One season or fewer: your favorite short-term Red Sox.

dbn

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I'm woulda-coulda-shoulda whining, but have the Sox had a full-time, reliable 3Bman since letting Beltre walk?

I loved Beltre. Knew it was a mistake not to resign him. Had no idea how big of a mistake.
Recently, when the main board was really quiet, I almost started a fluff-thread asking everyone's favorite RS to play one season or less with the team, with Beltre being my answer. I just love watching great D, and that weird take-a-knee swing is fun, to boot.
Sorry if this is too light of a topic for the main board, but things have been a bit slow here so it's a least something to generate discussion.

Are there any players that spent only one or fewer seasons with the Red Sox, but you still miss? For me it's Adrián Beltré. Loved watching his amazing defense, his one-knee-to-the-ground homers, etc.

There are more for me, but I'll just start with Beltre and let others discuss first.
 

Koufax

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Sorry to violate your rules coming out of the gate, but Pokey Reese was a short-termer (2 season with the Red Sox) who was part of the '04 championship team and made some of the most spectacular leaping catches I've ever seen. He also had a game with a regular and an inside-the-park home run. He was a joy to watch running or fielding.
 

Dollar

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I had a hard time coming up with more than a couple until I got to the 2002 team. The '02 Sox had a bunch of guys who qualify, like Carlos Baerga, who had a walkoff RBI against the Yankees in one of the few Yankees-Sox games I've attended. And Rickey Henderson, who scored on that play if I remember correctly. But not Tony Clark.
 
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E5 Yaz

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Career .400 hitter Roger LaFrancois of the 1982 Red Sox
 

Leather

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I always think of Nick Esasky, when it comes to one-season Sox wonders.
 

dbn

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I had a hard time coming up with more than a couple until I got to the 2002 team. The '02 Sox had a bunch of guys who qualify, like Carlos Baerga, who had a walkoff RBI against the Yankees in one of the few Yankees-Sox games I've attended. And Rickey Henderson, who scored on that play if I remember correctly. But not Tony Clark.
Roberts and OCab are the obvious ones I alluded to. Cabrera seemed to be having such a good time that partial season with the Sox, driving liners off the Monster.
 

glasspusher

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O Cab sure didn't suck in his half season here, including the playoffs- other than a few overanxious at bats, but yeah, Beltre was such a solid guy. If only he didn't run into our fragile outfielders...
 

dbn

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O Cab sure didn't suck in his half season here, including the playoffs- other than a few overanxious at bats, but yeah, Beltre was such a solid guy. If only he didn't run into our fragile outfielders...
Amen. The FDA should have put a warning label on his jersey.
 

Buzzkill Pauley

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Just drawn from the joy from that season, it's hard not to pick a bunch of guys from 2004.

Roberts, of course, for that single moment.

But I say Orlando Cabrera, who was almost as pined-for as Beltre, and whose departure left a revolving door at SS for almost 10 years, until Bogaerts seized the job.
 

jtn46

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Billy Wagner wasn't here long, he wasn't great in the short time he was, and certainly having him longer would not have been very rewarding, but he was my favorite non-Sox player for a few years and it was a trip to see him pitch for us.
 

dbn

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Sorry to violate your rules coming out of the gate, but Pokey Reese was a short-termer (2 season with the Red Sox) who was part of the '04 championship team and made some of the most spectacular leaping catches I've ever seen. He also had a game with a regular and an inside-the-park home run. He was a joy to watch running or fielding.
No reason not to play fast and loose with the rules here!
 

dbn

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Has Esasky been hanging around the Red Sox clubhouse at all lately? Maybe Brock caught the vertigo from Nick.
 

smastroyin

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Can't mention Pokey without mentioning Bellhorn.

Anyway, one of my favorites even though he wasn't a great performer stats-wise is Luis Alicea. Don't know why, but I loved that guy and I really loved that team. My favorite non-WS team by far.
 

tims4wins

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I really enjoyed Todd Walker in 2003. He hit that game tying 3 run homer against Baltimore in the bottom of the 9th with 2 outs late in September that brought the Sox very close to clinching a playoff spot. Then he hit .349 in the playoffs, .391 OBP, slugged .767 - he hit 5 HR, a double, and a triple in 43 postseason ABs that year.
 

Rovin Romine

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Could we put together an all star team of one season wonders?

Esasky, Aguilera, Stairs, Nomo - of them all, my personal fav. is Beltre.

(It's amazing how many guys I'd have guessed were one season players were actually two season players.)
 

8slim

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Fun topic!

