. I think that makes you a jackass, Johnny Damon. But not everyone agrees with me…
Why not bring back Johnny Damon to start the season in right field?
Really, Bleacher Report? Really? You are going to force me to answer that moronic excuse for a question????
Oh, and the fact that he’s a complete, egocentric jackass (can we take that away? Can we fit that through the door, guys?) who writes his own praises on, perhaps, the LAMEST personal website in an ever…
He is the biggest whiner in baseball!!!!! WHY DO YOU PEOPLE NOT SEE THAT???
Seriously. I think I do a gooooood job of documenting every time he whines. Do an archive search on my site. Go ahead. And I don’t get all of them. EVERY TIME he is in Boston, he says something snarky. EVERY TIME he plays Boston- he says something snarky. EVERY TIME he’s given an opportunity, he says something snarky. He is a bigger media whore than Curt Schilling. And he’s supposed to be busy. You know. PLAYING BASEBALL. And when he’s not being snarky, he’s acting all whimpery and hurt. Puh-leeze. Go blow your nose on your money, JD and leave the media out of it.
So, let’s take a September Soxsplosion team that’s disheartened and, let’s face it, whiny (how else would you describe the “unnamed sources'” state of mind?). And let’s add a whiner so weepy that he makes Andy Dick’s character on News Radio look attractive.
ARE YOU TRYING TO MAKE FENWAY PARK BLOW UP????????
The REALLY scary thing? There’s a poll. And, as of 10:53 a.m. today, 54.8 percent of Soxies say they’d welcome him BACK.
WHAT AM I MISSING? Is 54.8 percent of America on crack cocaine?
Seriously. Someone tell me when we decided to forgive the Idiot? Because I didn’t get that memo.
John Lackey doesn’t get a free pass for his jackassishness, and he still proudly wears the uniform. Johnny Damon??? Really???
Someone explain this using bullet points, please.
The reality is, Johnny Damon knows Boston. He knows the city, the fans and the ballpark.
Because he was “surprised” at the fan reaction to his Stankee switch.
And he was “surprised” to hear boos upon returning to the park that let him grow his hair out.
Does that sound like a guy who knows the fans?
Or do quotes like-
Make him sound like an egotistical jerkwad with a hankering to whine? You tell me, America.
Seriously, Red Sox. You have pissed us off enough over the past year. You really want to throw Johnny Damon at us NOW? Not a good plan, guys. And Benny C- I don’t think you’re that stupid.
Johnny, go back to Tampa and leave us alone.
The Bleacher Report agrees with me on something.
And that something IS… RYAN BRAUN!!!!
If it’s leprosy, you can just TELL us, Ryan.
Bud Selig would MUCHHHHH rather you have leprosy than juice in your veins.
Leprosy is nothing to be ashamed of. Lots of famous people have leprosy! Like Nicholas Cage.
Really, Ryan. No one cares if you have leprosy. Or. Whatever. Well, your random hookups might. But I bet you and Derek Jeter could hang out and make gift baskets as an apology. Jeter’d just appreciate a friend. So would Minka. Think of all the happy times you could have together. Make a sleepover out of it! Play “never have I ever” with jello shots! “Never have I ever juiced…”
See, it’s not just about you, Ryan. It’s about the Brewers. And MLB. And little kids with chewing gum and Ryan Braun trapper keepers (do you think they HAVE Ryan Braun trapper keepers? I want a Kevin Youkilis trapper keeper. Can someone get on that?). When you bring steroids into the mix- it’s about more than your career.
So, how’s about setting a few rumors straight?
Doesn’t look like you have a lot of time.
Seriously? Nicholas Cage does NOT have leprosy? What’s leprosy again?
Oh. OH! Ew.
DODGING (hah! a pun! a pun!) Joe Torre. Carlos Silva. Jason Varitek. And other news to whimsy your Wednesday.
Joe Torre is NO LONGER AT MLB! Why? Because he wants to be George Steinbrenner when he grows up.
Sorry, Bud Selig. You’re going to have to find another sleepover pal to play Truth or Dare with on those long, lonely nights… you could always hire a friend. You can afford it.
Joe Torre resigns from MLB!
And there was much rejoicing.
But I don’t know if they’re rejoicing in LA. Of course, I do think I heard a chorus of Well-it-couldn’t-be-worse-than-McCourt. A catchy tune, that one…
You’ll recall he stuck it to NY by managing the Dodgers in 08- a role he won’t be returning to…
And NY stuck it to him in a… well… we don’t have to go down that awkward memory trip again.
