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  • Tek is done.

    http://articles.boston.com/2012-02-2...eld-jon-lester

    This man will be our manager at some point.

    Jolly good career, Mr. Varitek. No one's going to nominate you for the Hall, but you'll be remembered in Boston as the second best catcher we've ever had, and you accomplished things here that Mr. Fisk never did.

    Having a catcher like you to build around -- smart, disciplined, tough, good offensively and great defensively -- was the only way we were going to break the curse. I can only hope to see another Red Sox catcher like you in my lifetime. Fare well in retirement. You'll never have to buy a drink anywhere in New England.
    Last edited by Imgran; 02-28-2012, 06:17 AM.

  • #2
    Originally posted by Imgran View Post
    http://articles.boston.com/2012-02-2...eld-jon-lester

    This man will be our manager at some point.

    Jolly good career, Mr. Varitek. No one's going to nominate you for the Hall, but you'll be remembered in Boston as the second best catcher we've ever had, and you accomplished things here that Mr. Fisk never did.

    Having a catcher like you to build around -- smart, disciplined, tough, good offensively and great defensively -- was the only way we were going to break the curse. I can only hope to see another Red Sox catcher like you in my lifetime. Fare well in retirement. You'll never have to buy a drink anywhere in New England.
    The Sox were "built around" Varitek? I think that's bit of a stretch to say, when they had superstars like Manny, Ortiz, Pedro, and Schilling. But Varitek was a nice player and by most accounts, a good leader (though his leadership skills must have seriously eroded in 2011) and I'm sure he'll be headed to the Red Sox Hall of Fame, if there is such a thing.
    My top 10 players:

    1. Babe Ruth
    2. Barry Bonds
    3. Ty Cobb
    4. Ted Williams
    5. Willie Mays
    6. Alex Rodriguez
    7. Hank Aaron
    8. Honus Wagner
    9. Lou Gehrig
    10. Mickey Mantle

    Comment


    • #3
      A good catcher is more critical than its weight in offensive production or pitching. There's no factor of the game a good catcher can't help a lot and a bad catcher can't hurt a lot.

      I can think of teams that won the whole thing once or had great individual years without strength from behind the plate, but I'd have a hard time finding a team that really went on a run without at least a decent backstop.

      Think about the Flying Molina Brothers. Between them they have 5 rings and Yadier could win again. there's a reason for that. Quality catching is very important to how to be a good team. Why do you think Buster Posey was such a huge loss to the Giants last year? Or the collapse of the Sox coincided with the end of Tek's run as one of the league's best catchers?

      And then there's the fact that even before he was done for good, every time Tek has ended his season with an injury like he did in '01 and '06, other elements of the team that were so lauded at the time -- Nomar, Manny, Papi, Pedro, etc. -- weren't able to carry on without him and the team missed the playoffs.

      So no, I don't think I'm exaggerating at all.
      Last edited by Imgran; 02-28-2012, 07:22 AM.

      Comment


      • #4
        He didnt see a heck of a lot of playing time in these last couple years, and didnt do too much at the plate over that time, but he is a guy i will miss having on the team.

        Wow there has been alot of retirements this offseason, more than any other offseason i can remember.

        Comment


        • #5
          I will miss Varitek, a nice guy who played the game to play the game. His presence wasn't very obvious during the past few years, but the fact that I now have to say Boston's roster doesn't include him feels a little strange.
          "Allen Sutton Sothoron pitched his initials off today."--1920s article

          Comment


          • #6
            he certainly had a nice career. his 98 career OPS+ is well above average for a catcher (catcher average is about 80-85 or so) but was he really a good defender?
            he only threw out 23% of base stealers. that is not very good.

            I would call him a solid hitter and likely game caller but not an above average defender behind the plate.

            still a nice career. hopefully they will try to develope lavarnway into a catcher and not move him to DH before even trying him behind the plate.
            I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by dominik View Post
              he certainly had a nice career. his 98 career OPS+ is well above average for a catcher (catcher average is about 80-85 or so) but was he really a good defender?
              he only threw out 23% of base stealers. that is not very good.

              I would call him a solid hitter and likely game caller but not an above average defender behind the plate.

              still a nice career. hopefully they will try to develope lavarnway into a catcher and not move him to DH before even trying him behind the plate.
              Hopefully he will take a coaching job with the red sox down the road. maybe a bullpen coach or base coach maybe. seems like too smart and too good a guy to never see him again with the team in some capacity.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by RDB_SoxFan View Post
                Hopefully he will take a coaching job with the red sox down the road. maybe a bullpen coach or base coach maybe. seems like too smart and too good a guy to never see him again with the team in some capacity.
                MLB Network was reporting last night that Varitek would remain in the Red Sox organization in some yet-to be determined capacity.
                They call me Mr. Baseball. Not because of my love for the game; because of all the stitches in my head.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by dominik View Post
                  he certainly had a nice career. his 98 career OPS+ is well above average for a catcher (catcher average is about 80-85 or so) but was he really a good defender?
                  he only threw out 23% of base stealers. that is not very good.

                  I would call him a solid hitter and likely game caller but not an above average defender behind the plate.

                  still a nice career. hopefully they will try to develope lavarnway into a catcher and not move him to DH before even trying him behind the plate.
                  You can't look at catching numbers. Catching is the last frontier statistically -- the one position you really can't map out well because of how much it impacts all of the three big statistical areas.

