I almost feel like it's been too long since the season to write this review. Like there was something extra about Padilla that fit him into the mold of unlikable and mediocre that seemed to define the Red Sox in 2012.
But, no, for all that many came into the season disliking Padilla for his reputation, and all that he was not terribly good at baseball during the season, Padilla was just run-of-the-mill, humdrum bad, unexceptional in every way.
There were few controversies. Aside from the whole thing about Mark Teixeira and "womens' sports" as far as we can tell Padilla had no place in making Boston's clubhouse the three-ring circus it was. He only hit three people, incited no brawls, created few waves. For a while there, he was even decent, running his ERA all the way down to 3.50 in late July.
Of course, it had to be brought down in the first place because Padilla had hit rock bottom when he came into an April 21st game against the Yankees with a 9-1 lead and started them on their way to a dramatic comeback by giving up five runs and recording just the one out. It's a loss that, even after this awful season, shines through as the worst, and will not soon be forgotten.
And after that point in July, Padilla faded besides. With playing time growing limited as the Sox surrendered the season and sought to mix in players who might actually have a future on the team in 2013, Padilla found himself relegated to mostly unimportant innings, and his few implosions were all the harder to offset as a result. By the end of the season, it was clear that there was no place or need for Padilla in 2013, especially with the Sox looking to bring in as many new faces as possible.