Xander Bogaerts Helped Padres Sign Ex-Red Sox Teammate Michael Wacha

'Bogey is the man'


Feb 20, 2023

Xander Bogaerts is already getting busy in helping recruit on behalf of the San Diego Padres.

Bogaerts, who signed an 11-year deal in free agency with the Padres that finalized his time with the Red Sox, helped pull some strings for ex-Boston teammate Michael Wacha. The 31-year-old veteran pitcher sat in free agency and patiently awaited his turn at securing a new contract. And those prayers were answered when the Padres came knocking, locking in Wacha to a four-year contract worth $26 million.

During Padres spring training workouts last Thursday, Wacha revealed that Bogaerts played a role in his arrival to San Diego and expressed his gratitude after just one year’s worth of experience being teammates with the All-Star shortstop.

“Bogey is the man,” Wacha told reporters, per San Diego’s 97.3 The Fan video. “It was a lot of fun getting to know him last year, seeing him go about his business every day. He’s the guy that’s in the weight room. He’s preparing the right way to be able to go out there and play 162. And he’s an absolute stud. Great, great pickup for the Pads.”

While 2022 served as a chapter that the Red Sox will attempt to put in their rearview mirror moving forward, the same can’t be said for Wacha. Rather, the campaign proved to be comeback-worthy one for the 10-year big leaguer.

Wacha went 11-2 over the course of 23 starts in Boston. He pitched to a 3.32 ERA with 104 strikeouts in 127 1/3 innings, helping provide a much-needed source of stability in what was a struggling Red Sox rotation last season.

In signing with the Padres, Wacha is set to make his return to the National League, where he spent eight previous seasons.

Wacha and Bogaerts will play host to their former squad when the Red Sox visit the Padres for a three-game series at Petco Park beginning on May 19.

Thumbnail photo via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images
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