Tagged: john burkett

November 28 – Happy Birthday John Burkett

John Burkett had already pitched 15 seasons of big league ball when the Red Sox signed him to a two-year $11 million free agent contract in December of 2001. The right hander was a product of the Giants’ organization and had pitched for San Francisco during his first half dozen seasons in the majors. He seemed on the verge of super-stardom when he went 22-7 for the 1993 Giants. The following season however, which was the final year of his contract with San Fran, he collapsed to a 6-8 record.That didn’t stop the Marlins from signing the New Brighton, PA native to a three year $10 million-plus deal in April of 1995. That began a string of five straight lackluster seasons for Burkett that included a 1996 mid-season trade to Texas. After three-plus pretty bad years as a Ranger, he signed with the Braves and pitched effectively in both 2000 and ’01. Still, when the Red Sox signed him, I remember thinking he’d get shelled in Fenway. In fact, he did get hit pretty hard in quite a few of his starts for Boston but he also won 25 games during his two-season stay in Beantown, while losing just 17 times. Not bad for a 38-year-old. Burkett retired after his two Red Sox seasons with a lifetime record of 166-136. During his fifteen big league seasons he earned just less than $38 million. He was also probably the best bowler ever to play Major League Baseball