Former Boston Red Sox star Steve Pearce has decided to call it a career after 13 seasons. His heroics in the World Series will always be remembered fondly.
It’s been relatively quiet on the baseball front as we await what may become of the 2020 season. The Red Sox made their moves this winter but have been mostly silent since the delay of the season was announced. Today we got some good news regarding one of our former starts and it came at the right time.
Former Red Sox first baseman and outfielder Steve Pearce officially announced his retirement from baseball. WEEI’s Rob Bradford reported the former World Series MVP’s news this morning after Pearce made the announcement during an appearance on WEEI.
"“You know what? It has been a good run. I have 10 years in there. Right now I am officially retired,” said Pearce, who turned 37 years old Monday."
The power-hitter is coming off of a rough season with the Red Sox that saw him only play in 29 games due to mounting injury issues. It felt like right when he would heal up from one ailment another would pop up and slow him down. He didn’t get much attention this winter on the free-agent market as the 2019 season didn’t offer much insight for prospective teams.
Pearce came to the Red Sox during the summer of 2018 and would instantly become a fan favorite with the Fenway Faithful. Former President of Baseball Ops Dave Dombrowski made a few moves ahead fo the trade deadline in 2018 and they would all pay off for Boston come that October.
He would play in 50 games in 2018 for Boston posting a .279/.394/.507/.901 line with 7 homers and 26 RBI. Pearce would instantly join the ranks of some of the most beloved players in Red Sox lore as he crushed three homers against the Yankees at Fenway Park, and then in his first at-bat the next day sent another ball to the Monster seats. If you want to be accepted by one of the harshest fanbases in all of sports just smack some dingers against the Yankees, works every time.
Pearce would add on to his quickly built legendary tenure with Boston that fall as the Sox were marching through the playoffs. In what had already been a historic season where the team set a franchise record for wins (108) and cruised to the American League East title, they weren’t done.
During the 2018 postseason, the utilityman went from journeyman to Superman as he shifted into another gear and was automatic at the plate. Just take a look at his numbers from that October:
ALDS: .333/.429/.333/.762/2 RBI
ALCS: .214/.353/.500/.853/1 HR/ 1 RBI
World Series: .333/.500/1.167/1.667/ 3 HR/ 8 RBI/ MVP
He more than earned his money that year and was rewarded for his effort in bringing another championship to Boston with a one-year/$6.25M contract that winter. Sadly, as I mentioned above, injuries would derail any chances at a repeat performance and Pearce would watch most of the season from the bench.
Pearce joined the rest of his teammates and scoffed at the idea that the 2018 Red Sox did anything wrong. Much like J.D. Martinez, Rafael Devers, Andrew Benintendi, and Ian Kinsler before him, Pearce was adamant that no shady behavior went down and the Red Sox were simply one hell of a team, which they were.
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"“No. That’s such a joke to us,” Pearce said. “When it came out we were all kind of joking about it. We just want this to pass us. We won it fair and square. Whatever they accused us of, we were all kind of like, ‘I can’t believe this is even an issue.’ Once the report comes out we’re all going to be free.”"
We’re all still waiting for MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred to release the findings of his investigation, which is apparently complete but needs to be typed. A ridiculous excuse for there to not be a conclusion to this entire mess but I’ve written about the witch hunt ad nauseam, so I’ll spare you.
The retirement shouldn’t come as a surprise as Pearce had spoken about entertaining the idea back at the end of the 2019 season. Having a 13-year career is nothing to sneeze at and he is only the sixth player to be a member of every team in a single division. Now, that may not be great in some aspects but it’s also another thing to be remembered for.
It was with the Red Sox though, that he did some of the best work of his career. After bouncing around the league he was finally able to play for his childhood favorite, and helped them win a World Series. I can’t imagine a better way to finish the final chapter of your career. Steve Pearce will forever go down in Boston history for one of the best postseason performances in history, and always be beloved for it.