Tuesday, December 10, 2013
PORTLAND - When knuckleball pitcher Steven Wright found out he was traded to the Boston Red Sox Tuesday afternoon, he did not have to travel far.
Wright, 27, played for the Akron Aeros, the Double-A minor league team of the Cleveland Indians. The Aeros are in town to play the Portland Sea Dogs.
Wright will soon be measured for a Sea Dogs uniform. The Indians traded him to the Red Sox for former Sea Dogs first baseman Lars Anderson. Wright said he is being assigned to Portland.
Wright was beaming in the Aeros clubhouse after he heard the news.
"Exciting," he said, still in his Aeros uniform. "With (Tim) Wakefield and the success he has had there."
Wakefield, the recently-retired knuckleball pitcher of the Red Sox, recently talked to Wright, a phone call arranged by Rob Leary, the former Red Sox coach who is now the Indians minor league field coordinator.
"We just talked on the phone a little bit before my last start," Wright said. "It was nice to pick his brain.
"Now that I'm with the Red Sox, it might be easier to have access to him."
Wright was 9-6 with a 2.49 ERA with the Aeros.
Wright was a second-round draft pick of the Indians in 2006, out of the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He did not throw the knuckleball than. Wright reached Triple-A in 2009, but struggled. Sent back to Akron in 2010, the struggles continued.
"I started messing around with the knuckleball," Wright said. "At first, I threw it as an out pitch, and it evolved."
Anderson, 24, as long been on the trading block since the Red Sox traded for Adrian Gonzalez before last season.
In Boston's other, bigger trade on Tuesday, the Red Sox sent reliever Matt Albers and outfielder Scott Posednik to the Diamondbacks for left-hander reliever Craig Breslow.
Kevin Thomas covers baseball and basketball for the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram. He wisely moved to Maine in 1994 after working for the St. Petersburg Times. He is married to Nancy and they have nine children.
Follow his thoughts on the Boston Red Sox and Portland Sea Dogs on Clearing the Bases
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