Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 11/5/14
Df
Gary Tuck earned what so many seek to earn throughout their coaching careers: respect. So while replacing a bullpen coach hardly leads to the fanfare of signing a free agent or executing a trade, the Red Sox need to choose wisely in replacing Tuck. Immediately, the name that comes to mind is Jason Varitek. The former Red Sox captain rejoined the organization in September as a special assistant to general manager Ben Cherington, and it’s long been assumed — even during Varitek’s playing days — that Tek would someday become a coach, likely within the Boston organization. Upon hearing of Tuck’s decision to retire, Varitek seems like a logical replacement given his baseball smarts, familiarity with the organization and its players, and, most importantly, his familiarity with Tuck. Varitek held his former coach in the highest regard while the two worked together, even thanking Tuck individually during his retirement speech at JetBlue Park in Fort Myers last March. “If Webster needs a definition of coach, it has to be Gary Tuck,” Varitek said during his speech. “He has meant more to me at an age I was told my skills were depleted. But he pushed me, got me better, stood by my side, believed in me when no one else did. I forever will have a friend in Coach Tuck.” Varitek’s friendship with Tuck isn’t enough to warrant a passing of the torch, but Tek’s vote of confidence holds a lot of weight, as should the bond established between the two leaders during Tuck’s six-year stint in Boston. If there is one player who knows Tuck more than anyone, it is Varitek. And given the time the two spent working together on a daily basis, it’s probably safe to assume Varitek would approach the role of bullpen coach in a similar manner, whether that means implementing similar philosophies, mentoring techniques or drills. The Red Sox would essentially be hiring a little bit of Tuck by going with Varitek. That has to be very tempting for the Red Sox’ front office, especially when you consider the amount of success that Varitek had under Tuck’s tutelage and the success that Jorge Posada had while being coached by Tuck in the Yankees’ system. If Varitek was able to impart even part of his wisdom on the organization’s current batch of catchers — which includes the still young Jarrod Saltalamacchia, the up-and-coming Ryan Lavarnway and impressive prospect Blake Swihart — then it’d be immediately be viewed as a fantastic addition to manager John Farrell‘s staff. In fact, Varitek’s relationship with Farrell would make a transition to the role of bullpen coach that much smoother. One thing that stuck out during last season’s train wreck was Bobby Valentine‘s apparent lack of relationship with his fellow coaches, particularly Tuck. With Varitek serving as a coach under Farrell, that wouldn’t be an issue because of how closely the tandem worked together during Farrell’s first stint in Boston — when Farrell was the team’s pitching coach from 2007-2010 and Varitek was the starting catcher. Varitek becoming the Red Sox’ bullpen coach would hardly guarantee the club’s 2013 pitching staff would fare better than the 2012 version, but a glimpse of Boston’s AL-best 3.87 ERA in 2007 and the success of Jon Lester while both both Tek and Farrell were in the mix suggests it could help restore order. The fact of the matter is that Varitek will likely proceed in his current role as special assistant. He’s reportedly not considered a likely candidate — in large part because of his own wishes — and the 40-year-old might not dive into the world of coaching for a few more years. When Varitek is ready to take the plunge, though, the Red Sox should be ecstatic about his decision. Have a question for Ricky Doyle? Send it to him via Twitter at @TheRickyDoyle or send it here.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Eagles, Jets will make trade for Marcus Mariota

Cam Newton not a person of interest in night club shooting

Should Texans consider moving on from Arian Foster?

Dice-K begins comeback bid, makes first start in Japan

Report: Teams think Suh to Dolphins is ‘done' deal

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Adrian Peterson still has ‘concerns’ about Vikings

LSU S blasts Tigers fans for leaving game early

Nobody’s safe in the NFL and nothing is sacred

UMass to retire jersey in honor of John Calipari

Houston Texans are moving on from Andre Johnson

Top landing spots for Darrelle Revis

Twelve unlikely players who could be NCAA Tourney heroes

WATCH: CP3 goes nuts after DeAndre Jordan doesn't shoot

WATCH: Ridiculous foul called on Penn State

WATCH: Westbrook throws down huge dunk in return

Cowboys hang out at Duke game, pose with funny poster

Report: Peyton Manning's contract incentives tied to Super Bowl

Bean responds to Murphy's homosexuality comments

Haynesworth to Suh: Skins ‘took my love away from the game’

Five teams that should consider signing JaVale McGee

MLB local streaming is unlikely for Opening Day

Ronaldo sends his hair stylist to check on his wax figure monthly

Arizona Diamondbacks unveil 'The Churro Dog'

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Unlikely NCAA Tourney heroes

Every starting QB ranked by mobility

WATCH: CP3 goes nuts

UFC must make Rousey vs. Cyborg happen

Suh to Dolphins a 'done' deal?

Why haven't brands shown love to James Harden?

Nobody’s safe in the NFL and nothing is sacred

Tim Lincecum’s last best chance

Ten most underrated players in the NBA

Stevens: LeBron looks like the MVP

Spiller: EJ Manuel learned not to be 'buddy buddy' with everyone

Ten most underrated NFL free agents

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.