The most up-to-date content on the planet
this just in
 RSS
WEEI » This Just In » Fired Sox coach Page: 4 players fell off track
Fri, 11/04/2011 - 12:43pm  

Fired Sox coach Page: 4 players fell off track

Dave Page, who was fired as Red Sox strength and conditioning coach this week, joined the Mut & Merloni show Friday and talked about issues with players failing to adhere to the physical conditioning program leading up to the team's September collapse.

Page said the starting pitchers -- the most publicly criticized members of the team this offseason -- did not stand out as a group that was not following the program. "I think for a lot of reasons that he team in general, we were just, from a physical, fundamental and mental preparation, we just didn't have it every night," Page said.

Page did not name names, but he did reference four players as standing out for their failure to adhere to the conditioning program.

"We got to the end of the year where we had four guys -- without naming names -- we had four guys that we thought didn't make it to that part of the season where we hoped they would be: one position player -- an everyday guy -- one pitcher -- a starting pitcher -- and two bullpen guys," Page said. "For the most part, everybody else had stayed within where we wanted them to be. They were what we expected. Most of them were working."

One such player acknowledged his mistake in a candid discussion during the team's final series in Baltimore.

"I did have a good conversation with one player at the end of the year in Baltimore that really kind of opened my eyes," Page said. "I said, 'Hey, what's going on here? It seemed like you pulled the plug a little bit. Why?' He kind of looked down at the ground, looked back and me and said, 'I don't know why. I can't answer that question.' Which was kind of a shock."

Page said he's received messages of support from "probably 90 percent of our roster" and others in Major League Baseball, including one text from a guilt-ridden Sox player.

Said Page: "I got a text message from one player the other night that said he felt that way. He texted me and said, 'I feel this is all my fault.' I don't want to say who it was, because that's between him and me. But he did say that."

Page pointed to a specific game against the Yankees in late August as an example of the Red Sox' lack of effort.

"The bottom line is we weren't ready to play, physically, fundamentally or mentally the way we should have been, like a championship team should have been," he said. "The one thing that kind of highlights some things is when Curt Young, his dad died, they put Gary Tuck on the bench to be the pitching coach for a few days. So, they asked me to go to the bullpen. So, I'm out there and I get a chance to watch the whole game.

"In the first six innings of a couple of games -- and this was a Yankee game I was out there -- the first six innings, we hit 18 balls in play. [Of the] 18 outs that we made, seven times the guy who hit the ball never made it to first base -- peeled off before he got to the bag. I said something to the other coaches. I said, 'We're just not playing hard.' That trickles down a lot of places. It can manifest itself in a lot of different ways. It really kind of opened my eyes to maybe what was going to lie ahead in the next six weeks."

Following are more highlights from the conversation.

On learning from the team that he was being fired: "I was very surprised. It was a tough thing to hear. It kind of shocked me, the fact they waited this long. I know they had some bigger fish to fry, with the whole Theo [Epstein] situation, Tito [Francona] and all that stuff. But that fact that they waited 33, 34 days from the end of the season to do it, it led me to believe that things weren't going to change, and it really kind of limited my opportunities to move on with another team. It was very surprising."

On if this year was more challenging than his previous five seasons in Boston: "At times it was. I wouldn't think any more than it had been in the past at times. I was there six years. We didn't have a whole lot of roster turnover. Every few years you see new guys you get to plug in. But it's the same guys every year. I knew them and they knew me. They go through things on and off the field that I might not know about that may have limited them. But for the most part, I didn't really see anything."

On Josh Beckett: "Josh has always worked hard for me. He really has. He's been probably one of the guys that we wanted guys in the past to emulate, see young guys coming up saying this is the guy that you need to follow, everything he does. He did express some concerns himself. In fact, he brought it up to me and other members of our training staff, that he felt he was getting a little sideways, so to speak, on his weight. I don't think it was something that wasn't just noticed by outsiders. I think he felt the same way."

On the pitchers eating chicken and drinking beer in the clubhouse: "I think that whole chicken and beer thing has gotten a lot of unnecessary play, to be honest with you. I really didn't see chicken in the clubhouse all that often. I'm in and out of there a lot. … I rarely saw the chicken. The beer, if they're drinking beer, it's probably upstairs. And I wasn't up there. … In my opinion, it wasn't as rampant as it's gotten made out to be."

On if he got proper backing from the coaches and front office: "I would say it's been a lot better in the past."

For a transcript of the interview, check the Full Count blog later in the afternoon. To hear the interview, go to the Mut & Merloni audio on demand page. For more Red Sox news, visit the team page at weei.com/redsox.




Audio On Demand

Dale and Holley: Peter Ki…

Dale and Holley: Peter King Patriots Playoff seedings

Peter King of Sports Illustrated joins the show to talk about the Patriots clinching homefield advantage and who the AFC is contenders.

It Is What It Is Cast: Patriots still want to finish strong

WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Chris Price discuss the Patriots' approach for Sunday's game against Buffalo, a game rendered essentially meaningless now that the Patriots have clinched the No. 1 seed.

Bruschi on Dale and Holley Show 12-22-14

Bruschi joins the conversation on the Patriots win over the Jets and other games over the weekend.

Jackie MacMullen, ESPN Bo…

Jackie MacMullen, ESPN Boston, talks about the Rondo trade 12-19-14

Jackie MacMullen, ESPN Boston, talks with MFB about Rondo being traded to the Dallas Mavericks, and how this will have an effect on the Celtics rebuild process

We Hate Dwayne Wade - Marcus Smart injury 11-12-14

How have the Celtics looked after a couple weeks? Could they be a playoff team? These questions and more...

