The Red Sox are conducting a workout on Tuesday, the first of three straight days in which the team is taking to the field at Fenway Park in order to stay sharp for the start of the American League Division Series on Friday following four off days. The team is still finalizing its roster decisions, and it’s also holding off on announcing its starting rotation, but overall, manager John Farrell suggested that he is in charge of an extremely well-rounded team that is a credit to the work of GM Ben Cherington in taking a team that went from 69-93 a year ago to a 97-65 record that was tied for the best in the majors this year.
“He’s done an outstanding job. I’m certainly not one to compliment him on it because he lives it, as do we. But his vision clearly started last August with the trade with the Dodgers. Where we stand today was initiated 14 months ago,” Farrell said, alluding to the blockbuster deal with the Dodgers that sent out Adrian Gonzalez, Carl Crawford, Josh Beckett and Nick Punto to liberate tremendous resources. “It’s tremendous foresight on his part, but to select the people, in addition to the talent that he brought in, everyone has fit well. It didn’t stop after the free-agent signing period this winter. Quintin Berry is another example of maybe a less publicized acquisition that can maybe fill a pivotal role or pivotal contribution on our end. It’s a never-ending pursuit on his part, whether it’s looking at internal options, his ability to outline things to us in uniform from a staff standpoint, he includes us in that whole process and it’s worked very well. But he’s done a great job of revamping who sits in our clubhouse today.”
Farrell praised the work done by Cherington in finding players of character to come to Boston, something that became most evident when the team took the field on April 16, the day after the bombings at the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
“The one moment that stands out in my mind is standing on the … during the moment of silence in Cleveland following the bombing here. And it wasn’t so much about on field performance. We had gotten off to a good start the first two, three weeks of the season,” said Farrell. “We saw some things come out of the individuals. Spoke to their understanding that they were in a special place and showed some [character] at a very difficult and unique time. Whether that was the galvanizing moment for this team, I can’t say that. But it was a moment in time where guys showed a different side of them that this was a special group. What the performance was going to be, the total number of wins achieved, we didn’t know. But there was a [character] that showed through in that moment that was special.”
While Farrell did not make any formal announcements about the roster or rotation, he did confirm that Clay Buchholz and Jake Peavy would throw multiple innings in Wednesday’s intrasquad scrimmage, a signal that the team plans to have Jon Lester and John Lackey start the first two games of the ALDS.
Other notes from Farrell:In addition to Buchholz and Peavy, the Sox will want to get action for a number of relievers. It will be up to the team’s hitters whether they want to face live pitching, and Farrell said that some may prefer not to do so. The game will have an umpire, and players will run the bases and play the field as opposed to simply stepping in the box as might occur in a simulated game for a rehabbing pitcher. Farrell suggested that, even though the demands of a five-game series with two off days are distinct from those of the 162-game regular season, he does not want to drastically alter his roster from the one he used for the lion’s share of the season. “There will be some of that involved but the one thing I want to be clear at is we’ve set a pretty clear approach to how we’ve used all of our position players throughout the course of the regular season,” said Farrell. “To make a drastic shift from that, I don’t know that it would be putting guys in the best position to succeed so this is a team that, we’ve had a couple of situations where we’ve pinch hit before or we’ll use a pinch runner. We’ve demonstrated that. so to say that we’ll look to do something completely different because we’ve got a five-game series with two off-days in it, I think that would be running from what our strengths have been established all year.” Farrell said that the team is unlikely to factor in the possibility of having Mike Napoli catch into its roster decisions: “I don’t think at this point of the season we would consider him behind the plate,” said Farrell. “That would be a major shift from anything that we’ve communicated to him throughout the course of the year or anything