And then there was One(ish)

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And then there was One(ish)

With the recent retirements of Jason Varitek and Tim Wakefield, there are technically only two players remaining from the legendary 2004 Red Sox: Kevin Youkilis and David Ortiz.

But as far as I'm concerned, there's really only one.

First of all, because it's far more fun and dramatic to look back and say: "Wooow, there's only ONE guy left from that team How did we get here?"

And second, because while Youkilis might have two rings, he was barely visible during that historic 2004 run. He had only two post season at-bats, and none after the ALDS. He was as much of a factor as Johnny Pesky.

Yes, he was on that team. But was he really part of it?

Do you have even one Kevin Youkilis memory from that 2004 season?

Actually, I do. And since I've spent the first part of this post blasting young Youk for no good reason. Let's give a quick tribute to the highlight of his rookie year

May 15, 2004: Kevin Youkilis makes his Major League debut, and blasts a fourth inning fastball (courtesy of Pat Hentgen) over the left field wall for his first career home run.

As the ball lands in the stands, Youk rounds the bases and jogs into the dugout, where he finds Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

No one will even look at him, never mind deliver a high five or trademark slap on the ass.

It was the old school silent treatment!

Eventually, Youk had no choice but to walk down and take a seat by himself on the end of the bench, as his teammates went about their business like nothing even happened.

A few seconds later, the team broke character, and offered up some love, but even if it was brief, the moment and the gesture were so memorable. It's something I'll always remember about Youk, no matter how old he gets or how many times he marries.

But I'll never remember him as a serious player on that 2004 team. And now, it's hard to believe that there's now only one guy left. It's weird, cool and depressing all at the same.

Honestly, how did we get here?

Rich can be reached at rlevine@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine

Lowry, Sullinger and Blount interrupt interview with DeRozan

Lowry, Sullinger and Blount interrupt interview with DeRozan

DeMar DeRozan didn't get a chance to answer one question in his postgame interview before being interrupted by Kyle Lowry, Jared Sullinger, and LeGarrette Blount.

Sullinger on Celtics: 'I watch from a distance, I support from a distance'

Sullinger on Celtics: 'I watch from a distance, I support from a distance'

BOSTON – The trip to the TD Garden is one that Jared Sullinger has made many times but never like this. 

The former Celtic was back in town with his new team, the Toronto Raptors who signed him to a one-year, $5.6 million deal after the Celtics rescinded their qualifying offer to him and thus made him an unrestricted free agent. 

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“I had a feeling it was going to go that way once they signed big Al (Horford), that they were going to let me go,” Sullinger said prior to Friday’s game.  “We were prepared for it. It is what it is. I’m happy these guys are doing well.”

And he hopes to say the same for himself sometime in the future after undergoing surgery to have a screw inserted in the fifth metatarsal of his left foot – the same foot he had season-ending surgery on during the 2014-2015 season with the Celtics. 

There’s no specific timetable as to when he’ll be back on the floor, and Sullinger is cool with that plan. 

“I don’t know. They’re hiding the protocol from me so I won’t rush; we’ll see,” said Sullinger who is still in a walking boot. 

The 6-foot-9 forward played well in the preseason and solidified himself as the team’s starting power forward. 

Now that he’s out with another injury, he’ll have to once again try and prove himself either later this season when he returns, or this summer when he becomes a free agent again.

For now, Sullinger is happy to be back in town, seeing lots of familiar faces, friends and ex-teammates that he says he still keeps in close contact with. 

“Some of these guys I considered like brothers to me,” Sullinger said. “IT (Isaiah Thomas), Jae Crowder to name a few. So I watch from a distance, I support from a distance. They’re playing well.”

In addition to his former teammates, the lines of communication remained open between him and Celtics head coach Brad Stevens as well. 

Stevens said the two exchanged text messages right before he had foot surgery, and afterwards. 

“Obviously, everyone here wishes a speedy recovery and hopefully he gets back on the court soon,” Stevens said. 

Sullinger has been an effective player during his time in the NBA, with career averages of 11.1 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. 

But this will be the third time in his five NBA seasons that he will miss a significant amount of time on the court due to an injury or recovering from an injury. 

Stevens acknowledged that he feels for Sullinger who once again has to go through rehabilitation in order to get back on the floor.

“I like Jared a lot,” Stevens said. “He’s a heck of a player, he’s a really smart guy. Got a lot of respect for him and it stinks that he’s got to go through that but he’ll come back strong I’m sure.”