Thursday, December 20, 2007

Kapler To the Brewers

Red Sox fan favorite Gabe Kapler just signed a one year deal with the Brewers. As of yet, there's no word on his salary for the 2008 season. This comes as a bit of a surprise as many expected Kapler to be invited to Spring Training with the Red Sox. Kapler played the last three years of his career with the Red Sox, and managed the Red Sox Single-A team the Greenville Drive.

Kapler won a World Series with the Red Sox in 2004. He was a backup outfielder on the team until he ruptured his Achilles tendon running out a home run in late 2005. It is ironic that Kapler's hustle would be his Achilles heal so to speak. It was what made him such a hero with the Fenway Faithful, even though is offensive output was rather mediocre.

His players seemed to like him as a Single-A manager last year, but it will be good to see Kapler back in the majors. I'd have to think the Brewers signed him as much for his leadership abilities than they did his playing abilities. Many will be sad to see Kapler leave the Red Sox organization, but hey, at least he didn't go to the Yankees, right?

Many may remember Kapler's role in the July 2004 bench clearing brawl between the Red Sox. Kapler was grabbed from behind by Yankees reliever Tanyone Strurtze but the choke hold wasn't very affective. Sturtze left the fight with some red stains on his uniform.

Following the fight, going into the bottom of the sixth inning of the game down 9-4, the Red Sox then went on to win the game with Bill Mueller's walkoff home run against Mariano Rivera in the 9th inning. Many fans later pointed to the bench clearing brawl as the turning point to the Red Sox championship season in 2004.

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