The most up-to-date content on the planet
this just in
 RSS
WEEI » This Just In » Salty: Red Sox haven't discussed playing first
Tue, 01/22/2013 - 1:38pm  

Salty: Red Sox haven't discussed playing first

The Red Sox have a need for a left-handed complement to Mike Napoli at first base. They also are heading into spring training with three catchers – Jarrod Saltalmacchia, David Ross and Ryan Lavarnway – who are all at points in their career which would suggest they would each be earning spots on the major league roster.

So, where does that leave the starter of a season ago, Saltalmacchia?

He is heading into what would be perceived as the prime of his career at 27-years-old, and will become eligible for free agency following the upcoming season. Saltalamacchia is also fresh off showing the kind of power (25 homers) most teams drool over when trying to lock in backstops.

According to Saltalmacchia, little has changed.

At no point this offseason has he been asked to break out a first baseman’s glove for spring training. “I haven’t had any conversations about first base,” he said by phone from his Florida home.

Catching, he reiterates, is still his thing.

“When I catch, that’s when I play my best,” said Saltalamacchia, who started a career-high 95 games at catcher in ’12.“I’ve learned that about myself. I’m a better player when I catch, and catch on a regular basis. I think that’s something a lot of people learned last year.”

Saltalmacchia did hit all but two of his home runs while catching, finishing with an OPS .143 higher (.755-.612) catching than his 47 plate appearances as a designated hitter. It was DH he spent quite a bit more time at in the final month or so, with Lavarnway getting to 15 September starts at backstop, compared to Saltalmacchia’s 11.

The discussions he has had with Red Sox manager John Farrell over the past few months, in fact, have done nothing to dissuade the switch-hitter from believing Saltalmacchia won’t get further opportunities to prove his theory regarding production in relation to playing time.

“I’ve had a few conversations with Farrell and every conversation is great,” Saltalmacchia said. “He told me, ‘Listen, we signed Ross to complement you. You’re going to get right-handed at-bats.’ Stuff like that. I’ve been happy with it. I’m just looking going into spring training having already gone through the mental grind of the game, so it’s just best to go out there and let your play show for itself. You can’t control what the manager does. We have to go out there, and if the manager says, ‘You’re going to play one day this week and get two at-bats,’ that one day and those two at-bats have to be the best they possibly can be. I just have to be prepared at the max level.”

Although Lavarnway could very well enter the playing time equation, he does still hold an option, allowing the Red Sox the flexibility of returning the righy hitter to the minor leagues to start the season.

The challenge in identifying plate appearances for last season’s starter comes primarily when looking at Ross’ success – and Saltalamacchia’s struggles — against left-handed pitching.

The dynamic may not be all that different than when the right-handed hitting Kelly Shoppach resided on the roster. Although there was some grumbling from Shoppach regarding playing time, the situation seemed to fit Saltalamacchia, who just missed out on making the American League All-Star team after having totaled an .807 with 17 homers in the first half.

But while Saltalamacchia would catch 472 2/3 innings in the season’s first three months, he served as the Sox’ backstop for just 353 2/3 frames in the final three. Despite the role change (which was pushed along by a combination of David Ortiz’ injury and the team’s desire to see more of Lavarnway), Saltlamacchia felt like the ’12 experience was still a big step in the right direction.

“A lot of times I forget where I was at two or three years ago, and a lot of people forget that, as well,” he said. “Just physically and mentally, what your body goes through, nobody understands your body is really, really tired and you have to depend on skill. But I always felt differently with myself where I felt as the year goes on I get better and better and my body gets used to it. Last year splitting time and really DHing in the last couple months of the season, it was tough. I had to learn on the go again.”




Audio On Demand

Daniel Jeremiah, NFL Netw…

Daniel Jeremiah, NFL Network and NFL.com, joins NFL Sunday to give his take on the upcoming NFL Draft, 4-26-15

Daniel Jeremiah calls NFL Sunday to preview the NFL Draft and discuss what the New England Patriots will be looking to do starting Thursday night.