that we’ve chose to do inside of a given game, whether we’ve put [Jarrod Saltalamacchia] back in behind the plate in a game that David Ross will start, or vice versa. That’s one thing that will be considered when we look at the 25-man roster as a whole. I can’t say that’s an overriding factor.” On the structure of the bullpen bridge from the team’s starters to closer Koji Uehara: “We have the ability to match up, to bridge from whoever the starter is that given night to Koji closing things out, we’ve got options. Guys have been very dependable, they’ve been durable, whether that’s been [Craig Breslow], whether that’s been Junichi [Tazawa], who’s done a very good job for us. At times, there’s been some challenging moments for him. The emergence of Brandon Workman, was encouraging his last outing in Baltimore, coming off the outing over in Denver. So, we feel like we’ve got ample options to go to. Franklin Morales‘ last six weeks of the season have been very encouraging and then we’ve put some veteran presence back there with Ryan Dempster in that role as well to bridge to Koji. Koji’s abilities have finally been highlighted because of the role he’s in. He’s been a very good pitcher his entire pro career, both in Japan and here. To see the efficiency with which he pitches, he’s having an outstanding year for us. We’ll need it to go forward.” Farrell said that his contact with former Red Sox manager Terry Francona has been “minimal,” limited to “a congratulatory text” since the Indians clinched a wild card berth. At the same time, he acknowledged that the cross-pollination of the Indians and Red Sox organizations would lend itself to a number of interesting storylines if the two teams face each other in the ALDS. “There’s a lot of quality and talented people over there. To see it come together with a chance to advance after tomorrow night, I think because you have past experiences with many people, you want the best for them,” said Farrell. “There would be an incredible amount of side stories if we do meet up with them in the Division Series. In some ways, it’s reminiscent of the ALCS in ’07. There’s so much crossover that still exists between people that have worked, either starting in Cleveland and coming here, and now it’s in some ways reversed with Tito going back there and leading their team. Hopefully we get a chance to meet up. Four players who are not candidates to participate in the postseason have been sent home: Allen Webster, Brayan Villarreal, Steven Wright and Brock Holt. The intrasquad scrimmage on Wednesday and the working, which starts at 2 p.m. and is scheduled to run until approximately 5 or 6 p.m., will be open to the public for no charge. “I think it’s more of a gesture to those who have stood by us throughout the course of time, and give them an opportunity for our season-ticket holders to be presented something unique and maybe in some small way, an indirect way, a thank you,” said Farrell. Regarding the 5:37 p.m. start time of Saturday’s game, Farrell noted that the teams would have to contend with shadows in the early innings but that the sun would set relatively early in the game.
Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick joins Dale and Steve DeOssie to talk about cutting the roster down to 53 players. Jimmy Garoppolo is set to start and play most, if not all of the preseason contest against the Giants. Bill also expressed his thoughts about the kicking game and how some of the new rules have affected the importance of it.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Chris Price discuss the news that Jimmy Garoppolo will get the start Thursday and play most of the game. They talk about what it might mean for Ryan Mallett.
Julian Edelman joins Christian and Danny Picard to talk about his approach going into the season, his performance this preseason, as well as the VMAs, and preventing cramps using mustard.
Jackie Mac joins the guys to discuss her thoughts on a possible mid-season tournament in the NBA, LeBron's return to Cleveland, trade rumors with the Celtics and Red Sox, and Darrelle Revis' contract situation.
Jackie MacMullan of ESPN Boston to talk about the Lebron James Saga, the possibility of Rajon Rondo being traded, and the future of Marcus Smart.
Former coach of Celtics 1st-round pick Marcus Smart, Travis Ford joins MFB to talk about what Celtics fans should expect from the strong point guard. Among other things, Coach Ford says Smart will be a hard worker, and will improve his shooting ability.
Joe talked to the Sox right-hander, who allowed three hits and zero walks in the 3-0 win over the Rays.
Red Sox Manager John Farrell talks about Bogaerts' concussion and the youth movement.
