FORT MYERS, Fla. – So, what to make of Daniel Bard’s first appearance of the spring – a one-inning outing against Northeastern at JetBlue Park Thursday afternoon, in which he struck out the side.
Catcher David Ross: “Bardo struggled early on and then found it. He actually made adjustment midway through the inning and looked sharp. But early on it was just trying to get his body under control. Even though we’re going up against college kids, there’s still some adrenaline. I had some nerves and adrenaline today.
“I caught him in two bullpens. I think he’s working on some things mechanically. What’s promising is that when he got out of whack with his fastball he flipped that breaking ball out there, which is a good sign to me as a catcher. He has a very good slider, and a very good changeup.”
Manager John Farrell: “He went from a guy who was ultra-aggressive and ultra-confident to one who, with the change in role came a change in mindset. We’re getting back to that shorter stint and aggressive mentality. That’s something he set out to establish or regain and prove. Today was the first step in that process.
“In conversation and in side work, in BP, yeah, I don’t think it’s going to happen over night. The one thing we want to do is establish the aggressiveness first, and if we have to make some adjustments to gain more consistent command, that might be the case. The first step is more from the mentality side of things.
“At times, he leveraged it downhill, his delivery was on time. There were other times you could see him come off the pitch where he’d run it up and in to a right-hander. That’s not totally unexpected.”
Bard: “I’m satisfied. Not perfect obviously, but it’s a huge step in the right direction. It’s always good to get out of the gate with some good results. The focus today was just being in the zone as much as possible. I threw two pitches for strikes. Just go from there. …
“It was exciting. The live BP, I don’t think I got any swings. I was happy with how I threw the ball but they were just tracking pitches. This was the first real adrenaline rush. It’s a lot of fun.”
The pitcher would finish his 18-pitch outing throwing 13 strikes, while only allowing a leadoff single to the Huskies’ Connor Lyons.
As mentioned by Ross, the reliever struggled with fastball command early on before straightening himself out, thanks in part to the use of an effective slider.
“I think sometimes some pitchers to slow them down you call breaking balls. I think that’s the process that you use,” Ross explained. “I thought early on he was just leaving fastball arm-side, and it was running up and in. He settled down a little later, getting the ball back down and away, which is what I want. When righties can throw the ball glove-side down and away that is a key for us as a safety valve to go to, especially with him being as good as he is.”
“He doesn’t overthrow his secondary stuff as he might with his fastball, and that’s just the counter-adjustment from pitch to pitch,” Farrell said. “That’s probably the most encouraging thing. He didn’t get into a three or four pitch sequence where he was missing to the arm side. There was the ability to make the adjustment in one or two pitches.”
All in all, Bard came away from the exercise feeling he had taken a much-welcome step in the right direction.
“The last time I really came into camp with something to prove was my first big league spring training in ’09,” said Bard, whose next outing will be Monday in Port Charlotte against the Rays. “I was not supposed to make the team by any means, but I had a lot of people I was supposed to impress in my mind. I was able to come out and do that, and win a spot about a month later in the bullpen. It’s not that much different this year, besides the fact that everyone knows my name and knows who I am. But I feel like I have something to prove.”
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.
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.
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.
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 "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.
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.
Joe and Lou Merloni talk with the hero of the night, Mookie Betts after the Red Sox come back to beat the Toronto Blue Jays in walk-off fashion in the first game of the series
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.
Continued Red Sox talk on benching Victorino and the Red Sox pitching issues..and Sean's love for the band Poison.
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.
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!
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. expressed his thoughts on Tom Brady's White House snub and Floyd Mayweather's past.
The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane.
The guys discussed Kevin Love and the Celtics.
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.
The guys dissect Bruce Jenner's interview with Diane Sawyer on Friday night.
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?
Dale, Michael and Jerry discuss the struggling Red Sox, in particular the tattered shape of their starting and relief pitching.
Dale and Michael discuss the sweeping nature of the exit of the Celtics, and whether or not Kelly Olynyk made a dirty play when he injured Kevin Love's shoulder early in the final game.
We look into four injuries in pro and Boston sports where a debate erupted about whether or not there was an intent to injure on the play.
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.
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 Mut to talk about how Revis will heat up the Jets-Pats rivalry next season
Gerry, Kirk and Glenn discuss Bruce Jenner's interview with Diane Sawyer and Chris Gasper's latest column.
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!
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. expressed his thoughts on Tom Brady's White House snub and Floyd Mayweather's past.More from this show
Gerry, Kirk and Glenn discuss Bruce Jenner's interview with Diane Sawyer and Chris Gasper's latest column.More from this show
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.More from this show