Reliever Brayan Villarreal didn't throw a strike for the Red Sox last season. In his only appearance with the team, he gave up a walkoff walk to Marco Scutaro for a 3-2 Giants win. But despite his forgettable appearance, Villarreal still received a World Series ring on Friday at Fenway Park.
It's quite amazing at how many players can be shuffled over the course of an MLB season. Every team demotes or calls up guys, but when that team wins a World Series, every player who had a roster spot at any point that season can be considered part of that championship roster, regardless of how helpful they actually were.
Even Villarreal, who was part of the three-team deal involving the Red Sox, Tigers, and White Sox. He threw four balls and held a 20.77 ERA from a rough April with Detroit, but he still counted. Villarreal didn't even record an out with Boston. It may be the least, stat-wise, a player has ever had to do for a ring.
Villarreal was designated for assignment in January, and he's currently pitching for the Pawtucket Red Sox, but he stays positive about his one, inauspicious outing. (Besides, he was there to clean up a bases-loaded mess caused by Junichi Tazawa and Franklin Morales.) From ESPN Boston:
"I remember it exactly," he said. "I got called up the day before I got to pitch, and I was excited to be with a new team. While it didn't go good, it didn't go as I wanted it to, but that's just how it is. I didn't get to pitch anymore, but I got the ring. They became champions, and I was happy for them."
"We were part of the team. I faced only one batter, but we shared with the team. We wore the uniform. We cheered for them, and we were right there. Anyone that is part of the team is allowed to get a ring."