NFL Sunday, the offseason edition, with Greg Dickerson and Chris Price - Hour #2, 4-26-15

In hour 2 of NFL Sunday, we get more draft talk from Price and Dickerson. They discuss if the Pats will trade up or down at all or what they can get by staying put. Also, what does the RB position look like for New England? We hear from Daniel Jeremiah from the NFL Network and NFL.com and get his thoughts on the NFL draft and what the Patriots will do. Finally, the boys talk about the Greg Hardy situation in Dallas.

NFL Sunday, the offseason edition, with Greg Dickerson and Chris Price - Hour # 1, 4-26-15

It's finally the week of the NFL Draft and the guys are psyched. They kick off the show discussing the release of the NFL schedule and how they expect the Pats to do against a relatively easy road for the Super Bowl champs. Greg and Chris talk about any difficult match-ups and if any teams in the AFC East can contend with the Patriots. Then the boys move on to the Draft and where the Pats may go. WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia joins the program to discuss his thoughts on the upcoming draft, the Pats needs and his ideas on why the Patriots may in fact trade up this season.

Dickerson and Tomase disc…

Dickerson and Tomase discuss the Celtics and their upcoming playoff series against the Cavs 4-19-15

Greg Dickerson and John Tomase discuss the amazing season for the Celts and if they have any chance against Lebron and the Cleveland Cavs in a seven game series. If they do, HOW ... how do they get it done?

Brian Scalabrine: I am the biggest Marcus Smart fan. 4-2-15

Brian "White Mamba" Scalabrine joins the guys to talk about the Celtics playoff push, the development of Marcus Smart and James Young, and the prospect of Brad Stevens leaving the Celtics for a college job.

We Love Anthony Davis - Celtics Playoff Push, 3-25-15

Brow Buff's Sam Packard and Ben Kichen break down Marcus Smart's unfortunate ball tap, debate leadership in the Celtics locker room, and rehash the great Kevin Love to Boston rumors.

Brock Holt on the Player …

Brock Holt on the Player of the Game Show

Joe and Dave talk with Red Sox super utility man Brock Holt, who hit the game winning 3 run home run that propelled the Red Sox over the Baltimore Orioles, and played some stellar defense to seal the win.

Sean Casey joins MFB 4-23-15

Continued Red Sox talk on benching Victorino and the Red Sox pitching issues..and Sean's love for the band Poison.

Red Sox Manager John Farrell with Dale and Holley

Dale and Michael check in with the Red Sox manager John Farrell for his weekly take on all things Boston Red Sox.

Fluto Shinzawa, NHL repor…

Fluto Shinzawa, NHL reporter for the Boston Globe, joins the Sunday Skate crew to discuss the future of the Bruins franchise 4-19-15

The awesomely knowledgeable Fluto Shinzawa calls DJ, Naoko and Pete to talk about his thoughts on the future of the B's. He discusses his column from earlier this week on Cam Neely wanting to give Claude the ax earlier in the season but not getting the ok. Fluto shares his thoughts on Chiarelli's firing, the future for Claude and where the Bruins should go from here. He also gives his opinion on potential moves the team can make, who would fit in here, his thoughts on the NHL playoffs so far and more.

Sunday Skate with DJ Bean, Naoko Funayama and Pete Blackburn - HOUR #2 - 4-19-15

In the final hour of the "midseason finale" as DJ likes to call it, the crew discuss more about the future of the Bruins franchise, the possible power struggle in the front office and who should be the head coach going forward. They talk to intelligent and talented Fluto Shinzawa about all of these thing and more in an excellent interview, and finally, DJ says THANK YOU!

Sunday Skate with DJ Bean, Naoko Funayama and Pete Blackburn - HOUR #1 - 4-19-15

DJ, Naoko and Pete get into the huge week for the Bruins that saw the franchise move on from GM Peter Chiarelli. They discuss why that was done and if they agree. What does this mean for Claude? They talk about Claude and if he can exist here. If not, who would work in Boston? They also get into the NHL Draft Lottery last night and talk to ESPN Boston's Joey "National" McDonald live from Tampa, Florida.

Stephen A. Smith on Tom B…

Stephen A. Smith on Tom Brady and Floyd Mayweather 4-27-15

Stephen A. expressed his thoughts on Tom Brady's White House snub and Floyd Mayweather's past.