And the Sox could be hoping newly signed Carlos Silva hulks into a badass…
Last January, the Yankees signed Colon to a minor league contract. The one-time Red Sox starter made New York’s roster in spring training, and for the bargain price of a $900,000 base salary, the 38-year-old right-hander made 26 starts, logged 1641⁄3 innings and posted a 4.00 ERA.
Nick Cafardo reports we’re still interested in Roy Oswalt, Hiroki Kuroda, and Joe Saunders- but not their price tags.
But Nick Cafardo gets nothing from me until his other prediction comes true- the one about Jason Varitek.
While there’s lots of Tekky speculation- nothing is coming from the actual RED SOX- a point gracefully pointed out today by MassLive.
Maybe the Red Sox are formulating a creative plan for Varitek to return in some non-playing role but stay in shape, just in case.
If it’s anything else, they are not being polite by stringing Varitek along.
If the Sox hired Varitek as a coach or advisor, but told him to stay in shape in case an emergency need for a catcher occurred, I could see the logic.
Let’s do that.
In other news… Snowpocalypse averted in Boone, North Carolina.
And I get to write about basketball Friday. The new guy (UNC-Chapel Hill fan/musician. Let’s call him “Sweaters.” Yes. Because he wears sweaters.) is big into basketball. So, I guess this will just give me an excuse to nab a couple study sessions. Is it tacky to bring wine?
Inspired by fellow blogger Jup.
Jup, you see, doesn’t like Jacoby Ellsbury (who she calls Pretzels). And is unapologetic about it:
You’re not getting me on that bandwagon. It looks crowded, and I’m not that social. After giving it thirty seconds of thought, Pretzels has Kevin Cash syndrome. No matter what he does, no matter how well he plays, I won’t like him, and I don’t have a legitimate reason.
I get it.
No, I do.
I am a staunch Jacobist. Always will be (as long as he stays anti-juice) thanks to a well-timed home steal against Pettitte that one time.
But it got me thinking…
Who’s that player that you’re unapologetic about? Who’s that player that can’t do right by you, even if they work the win?
I have two, really. You know my anti-Lackeyness… (who I grimace at even on the few outings where he kicks) but unless you’ve been paying close attention- you may not know about my anti-Jed Lowrie-ness. I can’t explain it, really. I think it’s because he’s always injured. But Dice-K is always injured. And much more of a liability. And I find myself missing him, that little smirk he does when he sizzles. You know?
Jed Lowrie? I don’t even miss him when Scut anti-sizzles. You know. That thing he has been doing ALL THE TIME lately.
So who is it that cringes your last nerve? That you force yourself to watch? That you root for BECAUSE he’s on the home team?
And, on the other side of the spectrum… who do you unapologetically defend with every fiber in your fan being, often for no reason? Who will always be on your fantasy team? Even when he’s swinging strikes and falling face first into the baseball dirt on his way back to the dugout?
I don’t have a player like that. Nope.
KEVIN YOUKILIS DOES NOT COUNT. HE IS PERFECT.
Non-Sox fans? Same question.
4:23. At work. Explaining to someone the tradition that is Tim Wakefield.
So, betting time. I’ve got all my imaginary money on a win. That’s approximately 127,450 imaginary dollars. Imaginary dollars that I was saving for my imaginary boat and my imaginary high-interest mutual fund. It’s all I have left after purchasing my imaginary island last week with my imaginary savings. If I lose it, I’ll be marooned.
What do you think, Soxies? Is today the day that Father Time… um… Father Tim will deliver double hundreds?
See you in a few hours!
6:15. Getting off work. Step closer to being able to watch entirety of actual game…
HILARIOUS story about Alex Rodriguez on Deadspin (thanks, Jeb!).
New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez played in an underground, illegal poker game where cocaine was openly used, and even organized his own high-stakes game, which ended with thugs threatening players.
Check it out while you tailgate.
7:15. Okay. Carlos Carrasco. There’s something funky about the video on MLB.tv today… anyone else experiencing this? Checkerboards? No? Just me.
Jacoby chops to first. First out.
I wish they would stop spitting in public. It’s embarassing.
This is frustrating already. two outs. Sorry, Pedroia. I thought it was a homer too.
