Carl Yastrzemski was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1989. Let?s take a moment to celebrate the 20th anniversary of his induction and his No. 8 being retired.
The last eight Red Sox to wear the No. 8:
Mike Guerra (1951)
Tom Wright (1951)
Aaron Robinson (1951)
Hal Bevan (1952)
Billy Consolo (1953-54)
Sammy White (1955)
Pete Daley (1958-59)
Ed Sadowski (1960)
Here are eight from the files:
1. Jonathan Papelbon has appeared in 264 games and never had an at-bat. It sounds like a lot until you think of the ?Steamer,? Bob Stanley, who appeared in 637 games without an at-bat. A couple of interesting side notes: Pap has also appeared in four postseason games without an at-bat, but in the 1986 World Series, Stanley did go to the plate and struck out. And here?s another from not so way back, about John ?Waaay Back? Wasdin. Wasdin never had a Red Sox ?at-bat? in 170 games, but in 1998, he did have a plate appearance and drew a walk.
2. Speaking about Drew and walks. Through games of Sept. 21, J.D. had 79 walks on the season, the exact total he had each of the last two years. Other Sox who finished seasons with 79 walks are Billy Goodman, Harry Hooper, Jackie Jensen, Felix Mantilla, Trot Nixon, Pete Runnels and Mo Vaughn. Entering play Friday, Drew has 82 walks.
3. Unless the Twins make it to the postseason, the Red Sox have seen the last of the Metrodome. The Twins moved to Minnesota from Washington (where they were the Senators) to start the 1961 season. Since that time, the Red Sox are 278-286 all-time against the Twins with a record of 116-167 playing in the Twin Cities. The Twins played at Metropolitan Stadium when they first moved to Minneapolis and the H.H.H. Metrodome opened on April 3, 1982. The ballpark was named after former Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey, who deserved a better homage. The Red Sox, since 1982, are 58-80 at the Dome, and went 2-2 this year.
4. On the subject of Minneapolis and Red Sox wearing No. 8, Sammy White was a catcher for the Red Sox from 1951-59. He opted for the MLB Red Sox over the NBA Minneapolis Lakers (yes, that?s how the L.A. Lakers got their name), with whom he had a tryout. White?s name was remembered in Boston for many years because he opened Sammy White's Brighton Bowl, or simply Sammy White's, a favorite bowling alley in Brighton, Mass. It closed in 1985.
5. The Red Sox are running out of time to tie their team record of three consecutive seasons tossing a no-hitter. On Sept. 1, 2007, Clay Buchholz no-hit Baltimore in a 10-0 win. On May 19, 2008, Jon Lester no-hit Kansas City in a 7-0 victory. The Red Sox? record was set in 1916, 1917 and 1918 when George Foster (June 21, 1916), Hubert Leonard (Aug. 30, 1916), Ernie Shore (June 23, 1917) and Hubert Leonard (June 3, 1918) all threw no-hitters.
The Shore game has some controversy attached as he entered the game after starter Babe Ruth walked the first batter and then was ejected following an argument. The runner was thrown out stealing, and Shore retired the next 26 batters. The Red Sox on two other occasions had two consecutive seasons of throwing a no-hitter.
6. Kevin Youkilis is the kind of guy you want at the plate with runners on base. This season with runners on, Youk is hitting .320. He?s even better with runners in scoring position, hitting .354. Youk has been to the plate 16 times this season with the bases filled ? collecting three hits (including a pair of doubles), three walks and a pair of sac flies. The result is a .300 average and 11 RBIs.
7. Ed Sadowski, the last Red Sox player to wear No. 8 prior to Yaz, was a catcher, just like Pete Daley and Sammy White, the two who preceded him wearing the number. Ed?s brothers, Bob and Ted, and his nephew, Jim, all briefly played in the majors, and all were pitchers.
8. Yaz is baseball?s last Triple Crown winner, but this year, Jason Bay is attempting to be baseball?s latest Meatloaf winner. The Red Sox? left fielder is looking to overtake Mark Teixeira and Carlos Pena in the home run and RBI chases, and if Bay does, ?don?t be sad, ?cause two out of three ain?t bad.?
Bill Chuck is the creator of Billy-Ball.com (www.Billy-Ball.com) and, with Jim Kaplan, is the author of Walk-Offs, Last Licks, and Final Outs — Baseball?s Grand (and not so Grand) Finales, with a foreword by Jon Miller, published by ACTA Sports. Chuck is a regular contributor to NESN and NESN.com and is available at Bill@billy-ball.com.