Once Dominant Red Sox Reliever Daniel Bard is On the Comeback Tour


Yahoo! Sports – For a time, Daniel Bard was one of baseball’s most effective and feared relievers. Now the 31-year-old right-hander is scratching and clawing for one more opportunity in the big leagues, which he hopes will come this season with the St. Louis Cardinals.

I admit I had completely forgotten about Daniel Bard. The once heir apparent to the best closer in Red Sox history, Jonathan Papelbon. Guy was absolutely lights out as a setup man and then the Red Sox fucked everything up. Seriously, don’t mess with success.

Remember when the Yankees had the same EXACT situation on their hands with Joba Chamberlain? Guy was an absolutely dominant reliever who was in line to take over as closer for Mariano Rivera. Nope, Yankees tried to move him into the starting rotation and the guy folded. Admittedly he had some sparks of dominance as a starter. I was at a game at Fenway he started and the guy went 7-8 innings and struck out 10. But for whatever reason, his build, his control, his endurance the guy unraveled and was ruined as a pitcher. They had a specific set of rules called the Joba Rules to keep this guy in tact for christ’s sake. Probably not the ideal guy to be messing with his whole workload and mindset. But I digress…

This is the latest team in a long list of teams kicking the tires on Bard. Theo was the first to try and resurrect Bard’s career unsurprisingly, picking him off the scrap heap in 2013 after the Sox placed him on waivers. He signed with the Rangers next season before actually re-signing with the Cubs organization in 2015, signed with the Pirates organization in January 2016 and didn’t even make it to April before getting released. Bard ultimately signed with the Cardinals last year and that’s where the comeback tour rolls on.

Reports say Bard seems to have his control back and is still throwing 96 mph. And this isn’t from some scrub St. Louis reporter, by “reports” I mean that this is coming from Peter Gammons, the human Britannica of baseball himself. So that’s gotta count for something.

With guys like Bard who were absolutely filthy for a short stint and then flamed out just as fast, it always reminds me of the Stellan Skarsgard quote from Good Will Hunting.


Best of luck, Dan.

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