Boston Red Sox vs Cleveland Indians, 05/24/2013, at Fenway Park ... Find Tickets

# Sports

More

< Back to front page Text size +

# Smoltz designated for assignment

Posted by Chad Finn, Globe Staff  August 7, 2009 04:32 PM
• E-mail

#### Your article has been sent.

After eight starts and few glimpses of the repertoire that made him one of the dominant pitchers of his generation, John Smoltz's Red Sox career has come to a crossroads, and possibly an end.

The Red Sox have designated the 42-year-old righthander for assignment this afternoon, meaning that if he is not claimed on waivers, the club has 10 days to release him or send him to the minors. Smoltz, who went 2-5 with an 8.32 earned-run average this season, could also retire.

Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein flew to New York this morning to deliver the news to Smoltz in person.

"I think [that] was an important thing to do," said manager Terry Francona. "He met with Smoltzie face-to-face, told him what we were going to do, told him to go home and take a deep breath."

"It’s never easy," Epstein said. "I think we just felt like we had to try something different. It’s never easy to tell someone they’re designated for assignment, especially a Hall of Fame pitcher like that. It was certainly time to try something different. John understood. We asked him to go home for a few days, think about what he wants to do, think about if he can still help. The good thing about the designation is that it buys time to come up with the appropriate assignment."

Smoltz, who allowed nine hits and eight earned runs in 3.1 innings of the Sox' gruesome 13-6 loss to the Yankees last night, has left the club and returned to his home in Atlanta to consider his options. During his pregame press briefing, Francona did not seem to rule out any option with regard to Smoltz should he clear waivers. Rosters expand Sept. 1.

"It's tough," Jason Bay said. "I faced him a few years ago, back when he was dominant. It's tough to say that it's over him. He had a little rough patch. The guy I'll always remember is the dominant guy that pitched for 15, 20 years and did it all for Atlanta. It was pleasure to play with him.

"Regardless right now if you're a guy with no time or if you're a guy with 20 years, we're just looking for people to get the job done."

The surefire future Hall of Famer is replaced on the roster by rookie Junichi Tazawa, who was pitching in the Japanese Industrial League last season and has skyrocketed through the Red Sox system.

Tazawa will be in the bullpen tonight. The club has not yet named a starter to replace Smoltz on Tuesday, but the 23-year-old righthander appears to be the leading candidate if he is not used in relief this weekend.

"It's certainly been a rapid ascent," Francona said. "It's a great story, and I think there's a lot of people in our organization that really think this kid can help us win some games -- his poise, throwing all his pitches for strikes. He handles the game. Everything that's been thrown at him, he's handled. This will just be something else. I think we're excited to watch him pitch."

Two of the three pitchers the Red Sox used in their loss to the Yankees last night were designated for assignment today -- lefthander Billy Traber, who relieved Smoltz and was no more effective, was let go to make room for veteran infielder Chris Woodward, who was claimed on waivers from Seattle.

If this is the end of Smoltz's decorated career, during which he won 212 games -- the first 210 during his 20 seasons with the Atlanta Braves -- and saved 154, it was certainly an inauspicious final few weeks.

