CHICAGO -- Of the 1,477 games that Jason Varitek has played in the Major Leagues, all of them have been with the Boston Red Sox. But he acknowledges that the memorable ride could be within days of ending.
The 38-year-old Varitek has made it clear that he will play next season and perhaps beyond, but he knows there's a very real chance the Red Sox won't deem him a fit.
"It's there," said Varitek. "It's obvious. You try not to think about it, and I hope you guys don't ask me too much about it over the weekend, but it's there -- it definitely is."
The Red Sox have Jarrod Saltalamacchia coming back, and it remains to be seen what happens with Victor Martinez, who is a free agent.
Varitek's career with the Red Sox has included eight postseason appearances over 13 seasons, including the franchise's first two World Series championships since 1918. This is one of those rare campaigns what will end with Varitek and his team serving as spectators throughout October. Boston was officially eliminated on Tuesday night.
"I'll just try and focus on what I've got to do," said Varitek. "It's been a long time [in Boston]."
Varitek has served as Boston's team captain since 2005.
He was the starting catcher for the Red Sox from 1999 until July 31, 2009, when Martinez was acquired from the Indians. Varitek has transitioned well to the backup role, and thinks it could prolong his career.