Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Purging Continues - Byrd Flyes to Boston

Almost three full years in a Tribe uniform has come to an end for Paul Byrd. The crafty right-hander was all heart, guts, and guile during his stint with the Indians and was rewarded by being dealt to the Red Sox for a player to be named later or cash. If ever anyone has made themselves into a hot commodity faster than Byrd, I'd like to see it.

After struggling mightily most of the year, the Byrd man completely re-made his season after a talk with Bert Blyleven about a month ago. He hasn't lost since. During that span, he has gone 4-0 in 28 innings pitched, allowing just four earned runs. I was at his last home start where he shut out the Tigers into the eight inning. After walking off the mound for the last time at the Jake, I wrote:

my respect level for the Paul Byrd reached an all time high. When he left with two outs in the 8th, I was one of the 24,000 strong giving him a well deserved standing ovation. In what could have been his final start as a member of Wahoo Nation, the Byrd Man was brilliant, throwing 7 2/3 scoreless innings against the team with the second largest payroll in the game.

Here is the bottom line, now is the time to say goodbye to the Byrd Man. His market value will not get any higher than it is right now. He seems to have righted himself and a pitching-starved contender like the Phillies, or maybe the Diamondbacks who are watching Micah Owings get lit up light a Christmas tree each outing could use a crafty, playoff tested pitcher like Byrd. Lets not forget that while C.C. and Fausto floundered against the Red Sox in the ALCS, Pauly won his start in a pivotal game four. Remember who started, and won the clincher against the Yankees in the Bronx? Paul Byrd.

That is something I will always love Byrd for. During the playoffs, he came up big when our twin 19 game winners couldn't. Both have filthier stuff, but didn't have the mental capacity of old #36.

Take a bow and a victory lap, Pauly. You earned it and you will be missed.

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