Wakefield named Sox special instructor

Longtime Boston Red Sox knuckleballer Tim Wakefield officially rejoined the club on Friday, named as a special assignment instructor and honorary chairman of the Red Sox Foundation.

The 46-year-old Wakefield, who spent 17 of his 19 major league seasons with the Red Sox, announced his retirement in February 2012. He will join former teammates Jason Varitek and Pedro Martinez on general manager Ben Cherington’s baseball operations staff. In that capacity, Wakefield will handle specific instructional assignments. He was in Fort Myers this spring working with young knuckleballer Steven Wright.

As honorary chairman of the team’s charitable foundation, Wakefield will contribute in fundraising efforts, community service and personal visits. Among the most devoted Red Sox players to charitable endeavors, Wakefield in 2010 won Major League Baseball’s Roberto Clemente Award, given each year to the player who "best exemplifies the game of baseball, sportsmanship, community involvement and the individual’s contributions to his team.”

Wakefield ranks third all-time with 186 victories in a Red Sox uniform, trailing only Cy Young and Roger Clemens. His 430 starts and 3,006 innings are both team records.