WHDW - Greg Dickerson Joins the Show to talk Celtics

Sam and Ben talk with Greg Dickerson about how fun this year's Celtics team is to watch as well Jeff Green trade ideas.

Jon Lester says he would …

Jon Lester says he would probably have signed with the Red Sox for 5 years and $120M last spring training

Mut, Rob, and Alex talk with former Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester. Jon talks about his experiences with free agency, what it would have taken to sign him to the Red Sox last season, and his experiences with fans since signing with the Cubs.

Wade Miley talks gluten, swamp people, and coming to the A.L. East

Mut, Rob, and Alex talk with newly signed Red Sox pitcher, Wade Miley. They talk about the story that came out about the D-Backs wanting him to switch to a gluten-free diet, and what he expects coming from the N.L. West to the A.L. East.

Hot Stove Show 12-18-14

The boys are back at it, Mut, Rob, and Alex talk with former Red Sox pitcher and new Chicago Cub Jon Lester, they then talk with new Red Sox pitcher and ongoing consumer of gluten, Wade Miley.

Pierre McGuire: TJ Oshie …

Pierre McGuire: TJ Oshie would be a great player on the Bruins 12-18-14

Pierre joins the show to talk about the Bruins-Wild game, Bruins trade rumors, and the rest of the NHL.

Jack Edwards with Dale and Holley

Jack Edwards talks with Dale, Michael and Jerry Thornton and drops the bomb on us that based on how the standings look now, the Bruins could miss the playoffs this season.

Pierre Mcguire: Chara's return will have huge impact for Bruins 12-11-14

Pierre joins the guys to talk about the Bruins and all things NHL

Butch and Buck in for D&C…

Butch and Buck in for D&C&M, 12-24-14

Just like on a Sunday morning in the summer, Butch Stearns and Steve Buckley hit the airwaves to talk about the Bruins win last night, and Patriots possibly resting starters against Buffalo this Sunday.

Nancy Frates on an incredible year for her family 12-23-14

Nancy Frates called in to discuss her son Pete and her granddaughter Lucy.

Tom Brady on Rex Ryan 12-22-14

Tom joined the show to discuss the close win over the Jets and Rex Ryan's comments.

"The Price is Right" with…

"The Price is Right" with Chris Price, 12-24-14

A Christmas eve edition of "The Price is Right," Chris Price of WEEI.com makes some predictions for the Patriots Sunday afternoon tilt against the visiting Buffalo Bills.

Andy Brickley, NESN, talks about the "surging" Bruins, 12-24-14

Andy Brickley joined the show to talk about the Bruins, who are in the midst of a 3-game winning streak. The team clearly has deficiencies and may need to make a few moves before the deadline.

Three For All - Bradford loves bathrooms, 12-24-14

Bradford asks everyone who will listen, "Who's the most famous person to use your bathroom?"

Jack Edwards breaks down …

Jack Edwards breaks down the struggling Bruins 12-24-14

Bruins Play-by-Play announcer breaks down the Bruins season so far.

4at4 - Boston Sports Naught or Nice 12-24-14

For each of the 4 major sports teams, we give our naughty and nice lists.

Baby It's Cold Outside by Jerry Thornton and DJ Bean 12-24-14

Jerry and DJ are out to prove that this Christmas classic is one of the creepiest songs of all-time

Kay the Textress comes in

Kay the Textress comes in

Kay comes into the show to try out for the textress role on the program. We learn about her favorite sports and fondness for Rajon Rondo.

Cold, Hard Football Talk

Mikey, Mut, Lenny and Kerry Byrne are taling Patriots-Jets and the potential end of Rex Ryan's coaching career with the team.

Mikey's 9th Anniversary Show

Tonight marks 9 straight years of the Planet Mikey Show. We play some sound from the takeover which got Planet Mikey rolling .

Pod Man Rush: Christmas E…

Pod Man Rush: Christmas Edition

DJ and Scott reveal the greatest Christmas song of all time: Fleetwood Mac's "Silver Springs." They also discuss the Christmas outrage of Fleetwood Mac's "Silver Springs" being left off Rumours.

College Puckcast – World Juniors Preview with Chris Peters

Scott McLaughlin of WEEI and Chris Peters of CBS’ Eye on Hockey preview this year’s World Junior Championship and break down Team USA’s strengths and weaknesses. The U.S. opens the tournament against Finland on Friday.

We Love Anthony Davis - Rondo Trade/Celtics Superlatives

Sam and Ben react to the Rondo trade and talk about the top 5 players in the NBA. The Celtics get their 2014 superlatives.

Bruschi on Dale and Holle…

Bruschi on Dale and Holley Show 12-22-14

Bruschi joins the conversation on the Patriots win over the Jets and other games over the weekend.

More from this show

Tom Brady on Rex Ryan 12-…

Tom Brady on Rex Ryan 12-22-14

Tom joined the show to discuss the close win over the Jets and Rex Ryan's comments.

More from this show

Broncos lose. The road to…

Broncos lose. The road to the Super Bowl goes through Gillette, 12-23-14

With Denver's loss to Cincy last night, the Patriots are guaranteed the number 1 seed. Peyton Manning threw 4 picks and looks awful. With the Buffalo game now inconsequential, does that mean Bill will rest guys like Brady, Gronk and Revis?

More from this show

Belichick on Dale and Hol…

Belichick on Dale and Holley 12-22-14

Belichick gives insight on the Patriots victory over the Jets and starts preparing for the Bills.

More from this show

D&C's Breaking Balls: It'…

D&C's Breaking Balls: It's time to catch up with Meter 12-22-14

Gerry and Kirk welcome Meter to the podcast. They discuss what Meter is up to now and what TV shows they're currently watching.

More from this show

Weei Writers