The Red Sox signed Smoltz, who was coming off major shoulder surgery that cost him most of the 2008 season with the Braves, to one-year contract for $5 million plus incentives in early January, hoping one of the great postseason pitchers of all-time -- he is 15-4 with a 2.65 ERA in 40 postseason games and 27 starts -- would offer a boost to the staff in October. But he couldn't make it through the summer. After several rehab starts in the minors, Smoltz made his Red Sox debut June 25, allowing five runs in five innings while suffering the loss in a 9-3 decision to the Washington Nationals. It didn't get much better after that, as Smoltz struggled terribly during his eight starts with the Sox, allowing 59 hits and 37 earned runs in 40 innings, including eight home runs. His two victories came against the Royals July 11 -- allowing just one run in five innings while striking out seven -- and the Orioles July 31, two of the weakest teams in the league. His losses came against the Orioles, Nationals, Rangers, A's and Yankees. Smoltz, who threw in the upper-90s with perhaps the best slider in baseball during his heyday, struggled with his command during his time with the Sox, and his pitches lacked their familiar bite. He especially struggled against lefthanded hitters, who batted .440 against him with six home runs and a 1.248 OPS in 91 at-bats. • E-mail • ### E-mail this article Invalid E-mail address Invalid E-mail address #### Sending your article #### Your article has been sent. 122 comments so far... 1. So for 5 million bucks plus incentives the Sox got an 8.33 ERA, a tired bullpen, and several Losses. Who said this was a low risk move again? 1. Well... I said the in Tazawa blog that his coming to the majors was a possible sign of this... guess it came true.... 1. it's too bad this didn't work out. It would have been a great story. Oh well ... 1. Thank God! 1. well , it seemed like a good idea. 1. Thanks for the effort John, it was worth the try (although not quite 8 starts worth of tries). Now, hang up those spikes, enjoy those millions of dollars that arm has earned you and wait for your induction into the hall. Don't try to come back again for some other team. 1. I am not sure I understand this move. It is obvious that he will not be a starter, but he has been pretty effective the first time through the opponents' batting order. Why isn't he going to the 'pen as middle relief, at least until the Sox find a suitable replacement for Masterson? 1. 76 starts too long, IMHO 1. To bad it didn't work out but it had to end. Bring on the kid. 1. I'm sorry for Smoltz, but this had to be done. By the way, why not use Smoltz as a reliever? He still seems to be capable of pitching well for a couple of innings. 1. Horrible signing by Theo, Hopefully Tazawa brings something to the table. 1. It's okay to let go, John. You were an elite pitcher and deserve to go to the HOF. Time to hang them up and move on. 1. Is there going to be a Schilling siting in John Henry's box?? "Oh my goodness gracious" 1. Thanks John for trying !! For once lets remeber who he was and remeber what he has done for the GAME and not for the end! Nowadays you have to twist they're arms just to get them out on the field. Idon't ever remeber that with You, thanks for what you ment to the game HOF!! 1. Thanks John for trying !! For once lets remeber who he was and remeber what he has done for the GAME and not for the end! Nowadays you have to twist they're arms just to get them out on the field. Idon't ever remeber that with You, thanks for what you ment to the game HOF!! 1. markes018 The Sox don't need him in the bullpen. They need a starter. Smoltz cannot start. 1. We all knew how this experiment was going to end he did not do that well in his minor league starts.. So why would he do well here. he may be good in the pen but not ours. 1. Its a shame, he could have been big in the playoffs. But unfortunately it was more like batting practice. 1. Its a shame, he could have been big in the playoffs. But unfortunately it was more like batting practice. 1. BYE !! 1. Should mad Pedro the "project". He can pitch @ 88 MPH and still win. 1. This is the 2nd Best News since Lugo was designated. Next "Bay"....and we get Matt Holliday in the offseason for 2010. 1. Unfortunately this signing became low risk, low reward. Smoltz probably should have retired last off-season. We all know he gave his all in trying to come back with the Sox. It just didn't work out. Let's hope our offense can muster some run support for Tazawa when he starts next week... 1. Could have had Bobby Abreu and saved yourself 500K, Guitar Hero. 1. This guy was no John Smoltz, that's for sure. At least we know he could actually pitch. "El Floppo," otherwise known as Dice-K, can't pitch, never could, and is a total waste. Finally, those who can, pitch. Those who can't, throw the knuckleball. Right, Tim? Bob Stanley doesn't look so bad now, does he? 1. Should have got Hallyday.... 1. I am really starting to wonder about this team. First Julio Lugo, now Smoltz. Why not give him a chance in the bullpen??? It's not too late, but apparently Theo and the gang are getting impatient. BAD MOVE!!! Just like Lugo. I just don't understand. Why, why, why??? I know he has been BAD as a starter, but give the guy a chance in a different role. In the case of Lugo, you trade a valuable infielder who could have found his groove down the stretch (like w/ the Cards). Now what do the Sox do at shortstop? I am beginning to question some of these decisions. I never really saw Smoltz as a starter on this team in the first place. 1. Plus, I would think that the condition of his shoulder is not conducive to bullpen work where relievers often have to warm up quickly. I know that Smoltz thrived as a closer in prior years, but given the health of his shoulder it's probably not a good idea. I know this isn't the forum for it, but why hasn't anyone talked about Saito? Here's a guy who cannot work on consecutive days and isn't that good when he does pitch. How is that useful? Francona hinted that he didn't want Saito to walk Longoria and Zobrist in that extra innings loss, loading the bases for that no-name Dillon, a few nights ago because he was worried about Saito's control. So let me get this straight: not available on consecutive days AND poor control. Awesome. 1. I really hope they start Tazawa as you suggest. Now if only they could bat him for Papi and Drew, we might be getting somewhere. 1. This is really too bad. I was ecstatic when they signed him, and I rooted for him each start, more so than I cheered for anyone else. I really wanted it to work for him, it's really unfortunate that it had to go this way. He's a class act, and he deserves all the credit in the world. 1. Does anyone know if Kevin Costner is available? He's got to be a better bet than the majority of our pen. Time for a spring cleaning. 1. This is like Tom Seaver in '86 all over again! 1. Could it get any worse for Boston? How about Josh Beckett falling apart tonight at the new Yankee Stadium? Yanks have his number, and he knows it. 1. Somebody put a waiver claim in for Rios, any possibility that it was the Sox? Pretty unlikely with$60 million still owed and no real room for him but with Rocco on the DL and the possibility Bay walks next year, who knows.

