Red Sox News: Doug Mirabelli Gone Again

Chris RichardsonContributor IMarch 15, 2008

Ok. Being a big Red Sox fan I have a huge amount of respect for a guy like Doug Mirabelli. It is because of that fact that I do not see why the Red Sox don't want to keep him. He is a great catcher defensively and an asset on the bench that not many people give him credit for.

Now I understand that last year he only batted .202 last year in 114 at-bats, but he's such a great presence behind the plate every fifth game and an even bigger presence in the dugout.

1. He gives Jason Varitek a day off once every five games

2. He gives confidence to Tim Wakefield because he can catch the knuckleball

3. Varitek believes "Doug's been an instrumental part with me and my career. He's got great eyes . . . and understanding from the bench. Great awareness of what guys are going through, hitting-wise and catching-wise, a great sounding board. He always knows what's going on, and that is such a big part of people who don't play every day."

4. He's one of only 8 players still with the Sox from 2004

5. We've tried this before. We see how well it worked out the first time.

I mean, come on now. Does anyone really think a guy like Kevin Cash is going to get the job done? They say Mirabelli is gone because he was an offensive liability. Cash batted .111 in 27 at-bats last year. No one can argue that Mirabelli is a better catcher for Wakefield. Even Wake was shocked at Mirabelli's departure.

Mirabelli made it very clear that he wanted to stay with the Red Sox. "Everybody that knows me knows that this is where I always want to be." He would even take a huge pay cut, one to the extent of 200,000 dollars to be exact, just to stay with the team. In short Mirabelli wanted to do anything he could just to stay in Boston and they let him go. What's the issue? So maybe his hitting isn't that great. You replace him with someone who hit just over HALF his average last year? I don't get it.

Mirabelli is certainly better than Cash defensively. He's the biggest asset the Red Sox have on the bench. With a 200,000 dollar pay cut it isn't the money. The team captain says, "We complement each other extremely well with the staff." So why would you not keep him? It just seems to make no sense.