Originally posted on Ted's Army  |  Last updated 3/2/12


Of all the things that Jason Varitek has done during his lengthy career with the Red Sox, none is more recognizable than jamming his catcher's mitt in the face of Alex Rodriguez.  And that's something that doesn't sit well with Jason, nor his father.

Via CSNNE.com:

“It wasn't something that you're proud of. We've been down this road talking with my kids. I was just being a teammate. Things were going on and being said to my teammate and it just happened to happen that way.”
 
He no longer autographs pictures of the incident.

“It became ongoing as soon as the first day my oldest daughter [Ally, now 12] . . . said, 'Oh, Daddy, look: It's the picture of you fighting again,’ ” he said.  “I was like, 'Maybe I shouldn't sign that.' ”

Varitek's father discussed the incident Thursday after the retirement announcement and had slightly stronger feelings than his son.

"I'm not a fan of that picture."

From a 'I don't want my kids to think that fighting is the answer' perspective, I totally get it.  And when anyone talks at length about Tek, this incident undoubtedly surfaces.  You don't want a single heated incident in your past to be constantly shoved in your children's faces.

Even if his children weren't in the picture, I'm sure that Tek would rather be remembered for this or this or this. 

But the A-Rod incident, and the subsequent image, is much larger than Varitek.  That single moment turned the tide for an entire organization and its fan base.  Ask any Red Sox fan and they can tell you where they were the moment Varitek ***** slapped Rodriguez. 

Pushing his mitt into A-Rod's manicured face symbolized Red Sox Nation telling the Yankees that they weren't going to stand idle while the Yankees collected their trophies.  That moment ignited that Sox squad.  The 2004 World Series doesn't happen in October if Varitek doesn't push A-Rod in July. 

The Variteks can collectively despise that picture.  The Captain can refuse to autograph it.  His father can urinate on it every morning when he steps out of bed.  I don't care.  That picture will always bring a tiny smile to my face and goosebumps to my arms.  That picture represents everything that was great and fun and unpredictable and wild about that 2004 season, and the best damn baseball team that I ever cheered for.

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