1. No big blame for post surgery problems here, he did the best he could with what he had to work with.

1. Smoltz gave it his all! I remember; him with the Atlantic Braves and he was unbeatable. I know he is a perfectionist and this must be so frustrating for him. Wishing you the best and you are a baseball legend!!!

1. SHould have kept Masterson and moved Bucholz. Masterson was proven as both a starter and reliever.

1. We forget that this signing was the result of the failure of the Sox to land Tiexiera and/or s strting pitcher in the off-season. How long and how many times will this come back to haunt us?

1. It was a huge mistake bringing Smoltz up BEFORE he could demonstrate that he could be effective in the minors. Huge, huge mistake. And that happened because the Sox brass catered heavily to Smoltz' reputation and placed far too much weight on his self-assessment of his performance. A Mike Bowden, by contrast, would not be offered the same mulligans, even though Bowden was far more effective than Smoltz in the minors this year.

But OK, Theo finally lanced the boil. Life goes on. One can argue it was "too late", but that's the way it goes when you take such a calculated risk. Part of the reason it took this long, though, is because Theo would have to step up to the mark and face Smoltz himself. I'd bet that alone kept Smoltz around an extra game or two.

1. I saw him warm-up last night and he looked off. He told the person sitting next to me the Yankees needed to get to him by the 4th inning. They did. Joba threw tons of balls, but the Sox couldn't score.

1. well said # 1

1. I'm sorry for Smoltz, but this had to be done. By the way, why not use Smoltz as a reliever? He still seems to be capable of pitching well for a couple of innings.

---------------------------------------------------

Thank you Ad, it's exactly what I was thinking!

1. With the addition of Carpenter you can bet that Lowrie and his 140 BA is next out the door (or at least to the DL)

1. Wasn't anywhere for him to go. Ramon Ramirez was the only possibility and you can't let him go. Such a shame. We really needed the Smoltz of old. I can't see him going back to Pawtucket. Looks like it's the end for now.

1. The Sox might also consider designating: Drew, Ortiz, Baldelli, Lowrie, Green, Buccholz, Penny....Okay, perhaps designating Ortiz, Penny and both our shortstops might be a stretch, but Drew and Baldelli could go tomorrow and it wouldn't bother me.

1. Never say never. He knows he has not performed and he knows what he has to do to get back in October. My bet is he goes to the minors and rehabs until the roster expands. At worst, he is a proven sage on the bench in the playoffs.

Smoltz is NOT A FIT FOR THE BULLPEN!
He requires the structure and warm-ups that being a starting pitcher provides to be ONLY as effective as he's shown this season.
To try to make him pitch from the pen, with the warm-up / cool-down, and not knowing when he's pitching in advance would be AN ABSOLUTE NIGHTMARE!
So people, PLEASE, PLEASE think before you suggest that Smoltz go to the pen. PLease? Sure he was better the 1st time through the order, but that's WITH all that structured game prep and warm up.

1. I'm glad he came and gave it a try. i feel bad he got so ruined. gota respect him with his losses, it just wasn't meant to be... time to learn about this new kid

1. Smoltz is 42 years old. He can't pitch on consecutive nights, and he may not be able to pitch more than once a week. Will you softbrains please tell me the value in a reliever who can only pitch once a week?

