Former Red Sox Papelbon Recalls When Varitek Smacked A-Rod
If there ever was a baseball season that epitomized the rivalry between the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees, it was the 2004 season.
Not only was 2004 special because the Red Sox had to come from behind to defeat the Yankees in the American League Championship Series to advance to the World Series, but there was a lot of friction between the two legendary ballclubs all season long.
What Red Sox fan can forget the events of July 23, 2004?
It was a hot and steamy night at Fenway Park. The Yankees were in town. Bronson Arroyo was toeing the rubber for the good guys and tossed a pitch that hit Alex Rodriguez.
Rodriguez made a move towards the mound but was intercepted by Boston catcher Jason Varitek, who shoved his catcher's mitt into A-Rod's face. Both benches cleared. It was awesome!
What happened in 2004 was a carryover from the 2003 season when the two teams brawled, and Boston pitcher Pedro Martinez grabbed Yankees coach Don Zimmer by the melon and sent him sprawling on the grass.
The Yankees defeated the Red Sox in the ALCS that year and went on to the World Series.
Now, former Boston pitcher Jonathan Papelbon is calling on ESPN to produce a documentary about the Varitek/A-Rod fight. Fox News reported after watching an ESPN documentary by former Yankee Captain Derek Jeter, Papelbon tweeted, "Hey ESPN, when y'all are ready to do a documentary on the real captain who whipped A-Rod's A-- Let me know!"
The Red Sox re-wrote baseball history in 2004 by becoming the first team to come back from a three-game deficit to win a league championship.