May 2, 2006


Masked man rides to the rescue (Bob Ryan, May 2, 2006, Boston Globe)

Any skilled professional can catch Curt Schilling or Josh Beckett. But is Doug Mirabelli the only man on this planet who can catch Tim Wakefield?

We know this much: He did it with aplomb for 4 1/2 years, and the five games Wakefield had thrown in his absence this season were terrifying exercises in knuckleball stoppage. Josh Bard was en route to establishing passed ball records that might have endured for centuries, and so the Red Sox did the only thing they could. They asked Bard and Cla Meredith to transport $100,000 with them to San Diego and they welcomed back the man they had traded away in December for Mark Loretta.

When Doug Mirabelli was announced as last night's starting catcher, the crowd erupted as if John Henry had just announced free beer and hot dogs for both Yankee games.

How badly did the Red Sox want Mirabelli back? The police escort was ready on the tarmac when he disembarked from his plane at 6:48 p.m. He dressed in the car. He breezed through the clubhouse, put on his equipment, and headed to the field.

Wake up call (Eric Wilbur, 5/01/06,
Doug Mirabelli didn’t directly answer the question as to whether this was his first time in a police car.

“It was my first time naked in a police car,” he said.

It was that kind of day for the newly re-acquired Red Sox catcher, who summed up his day in one word -- “Wow", following Boston’s 7-3 win over New York at Fenway Park. Arriving just minutes before game time at Logan Airport, Mirabelli changed into his Red Sox uniform while enjoying a police escort down Storrow Drive to the Fens.

“You can’t even imagine how much work went into getting here,” he said.

Mirabelli said he was nervous the entire flight from California that he wasn’t going to make it in time. He arrived at Fenway at 7 p.m., 12 minutes after disembarking his flight.

“He rolls out with all his gear on and jumps right in,” Wakefield said. “It’s the most unbelievable thing I’ve seen in my life.”

Sox get back Mirabelli, whose role is labor of glove (BOB HERZOG, 5/02/06, Newsday)
There was some added intrigue to the deal because the Yankees played their version of Hollywood Squares, as in "I'll take Doug Mirabelli to block." Yankees GM Brian Cashman admitted he tried to get involved in the trade talks with the Padres.

"I knew it was an obvious fit [Mirabelli with the Red Sox]. I wanted to make it as painful as possible," Cashman said. "I wanted to make sure it wasn't a one-horse race."

Even if he couldn't get Mirabelli, Cashman acknowledged, "I hope I drove up the price."

It's understandable if folks in Podunk are tired of The Rivalry, but it really is just better than any other in sport.

Posted by Orrin Judd at May 2, 2006 5:22 PM

Chicago ain't Podunk nor Peoria neither and personally, I'm nauseated by the eastern seaboard's geocentric worldview.

Care to bet anything on which color Sox will repeat first in this millenium?

Posted by: Ray Clutts at May 2, 2006 6:29 PM

Sorry, you'll have to yell into the tin can louder....the twine is frayed around Palookaville....

Posted by: oj at May 2, 2006 6:32 PM

OJ - Does your man, CLiff Johnson, still hold the passed ball record?

Posted by: Foos at May 2, 2006 6:36 PM

I wonder if people in Dallas/Washington, LA/SF, Ann Arbor/Columbus would really agree.

Posted by: Brandon at May 2, 2006 6:36 PM


"Red Sox catcher Josh Bard is on pace to set a major league record for most passed balls in a season. Theres just one problem: The guy who holds the record doesnt want Bard to break it.

Geno Petralli, who was charged with 35 passed balls with the Texas Rangers in 1987 serving as knuckleballer Charlie Houghs catcher, said last night hed like to talk with Bard - even work out with him - and perhaps pass on some of the secrets of catching the tricky pitch. "

Posted by: oj at May 2, 2006 6:53 PM

35 is the record? Josh Bard could have overtaken that by Memorial Day.

Posted by: pj at May 2, 2006 7:25 PM

Sorry, you'll have to yell into the tin can louder....the twine is frayed around Palookaville....

He's using twine because that's the best they've got out there in Little Canada. They thought about installing fiber optics until they realized the locals would just steal it for fishing line.

Go Blue Jays

Posted by: Raoul Ortega at May 2, 2006 9:20 PM

Blasted rainout. Godforsaken East Coast.

Posted by: Jim in Chicago at May 3, 2006 12:04 AM

Jealousy well befits both of you.

Perched atop all other teams here in April and located at the epicenter of this great nation our lofty position allows us to be gracious towards lesser contenders for the title.

Posted by: Ray Clutts at May 3, 2006 9:51 AM