Please, get some baseball IQ before commenting.

1. I'm glad he came and gave it a try. i feel bad he got so ruined. gota respect him with his losses, it just wasn't meant to be... time to learn about this new kid

1. some guys just don't know when to hang them up.......

1. itt is about time we got rid of this stiff!!!!!!!!!!!why did we wait sooooooooooooooo long??????

1. One of the things overlooked in this article is that one of the incentives is 35K for each day on the active roster plus 500K for being on the active roster the final day of the season. DFA ing him saves the Sox about 2.5MM. Granted, he was still an expensive experiment that didn't work out, but the Sox could afford to do it in terms of money, lets just hope it doesn't cost them a playoff run...

1. Good riddance, but much too late. Hope we don't miss the playoffs by a few games. Here's to no more reclamation projects!

1. As Bob Uecker That closes the book on Smotz. Thank God.

1. Wow, bunch of whiny biatches around here. . .

1. Some may think me stupid, but sometimes you can have too much competition in the starting rotation. This makes room for the AWESOME talent the Red Sox already have there. Daisuke is going to be a stud from here on out. Bucholz will blossom. Wake will be back. Penny is going to pick it up. Of course there's Becket & Lester. And who knows about Tazawa. They have plenty!!!!!!! Smoltz was a "luxury" in my mind. Maybe Smoltz wasn't ready for a new team, a new league, etc. He probably should have retired a Brave, anyway. But this is a bad scene nevertheless. It's time for the Sox to WAKE UP and silence the doubters!

1. My question is this: When are the Red Sox going to stop it with these reclamatinon projects??? they never seem to work out well. There was obviouly a good reason why Atlanta let a future HOF pitcher who had been with them a long time....go. Same with Baldelli, Drew and Now Bay too. Although I believe Bay will be back and able to play just fine once the hammy clears up. But why must they go after guys other teams let go due to injury or age? I hate to say it but Mike Lowell and Tim Wakefield are in this category now too. Loweel looks like he'll never be the player he was prior to his surgery. Wakefield has Sciatica issues. That condition only gets worse as one gets older. We are lucky to have the young guys that we do have and they are what is saving this team from sinking to last place. David Ortiz had problems and now he has the added weight of being an "outed P.E.D. user". I'm sorry it didn't work out for Smoltz here. But it was entirely predictable. Dice-K seems more interested in being a hero back in Japan in the W.B.S. than pitching the entire season here. Jeeeesh. Looks like we'll be lucky to get into the playoffs this year...

1. Finally he's out of here. I would have liked to see how he would have done in the bullpen because it seems he pitches great for the first 2-3 innings and thats all he needs to do in the pen but then things often get ugly with a 4-6 run inning around the 5th.

1. Senior PGA Tour next stop

Sad this didn't work out, bad year for old guys, Tom Watson, Smoltzie, Greg Norman, Glavine

1. its time john to retire, u have had a great career, next stop hof.

1. About time he was taken out of the starting rotation, but released?! I thought Smoltz could be used for 2-3 innings of middle relief. He has been fading around the 4th inning. Same for Penny. 2-3 innings of relief. Too bad NOT-Einstein had to give up Masterson to get Martinez to cover for the ineffective Varitek and Ortiz. Masterson could have been that starter the SOX need so desparately. Theo's record with FA pitchers is enough to get him canned in any other organization. Spend, spend, spend and get nothing. Hey... now there's room for Dice-K. Aghhh!!!

1. The Red Sox wanted to believe that a formerly great 42 year old pitcher with a bum shoulder would work out. I gave him a 50-50 chance at best. A shame for everyone that a fine career ends like this because of wishful thinking.

1. Smoltzie should come back home and middle relief/close for the Braves, our designated closer, Soriano, has blown two saves in past week by giving up "walk-off" 9th inning home runs in both.

1. There are many legit questions posed through #27.

The question nows needs to be answered: Have the sox been winning because of Tito or despite him, because this year, it seems to me, Tito has been managing without any b---s.

I hope he reads this and grows some cause its a business, a business to win, and it aint happening buddy. Its not too late but the turnaround gotta start in the next 10 games. Seacrest out.

1. John Smoltz gave all he could but it didn't work out and that's too bad

1. In the case of Lugo we traded a valuable infielder ?
We dumped a salary for a guy who had no range \in either direction and who could not hit or drive in runs.
Smoltz was a shot in the dark and turned out to be a dud.

