Tim Wakefield

Tim Wakefield says 2011 will “probably” be his last season

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Jamie Moyer is undergoing elbow surgery with an eye toward returning in 2012 at age 49, but Tim Wakefield isn’t planning to stick around that long.

He’ll be back with the Red Sox in 2011 after going 4-10 with a 5.40 ERA this year, but the 44-year-old knuckleballer told Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe that “this probably will be my last year”:

There are still some numbers I want to achieve, but I’m not going to put that much pressure on myself knowing that this probably will be my last year. I’m not going to come out and say I’m going to retire at the end of the 2011 season. But getting closer to the end, I’d really like to enjoy it more than I did last year.

When he says “there are still some numbers I want to achieve” Wakefield is likely talking about the fact that he’s 13 wins away from tying Cy Young and Roger Clemens for the most victories in Red Sox history, but he hasn’t won 13 games in a season since 2007.

Wakefield was unhappy with a spot starter/long reliever role this year, but seems resigned to the fact that he won’t be back in the Red Sox’s rotation barring a rash of injuries, saying: “I’m looking forward to coming in and contributing in whatever manner I can.”

Asked about Moyer’s plans for a post-surgery comeback, Wakefield replied: “Good for him. I don’t why, but good for him.”

Video: Undercover David Ortiz drives a Lyft in Boston

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David Ortiz did one of those “Undercover Lyft” spots for, well, Lyft, in which famous people disguise themselves while driving passengers around. Yes, they’re ads, but they’re still pretty funny. At least this one was.

Best parts: (1) the woman who says she has two David Ortiz shirts to which Undercover Ortiz responds, “actually, all my shirts are his shirts”; and (2) when Ortiz agrees with someone that baseball games are “so loooong.” Oh, and at one point he tells a woman who said she was going to the Red Sox game that night that he was too. After he unmasked himself, she explains his own joke to him. Which, ooohhkay.

In other news, people who take Lyfts in Boston either don’t watch much baseball, because Ortiz’s costume is NOT very concealing, or else they simply don’t look at their Lyft driver while in the car, at all.

Scouting in Venezuela: “Someone is going to get killed. It’s just a matter of time”

MIAMI - MARCH 14:  Venezuela fans cheer with a country flag while taking on the Netherlands during round 2 of the World Baseball Classic at Dolphin Stadium on March 14, 2009 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
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Ben Badler of Baseball America has a story about how major league scouts who cover Venezuela are unhappy with the rules imposed upon them by the league. Rules, they say, which unreasonably prohibit them from scouting Venezuelan players in centralized, team-controlled locations or, alternatively, flying them to team facilities in the Dominican Republic or elsewhere.

The result: international scouts are forced to travel all over Venezuela to evaluate prospect. And, given how destabilized and dangerous Venezuela has become, they believe their safety is at risk:

“MLB’s rules that limit our ability to travel a Venezuelan guy to the Dominican Republic, that limit our ability to get them in a complex at different ages, all these rules are solely contributing to the risks that all of us are taking traveling from complex to complex, facility to facility in the streets,” said one international director. “Someone is going to get killed. It’s just a matter of time, and it’s on MLB when it happens, because they’re the ones who created these rules.”

As Badler notes, Major League Baseball itself has moved its annual national showcase out of the country due to safety concerns. It will not, however, relax scouting rules — which seem arbitrary on their surface in the first place — in order to make the job of international scouts safer.

It seems that Rob Manfred and the league owe their employees better than this. Or at the very least owe them an explanation why they don’t think they do.