Off the Wall: Wes Welker

We interrupt the Hooking Foul baseball preview to bring you the NFL free agency news that Wes Welker has signed a 2 year 12 million dollar contract with the Denver Broncos. Yes, you are correct that does not say with the New England Patriots.

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For the last 6 years Wes Welker has put up huge statistics and become the definition of a chain moving slot receiver working with Tom Brady in New England. He has averaged 112 catches per season which is by far the most in the league over that time. He redefined the usefulness of the position and his impact on the game is visible and tangible, but, sad as it may be, its ok that he is gone, now let me tell you why. Continue reading

Off the Wall: Jon Lester

imagesJon Lester has led quite the life especially when you include his, at times, brilliant baseball career. The highlights include dominating high school baseball in Washington State, culminating in being named the Gatorade State Player of the Year in 2000. He was then drafted in the 2nd round of the MLB entry draft by the Boston Red Sox and signed a contract that included a signing bonus of $1 million dollars. He was named Red Sox minor league pitcher of the year in 2005 and made his MLB debut in the 1st half of 2006. Late in the 2006 season Lester was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma and missed the final month of the season. He was treated successfully and returned the Red Sox rotation in July 2007, less than a year after his diagnosis. In the clinching game 4 of the 2007 World Series  Lester started, pitched 5 and 2/3rds innings and got the win. Back to full strength in 2008 Lester won 16 games, threw a no hitter and on the heels of such a successful season was awarded with a new 5 year, 30 million dollar contract. Over the first 4 years of that contact Lester has been 58-39, with a 3.74 ERA, has pitched over 800 innings and has consistently been one of the most durable starting pitchers in the MLB. Now I’m going to tell you why the Red Sox need to trade him. Continue reading