Reunion to end all reunions

OK, I am positively dizzy from the morning reunion that took place on the lawn of City of Palms Park this morning. How can you keep track of all these intertwinements?

Nomar is in the house, and some folks were very happy to see him. David Ortiz bear-hugged him. Jason Varitek and Tim Wakefield also had conversations with Boston’s former favorite son.

No. 5 also had a nice moment behind the batting cage with Captain Carl Yastrzemski, who made his first public appearance in camp.

Oh, and did we mention Grady Little is here? Grady has a big smile on his face and held court with all kinds of old friends. Jim Rice, Wakefield, Johnny Pesky, et al.

Bill Mueller strolled on the field in casual street clothes and a laptop case. Yes, Billy Ballgame
is a full-blown executive now, serving as Ned Colletti’s special assistant.  Mike TImlin and Doug Mirabelli, in particular, were pretty excited to see the 2003 American League batting champion.

Mike Easler is also here. He’s now a coach in the Dodgers system. It was interesting watching him and Rice. Remember that Rice and Easler were teammates on a relentless Red Sox lineup in 1984. Remember how good that lineup was? Boggs-Evans-Rice-Armas-Easler-Buckner-Gedman-Barrett. That was a lineup and a half that year. Anyway, before I digress any further, Rice replaced Easler as the Boston batting coach in the mid 1980s.

Still, there are more connections. Rudy Seanez and Matt White — a pair of former Sox relievers — are here. Seanez was booed out of Boston last year.

White, a Rule 5 pick from 2003, has recently landed a fortune, thanks to 24 million tons of mica rock. Estimated fortune? Somewhere between $1.2  and $2.4 million.  There’s another angle to the story though. White is sick of talking about his pending fortune and more worried about winning a roster spot in the Dodgers bullpen. Oh well, hey, at least if he doesn’t make the team, he won’t go hungry.

Don’t forget that Damian Jackson is also with the Dodgers. You remember Damian Jackson. The guy who had the crash to end all crashes with Johnny Damon in the 2003 playoffs. My other recollection of Damian Jackson is the throwing contest he once had with Gabe Kapler before a home game at Fenway. Standing behind the first base line, both men were aiming baseballs over the Green Monster. As I recall, Gabe won the competition handily. But Damian is still spry as ever. My pal Rob Bradford informs me that Jackson ran up to Varitek during pre-game drills today, put his hands on ‘Tek’s shoulders and leaped over the Captain.

More crossovers? Dave Jauss, who lives in my hometown of West Roxbury, is Grady’s bench coach. Jauss was a very valued advance scout for the Red Sox during October of 2004.

Also, there’s the J.D. Drew factor. J.D. caused some resentment in Los Angeles when he opted out of his deal with the Dodgers to come to Boston. And one more worth mentioning. Alex Cora played most of his career with the Dodgers and is just one of those guys who looks like a Dodger. Alex enjoyed some reunion time as well.

All this makes me long for my next reunion.

Ian.

16 Comments

It would be interesting if these teams met in the World Series. I’m sure that the network would love all of the story lines. Damian Jackson not only crashed into Johnny Damon, but when he was playing for the Reds, he threw a ball from second base during warmups that hit Sean Casey (who was then playing first base for the Reds) in the head, causing Casey a hospital stay and a long stint on the DL. It happened during double play practice in pre-game warmups. Jackson tried to turn to, but apparently Casey wasn’t looking.

Jeff

http://www.soxandpinstripes.com

http://www.bosoxbanter.mlblogs.com

Where has everyone been lately? The turnout on the blog has been WEAK with a capital “W” the last couple of days. T-minus a month until Opening Day. it’s time to get revved up.

you guys didnt do too well today maybe thats why.

Here’s one thought: the biggest news of the day came from a B-game.

Jon Lester feeling good in his comeback. That awesome for him, his family, his teammates and the fans.

Now that’s something to talk about.

what about derek lowe?

D. Lowe wasn’t scheduled to pitch so he didn’t make the trip.

Sorry about the poor showing, Ian. No excuses, just haven’t taken the time to post.

I think it’s great to see former teammates greeting each other the way they do. Seeing it reminds me that when we as fans say someone is a traitor because they signed with another team, we really don’t understand the players’ point of view. In the end, they’re all pretty cool with each other, and just because someone plays on another team doesn’t change the friendships that were created when they were on the same team.

Nice piece on Schilling’s work on his changeup, Ian. He’s been talking about it for a while. It will be interesting to see if he’s able to use it effectively.

Ian, Matt White is worth $2.4 BILLION (not million). I think you should write a wonderful puff piece on your next ‘best buddy’…

You rattle off those names and there are so many memories. I’m now 56 years old, and when I was growing up as a kid, I learned to hit left handed because that’s the way Yaz hit. Yep, I learned to **** the bat and take that big round house swing. The back of the Quincy Elementary School was the Green Monster, and every kid learned to play balls off that wall on one hop with the bare hand and gun the ball to the infield, just like Yaz did it. Everyone wanted to be like Yaz, we even ate Yaz bread. Yaz was my role model, not in the kind of person he was, because we never knew anything about that, but in the way he played the game. One hundred percent, pedal to the metal, all the time! Thanks Yaz!

Well, I wasn’t here earlier today because I was in Jupiter watching our guys in action… Craig hansen almost blew it!!! If it hadn’t been for the bats, it definitley wouldn’t have been pretty. Anyway it was great to see Youk, Tek et al. I don’t think Manny or Papi made the trip. The Sox got their an hour later than scheduled because, are you ready for this??, the bus driver got LOST. Regardless my husband and I had a great time. Roger Dean Stadium is really a nice play to watch a game.

Sorry Ian-still here! Just trying to contain the excitement…but wasn’t that some SWEET pitching today by Matsusaka?

Go Sox!

Interesting to read that Matsuzaka feels he’s only 40-50% ready for the season (see Ian’s article from yesterday evening). I’m not sure whether that’s modesty one might expect because of the Japanese culture, caution on his part, or an indication that he thinks he’s really twice as good as we’ve seen so far.

Been busy lately. Glad to hear you miss us, Ian.
Sox are looking good today. Wake and Paps gettin’ it done!

gsm52, I had to smile at your post about imitating Yaz. My cousin and I would both hold our bats as high over our heads as we could when we were hitting. We looked funny enough, but honestly I can’t say it improved our hitting abilities.

Wakefield and Jon-Bon really looked good, especially Papelbon. But Donnelly looked awful. I hope it’s just a Spring Training thing.

I’m sure Donnelly will be fine. He’s a dependable reliever. Good to see the Sox rally after losing a five-run lead. It is especially good to see all of our starters throwing the ball well.

Jeff

http://www.soxandpinstripes.com

http://www.bosoxbanter.mlblogs.com

“White, a Rule 5 pick from 2003, has recently landed a fortune, thanks to 24 million tons of mica rock. Estimated fortune? Somewhere between $1.2 and $2.4 million.”

**it is actually worth between 1.2 and 2.4 BILLION

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