                  Tek was one of the smartest defenders I've ever seen and his arm, which was above average in its own right, is easily his poorest defensive attribute.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Imgran View Post
                    You can't look at catching numbers. Catching is the last frontier statistically -- the one position you really can't map out well because of how much it impacts all of the three big statistical areas.

                    Tek was one of the smartest defenders I've ever seen and his arm, which was above average in its own right, is easily his poorest defensive attribute.
                    I agree that catching is hard to judge. the big problem is quantifying the effect of game calling. we can measure passed balls and CS% but not so well the effect of the catcher on pitchers ERA.

                    would be interesting to see red sox pitchers ERA on him vs backup catchers (although this would only make sense if the backup caught all pitchers -i.e the wakefield specialist).

                    but still you cannot neglect CS%. he certainly did have no weak arm (any catcher has a cannon compared to the average MLB position player) but 23% is not very good. especially if you consider that catchers with low percentages get run on more so that the actual difference between a guy like molina or pudge vs piazza or posada is even greater than CS% shows. a catcher with a cannon keeps guys at the base.

                    Still I'm not trying to bring him down. he is certainly a smart ballplayer and had a very solid career. I was just discussing about the attribute good defensive catcher. I have always viewed him more like an offensive oriented catcher who was solid but not particularly good behind the plate. but of course I can jst go by stats. you might now more about him since I have only seen him as an old man.
                    I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Imgran View Post
                      A good catcher is more critical than its weight in offensive production or pitching. There's no factor of the game a good catcher can't help a lot and a bad catcher can't hurt a lot.

                      I can think of teams that won the whole thing once or had great individual years without strength from behind the plate, but I'd have a hard time finding a team that really went on a run without at least a decent backstop.

                      Think about the Flying Molina Brothers. Between them they have 5 rings and Yadier could win again. there's a reason for that. Quality catching is very important to how to be a good team. Why do you think Buster Posey was such a huge loss to the Giants last year? Or the collapse of the Sox coincided with the end of Tek's run as one of the league's best catchers?

                      And then there's the fact that even before he was done for good, every time Tek has ended his season with an injury like he did in '01 and '06, other elements of the team that were so lauded at the time -- Nomar, Manny, Papi, Pedro, etc. -- weren't able to carry on without him and the team missed the playoffs.

                      So no, I don't think I'm exaggerating at all.
                      Amen. Thanks for the memories Tek.
                      San Francisco Giants, World Series Champions in 2010, 2012, and 2014!!!

                      "Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" ~ Albert Einstein

                      "Royals wear crowns, but Champions Kiss the Ring" ~ Jeremy Affeldt

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by dominik View Post
                        I agree that catching is hard to judge. the big problem is quantifying the effect of game calling. we can measure passed balls and CS% but not so well the effect of the catcher on pitchers ERA.

                        would be interesting to see red sox pitchers ERA on him vs backup catchers (although this would only make sense if the backup caught all pitchers -i.e the wakefield specialist).

                        but still you cannot neglect CS%. he certainly did have no weak arm (any catcher has a cannon compared to the average MLB position player) but 23% is not very good. especially if you consider that catchers with low percentages get run on more so that the actual difference between a guy like molina or pudge vs piazza or posada is even greater than CS% shows. a catcher with a cannon keeps guys at the base.

                        Still I'm not trying to bring him down. he is certainly a smart ballplayer and had a very solid career. I was just discussing about the attribute good defensive catcher. I have always viewed him more like an offensive oriented catcher who was solid but not particularly good behind the plate. but of course I can jst go by stats. you might now more about him since I have only seen him as an old man.
                        2004 without the knuckelball factored in:

                        Veritek CERA: 4.18
                        Mirabelli CERA: 4.26
                        Mirabelli's CERA that year with Wakefield on the mound was 4.94.

                        Very small sample size, I realize, but it's all I have time for.
                        San Francisco Giants, World Series Champions in 2010, 2012, and 2014!!!

                        "Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" ~ Albert Einstein

                        "Royals wear crowns, but Champions Kiss the Ring" ~ Jeremy Affeldt

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by dominik View Post
                          he certainly had a nice career. his 98 career OPS+ is well above average for a catcher (catcher average is about 80-85 or so) but was he really a good defender?
                          he only threw out 23% of base stealers. that is not very good.

                          I would call him a solid hitter and likely game caller but not an above average defender behind the plate.

                          still a nice career. hopefully they will try to develope lavarnway into a catcher and not move him to DH before even trying him behind the plate.
                          Catching is hardly all about throwing out runners. There are many measurable, as well as unmeasurable aspects of the catching position.
                          San Francisco Giants, World Series Champions in 2010, 2012, and 2014!!!

                          "Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts" ~ Albert Einstein

                          "Royals wear crowns, but Champions Kiss the Ring" ~ Jeremy Affeldt

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Rich the Giants fan View Post
                            2004 without the knuckelball factored in:

                            Veritek CERA: 4.18
                            Mirabelli CERA: 4.26
                            Mirabelli's CERA that year with Wakefield on the mound was 4.94.

                            Very small sample size, I realize, but it's all I have time for.
                            Course, Belly was no slouch in his own right. It's not like that's a comp with a replacement caliber catcher.

                            The thing about having a good catcher, is that it isn't just about having a good catcher. Quality catching is so rare and hard to acquire that many otherwise good teams in any given season are hamstrung by having to tolerate outright bad catchers. So having an outright good catcher puts you ahead twice.
                            Last edited by Imgran; 02-29-2012, 07:16 AM.

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