The Baseball Desert

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Fare thee well

We'll miss his assorted bouts of wackiness, but before he leaves town for good, I want to give a last tip of the cap to Julian Tavarez.

I thought I might be alone in my wish, but Tito - as ever - has been quick to recognise the invaluable contribution Tavarez made to last year's championship:
"Last year, Julian saved us," Red Sox manager Terry Francona said. "He started for about three months and did a pretty good job."
A 7-11 record and 5.15 ERA might not look like much to write home about, but Tito is right - given the circumstances, Tavarez did a pretty good job. Although he started the year 1-3 (with one no-decision) it's worth pointing out those first 5 games (as a #5 starter) came against Kevin Millwood, Roy Halladay (twice), Chien-Ming Wang and Johan Santana. He came in as a stop-gap, back-of-the-rotation starter, and ended up throwing 134.7 innings over the year (5th most on the team), saving other keys arms from extra wear and tear, keeping the Sox there or thereabouts in the division, and always quick to acknowledge his place in the greater scheme of things.

Wherever he ends up, we wish him all the best.