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Some Guy Named Smoltz

The big item of the night between the Boston and Washington is that John Smoltz is making his Red Sox debut.

Smoltz's 21-season tenure with the Atlanta Braves ended in an ugly fashion. After Atlanta failed to sign him as a free agent, Smoltz vocalized displeasure with the organization he helped to 14 division titles between 1991 and 2005. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution wrote that Smoltz left a "hole in the heart of Braves Nation, as well as the team's staring rotation" when the Red Sox signed him in January.

General Manager Theo Epstein said he had visions of Smoltz, who has 210 victories and 154 saves, pitching the Red Sox into the playoffs in October. So Epstein took the low-risk gamble on an aging pitcher coming off of major shoulder surgery, signed Smoltz to a one-year deal worth $5.5 million.

"Coming back from surgery, this is not a half year job," said Smoltz, who only threw 28 innings last year before undergoing surgery in June. "This is not something I wanted to do for a half year. I wanted to pitch past this year."

Meanwhile, note that Adam Dunn is back in the lineup. He walked in a pinch-hit appearance last night. Apparently, the wrist injury was of no legitimate concern. Often, when players and coaches try to play down the seriousness of an injury, it is smart to chase their opinion with a grain of salt. That has not seemed to be the case with Dunn's nagging wrist discomfort.

Boston Red Sox
1. Pedroia, 2B
2. Drew, RF
3. Bay, LF
4. Ortiz, 1B
5. Lowell, 3B
6. Varitek, C
7. Ellsbury, CF
8. Green, SS
9. Smoltz, P

Washington Nationals
1. Guzman, SS
2. Johnson, 1B
3. Zimmerman, 3B
4. Dunn, LF
5. Willingham, RF
6. Bard, C
7. Harris, CF
8. Hernandez, 2B
9. Zimmermann, P

By Mark Viera  |  June 25, 2009; 3:05 PM ET
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So, you think you're pretty quick on the draw, eh Viera? ;-)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 25, 2009 3:16 PM | Report abuse

It seems that blog has taken notice of the Nationals fans to Red Sox fans ratio this week...

Posted by: ihatewalks | June 25, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

newer new post.

Posted by: leetee1955 | June 25, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

I bet the Red Sox are viewing this as a AAA rehab start

Posted by: tdogjuwan | June 25, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

I seem to recall another player last year who had wrist problems that interfered with his hitting. A guy named Nick...

Posted by: ramgut | June 25, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Hope that we can get to Smoltz as we have on occasion before. (After which, he can go on to pitch into October, or not.)

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 25, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

"I bet the Red Sox are viewing this as a AAA rehab start"

Yep, thats good on you....with the Paw-Sox in Norfolk tonight, John decided he'd just go ahead and pitch in Fenway on The Potomac tonight, for convenience!

Posted by: caphcky | June 25, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Yippee! It's like old home week around here. All the old trolls are coming out to play.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | June 25, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse


How about dem Bruins, eh?

Sec 204 Row H Seat 7

Posted by: adhardwick | June 25, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

I hate the use of "Nation" after a team name.

Posted by: JohninMpls | June 25, 2009 6:35 PM | Report abuse

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