In what they admittedly term “needless analysis” Red Sox Links Daily has put together a comprehensive report on numerical uniform distribution for the Red Sox over the years. For instance, Doug Mirabelli’s No. 28 has been work by more players in team history, a record 54. Of the numbers 70-80, only 77 (Josh Bard) has been used.
I suppose it’s a little surprising that so many players wore Carlton Fisk's No. 27 (used almost 40 times in team history) before being retired. But it reminds us to ask, what is the holdup with using No. 21 again? First of all, Roger Clemens isn’t pitching here again anytime soon. Second, how exactly do you think Red Sox fans would react should the team honor him by retiring his number after all we've learned about the former Cy Young winner this offseason? Sure, that wouldn’t be a disaster.
Once again, we nominate Jon Lester to be rewarded with the honor, if he so chose to wear No. 21. That’s not to say he should feel he has to live up to Clemens’ legacy by any stretch, but name me one other player that has battled through more to get where he is today. Is anyone else coming up through the system really more deserving?
By the way, the players who wore No. 27 before it was retired in 2000: Mike Brown, Jeff Sellers, Pat Dodson, Greg Harris, Stan Royer, Mark (Hard-hittin’) Whiten, Dave Hollins, Butch Henry, and Kip Gross.