Red Sox sign Mr. Surly to catch
A.J. Pierzynski signed a one-year deal for $8.25M to be the answer at catcher since the retirement of Jason Varitek. Pierzynski certainly had the offensive statistical accomplishments as the lefty hitter had respectable power and eventually retired with a .280 batting average. Defensively, Pierzynski was no Varitek but after the previous season, the World Champions had Jarrod Saltalamacchia catching who was somewhere between awful and terrible defensively. In the playoffs backup, David Ross saved them.
Pierzynski had a reputation that followed him throughout his MLB career and was it intensity or just a pain in the arse? With the Red Sox fading fast the finger-pointing started and Pierzynski became the target with the usual “unnamed sources” in the clubhouse tossing the 37-year-old veteran under the bus.
Pierzynski was an easy target since his unlikeability rating was already well established as his manager Ozzie Guillen once said: “If you play against him, you hate him. If you play with him, you hate him a little less.” That is certainly acceptable when you win but Boston was losing and soon the less than affable Pierzynski was sent to the DFA wire and gone.