Gonz has an extremely dramatic single. Jacoby would have made that a triple. But whatever. The crowd goes silent as Youkie steps up to the plate. Okay. I may have assisted with the mute button on my computer…
Okay. They’re picking on Youkilis. The announcers say they’re picking on Youkilis. STOP PICKING ON YOUKILIS.
Thank you. With that complete and utter fail, Cleveland, you stopped. And helped my husband have one hell of a double. Okay, sound. You can come back again.
Papi at the plate. This MLB feed is really going to annoy me. I can tell. Base hit! Youkie! Gonz! 2-0 lead. 2-0. I like how this is going. Yes. Go team 200. That’s what I will call you all today. Team 200. Do it for Wake. Do it.
Carl Crawford, buddy, pal, friend, let’s widen the cushion, shall we? Let’s spread out that cushion like a picnic blanket. Like throat coating cough syrup. Like… like a home run.
Out. Okay. Um. First inning. Two runs. Okay.
Top of the second. 7:29. Travis Hafner. at the plate. Strike two.
Youkie in the shortstop spot (????) throws him out.
Carlos Santana who has shifted from catcher to first base? What a weird game.
Okay, announcers. I don’t want to know how well the batters hit against Timmy. This is not helpful information for my pro-200 mindset. You will go on mute again. Mute, I say.
Steeeerike. First K of the night.
Knucklin’. Knucklin’ your way to 200. Knuckleballs look so silly. I wonder how they look coming at your face. Judging from the confuzzled expression on Konerko’s face, not pleasant.
Throws it in the dirt again.
Um. Let’s not do that.
Tim turned 45 yesterday? Why didn’t I know that? I would have thrown a party.
A-Gonz shoves in the out.
7:35. I am so tired, guys.
Bottom of the second.
Not. A. Good. Sign for my awakeness…
Cleveland, I’m sorry your pitcher lost his last five starts. Really. And I’m sorry that tomorrow it will be six. Heidi Watney, I really don’t care about this. Thanks.
Reddick. Base hit. At the wall. Dramatic single. One out. But Joshy on first.
That ball almost hit Baltimore… wayyyyyy on the bottom of the wall list.
Marco Scutaro kind of looks like this guy I went out with this this one time. Not sure why I’ve never noticed that… my, what an awkward memory.
Good swing by Marco Scutaro? Um, Remy, a good swing is going to be when it’s out of the park and we’re two runs scarier.
Full count for Scut. See, I’m not worried- because Jacoby’s up next.
Fly to center… catch. Out.
Whatever, let’s see you, Jacoby.
Ball one. Okay. We can walk there. That’s fine. My computer keeps freezing on ridiculous expressions in the audience. Like this guy in a pink plaid shirt with his mouth open. He is clearly a Cleveland fan.
No offense, Bheise. You would NEVER wear that shirt.
In the air to right. Makes the catch. Ends the second. Okay. That’s fine.
0-2. Top of the third. Tim Wakefield is about to be a badass. You’ll see.
Any minute now.
Pop out. Jacoby’s all over it.
Any minute now.
He just smirked. Was that a badass smirk?
Yes. Yes it was. Second strike out for Tim Wakefield.
That’s KK, for those of you paying attention at home.
Ground ball. Easy out.
And then Scutaro kicks it.
Scutaro kicks it?
Scutaro kicks it.
Bunt. Out at first.
Okay. Scut… you better go shake Gonz’ hand.
Up the middle, base hit for Pedroia… our 5th hit of the night, by the by… on a new 5 game hit streak… Okay.
25 game streak broken by the White Sox. That one hurt.
Gonz tries the bunt. Not so much with the success.
Pedroia tagged out. Pedroia!
“That’s a helpless feeling for a baserunner, when you take off too soon,” announcer said.
Caught stealing. Bah.
Gonz grounds into the shift. Obvious out- but he runs for THAT one, notice.
Shut up, Heidi! Youkilis is batting.
Ball and a strike. I just love the Youk chant. It’s like a moan, really. Ball and two strikes. Two outs. Come on, baby. I believe in you. Want me to clap? I’ll clap. I can do that. Hell, it worked in Peter Pan.
Clearly, you are not Peter Pan. End of inning.
39 pitches for you, Timmy. 40th… a strike. And a fast ball.
Okay. Breathe. 200. 200. Just repeat that. You know. 200 times.
Hopefully this won’t take 200 tries.
Ball bounces. Ridiculously.