If we're going to mention Dave Roberts then there has to be a place for Dave Henderson. Pretty lousy in the limited regular season at bats he saw after we traded for him late in '86. But of course he saved the season in Anaheim and then had a monster World Series culminating in the 10th inning of game 6. By all rights he should have been the hero who delivered the first championship to us since 1918.

Traded away in '87, never made it a full calendar year in Boston.
 

Cesar Crespo

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Juan Pena. He made 2 lights out starts as a 22 year old and was never heard from again due to injuries.
 

snowmanny

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Ted Cox batted .362 and helped bring Eck to Boston
Billy Rohr has a career 0.45 ERA vs the NYY (20 innings)
Hawk Harrelson was a year and a half so doesn't qualify.
 

TonyPenaNeverJuiced

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The 1995 team had a couple of solid one-and-done guys, including
  • Closer Rick Aguilera (traded from the Twins and then signed back with them)
  • Stan Belinda was doing fine before and after losing the closing role after the Aguilera trade
  • the afore mentioned Luis Alicea
  • Mike Stanton played on the Sox for exactly one calendar year, July 31st 1995 to July 31st 1996. Stanton came back for 1 inning, Sept. 30, 2005, to face his once and future team, the Yankees, so he technically doesn't belong on the list...
  • Erik Hanson was as serviceable as he is unmemorable
  • Willie McGee, the Abe Vigoda of baseball, coming off an injury.
Also, fun to note, that team also had Matt Stairs, who wasn't particularly good, but I did enjoy watching him take monster size hacks.
 

Ale Xander

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Favorite was Beltre, best either him or Esasky, but I'm going to nominate my second favorite, Rickey Henderson.

He was waaaaaay past his prime, unfortunately.
 

smastroyin

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Pena's fastball was good enough, but his primary pitch was the slider, which he used in any count against any hitter. The problem is that when you throw so many sliders you destroy your elbow. Which he did. Exacerbated of course by being hit by a line drive, but the impact he took would have a hard time causing an MCL tear on its own, and elbow ligament injuries are common with slider pitchers, particularly in that era.
 

E5 Yaz

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If we need a DH, it would be hard to top Bob Watson's half-season in 1979
 

The Allented Mr Ripley

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Long-time Astro Bob Watson was traded to the Sox in June of 1979 for Bobby Sprowl, Pete Ladd and cash. In 84 games he put up a 148 OPS+ with 13 HR and 53 RBI. Then he signed with the Yankees as a free agent in the offseason. I'll always remember his brief stint fondly.

Edit: Ha, E5 Yaz beat me by seconds.
 

AlNipper49

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Rob Deer. I remember being super excited about him.
I can remember collecting HR hitter's cards in the mid 80s, thinking that HR was this huge undervalued stat similar to how Sabremetrics then subsequently started pushing base advanced stats like OPS, etc a few years later.

Not only was I wrong about HRs being that stat, but I was also wrong about baseball cards. Ooops. Sadly they were not my worst investment ever.
 

Ramon AC

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Carlos Baerga made everything fun in 2002. The Red Sox were uptight and neurotic before then, like their fans. Baerga smiled and joked around and it seemed like the team was looser than it had ever been in all the years I followed them. I give Baerga a lot of credit for setting the stage for the 2003 Cowboy Up team. Without his attitude and charm in 2002 maybe RS Nation isn't ready for Papi and Cabin Mirror and a less dour take on Manny.

Edit: He also inspired one of the greatest SoSH handles ever.
 

TonyPenaNeverJuiced

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Pena's fastball was good enough, but his primary pitch was the slider, which he used in any count against any hitter. The problem is that when you throw so many sliders you destroy your elbow. Which he did. Exacerbated of course by being hit by a line drive, but the impact he took would have a hard time causing an MCL tear on its own, and elbow ligament injuries are common with slider pitchers, particularly in that era.
This old BP article (free) is pretty wise on the subject.
 

dhappy42

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Tim McCarver.

Allow me to clarify. I'm glad he was only on the Red Sox for one season.

More seriously...

Dave Roberts, obviously, and Adrian Beltre. Victor Martinez (one season-and-a-bit.) Hated seeing VMart leave, but understood, considering a team can't carry two DHs, but not re-signing Beltre was one of the biggest mistakes of this decade.

Texas took him for $96 million over six years and we signed AGon and Crawford instead for a combined $300 million over seven years and Youk moved from 1st to 3rd for a while before being traded to Chicago for Brent Lillibridge and Zachary Stewart (for those who've tried hard to forget the Valentine year.) Thus began the Middlebrooks-Sandoval era.

Beltre's WAR since then? 5.5, 6.5, 5.0, 5.8, 4.8, 6.1...

Edit:

Gonzalez's and Crawford's combined WAR since 2011 = 26.9 WAR
Beltre's = 34.9 WAR

Of course, Beltre and Crawford went to the Dodgers in the Punto trade, freeing up $$$ and getting rid of Josh Beckett, so the "math" isn't that simple, but still... not signing Beltre pissed me off then and I'm still not over it.
 
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tims4wins

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Does Dwayne Hosey count? He was here less than a calendar year. September callup in 1995, hit .338 / .408 / .618 (1.026 OPS) in 77 PA, with 6 SB and 0 CS. I thought he was the next Griffey. Then he went 0-12 in the ALDS and sucked in 1996.
 

tims4wins

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Another good one from 1995 - Erik Hanson. Went 15-5 in 29 starts on that division championship team and made the All-Star team.

Too bad Stan Belinda pitched for the Sox in 1996, he was also awesome in 1995
 

Captaincoop

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Tom Seaver in 1986. He wasn't on the postseason roster, so didn't figure into that drama. But as a kid it was so cool that a legend like that was joining the Sox, even at the end of the road for him. He made several really good starts during the pennant chase, too, including a complete game 1-run start with 9 Ks at Detroit in August.

edit: And another very different one-year Sox who got me all excited was Kevin Morton, who dominated the Tigers with his awesome curve in July of 1991, which as far as I know represented the absolute peak of his life, and then never did anything again.
 
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smastroyin

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Go ahead and play the game with yourself of what Games 4, 6, and 7 of the World Series might have looked like if Seaver hadn't hurt his knee. (thank you 2004, 2007, and 2013!)
 

E5 Yaz

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Go ahead and play the game with yourself of what Games 4, 6, and 7 of the World Series might have looked like if Seaver hadn't hurt his knee.
The only mind game I've played more than that is the one where Jim Rice gets his hand out of the way of Vern Ruhle's pitch in 1975
 

TeddyBallgame9

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Orlando Cepeda, way past his prime, as the Sox first DH in 1973. I remember a few balls he absolutely crushed but he could barely run by then so anything in the gaps usually wound up as a single. Great hitter in his prime.
 

dhappy42

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Tom Seaver in 1986. He wasn't on the postseason roster, so didn't figure into that drama. But as a kid it was so cool that a legend like that was joining the Sox, even at the end of the road for him. He made several really good starts during the pennant chase, too, including a complete game 1-run start with 9 Ks at Detroit in August.

edit: And another very different one-year Sox who got me all excited was Kevin Morton, who dominated the Tigers with his awesome curve in July of 1991, which as far as I know represented the absolute peak of his life, and then never did anything again.
Yes. Him too. Past his prime but I loved having the chance to see him pitch at Fenway.
 

Captaincoop

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Go ahead and play the game with yourself of what Games 4, 6, and 7 of the World Series might have looked like if Seaver hadn't hurt his knee. (thank you 2004, 2007, and 2013!)
Also, just imagine what a great storyline it would have been - Tom Seaver, whose trade from NY had been the darkest/angriest moment in Mets history to that point, pitching for the Red Sox in that World Series.
 

Hoya81

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The pride of Ware, MA himself, Billy Jo Robidoux.

Misses the cut for this exercise but I enjoyed all 198 games of Canseco in '95/96.
 

shaggydog2000

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It has to be Rickey Henderson for me. On the field not so much, but the stories were definitely worth it.
 

jnlevetoncnmt

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I thought picking up Billy Wagner in 2009 was a really good move, but we got swept by the Angels. Considering all the times that I've seen teams give up too much for a reliever it was a great trade. We got him for Chris Carter (who we got for Willy Mo Pena).
 

moondog80

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I know it was the worst trade in Sox history, but worth noting that Larry Andersen was pretty kick ass for us in the short-term. 1.23 ERA in 22 IP with 25 K, 3 BB, and no homers.
 
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Puffy

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I think sometimes think about Danny Heep in 1989, who was a great 10th man and totally overshadowed by Esasky's surprise year.
 

RGREELEY33

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No takers for the 15 games that Larry Andersen spun his magic with a 1.23 ERA?

Nick Esasky was probably my favorite one-year wonder as well. Him hitting lasers into the net was fun to watch.

I'm amazed at the Juan Pena reference. I vividly remember those starts, but have no recollection of him never playing again.


EDIT: Moondog beat me to the punch with Larry Andersen!
 

Kliq

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Doug Mientkiewicz. By my calculation he saved 4,379 runs at 1B in 2004.