Sports Outside the Beltway

2 Former Red Sox Players Moving On

After being speculated and reported for weeks now, Keith Foulke has signed with the Cleveland Indians

The free agent reliever finalized a $5 million, one-year contract with the club Thursday, a deal both sides hope turns into a longer partnership. Foulke’s deal includes about $2 million in performance bonuses and a mutual option for 2008.

Back in 2004 I loved the toughness that Foulke brought to the mound. He obviously does not have overpowering stuff, but he just found a way to get people out, and sometimes in a dominating fashion.

Since that magical run in October of 2004, his performance has been just awful and his attitude has been worse. I will agree that Boston is a tough place to play, but his action and comments did not make it easier to accept his poor performance.

The Indians (Borowskie, Hernandez, Foulke) like the Red Sox (Donnelly, Romero, Hernadez, Pineiro) are signing a lot of cast off pichers and hoping enough are able to regain their past form or become a hidden gem.

In other news Mark Loretta will reportedly sign with the Houston Astros

Loretta, who played briefly with Houston in 2002, signed a one-year deal worth $2.5 million, but the contract could be worth as much as $3.5 million if incentives are met.

According to Loretta’s agent, Bob Garber, Loretta had an offer from the Rangers worth $1 million more. The Reds also made an offer, but Loretta picked Houston, partly because of an aggressive recruiting job by Roy Oswalt and Brad Ausmus. Oswalt put the bug in club owner Drayton McLane’s ear, and Ausmus gave his best pitch while working out with Loretta in San Diego, where both reside during the offseason.

I had only seen Loretta play here and there prior to last season since he played in a time zone that is does coorperate with my east-coast bed time. From my limited exposure he seemed like the prototypical #2 hitter and a consummate professional. After watching him for a full season my feels were confirmed. I think the Astros are getting a true “baseball player”. His efforts and contributions will be missed by me, but I do think it is time for Dustin Pedroia to get a chance.

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