As he does every Wednesday, Buster Olney, ESPN, joins the boys of MFB to talk baseball. This week Buster shed some light on what to expect from Rusney Castillo, and how Cuban players are being viewed. He suggests that the acquisition of Castillo helps Boston's chances to get Giancarlo Stanton. Also, the Sox should shut down Koji if they want to re-sign him.
Rob Bradford is joined by WEEI.com Bruins beat writer DJ Bean, as well as Boston sports fan/blogger Turtleboy to talk all things Bruins free agency. With the B's recent moves, the conversation turns to where the Bruins might next turn and what kind of dent losing Jarome Iginla and Shawn Thornton might make.
DJ discusses Shawn Thornton's new deal, and the on going negotiations with Jerome Iginla
DJ Bean joins the program to dismiss the recent rumors that the Bruins are in discussions to trade Brad Marchand to the Sharks for Patrick Marleau
Hackers obtained hundreds private photo's of celebrities such as Kate Upton and Jennifer Lawrence. Also, Market Basket is back in business, and Pete Frates and his wife Julie have a baby girl, Lucy.
The usual suspects had the day off so the hosts of The Real Post Game Show stepped to talk about the Pats. Logan Mankins and Ryan Mallett were both traded and Miami is 6 days away.
John Frates called in to the show to discuss his son Peter and his past experience with Fred.
7th round draft pick Michael Sam was trying to be the first openly-gay player in the NFL. With only 7 days to go before the season opener, the Rams released him on one of the last round of cuts.
The Patriots finally completed a deal that was speculated for weeks, when they traded back up QB Ryan Mallett to the Texans for a conditional 7th round pick. Mallett will be reunited with former New England quarterbacks coach Bill O'Brien.
More reaction from the Logan Mankins-Tim Wright trade.
Tom Curran recaps the Pats preseason and talks about some of the players who may get cut.
Michael Irvin talks about the final preseason game for the Patriots and the biggest storylines heading into the opening weekend.
We recap the summer's biggest sports stories leading into Labor Day Weekend.
Co-founder and chairman of the Boston Beer Company, Jim Koch, talks about his Sam Adams beer and the history of his brewery.
Danny picard is filling in for Mikey and talks with CSNNE's Mike Giardi about Clay Buchholz heading up the Red Sox pitching rotation, and how the Patriots have looked through training camp so far.
Mut and Villani are talking about whether the Red Sox will give Jon Lester the type of contract he is looking for, or whether they might be shopping him with rumors of the Red Sox scouting Cole Hamels.
Fantasy Football Drafts are now happening every day, so Pete Davidson and Jim Hackett have you covered. The NFL season kicks off on Thursday night, so Pete and Jim get their final thoughts of some drafting strategies. They discuss their Auction draft from earlier in the week. Also, some big name players that smart drafters should avoid.
We know your Fantasy Football drafts are happening right now, so Jim Hackett and Pete Davidson are here to help. We know you’d never blow off work to draft right? Turn up the speakers! Our fantasy guys chat up Pete’s most recent article on WEEI.com that offers background on several players you can target late in drafts across multiple league sizes; covering upside players to grab in 8-team leagues, 10-team leagues, 12-team leagues and 14-team leagues. Jim and Pete will be back at 7:30 a.m. on Sunday morning on your radio dial, 93.7 FM, with more ammo for all this weekend’s drafters. Good luck!
How can teams acquire players who are entering their primes without having to live through the potentially massive transition of prospects coming from the minors to the big leagues? The Red Sox have two such case studies. The signing of Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo represents one effort to acquire a player for his prime years for whom the transition to big league-caliber competition might not be turbulent. Red Sox assistant director of player personnel discusses the scouting process involved with landing Castillo. The episode also features Brock Holt, the one rookie who played at a consistently high level for the Red Sox this year. Holt explores some of the distinctions that might help to explain why he did not experience some of the struggles that characterized the seasons of Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr.
John Frates called in to the show to discuss his son Peter and his past experience with Fred.More from this show
More reaction from the Logan Mankins-Tim Wright trade.More from this show