Friday, February 17, 2012

My boy Wake retired today

tim wakefield

Timothy Stephen Wakefield retired from baseball today at the age of 46.

Faced with no spot in the starting rotation and no guaranteed bullpen job, Wake's only choice was to come to training camp as a non-roster invitee and try to earn a spot or try to latch on to another team.

Born in Melbourne Florida and coming out of Fla Tech, Wake broke into the bigs with the Pirates in 92. Picked up by Boston after he was cut by Pittsburgh, Wake got some coaching from the famed Niekro brothers in the art of throwing the knuckleball, and the rest is history.

A durable, reliable pitcher who could eat up innings, Wake was the epitome of what true Red Sox players are -- a team first guy. He pitched out of the bullpen, he started, he came off the bench to spell the staff even if it meant sacrificing his next start as he did in the historic 2004 World Series season.

This guy gave it all for the team, and chose to retire as a Red Sox rather than try to hang on with another team just to pad his stats.

I've always had a soft spot for knuckleball pitchers, and Tim Wakefield is probably my favorite pitcher of all time. My son bought me a great picture that Wake did for charity, that has him pitching on the field with the Looney Toon characters. It's signed by Wake and is something I'll cherish for years.

Thanks Tim! For all you've done for the Sox and this fan. You will be sorely missed.

1992 - 2011
wins -- 200
era -- 4.41
innings pitched -- 3226
strikeouts -- 2156
Roberto Clemente Award -- 2010
All Star -- 2009

No comments: