May 28, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Red Sox former player Manny Ramirez (right center) embraces fellow former player Johnny Damon (left center) after throwing out the first pitch before the game against the Atlanta Braves at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports
Johnny Damon: Damon signed a four-year deal in excess of 30 million and earned every baseball penny of it. With Damon, you never got cheated with an at-bat or in the field. A key ingredient in the recipe for curse-busting that came out of the oven in 2004. Damon average 150 games in his four years in Boston slashing .295/.312/.441.
Manny Ramirez: Manny being Manny. Thankfully the multiple PED issues came after his Boston years. Manny was quite possibly the most feared right-hand bat in MLB for ten years. In Boston for eight seasons, Manny slashed .312/.411/.588 with 274 home runs and 868 RBI. Manny’s contract was one of the steepest in baseball and the Henry ownership even had Manny on waivers in hopes someone would pick up the bill.
Jeff Reardon: Points are given for being local. Reardon was 34-years-old when he signed a three-year for seven million. Reardon bagged 88 saves in those three seasons.
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Tony Pena: I loved this signing. Pena was paid seven million over four years and just defensively it was money well spent. The slash line may not impress at .234/.290/.313, but this was one stalwart behind the plate.
Bill Mueller: Mueller was working on rotting pins as his knees were as fragile as a Faberge Egg. The Red Sox took a risk on the switch-hitter and paid seven million over three years and the returns were immediate with a batting crown in 2013. Mueller was around every big play that seemed to happen in the post season. Red Sox slash was .303/.378/.474 in 406 games. Toss in .429 against the Cards in 2004. A final curtain call with the Dodgers and the knees and Mueller were done.