Ellis Burks on NESN job: 'I've been waiting for an opportunity like this'


Ellis Burks now has a third life in Boston.

The first came when he played with the Red Sox from 1987-1992. Then the outfielder returned for his final season in the big leagues, earning a world championship ring with the Sox in 2004. And now comes the latest experience involving the Red Sox.

The 56-year-old Burks will be participating in the pregame and postgame show for Red Sox broadcasts on NESN, along with some work during select games.

"It's an honor for me to be back in the organizaTion in any capacity," Burks said when appearing on the Live BP Baseball Show Saturday. "I've been waiting for an opportunity like this for quite some time, and it finally came. I'm very excited about it.

"I'm very excited for the opportunity. I've never done anything like that before as far as the pre- and post-game, or analyzing the games. It should be a good challenge for me. I've always had a great expectations of myself, so off the field it should be the same as far as talking about the game, viewing the game and expressing my views to the fans."

Burks would end up playing 18 years in the major leagues, playing in exactly 2,000 games. For his career he hit .291 with 352 home runs and an .874 OPS, with some of his most memorable seasons coming with the Red Sox.

"When I first arrived in Boston it was just one of those things where I was so determined to be part of the organization, part of the team," Burks said. "Jim Rice and Dwight Evans and all those guys accepted me into the fold. It was just an amazing accomplishment just to make the team and be a part of it and to be successful. I spent my first six years in Boston. It was great. Injury-prone-type career there, but when I was healthy I had fun. It was just fun to be out there. And of course coming back in 2004 the excitement came back into my life as far as getting back there with an opportunity to win. They got Curt Schilling. Pedro (Martinez) was there. They had the front and the back-end of the rotation. And with the characters we had on the team it was just amazing. I knew it was going to be a very special year and it was. I decided to end my career after that season was over."

Regarding that 2004 team, which a then-39-year-old Burks only played in 11 game with, he recalled how special it felt from the get-go.

To listen to the entire Burks interview, click here.