Roger Clemens is currently not a Hall of Famer and he did not finish his career with the Red Sox. In the past, these two things would have kept him from being eligible to have his number retired by the Red Sox.
Times have changed though as the Red Sox have retired the numbers of both Johnny Pesky and Carlton Fisk, neither fit the strict requirements the Red Sox used to have for retired numbers. Pudge and Pesky were loved by Red Sox fans and never became Yankees. Roger's relationship with Red Sox fans is a little more complicated.
The fact remains that Clemens last pitched for the the Red Sox in 1996 and he is the last person to wear the #21 which is pretty strange. #26 was given out pretty quick after Wade Boggs left. #5 was seen again not to long after Nomar Garciaparra left. Then there was Jim Rice and #14, nobody wore that number after Rice retired and as soon as Big Jim was elected into the Hall of Fame the Red Sox retired it.
Nobody has worn #45 since Pedro Martinez left and it is safe to assume that as soon as Pedro enters the Hall of Fame it will be retired.
What about Roger? His Hall of Fame future is uncertain. Are the Red Sox waiting until he gets elected before they retire it? If that is the case, then why isn't Wade Boggs and the #26 retired?
Roger seems to making the rounds lately. He is on a Boston Red Sox goodwill tour showing up at the Pesky Tribute and then at the All Fenway Team Tribute. He was having dinner with John Henry the other night and talking shop with Pedro and Jason Varitek.
My feelings when it comes to Roger are complicated. He was my hero growing up. Jim Rice was my first favorite player and then came Roger Clemens. He could do no wrong. I hated Will McDonough and I hated Dan Duquette because of my worship of Roger. I came to my senses and blogged about it. My feelings for Roger turned 180 degrees into hate mode. I blogged about my hate of Roger and his lying ways.
He is now saying all the right things. He is embracing the Red Sox organization again. The 12 year old in me is quietly cheering. Is it time to forgive him? Is it time to retire #21? Vote in our poll to the left