They either came to this conclusion at the same time as the boards did last night or because of the outrage on these boards.

At least they had the grace to tell him to his face and not leave the work to Tito.

1. Richard, 18-3 last year means you knew Dice-K couldn't pitch? I'll take that any day over Smoltzie this year.

1. I'm becoming less and less impressed with the "talent" Theo Epstein aquires year after year (Victor Martinez being the exception) and the way Terry Francona manages that talent. Tito continues to keep pitchers on the mound when it is obvious to everyone watching the guy doesn't have it that night.

1. Some posters are vague, vulgar, and somewhat uninformed.
John Smoltz was one of the great pitchers of our time. He will go to The Hall on the first ballet. The Red Sox signed him in the hope that he could be 75% of who he was before his injury. He was slated to be a #5 (win 1-lose 1) starter who maybe, just maybe could show some post season moxie. Because of injuries to Wakefield and Matsuzaka he was moved up in the rotation.
He did not come back as expected. Everybody tried. There is no fault there. Please take pause and try to get that we had the privilege of seeing a dignitary of our great past time give his best for your Sox. All the best to John Smoltz. Thanks!
with a

1. Some posters are vague, vulgar, and somewhat uninformed.
John Smoltz was one of the great pitchers of our time. He will go to The Hall on the first ballet. The Red Sox signed him in the hope that he could be 75% of who he was before his injury. He was slated to be a #5 (win 1-lose 1) starter who maybe, just maybe could show some post season moxie. Because of injuries to Wakefield and Matsuzaka he was moved up in the rotation.
He did not come back as expected. Everybody tried. There is no fault there. Please take pause and try to get that we had the privilege of seeing a dignitary of our great past time give his best for your Sox. All the best to John Smoltz. Thanks!
with a

1. After all, we are just fairweather fans here in the Nation.

1. Gone is the luster that surrounded the 2009 Red Sox. Lugo, Smoltz, Penny, Ortiz and Veritek have been and continue to be signs of poor management in the front office and in the doughout. This team is 3rd in the AL East and will trail Texas in the "weak" AL West. It failed miserably against teams it should have dominated. Thankfully the front office didn't sign Bay long term. It is a sorry feeling in early August to start thinking about football. Just watch, it will be the Yankees and Dodgers in the World Series. I will be supporting an extended bad weather front which will result in complete cancellation.

1. For the people that want to badmouth the Red Sox for taking a shot at Smoltz, how about a nice heaping helping of Sierra-Tango-Foxtrot-Uniform. Every crapshot that the Sox take is not gonna strike gold. The fact that Theo stocked up on pitching is coming into play. Considering Smoltz was one of the greatest pitchers of the last 2 decades, it was worth the risk. Whatever happens, I wish him well.

1. Hindsight is always 20/20. Can't blame Theo too much. He was probably urged into the low-risk deal-making by John Henry. Max reward for min risk, dollar-wise. And at the time, it seemed okay - because the rotation also had Dice-K, Wakes, and a cast of thousands - including the promise of Brad Penny (and we all know how that turned out). Let's move on and solve some other problems. SS - the DL (should we replace the conditioning coach?) - the hitting coach (Mags should go, IMHO) - and let's make sure that the rookies in the system do not start to channel Calvin Schiraldi.

1. John gave the game all he had. Now he can relax and golf with Glavine, and Maddux.

1. I take nothing from Smoltz; a class act, great career, and fine athlete. I have no regrets for the Smoltz experiment save it extended longer than needed, given the compelling and compounding evidence over a short period of time that Smoltzie could not, and would not, return to the Smoltz for which all had hoped.

Good luck John. You've given much to baseball and will not soon be forgotten. The Hall of Fame awaits!

1. John Smoltz is a class act (and future hall of famer) who always played whatever role his team needed. In this era of liars and cheaters in the game of baseball, integrity and loyalty mean a lot.

1. it's time to admit that Theo's low-risk, high-reward projects do not work. And, should never have traded Masterson . . it should have been Buccholz instead. This team is doomed and Theo is to blame for not assembling/obtaining the chips he needed in order to win.

