Dude. Boomer’s gone.
Sure, I’m sad. Because it more or less signals the official “wavin’ of the white flag” on the 2006 season. But far more criminal is the fact that the dude high-tailed it back to San Diego without treating us to the full-on “David Wells Experience.”
Back when Theo signed him, I happily envisioned all sorts of mayhem. Wells wandering pantsless through Kenmore station. Engaging in blurry games of Smashy Canny with Northeastern freshmen. Moonlighting as a “security guard” at Boston University [“The girls are all tucked in, chief. Wink, wink.”]. One-upping Rick Dempsey with his own brand of rain-delay theatre. Buying the house a round at the Beacon Hill Pub, then showing up the next morning in a natty white suit and cap with a bucket and mop to happily clean up any stray vomit he might have left behind. I wanted stories of hangovers and bleeding gums and fistfights in a Brookline alley. I wanted Tito interrupting the fifth inning of a key Yankees match-up to deliver him a fizzing cup of Alka Seltzer on the mound. I wanted him and Kevin Millar to become post-game [and perhaps even pre-game] fixtures at every college bar across the city, trading autographs for glimpses of sophomore girls’ thongs and draining Jaegermeister bottles with reckless abandon.
Sadly, we never got it. Not a glimpse of the zany.
Not to say he went quietly in his Boston tenure. We did get that meltdown last season that led to a multi-game suspension. And, of course, the infamous follow-up press conference in which he more or less threatened to shiv Bud Selig. But for the most part, he was something of an invisible man. He was also our most reliable starter in 2005, and one Graff gaff away from possibly earning a win in Game Two of last year’s division playoffs.
My personal favorite Boomer moment came during the NESN broadcast of one of the many “2004 rocked, 2005 will be even cooler” dinner/music/funathons that occurred prior to Opening Day 2005. As Bronson Arroyo played his geetar on stage, the cameras panned the crowd, eventually landing on Wells, who looked like he’d rather be lining up for a shower at Shawshank Penitentiary:
Cut. Print. Awesome.
Oh, and we won last night.