The last hurrah?
Tonight is possibly the last time the Red Sox will take the field in 2008. If it is, it may also be the last time we see Tim Wakefield, Mike Timlin and Jason Varitek in Red Sox uniforms. All three of these players have been terrific contributors to the Red Sox success over the past several years, and it will be sad to say goodbye. I especially respect Tim Wakefield, who labored for the Sox through many lean years, but who has always — ALWAYS — been a true professional, and a man of dignity. I hope he is back next year, but if not I just say, Thank you, Tim.
Mike Timlin is definitely running on fumes and it seems highly unlikely he’ll even be in baseball next year, let alone in a Sox uniform. His skills have dropped off in the past couple of years, but it was comforting having him in the bullpen up until this year.
As for Varitek, he has been a great Sox play… possibly the best Red Sox catcher of all time, and certainly no lower than the second best backstop behind hall of famer Carlton Fisk. But, I must say that I’m disappointed in his apparent pouting about being pinch hit for in this post season — you didn’t hear any complaints from Wakefield when he didn’t pitch. But the captain has earned a little leeway from his outstanding play during the past ten years. If, indeed, tonight is Tek’s last appearance for the Red Sox, then it will be a sad day — and good luck, Theo, filling Tek’s socks.
I wouldn’t be surprised if the Rays win tonight’s game, but I believe the Red Sox will win. I think Dice-K will pitch well, Kazmir won’t and this team — the Red Sox — have too much pride to go meekly. Look for the series to go back to Tampa Bay where the Rays will take game six and move on to face the Phillies.