It was not long ago that Daniel Bard was a dominant setup man for the Boston Red Sox and looked in line to become the future closer. Then the Red Sox decided to try him out as a starter, and everything went downhill from there.
After posting an ERA of 1.93 in 2010 and an ERA a little over three in 2011, it ballooned to 6.22 in 2012 and he managed to pitch only an inning in the big leagues in 2013 before being demoted down to double-A and eventually released. Bard decided to play winter ball in Puerto Rico to try and resurrect his career, a move that is failing miserably.
His performance in Puerto Rico has been one that would make Rick Ankiel cringe. He has faced 13 batters thus far, retiring a grand total of one batter. On Saturday, he walked the first two batters he faced before allowing them to advance on a wild pitch. He promptly issued another walk to load the bases, allowed a run to score on a wild pitch, threw another wild pitch, walked two more and was promptly removed — having walked all five batters he faced and allowing three runs.
Bard is the second former Red Sox prospect to see his career come to an end in less than grand fashion this season. Lars Anderson was released by the Chicago White Sox after a 12-month whirlwind that saw him traded and released multiple times.
Both Anderson and Bard will be looking for spring training invites this coming spring, but it unfortunately does not look promising for either. Red Sox fans are holding hope that the Sox’ newest top prospect, Xander Bogaerts, doesn’t suffer the same fate these two did.