Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Bon Voyage

After years of loyal service to the Boston Red Sox, Alan Embree has been designated for assignment, marking the end of a nice run for the veteran in a Sox uniform. That is, until this year. Embree has run into a brick wall this season, posting an ERA enormously higher than his career average, and giving up moonshot after moonshot. Every time he runs out from that bullpen, I let out a sigh of frustration and get ready for the lead to be blown. I just sit back and watch it happen. I don’t know what happened to Alan, but this year he didn’t have the confidence or the stuff.

But we’ll always remember him as the guy that capped off the biggest and greatest comeback in American sports history, along with the biggest and greatest choke job. He was standing on the mound with two outs in the ninth, Ruben Sierra at the plate, and the Red Sox with a 10-3 lead and on their way to a World Series while running dead over the Yankees tracks. He delivered the pitch, Sierra grounded out to Pokey, and the rest is history. Tek jumped into Alan’s arms, ending not only the most exciting series in recent memory, but ultimately ending Embree’s joy in a Sox uniform. He’d play almost no part in the World Series, and this year he’s been an afterthought when solid bullpen pitchers are mentioned. His buddy Mike Timlin has taken that role.

And that’s too bad. Embree was always a likable guy with that big wad of tobacco and farmers appearance. He always seemed like he should be planting corn in the middle of an Iowa farm with overalls and a cowboy hat on, not delivering 91 mph fastballs to Sheff and Matsui in the eighth inning. He was intimidating to the hitters with that serial-killer type glance. I wouldn’t want to face him last year, that’s for sure. He was always that reliable lefty that Tito could turn to for a couple outs in a big game.

I bet he finds his stuff and confidence on a new team. I wish him the best of luck, and I’m sure he’ll get his career back on the right track before he goes Donnie Moore and winds up in some prison, eating lunch with a guy named Bubby and sleeping on a cement floor. With a smaller market like Milwaukee, Kansas City or Arizona, he can play looser and have less pressure exerted on him every game. Good luck, Alan.


At 4:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

sad to see embree go

great article, keep it up

At 12:39 AM, Anonymous jack said...

Did you hear the rumor that Embree will sign with the Yanks as soon as tomorrow? Is there any way we can ban this?

I wish him all the best...just not in pinstripes

At 12:40 AM, Blogger Zach said...

it makes perfect sense for the yanks


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