Mike Carista, a former highly-regarded prospect in the Boston Red Sox organization,
announced he's attempting to make a comeback after a 25-year break from the game.
According to sources close to Buster Olney, the stout right-handed pitcher from Saugus, Massachusetts reportedly signed a free-agent deal with the Somerset Patriots of the
Can-Am independently league, which Carista confirmed in an exclusive interview
"I am ready," Carista said. "I finally figured out my arm slot again. Rich Gale, who was
my pitching coach in New Britain, screwed it up royally. I'm going to kill that S.O.B.
next time I see him. I went from throwing 92 to 85 and that was the beginning of my
Carista said that he not only regained his arm slot, but added 12 miles an hour to his fastball,
which he inadvertently discovered while trying to win a stuffed bear for his beautiful wife,
Kate, at the State Fair of North Carolina in December.
"My ball had some serious hair on it," he said. "I just had some pulled pork with picante
sauce along with a corn dog and I was throwing some serious heat. My wife was pissed
because I didn't come close to hitting the target and she didn't get her stuffed animal, but
I felt like Jim Baker at one of those evangelical things: I was re-born! I hit 97 on the
gun. Jeff Plympton, Ken Ryan, or Dave Owen never did that!
Carista said he got serious about a comeback in late December and started to hit the
weight room in addition to working the pits at tractor pulls throughout the state.
"You talk about a workout! Between hauling 150 pound tires and pulling those trucks
through the mud, I got real big, real fast," he said.
When asked if he used any PED's during his comeback, Carista admitted he worked
at a local GNC and may have unknowlingly taken them.
"Hey, I feel for David Ortiz," Carista said. "I can see how he could've taken supplements
that were laced with steroids. Did you ever read the ingredients on the back of those
bottles? Good, lord. It's ridiculous.
Carista went from 240 to 310 pounds in three months, increasing his bench press to a
North Carolina record 660 pounds and deadlifting 700.
"I was in Beast Mode long before Marshall Lynch came along," he added.
The former 3-time all-state pitcher and academic All-American said he also unknowingly
became a BFF with Whitey Bulger, the notorious mob leader from Boston who was on
the run for many years before being captured by the FBI in California.
|Carista with Whitey Bulger at Applebee's|
YMCA and I asked him to spot me when I was repping 575 pounds on the bench. We
became fast friends. He'd come over to read my scrap book and watch my videos from
spring training with the Red Sox. He was amazed when I told him that I struck out
Albert Belle, Jim Thome, and Sandy Alomar Jr. in a row when I pitched against them
when they played in Canton-Akron. Whitey said, 'Holy Shit, you made them swim
with the fishes.' "He was a funny guy."
Carista didn't realize he had been paling around with the FBI's 'Most Wanted Man
in America' until he went home to be inducted into the New Britain Red Sox Hall
of Fame several years ago.
"We don't have cable, the Internet, or satellite radio in North Carolina and the last paper
I read was the Boston Globe after I made the all-area team my senior year in high school.
I go to New Britain and I'm watching CNN and I see Whitey gets busted by the FBI.
I couldn't believe it. He was such a nice guy."
Carista has been working with his former manager in Greensboro, Dick Beradino, hoping
to recapture the magic that put him on the cusp of greatness in the Red Sox Organization.
|'Fletch' Carista with Dick Beradino before a work out.|
asked. "I had a better record and ERA and you can look it up. We are still great friends
and he's been helping me prepare for my comeback. He even let me see what notes he
took in-between innings during all his starts. Curt also sent me his bloody sock that
he used against the Yankees for my comeback. How cool is that?", Carista stated.
Carista will be playing on a Somerset team loaded with ex-MLB players like pitcher
Andrew Cardigan and former Red Sox great Rich "El Guapo" Garces. He's hoping
to impress scouts enough to get a major league contract by July 1st.
The signing of Carista has already paid dividends for Somerset. Tickets to "Mike
Carista Beard Night" sold out within minutes of going on sale. Any fan who has
a beard like Mike can bring a friend with a beard and get them in for free.
"This will be the mother of all comebacks and they might just make a reality show.
out of it. Stay tuned."