1. I feel bad for Smoltz. I don't think the Red Sox handled the situation the right way. They hyped him up and hyped him up knowing he hadn't pitched in almost a year having career defining major shoulder surgery and had a huge road to recovery ahead of him. While they said they were going to take their time bringing him onboard, once they did they rushed him all the while with him having to relearn how to pitch all over again AND try to live up to all the hype!
Smoltz is a class act, he shouldn't have been treated this way. They should have had him spend the entire year in Pawtucket reinventing himself for next year. Those expectations I think would have been more attainable.

1. I feel bad for Smoltz. I don't think the Red Sox handled the situation the right way. They hyped him up and hyped him up knowing he hadn't pitched in almost a year having career defining major shoulder surgery and had a huge road to recovery ahead of him. While they said they were going to take their time bringing him onboard, once they did they rushed him all the while with him having to relearn how to pitch all over again AND try to live up to all the hype!
Smoltz is a class act, he shouldn't have been treated this way. They should have had him spend the entire year in Pawtucket reinventing himself for next year. Those expectations I think would have been more attainable.

1. I say get rid of Smoltz he has caused to many games He stinks as a pitcher maybe yrs ago he was good but now he is washed up he reminds me of Eric Gagne

1. A total waste of millions on an over the hill pitcher, who didn't have it when was signed. What a joke!

1. Theo is still the best GM in baseball. Who could have foreseen this? I even thought that Smoltz might have done better in Justin Masterson's slot, but you cannot fool with age. Wakefield is the exception, but his time is coming. Bring on the youth. I respect the Rays because most of their staff are young. I watch Brad Penny's fastball on TV, and it has no movement to it. Too straight and easy to hit. He should be designated, and Buchholz. Keep experimenting. Bring up Bowden and Tazawa, break them in. Try to get a hold of Jon Garland from the Backs. He is the hidden gem. Don't let the record fool you. The Dbacks are notorious for not hitting and supporting their pitchers. Try a couple of trades, the kids, and not be afraid to keep moving people around. Look how Vmart has stabilized the infleld and catching position. Kotchman is also doing a good job at backup. And their in the prime. Don't trade Reddick, no way. They still need one more power hitter to have the fleixibility that they now have on the corners of the infield.
I do believe that Theo is right going with under thirty. The Yankees biggest problem is age, and it will show up in the playoffs. You have not heard the last from the Rays, and I predict it will be them, and either us or the Yankees.

1. Hey G Ruch- I don't care how he's doing now, Lugo had to go.

Too bad it didn't work out with Smoltz. Everyone's a Monday morning quarterback.

1. After a couple pitches, which were taken, in first 2 innings last night, Smoltz appeared to be in some distress, sort of falling off the mound and looking around. I thought at first he had injured himself, but dugout and Vmart didn't respond. Was it just frustration of some sort, after all, things were still going reasonably well at that point. Any info?

1. Thank God.

This is a business not T-ball. And the business is all about winning. period. full stop. The Red Sox demonstrated fantastic patience but now this is August and Smoltz hasn't shown even a glimmer of what he was once. The team simply can not expect to get into the play-offs with a pitcher on staff who has a high probability of losing almost all of his starts.

And yes, that means that Penny and Buckholtz should consider themselves expendable as well. Even if they win here and there, that is not enough. Thet have to win consistently with only an occasional loss if the Sox hope to get into the playoffs.

1. Schilling gets $8 million for not throwing a single pitch in '08; Smoltz gets an incentive laden deal at 42 and flames out; the Sox are paying megabuck SS salaries for Renteria and Lugo to play for other teams, and the list goes on. Is John Henry paying attention to what's going on in the front office? 1. Schilling gets$8 million for not throwing a single pitch in '08; Smoltz gets an incentive laden deal at 42 and flames out; the Sox are paying megabuck SS salaries for Renteria and Lugo to play for other teams, and the list goes on. Is John Henry paying attention to what's going on in the front office?

1. It was an honor to have you in Boston, John. Anyone who is familiar with the integrity you bring to the game knows that this has to be hitting you the hardest. You gave it your best shot and unfortunately the organization wasn't in a position where it could wait any longer. Had we been far enough ahead or far enough behind I think things would have been different. Nonetheless, your experience and class will leave a lasting impression. Best of luck to you.

1. I agree with markes018. He would have seemed the logical replacement for Masterson in the bullpen.

They really have lost confidence.

