As reported yesterday by WEEI’s Alex Speier, centerfielder Shane Victorino also known as Rat boy, or Rat Face has signed with the Boston Red Sox. The contract is for three years, and 39 million dollars. It’s almost unbelievable that Rat boy was able to command that much money even though he had the worst year of his career in 2012, splitting time between the Phillies, and Dodgers. But alas, that is the free agent market we find ourselves immersed in this winter. Whatever, he’s Boston’s problem now.
The Dodgers acquired the 32 year old switch-hitting outfielder from the Phillies this last summer. They traded popular reliever Josh Lindblom, and a minor leaguer for Rat Boy. The Dodgers were in need of a lead-off hitter and left fielder, and Victorino provided them that during the playoff race last season. Or so we all thought. It seemed to make sense for the Dodgers at the time. Unfortunately, it just didn’t work out. Rat boy really sucked balls during his short stint with the Dodgers. Victorino hit .255 with a .321 OBP with 11 home runs, and 55 RBI in 154 games. In 53 games for the Dodgers, Victorino hit .245 with a .316 OBP, two home runs, 15 RBI, and 15 stolen bases, while missing time battling a wrist injury. Rat Boy did demonstrate his ability to pester pitchers on the base-paths by stealing 39 bases in 2012. However because of age, and injury, his batting skills have shown considerable decline. Victorino is entering his tenth season in the majors, and has a career .275 average, .341 OBP, and has stolen 201 bases. He has hit 90 home runs, and has won three gold gloves, and two all-star selections.
Victorino has been a nemesis of the Dodgers for years. Dodger fans have grown accustomed to hating Victorino over the years. Rat face has frustrated and annoyed Dodger fans since the beginning of his MLB career. Victorino killed the Dodgers during their back-to-back NLCS appearances in 2008 and 2009 when he was with the Phillies. He also broke up Hiroki Kuroda’s no-hitter back in 2011. Victorino will mostly be playing right field for the Red Sox in 2013, but could see some time in center field as well. There had been mutual interest on both sides to bring Victorino back to the Dodgers, but the Dodgers had already acquired Carl Crawford to play left field, and Victorino had stated he was not interested in taking a part time role. The Indians had also been interested in signing Victorino and had offered him a four year 44 million dollar contract.
So long Rat Boy, good luck in Fenway. That inter-league series the Dodgers will play against Boston next year is looking more and more interesting by the day.