Former Red Sox Wily Mo Pena signs with Rakuten Eagles
In the pantheon of bad Red Sox trades of recent history one is certainly in the mix – Bronson Arroyo for Wily Mo Pena.
Pena was that one item the Red Sox consistently have Bette Davis eyes for and that is the power potential of a right hand bat at Fenway Park.
With Cincinnati Wily Mo had that glimpse shown to one and all with some prodigious home runs. In his last season with the Reds Pena blasted 19 and plated 51 RBI. Wily Mo also walked a mere 20 times, struck out 116 times and managed to squeeze all that into 317 plate appearances.
Arroyo signed a new contract, professed his love of the Boston area and was 14-10 in his last Boston season with an ERA of 4.51. Arroyo went on to have several productive seasons churning out 200 innings and double-digit wins. And Pena?
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Pena’s Boston stat line was a less than inspiring .271/.328/.779 with 16 home runs and 55 RBI in 476 plate appearances. The Red Sox finally pulled the plug and shipped Pena off to the Nationals for Chris Carter in a PTBNL move.
Pena, now 33, made the rounds in professional baseball and with every stop came a moon shot that made one wonder what could have been if the real life Pedro Cerrano and ever put it all together.
Pena is now in Japan and has been since 2012. In Japan Pena has managed to be a productive and formidable power presence and has now signed a new contract to play for the Rakuten Eagles after a 32 home run 2014 with the Orix Buffaloes of the JPL.
Wily Mo will have a place in Red Sox history thanks to some memorable long blasts, outfield adventures and getting a ring for being part of the 2007 championship team.