The Ballad of Tim Wakefield ({Non}Cover of the Week 29)

Wake and I rocking Hot Stove Cool Music at Fenway 2005 (photo by Steve Latham)

Buff Tom was in the studio this week working on new songs. Work has also been very busy in my day job. I feared not being able to get to the Cover of the Week this week and, while that is technically true, I did get inspired by another dazzling knuckleball performance by 42-y.o. Red Sox legend, Tim Wakefield last night. So with 2 cups of coffee in me, I whipped this little homage up this morning. Also, finding it’s way into the song is this article from the Boston Globe this AM.

When rock and rollers hit a certain (middle) age, many of them feel compelled to write a baseball song. But having one of our own still going at 42, well, that just begs a songs. So in the tradition, hopefully, of Zevon and Dylan (and not so much Fogerty), here is mine:

The Ballad of Tim Wakefield


The Ballad of Tim Wakefield

He don’t need no injections in his ass
He makes the ball flutter, it don’t need to go fast
Hitters swinging just like a cartoons when it passes
The knuckleball from Timmy Wakefield

I remember all the late innings of June
But there came a night with a big harvest moon
And an October game when a Yankee named Boone
Hit a long one off of Tim Wakefield

But fishing off of Melbourne in the off-season glare
Knowing that middle-aged men everywhere
Are harboring dreams that they could be up there
Pitching just like Timmy Wakefield

When the boys are all flailing as the weather gets warm
He always remain the calm eye of the storm
There are 18 year-old people who might have been born
When a night game was pitched by Tim Wakefield

Batters strike out, pop up, heads bowed low
And into dark dugout tunnels they go
And still confused as the video shows
They were defeated by Timmy Wakefield.

Boston may not be the easiest place
It’s not every player they warmly embrace
So just go ask Keith Foulke if he would trade places
In history with Tim Wakefield

You know what they say about saving nine
Well Doug Mirabelli was his stitch in time
The State Police escorted him for no crime
We just needed him to receive Tim Wakefield

Taking the mound or offering his time
for charity’s sake and then on down the line
There are plenty of people who will be crying
When they hang up the spikes of Timmy Wakefield

Dylan has written all about Catfish
I may never write like Bobby, Wake like Pedro won’t pitch
But true Red Sox fans will always know what they wish
To have nine players just like Timmy Wakefield
Nine players just like Timmy Wakefield
Give me nine players just like Timmy Wakefield

22 thoughts on “The Ballad of Tim Wakefield ({Non}Cover of the Week 29)”

  1. Well…wow. I am totally blown away. You wrote and recorded this this morning??? I am bowing in the direction of Boston and repeating, “I’m not worthy, I’m not worthy…” I’m wondering: will you do this onstage sometime in the future with Theo, after he hears it? 🙂

    What a great tune, and so conflicting for me at the moment, because he pitched the Sox (My #2 team) over the Jays (my #1 team) last night. But I love the Wakeman, he so rules. I recall in 2004, a year after he surrendered the home run to Boone, he was standing on the mound in Yankee Stadium after the Sox’ miraculous comeback, soaking up the moment, which he so sorely deserved to do.

    Thanks again. Truly inspirational. Please let us know if you get a reaction from TW after he hears it.

  2. As if I needed further proof of your badassery. Well done, sir. And I’m currently typing my request to the Powers that Be at Fenway that this track be played before all Wakefield starts for the balance of his career.

  3. I second what Red wrote. This should definitely be played at Fenway for Wake.

    What a fabulous job, Bill!

  4. Great lyric. Wake is my favorite Sox player. An anecdote for you.

    Once, a couple of years back, he and a few of his teammates went to visit some cancer-stricken children at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, the home of The Jimmy Fund. Now, all of them were nice guys to go and visit sick children. However, there was one child who was receiving treatment during their visit and who didn’t get to meet the Red Sox players. While his teammates all left after the appointed time, Wakefield stayed at the hospital for an additional 3 or 4 hours, until that one child came out of treatment.

    In a game that sometimes seems to be overpopulated by bratty little kids in adult bodies, Wake is a real MAN.

  5. Great job, dude. Love the vocals… I still can’t get over that voice of yours… you were such a shy kid back in high school! Who’d a thunk!!!

  6. I remember reading Tim Wakefield say that new sox GM Theo Epstien told him he would be in the rotation every 5 days. I felt all warm all over.

    Only 4 or 5 pitchers in the 90’s threw 4 straight seasons of 200 innings plus. Wake just missed the mark because of managing douchebaggery. Theo put an end to that.

    Wake is the best value in the MLB!

  7. Well you’ve got a new fan … I’m hooked. Timmeh is my favorite player on the Sox and has been for many, many years.

  8. As much as anyone can be a bargain at $4 million a year, Wakefield is. I’ll never forget that ’04 ALCS. Saved the rest of the staff in that ridiculous 19-8 game, and then turned right around and beat the Yankees in Game 5.

  9. Awesome song, Bill! What a Red Sox week so far. Here’s a poem my father, Gary Margolis, penned in response to Papi’s performance the night after Wakefield pitched his gem….

    Papi’s Closing Vote

    The President wants to bar
    the doors to Guantanomo,
    close it for good. Congress
    isn’t sure yet. Where would
    we store our terrorists,

    hide our season tickets?
    In the center field bleachers,
    in Fenway’s camera well?
    That’s been reserved, held
    for an Ortiz home run ball.

    It’s been torture you may
    not want to hear me say,
    seeing the big man swing
    and miss, hang his head
    on his way back to the dugout,
    his hitless cell. Until tonight.

    When his father, here from
    the Dominican, told him
    something secret, Have fun.
    Swing like you know how.

    And he swung and hit one,
    I want to say ,almost to Congress
    Street, where our Minutemen
    didn’t take any prisoners, where
    we won a close and closing vote.

  10. Wake was the MVP in 95′. Not Mo Vaughn.

    The greatest stretch of knuckleballing in the history of the game. Appointment televesion as he was taking no no’s in to the 5th, 6th, and 7th innings or later every start it seemed.

  11. i nominate “the ballad of tim wakefield” for the hall of fame soundtrack in cooperstown.i had heard that the band slide wrote a song about bill buckner that is at cooperstown.have you heard “the baseball project”?members of r.e.m./dream syndicate/soul asylum and others sing about all the nuts in baseball.check it out if you dig “t.b.o.t.w.”.

  12. This song is great! I love it. I love it so much, I'm going to marry it. I especially like the ending about "gimme nine players just like Timmy Wakefield." I just had this image of these nine players turning a double play and throwing knuckle balls 6-4-3. It made me laugh. Awesome. Thanks Bill.

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