The Bucs are soon to announce the signing of Sidd Finch, a 53 year old flame throwing righthander who retired in 1985 after a brief tryout with the Mets during Spring Training. Finch (presently a monk at a Buddhist Temple in Nepal) still has his fastball that was once clocked at 168 mph. Finch says "I'll need to get into pitching shape, which should only take a few days since only meditation is needed to control the flight of the ball. I plan to be report with the pitchers and catchers just to get the feel of baseball again." He plans to wear his trademark black glove and hiker's boot when pitching.
When asked why he was returning to playing baseball, Finch explained “It just felt like the time was right to return to more structured physical activities. I played the French horn for a few years before I returned to the monastery here in Tibet. I chose the Pirates because they not one with the cosmos at this time. I hope I can bring them back into harmony.”
Neil Huntington said "This just shows that we are looking everywhere for talent to upgrade this team. Sidd is the kind of signing that should prove to the fans that we are serious in bringing a championship to Pittsburgh. I also think his clubhouse presence will be a positive factor on the younger players. This rounds out upgrades we were planning for 2011." When asked if Finch’s age would be an issue, Huntington said “I don’t know why it would be.”
New manager Clint Hurdle could not be reached for a comment at this time. It is assumed that Finch will immediately become the No. 1, 2, and 3 starters and also the closer since Finch needs very little rest between starts. As for him playing in the field during his few days of rest, that is unknown right now. However during his days with the Mets, Finch expressed an interest in playing SS.
The terms of Finch 's contract have not been announced, however it does not seem to matter. Finch said he was donating his salary to the poor and would sleep in the dugout and eat leftovers from the concession stands (vegetables only of course).
Finch will be in Pittsburgh in late January for a physical and contract signing. No specific date for the event has yet been set.