Headlines, Headlines, Headlines: Obama jokes 4-27-15

The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.

Kevin Love is not coming to Boston 4-27-15

The guys discussed Kevin Love and the Celtics.

Jackie Mac, ESPN Boston, …

Jackie Mac, ESPN Boston, talks about the Celtics loss to the Cavs, 4-27-15

The Celtics, unsurprisingly, were swept by the Cavs and Jackie helped the guys recap the season, and the crazy final game which saw some hard fouls as well as an ejection of JR Smith.

Three For All - The Bruce Jenner Interview, 4-27-15

The guys dissect Bruce Jenner's interview with Diane Sawyer on Friday night.

Is this Red Sox rotation worse than we thought? 4-27-15

The Red Sox rotation has the worst ERA in the league. No one thought this team had a true Ace, but did we think it was going to be this bad?

Discussing the Patriots 2…

Discussing the Patriots 2015 Draft with ESPN's Todd McShay

Michael, Jerry and Dale speak with draft guru Todd McShay of ESPN for some insight on what the Patriots might do in the upcoming draft.

Getting inside Rajon Rondo's head with ESPN's Baxter Holmes

We talk to Baxter Holmes of ESPN.com and discuss his column on Rajon Rondo from ESPN and ESPN the Magazine.

Nearing 100 days since deflategate... still no word on a decision

Dale and Michael discuss some news on deflategate as the 100 day mark approaches us.

The Mikey Adams Show 4-20…

The Mikey Adams Show 4-20 Edition with Lenny Megs & Erin the Textress on Patriots Day

Mikey, Lenny, and Erin talk about the Sox 7-1 win over the Baltimore Orioles on Patriots Day and the Sox hold on first place in the AL East. Also, the Celtics trail the Cavs 1 Game to 0 in their 1st Round series and the 2015 Boston Marathon is in the books.

The Planet Mikey Show Monday 4-13 Sox Home Opener and Season Ender

Mikey Adams, joined by Lenny Megliola and Chris Villani, talks about the Red Sox home opening win at Fenway and the Bruins fallout after missing the playoffs including the future of Peter Chiarelli and Claude Julien.

Chris Price joins Mike Mutnansky

Chris Price joins Mut to talk about how Revis will heat up the Jets-Pats rivalry next season

D&C's Breaking Balls: Que…

D&C's Breaking Balls: Question of the day: Are you a lesbian? 4-27-15

Gerry, Kirk and Glenn discuss Bruce Jenner's interview with Diane Sawyer and Chris Gasper's latest column.

Fantasy Football Podcast NFL Draft Edition 1

Football fans and Fantasy Footballers know that there is NO Offseason in the NFL, so Jim and Pete are back with the first of a series of Fantasy Football Podcasts of the “NFL Draft variety.” Tune in and you’ll get an in depth analysis on Pete’s most first batch of scouting reports on this year’s crop of Rookie Targets. Jim and Pete kick it off with a lot of focus on a Runningback rich draft class, some of the top Wide Receiver talent and touch on the top Quarterbacks, Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota. Enjoy!

Wrestlecast 4/21

Uncle Buck joins Chris on the show again to talk about Raw from 4/20, finishing maneuvers and gives a few classic match picks.

Stephen A. Smith on Tom B…

Stephen A. Smith on Tom Brady and Floyd Mayweather 4-27-15

Stephen A. expressed his thoughts on Tom Brady's White House snub and Floyd Mayweather's past.

More from this show

Bruce Jenner comes out as…

Nearing 100 days since de…

Nearing 100 days since deflategate... still no word on a decision

Dale and Michael discuss some news on deflategate as the 100 day mark approaches us.

More from this show

Discussing the Patriots 2…

Discussing the Patriots 2015 Draft with ESPN's Todd McShay

Michael, Jerry and Dale speak with draft guru Todd McShay of ESPN for some insight on what the Patriots might do in the upcoming draft.

More from this show

Kevin Love is not coming …

Kevin Love is not coming to Boston 4-27-15

The guys discussed Kevin Love and the Celtics.

More from this show

Weei Writers