1. Thank you John for proving why so few 42 year old pitchers are still in the majors.

1. To those who don't understand, just go away.
Looked good on paper ahead of time, certainly worth a shot.
The Sox can wipe their a with 5 mil, so that's no biggie, it showed the respect he earned over 20 years of success.
Thanks for trying, Theo and thanks especially to Smoltzie.
Now go polish your golf clubs, dude. We all wish it was different.

1. Assuming no one picks him up on waivers Send him to the Pawsox to sit in the bullpen and bring him in on Sept 1 to finish the season sitting in the pen MAYBE facing the odd guy. Dont add him to the playoff 25 but keep him around to be part of the ride. They have to buy him out now but not at the end of the season.After the roster expands for the last month who does it hurt to keep him around for the last month? No team USES all 40 spots of the expanded roster. After the season trade him to Atlanta for a bag of balls and a pitching rubber if he wants to retire as a Brave.

1. Now if only they would designate Varitek, Green, Baldelli and Saito and replace them with 4 youngsters we'd be much better off.

1. Theo has done an excellent job in vastly improving the Red Sox scouting, drafting and player development. The Sox have good farm system finally! Theo has done a less than average job of free agent signings, most of them did not perform well. I think the Red Sox would have been better served to have signed Derek Lowe than sign Penny and Smoltz?

1. Let's not forget about the bad Penny, this and dicek. Theo, earth to Theo.......
what the he** is going on here, we trusted you......Also that was Dan's team that
won in 04. Polish off that g'tar and start play'en cause you got some fancy song to sing now.

1. If you put the guy in the bullpen, you can't use his roster spot to get a guy to replace him in the rotation. It's not that hard to see, people.

1. eight starts too late, theo. does winning really matter any more, or gestures of respect?

1. No worries Smoltz, I loved you in Atlanta as a kid and loved ya in Boston regardless of what happened. Good luck playa.

1. Hit the links you washed up loser. Thanks for nothing.

1. Disappointed Fan: Baldelli, Drew and Bay? Not "reclamation projects". All of these guys have contributed in big ways in big situations. Baseball is a game of failure and if you can't see that these guys are putting their bodies on the line every time they step on the field, it might be a good indication of why you are disappointed. Baldelli and Drew are a good combo to spell each other as they deal with their ailments without really hurting the team and I'm happy to see either one of them out in right field. Bay: since he's come to Boston, this is the first slump he's had and it is coinciding with an injury. You're already to right him off?
Anyone who has rooted for the Sox prior to 2004 needs to remember what it means to keep the faith. They aren't out yet and even if they don't take the division, the wildcard worked just fine in '04. EVERY GM makes mistakes. Theo is doing what he can to correct them. I do think Smoltz might have been an effective addition to a taxed bullpen, but who knows?
As far as Papi being an "outed P.E.D. user"...we still don't know what he used (there was a lot of over the counter stuff available in 2003 when the positive test happened) and find me one player who is above suspicion at this point. Sad but true.
I hadn't heard that Wake's problem was Sciatica but I deal with it and I can months on end without pain. Wake was having a career season before going on the DL and I have complete confidence that he will come back this season and continue to contribute. Lowell is definately dealing with the healing process on the hip surgery but don't count him out too early, the guy is a gamer and he's holding his own, all things considered. With the addition of V-Mart and the flexibility he offers, I expect to see more from Lowell.
We don't want to turn into our counterparts in NY here...we support our guys in Boston, we don't boo them and we trust that "this is our year".

1. Didn't we just pass a certain date in which we could have maybe made some adjustments to the roster? An adjustment in which we could have actually acquired a baseball player or two of esteemed ability for players of lesser ability? AGHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!

1. thanks john. he tried very hard it simply wasn't there any more.

1. Smoltz is a class-act gentleman who went down fighting. Boston is better for having him, and the Red Sox continue to establish themselves as a team for those of exceptional character.

1. Theo makes a ton of bad decisions...he's not the "Golden Boy"...he's more like rusty iron. Dew was never great and Theo paid him like he was A-Rod. Smoltz was not low risk...$5 million and all the losses the sox incurred during his tenure was expensive any way you look at it. I heard Theo is getting ready to trade Bowden for Jamie Moyer and throw in$10 million to "sweeten" the deal. Theo has already tried to lure Eckersley out of retirement this week. Is Satchell Paige still alive? Rollie Fingers? Theo is the next one that needs to be designated for assignment.

