Red Sox bullpen
By Bob Hohler, Globe Staff, 3/29/2002
CL Ugueth Urbina (41)
Age: 28 Bats - throws: R-R
Height: 6-0 Weight: 205
Saves: 24 ERA: 3.64 K: 89
Fast stat: Threw first-pitch strike to 65 percent of batters he faced.
The lowdown: The Sox went from 60-44 before Urbina's arrival last year to 22-35 with him as the closer, but that had more to do with the implosion around him. Urbina gave the Sox the strikeout punch they sorely needed at the end of a game, as he fanned 32 batters in 20 innings. The only concern is how much stress his right elbow can bear. He twice underwent surgery in 2000 to remove bone chips.
RP Rolando Arrojo (44)
Age: 33 Bats - throws: R-R
Height: 6-4 Weight: 220
Wins - Losses: 5-4 ERA: 3.48 K: 78
Fast stat: 7-3, 3.99 ERA as Sox starter; 3-3, 4.42 ERA as Sox reliever.
The lowdown: A starter all his life, he reluctantly opened last season in the bullpen. He didn't allow a run in his first 10 appearances, but he made perhaps his greatest contribution when he posted a 2.04 ERA in six starts in July while filling in as a starter for the injured Martinez. When Arrojo is on, he's nearly untouchable, as he showed when he took a no-hitter into the seventh inning last year against the Blue Jays. When he's off, it can get ugly.
RP Willie Banks (17)
Age: 33 Bats - throws: R-R
Height: 6-1 Weight: 202
Wins - Losses: 0-0 ERA: 0.84 K: 10
Fast stat: Averaged better than a strikeout per inning for first time in career.
The lowdown: He was selected third overall in the 1987 draft by the Twins (the Mariners took Ken Griffey Jr. first), but shoulder trouble turned him into a journeyman. When John Burkett went on the disabled list last week, Banks made his first Opening Day roster since 1998. Little says this is the best Banks has pitched in his career. He figures to work in long relief.
RP Casey Fossum (15)
Age: 24 Bats - throws: L-L
Height: 6-1 Weight: 162
Wins - Losses: 3-2 ERA: 4.87 K: 26
Fast stat: Held leadoff batters each inning to measly .122 average.
The lowdown: After spending the winter devouring Krispy Kremes trying to bulk up, Fossum said he will have to switch in Boston to Dunkin' Donuts. But Little is not concerned about Fossum's weight (162 pounds at last count). The kid can pitch, as he showed last year both as a starter and reliever. Little will use him in various situations.
RP Rich Garces (34)
Age: 30 Bats - throws: R-R
Height: 6-0 Weight: 255
Wins - Losses: 6-1 ERA: 3.90 K: 51
Fast stat: Lefthanded batters hit .194 against him last season.
The lowdown: Entering what may be his last year in the Hub, El Guapo has slimmed down a bit as he approaches free agency. If he can keep the weight off, he may avoid the injuries that have hampered him in recent years. But his numbers speak for themselves. The set-up man has gone 23-7 with a 3.51 ERA in his six years with the Sox.
RP Darren Oliver (35)
Age: 31 Bats - throws: R-L
Height: 6-2 Weight: 220
Wins - Losses: 11-11 ERA: 6.02 K: 104
Fast stat: Went 2-0 with 1.38 ERA and .302 OBP vs. Yankees in 2001.
The lowdown: He was 13-20 with a 6.60 ERA in his last two seasons with the Rangers, but he looked in spring training as if he had turned a corner, going 2-1 with a 0.69 ERA. The lefthander also has been a Yankee killer (2-0 last year, 5-1 in his career). But the Sox won't need a fifth starter until April 12, and if Burkett is ready by then, Oliver will remain in the bullpen.
RP Tim Wakefield (49)
Age: 35 Bats - throws: R-R
Height: 6-2 Weight: 215
Wins - Losses: 9-12 ERA: 3.90 K: 148
Fast stat: Held hitters to .204 average when Sox were ahead, .287 when Sox were behind.
The lowdown: The longest-serving member of the team, the knuckleballer can do it all, from start to close. Though he wants to start, Wakefield will be content as a set-up man or middle reliever, anything but a mop-up guy. He believes he has earned that much respect. Nearly 10 years have passed since he last pitched in a League Championship Series - he went 2-0 for the Pirates in 1992 - and he would love another shot.