Back-up catcher Doug Mirabelli was the perfect team player for the Red Sox, doing anything needed — even welcoming ceremonial first-pitch participants to Fenway Park in 2002. By U.S. Navy photo by Journalist Seaman Joe Burgess. [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
If baseball was basketball, stats might credit back-up catcher Doug Mirabelli with 12 assists for knuckleballer Tim Wakefield’s dozen wins in 2004.
As “Wake’s” personal catcher with over-sized mitt, he gave the hurler the perfect defensive partner.
“Wake” throwing his knuckler in a 2006 battle at Baltimore. By Waldo Jaquith on Flickr [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Although he didn’t sparkle in the ’04 World Series, Tim Wakefield supplied Boston with a dozen victories prior to the Fall Classic.
He did it all with one mystical pitch.
Here’s one of his starring moments (including some slow-motion artistry) from the 2012 documentary, Knuckleball:
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