I already wrote about Andre Dawson in my article on the worst free-agent signings in Red Sox history, but since his inclusion on that list planted the seed for what eventually became this current article, he definitely warrants being discussed here as well.
After playing seventeen seasons for the Montreal Expos and Chicago Cubs, Dawson signed with the Red Sox in the winter of 1992. I was really excited and couldn’t believe the Red Sox got a player like The Hawk, but the reality turned out to be something quite a bit different. Hobbled by chronic knee injuries, by the time Dawson got to Boston he was no longer the same player he’d been during his glory days.
Struggling to cover ground in Fenway Park’s massive right field, Dawson struggled at the plate, too. He did hit his 400th career home run early in the 1993 season, his first with the Red Sox, but he re-injured one of his knees and spent most of the remainder of the season as a DH. He ended up playing in 121 games in that first year, hitting .273 with 13 HR and 67 RBI.
After having surgery on his knee at the end of the season, Dawson missed most of 1994 and only played in 75 games for the Red Sox that year, hitting .240 with 16 home runs and 48 RBI. The Red Sox let him go after the season and he finished his eventual Hall of Fame career with two forgettable seasons as a member of the Florida (now Miami) Marlins.