Tuesday, February 28, 2012

TEK

Tomorrow one of my favorite players the Captain and Catcher for the Boston Red Sox Jason Varitek will announce his retirement from behind the plate. Most fans felt this was going to be the case when the Red Sox acquired Kelly Shoppach in the off season as the back up for Jason  Saltalamacchia .


 I just want to wish TEK and his family the best and thank you for the memories. I hope that the team is able to find a position for him in some aspect. It would be a shame to  loose the knowledge and experience he has of the game, not to mention the pitching staff. There is a lot more that Salty could learn from TEK even if he isn't in a uniform. I'm sure that it will be sometime before we hear what the team has offered him. 
I seriously doubt he's has a place in MLB's Hall of Fame but regardless he was a damn good ballplayer.  Here is a breakdown of his career...




 A member of the Red Sox from 1997-2011, Varitek hit .256 with 193 home runs and 757 RBIs. 
Only Hall of Famers Carl Yastrzemski (23 seasons), Ted Williams (19) and Jim Rice (16) had longer tenures with the Red Sox without playing for another team. 
Varitek's retirement announcement will be at JetBlue Park. It will come 12 days after righthander Tim Wakefield retired from the Red Sox, ending his 17-year career. 
Like Wakefield, Varitek was offered a minor-league contract and an invitation to spring training. But without any guarantees of making the team, he elected to retire instead. 
Varitek, who turns 40 in April, will leave behind a legacy few can match. He hit .256 with 193 home runs and 757 RBIs in his career, was a three-time All-Star and won the Gold Glove and Silver Slugger in 2005. Varitek was ninth in team history with 1,546 games and had the most games for a catcher, .
He also played 63 games in the postseason and was widely respected for his ability to handle pitchers.
 
Varitek caught a major league record four no-hitters in his career, guiding Hideo Nomo (2001), Derek Lowe (2002), Clay Buchholz (2007) and Jon Lester (2008) into history. 
He also is only player to have played in the Little League World Series, the College World Series, the World Series, the Olympics and the World Baseball Classic.
Varitek led his high school, Lake Brantley, to the Florida state title in 1990 and the top spot in the USA Today national poll.
 
A first-round draft pick by the Seattle Mariners in 1994 after a stellar career at Georgia Tech, Varitek was traded to the Red Sox on July 31, 1997 along with Lowe for reliever Heathcliff Slocumb. It proved to be one of the most lopsided trades in history as Varitek became one of the rocks on which the curse-busting 2004 team.

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