1. I feel a little bad for John Smoltz. A pretty great pitcher with a terrible year. And it hurts that his terrible year was on my team.

But, if I can go off topic, how is Bud Selig still Commissioner of Baseball? His stupid idea turned Dice-K from a lucky slightly-above-average pitcher into a stressed-out below-average pitcher. When’s the last time he did anything right? And don’t get me started on the “Steroid Era” of baseball. When will he get run out of town?

1. I feel a little bad for John Smoltz. A pretty great pitcher with a terrible year. And it hurts that his terrible year was on my team.

But, and if I can go off topic, how is Bud Selig still Commissioner of Baseball? His stupid idea turned Dice-K from a lucky average pitcher into a stressed-out below-average pitcher. When’s the last time he did anything right? And don’t get me started on the “Steroid Era” of baseball. When will he get run out of town?

I mean, Boston's what, the third or fourth biggest baseball market in the country? When can we force Selig out?

1. "Also that was Dan's team that
won in 04."

And it was Theo's team that won in '07. Point?

1. Why not try him in the bullpen? Guy was a stud out of the pen for Atlanta. He's good for 1-2 innings.

1. So far Smoltz and Penny have worn out the bullpen and not won much of anything. Now all we have is Beckett and Lester. Plus the bats haven't been working unless they play a JV team like the O's. They have got to get some pitching. Ramirez isn't that hot and Takashi Pshcho pitches well for the other team. And then there is the biggest loser of them all Dice K. The Sox should have never let this guy pitch in the WBC! You clearly say where his allegiance was, with Japan and NOT the Sox. His contract should have been voided after that. The Sox better not let that happen ever again. Then his poor feelings were hurt. What a mess!!!

1. I'm truly amazed that anyone thought it was a smart move to sign a 42 year old pitcher coming off major surgery. Now I only wish we could have had Masterson take the spot in the rotation. Oh well.

1. Offense? I don't recall any run support for Smoltz.
Despite the losses Smoltz pitched just as good or better
than others in the rotation. In the NHL they fire coaches. In the MLB they fire and blame the pitchers. But pitchers don't bat in the American League, right?
You can all spit on one of the original 4 horseman of the Braves, but I am sure upon his return you will all give an emotional standing O like you do for so many former Sox players. I sincerely thank Smoltz for his efforts and allow us to get a glimpse of one of the greatest pitchers in modern times.

1. Offense? I don't recall any run support for Smoltz.
Despite the losses Smoltz pitched just as good or better
than others in the rotation. In the NHL they fire coaches. In the MLB they fire and blame the pitchers. But pitchers don't bat in the American League, right?
You can all spit on one of the original 4 horseman of the Braves, but I am sure upon his return you will all give an emotional standing O like you do for so many former Sox players. I sincerely thank Smoltz for his efforts and allow us to get a glimpse of one of the greatest pitchers in modern times.

1. Hey Smoltz, the graveyard is two blocks to the left. C-Ya!

1. Now get rid of Penny too!

1. Tazawa looked Sharp tonight. An A-Bomb from A-Rod. Yankees win! Thhheeeee Yankees Wwwwiiiiiiiiinnnnnnnn!

1. smoltz has been washed up for yours some guys think they can do things like they did twenty years ago what will this do to his hall of fame career?

1. hahahaha
bet Theo is missing Masterson right about now...

1. Funny how the same people criticising the Sox now about the pitching were the first ones calling for the offense to be improved. I said once Dice K went down and Smoltz clearly wasn't that affective that they need to go after Holliday, not a bat.

1. Sox waste time and MONEY on another washed-up has-been. Nothing new here; it's been going on at least since the Duke signed that long-time KC Royals guy who once won a Cy. I just now remembered the name: Bret Saberhagen. He, too, had an extended "rehab" at the Sox expense. He pitched like carp for the big club that that never stopped him from cashin' the checks! As a wise man once said: "You Could Look It Up!" Unfortunately, you can't throw your REPUTATION at hitters and expect to get them out. Players who were in diapers when Smoltzie came up with the Braves weren't intimidated in the least; in fact it was probably just the opposite: "Watch me Go Yard on this old guy!"