Breaking Down Jason Varitek's Past, Present and Future Impact on Boston Red Sox
Jason Varitek's days behind the plate as the Red Sox catcher are over, though his involvement with the organization is not.
Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington appointed Varitek as a special assistant to the GM, which brings Varitek back into the world of baseball in Boston.
On the field, Varitek brought together the powers of leadership and passion for the game of baseball and the Boston Red Sox.
Now, Varitek is helping out the team in every way that he can as a special assistant.
Varitek's future with the Red Sox is still bright. He is one of the most well-liked and popular people involved with the organization.
Here is a breakdown of Varitek's impacts on the past, present and future of the Boston Red Sox.
Varitek played 15 seasons with the Boston Red Sox and his impact as a player was felt both on and off the field.
He was never a star hitter, but he was a star catcher.
Varitek was a consistent fielder, despite allowing 992 stolen bases. He was a three time all star, and the team leader, which is more valuable than most accolades of baseball.
Every pitcher wanted Varitek behind the plate, making the calls, and controlling the game.
Usually pitchers hold the power of tempo and control in a game, but Varitek was the Red Sox on-field manager.
He would calm down his pitchers and bring out the best in his teammates.
According to Thomas Kaplan of the NY Times:
"Varitek was among 13 catchers in history who had caught three no-hitters. (His other three were thrown by Hideo Nomo in 2001, Derek Lowe in 2002 and Clay Buchholz last September.) Now, he alone holds the record."
There is a reason for Varitek's success behind the plate and being a part of the MLB record of four no-hitters caught.
He is a natural leader.
According to Scott Butherus of Naples News:
Varitek’s legacy, however, will be remembered better for all the things he did that didn’t show up on a stat sheet. Varitek was behind the plate calling the pitches for a record four no-hitters. Known throughout his career for a tireless work ethic and intense preparation for every game, Varitek, who graduated from Lake Brantley High School in Longwood, credited his high school and youth baseball coaches for instilling those values as a kid growing up in the Orlando area. It was those values that also made him a favorite of the Red Sox Nation.
He helped lead the team to two World Series championships with his catching and leadership and he was one of the few Red Sox players of the last 80 years to wear the signature "C" on his jersey.
Varitek's past as a player on the Boston Red Sox will always live on.
Jason Varitek did not stay away from baseball and Boston for very long.
Cherington wanted to have a guy like Varitek involved with the organization due to his positive attitude, leadership, and work ethic.
The Red Sox released a statement from Cherington about the hiring of Varitek:
Jason was one of the most respected players of his era and will be a key voice as we move forward. He will be involved in a number of areas including Major League personnel decisions, evaluations, and mentorship and instruction of young players. We are fortunate to have him in this role.
Varitek is the perfect man for that job.
He has gained the respect of every player thanks to his playing days and reputation as a hard worker and superior leader.
Yet, Varitek also maintains a humble, friendly nature that brings out the best in the people around him. He is bringing that mentality into prospect development.
Varitek told Ian Browne of MLB.com:
"That's the game. That's the part that I love most. I don't play. I'm not a player anymore. If I can pass on things or help someone, or be a helpful hand or another sounding board, that's what I'll be."
Varitek is already getting very hands on and wearing his uniform while being a part of pitching sessions and catcher development.
"Jason Varitek did not agree to become a special assistant to Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington for ceremonial reasons. After 15 years as a player, he had a sincere interest in learning another side of baseball."
Varitek will never take a back seat for the ride. He is one of the most driven individuals out there and will never back down from giving 110 percent.
He may be starting as a special assistant in a limited role right now, but Varitek's future has the utmost potential.
When the Red Sox were looking for a new manager before hiring Bobby Valentine and then John Farrell, Jason Varitek's name floated around.
He is a raw talent for a managerial role right now, but he could be molded into a manager in the future.
Varitek has the leadership, knowledge, and experience needed to thrive as a manager. He has everyone's respect and attention at all times and has established a commitment to making everyone better around him.
That is the perfect model for manager.
According to Ian Browne of MLB.com, "Even when Jason Varitek was in his playing prime, projections were rampant that he would one day become a Major League manager."
Becoming a manager will take some time and may not be the role that Varitek desires, but he is without a doubt the right man for a managerial job.
He may find his first break as a bullpen coach or bench coach before joining the rank of manager in the future.
According to Ricky Doyle of NESN.com, Varitek could be in line to replace former Red Sox bullpen coach Gary Tuck:
The former Red Sox captain rejoined the organization in September as a special assistant to general manager Ben Cherington, and it’s long been assumed — even during Varitek’s playing days — that Tek would someday become a coach, likely within the Boston organization. Upon hearing of Tuck’s decision to retire, Varitek seems like a logical replacement given his baseball smarts, familiarity with the organization and its players, and, most importantly, his familiarity with Tuck.
Varitek has to choose whether he wants to run the route toward becoming a future Red Sox manager or shift toward the front office and become a general manager or member of the front office.
He is cut out for whichever job he chooses thanks to a great career built on the foundations of leadership, success, and work ethic.
Varitek is already showing that he has a major impact with the players as a special assistant to the GM and his future holds a world of potential.
One day, Varitek could be perched in the Red Sox dugout as manager and he would be a great one due to his experience, leadership skills, passion for the game and overall baseball knowledge.