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Sunday, October 3, 2010
Cashing in?

By Joe McDonald

BOSTON -- Jason Varitek may not be the only Red Sox catcher spending his last game in Boston, and possibly of his career.

Backup receiver, and stopgap, Kevin Cash will turn 33 in December and it’s possible he’ll hang up the mitt and spikes this winter.

If he decides to keep playing, Cash realizes the chances of that happening in Boston are slim.

There are a lot of questions regarding the Red Sox's catching situation, and it remains to be seen whether they'll be able to re-sign Victor Martinez, whether Varitek returns and whether Jarrod Saltalamacchia can develop into a dependable option.

But any way you look at it, Cash seems to be the odd man out.

“I’m low man on the totem pole, so we’ll wait and see,” Cash said.

At this point, Cash is considering a career in baseball after his playing days are over. He’s planning on having that conversation with his family during the offseason.

“I really don’t know where I’m at right now,” he said. “I’ve got a lot of different thoughts running through my head.”

Red Sox manager Terry Francona has always spoken highly of Cash and his knowledge of the game. Cash was asked if he would accept a position with Red Sox if it were offered to him, and his answer was clear and simple.

“Without a doubt. Definitely,” he said. “As much as Tito and I kid around, we have a good relationship because, in a way, we were similar players.”

When the Red Sox acquired Cash from the Houston Astros on July 1, both Martinez and Varitek were on the disabled list.

“Cash’s personality may be misunderstood in the media, or the outside world with fans, but what he brings in that clubhouse, the energy, he can go into that clubhouse and stand up to anybody,” said Francona. “At a time when we were desperate for catching, he came in and that was right what we needed.”

This is Cash’s second stint with the Red Sox. He was a member of the 2007 World Series team, and he knew a return to Boston would be good for his present and future career in baseball.

“The situation I came into over here was awesome because I knew I was coming in here to play,” he said. “I didn’t play the way I wanted to, but I was coming in to try to keep the team in contention. We’ll see. I really don’t know. I’ll be talking to Tito quite a bit this season because any advice he has I’m going to listen to.”