08 December 2005

"Expletive Deleted" Hits the Dusty Path...

The Red Sox last night declined to offer arbitration to both Mike Myers and Kevin Millar, effectively ending their run in Boston.

Mike and I both gave Millar a ton of shit, mostly stemming from his goofball whiteguy-ness and his abominable 2005. But for the 2004 Red Sox, he was a huge cog, and someone who was instrumental in turning the clubhouse from one of grouchiness to one of good humor and positivity. People will forget this point rather easily- but that roster brightened up publically nearly the moment he arrived. That's no small thing, considering the background noise playing in Boston.

But even more important than that was his involvement in a ton of big rallies during the 2004 postseason. Here's a list:

ALDS Game One: 3-R HR for the first runs of the postseason
ALCS Game Four: Worked a BB (aka, "The Walk") off of Mariano Rivera down one run in the 9th inning. Dave Roberts pinch runs for Millar, steals 2nd, scores on Mueller's 1B.
ALCS Game Five: After David Ortiz' HR in the 8th to bring the Sox within one, Millar walked again, and was pinch run for Dave Roberts as last time. Roberts took third on Trot Nixon's 1B and scored on Jason Varitek's sac fly to tie the game.
ALCS Game Six: Millar's 2-out bases empty 2B starts a rally that culminates in Mark Bellhorn's 3-R HR for the only Boston runs in Game Six.
ALCS Game Seven: Millar singles to start the rally that ended with Johnny Damon's grand slam.

PLUS, he hit the walkoff hits in the only two times I have sat in the Green Monster seats- an RBI 2B of Kazuhiro Sazaki and the Mariners on 8/23/03 and a walkoff HR off Octavio Dotel and the A's on 5/10/05.

Not by any stretch was he one of the greatest Red Sox of all time, but he was one of the more memorable, and one of "The 25." Au revoir, Cabin Mirror. Bon voyage, Millardass.

Speaking of which, of "The 25," the following are no longer with the team:

Pedro Martinez
Derek Lowe
Ramiro Mendoza
Orlando Cabrera
Terry Adams
Kevin Millar
Mike Myers
Bill Mueller (to sign with LAD soon)
Mark Bellhorn
Pokey Reese
Alan Embree
Doug Mirabelli
Doug Mientkiewicz
Dave Roberts
Curtis Leskanic

So now, only Curt Schilling, Keith Foulke, Jason Varitek, Manny Ramirez, David Ortiz, Kevin Youkilis, Trot Nixon, Johnny Damon, Bronson Arroyo, Tim Wakefield, Mike Timlin, and (technically) Gabe Kapler remain.

Of course, if you believe reports, Nixon, Damon and Ramirez could all be back or elsewhere next year. Weird. It's like your graduating class in school breaking up after graduation- some people run off to new cities, some become "townies."

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