On Saturday, Roger Clemens will take the mound for the Sugar Land Skeeters of the independent Atlantic League.
According to ESPN, Clemens is only making one start, and he’ll take it from there.
Clemens is 50 years old and has been clocked at 87 miles per hour. In all fairness, that is pretty darn good for someone who is 50. But to say this is Clemens’ first step back to the majors is a long shot.
We all know he is one of the greatest pitchers of all time, and in theory, he has nothing left to prove. If he does return and goes 2-4 in 10 starts, what’s the point?
I guess we’ll confirm once and for all that he is a tremendous athlete, something we already knew. But if he does return and pitch for an MLB team, his Hall of Fame induction time-frame requirements restart, and he can’t qualify for another five years.
With the name Roger Clemens being mentioned on nearly every sports show, the publicity that independent baseball is getting is really great.
It allows many to take a step back from the bright lights and big cities of the MLB game and take a look at small-town baseball. It gives people a chance to see there is something else out there, and it's an opportunity for the talent to get the recognition it rightly deserves.
When Clemens joins the Skeeters, he will join a club managed by former Minnesota Twins great Gary Gaetti and a rotation littered with ex-pros: Jason Lane, Tim Redding and Scott Kazmir.
Kazmir recently lost his fifth game of the season but pitched a season-high six innings and reportedly hit 94-95 on the radar gun. Unfortunately, the greatest independent league rotation of all time with Clemens, Kazmir, Lane and Redding might be on hold permanently.
According to the Atlantic League website, Kazmir was placed on the inactive list by the Skeeters on August 20. I cannot confirm if this is the end of the line for Kazmir, but I do know he has given his all to prove the doubters wrong.
The Skeeters game on Saturday will be one of the most highly anticipated minor league games we’ve seen in years. Indy baseball will always surprise you, and this time, I think it's outdone itself.
Currently, Devon is a manager at a financial institution in Northern Ontario, Canada, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can follow The GM's Perspective on Twitter and Facebook. His full bio can be seen here.
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