Clearly witchcraft. 2-2. Tie game.
Yeah, Salty. I think you SHOULD talk to Tim Wakefield. Maybe you should talk to him longer. NO outs. 2-2. 8:05 p.m.
Wild crazy pitch puts the guy to third.
Okay. Wakey. Okay. Let’s just calm down.
This inning is gross. Let’s start over. Or. Um. End it. Or something. Wake?
52 pitches. Tonight a year ago collision at the plate with Santana? Yeah. Let’s not repeat that. I’d rather Wake just strike you the frick out.
Like he just did. Making it KKK.
55 pitches. Okay. Let’s give that lonely out some friends. Two, to be specific.
Thank you. Sit down.
And, in the announcer booth, we’re talking about Tito bobbleheads. I really, really want one. Is that wrong? Will you buy me one?
“Where’s his finger so I can dislocate it again?”
That’s a bit much, announcer. A bit much.
A bobblehead night?
Doesn’t make the catch- Ortiz stopped at third, double for Crawford. Lovely. Kismet.
Second. Third. ZERO outs. ZERO.
BASES LOADED! BASES LOADED!
But BASES LOADED!
Come on, Marco.
Come on, Marco. Stephen King is watching.
I mean, it’s not a grand slam… but… at least we avoided a double play.
2 outs. Carl at third. Marco at first. Jacoby at the plate. Scut steals.
Anddddd we start the bottom of the 6th with an out.
And about fifteen yawns from me.
And two outs. Blast.
That was a dramatic fail… and we’re on first.
Of course, it may be moot, because Marco’s up.
Out. That was fast.
Top of the 5h. 8:30 p.m., but it feels like midnight. Wake… can you do this quickly? Thanks.
Thanks. 1 out.
Crap. And one on first.
2 outs. Okay. Okay. Guy on second. Whatever, guy on second. Wake promised this would be fast.
First and second. Okay. And Asdrubal is up to the plate.
3 outs. Thanks be to Fisk. I’m so sleepy, guys. So sleepy…
Gonz and Pedroia are trying to wake me up. It’s sweet. Thanks, guys. But it’s not working. Youk is going to load up the bases. He will.
And the fifth crashes. Like I am about to…
Tim Wakefield. Please?
Oh no. Alfredo Aceves is warming up.
Oh no. Wakey, you can do it. I believe in you…
200. 200. 200. 200. 200.
Tim. 200. Tim.
He is stressing me out. Are you watching this? Is anyone watching this?
Tito looks stressed out. And Salty, I hope that’s stress, because you are causing some plate scariness with your not catching.
Okay, One on first. One on second. two outs.
Oh. AND IT IS TIED AT THREE-THREE now.
Tim is gone. And I have this sinking sleepy feeling that this is only the beginning of our journey to 200.
Top of the 7th. I am too tired to yell at you, Randy Williams.
It looked fair to me too, Jacoby. It is 9:20.
3-3. top. 8.
This game will clearly last forever.
Youkie. Fix it.
Ball four. Leadoff WALK.
Tony Sipp. Whatever.
Mike Avilles pinching. This is the first time I’ll really see you in action, Mike. Can I call you Mike? Papi. Oh, Papi. Swing and a miss. ‘Course.
Zero outs, Aviles on first.
Aviles steals second. This Aviles, he’s alright.
Pop out. Papi.
Carl. Can I call you Carl?
Seriously. Ties cause me to lose sleep. Fix this, Carl. Be a buddy.
Out on strikes.
Okay. Um. Aviles is still in scoring position. One out left. So. Um. Salty?
Oh no. Justin Masterson tomorrow. Oh no. I am so conflicted. I loved him so.
Right. Back to the actual game.
13-1 Yankees? Really, White Sox? REALLY?
Salty. Yes. Salty.
This game is stressful. I know what will make us ALL feel better:
The 9th. An out.
Crowd on its feet. Wish we were there.
Hi, Darnell McDonald.
FAIL, Darnell McDonald. Go. Sit. Down.
One out left.
ONE OUT or extra innings. And I can’t stay awake, people.
Jacoby, if you CARE about me at all…
OHMYGOD. You… you love me… you… you really love me…
I love you too, Jacoby. I love you too.
“Just want to try to drive the ball.”
You did, Jacoby. You did.
I love Paps’ victory face. I love it.
“We’re going to compete until the last out,” Jacoby said.