Red Sox outfielder Jonny Gomes checked in with Mut & Merloni on Monday to talk about the Red Sox’ busy offseason.
Since the Red Sox won the World Series at the end of the October, they have seen Jacoby Ellsbury and Jarrod Saltalamacchia leave as free agents, and they signed reliever Edward Mujica and catcher A.J. Pierzynski and reportedly came to an agreement to retain first baseman Mike Napoli
Gomes said his first season sharing a locker room with Napoli left him with a positive impression of the first baseman.
“I played against this guy for a long time, when he came up as a catcher with Anaheim, then over to Texas,” Gomes said. “I couldn’t really get a good read on him, to tell you the truth. Always focused — whether you’re getting in the box and he’s catching or he’s at first, he wouldn’t talk to you. I was so curious to see what I was going to get out of Mike Napoli when I was sharing a clubhouse with him. I had everything, all doors open. I didn’t want to do anything.
“This guy is truly something else. He is one of the best teammates I’ve ever had, one of the best competitors I’ve ever had, his work ethic, everything. They talk about championship-caliber players. That’s truly all he has on his mind. I’ve never seen someone in such a good mood after a tough 0-for-4 if we won. It’s team first, team second, team third for him.
“Hopefully like all the other Sox, I jumped for joy when this guy came back.”
Ellsbury is being viewed by some in Red Sox Nation as a traitor for signing with the rival Yankees, but Gomes said he doesn’t have a problem with Ellsbury signing the contract he received.
“I’m a firm believer in you are deserving of what someone’s going to give you,” Gomes said. “I’m sure a lot of people want to jump on the salary that he got, but no one wants to jump on some of the CEOs of some of these huge companies that make a lot of money, too.
“I played with Joey Votto for a while, and he did some pretty unbelievable things. I would always break it down to him, too: How many people in the world — in the actual world — can do what he can do? How many people in the world can consistently steal 50 bags in the big leagues and play a Gold Glove center field? What’s the price tag on that?
“I’m happy for him. He’s got security for his great, great, great, great, great grandkids. But we’ve got a spot to fill. At the same time, we’ve got the Executive of the Year on our side [in general manager Ben Cherington]. Hopefully we’ll get that spot filled.”
The Sox replaced Saltalamacchia with Pierzynski, who heads to Boston with a reputation as a player who can rub opponents and some teammates the wrong way. Gomes is convinced that the veteran will fit in with the Sox.
“Obviously what we built so fast inside our clubhouse is extremely important to 25 guys and the staff, that’s something I really buy into,” Gomes said. “I was [excited] when I saw an organization buy into that, which I have such high praise for as a clubhouse and chemistry. Outside of that, you want championship players. There’s not too many chemistry and good clubhouses that are in last place.
“He does have a World Series ring, and he’s been to the playoffs a whole bunch. He’s had Jake Peavy [as a teammate] in the past and [pitching coach Juan Nieves] in the past. One thing out of a catcher that I want is to play all the time, give me a couple of pull homers if you can. He can do that. I think he’s going to buy right in to what we’ve got going on.”
With the Red Sox preparing to defend their World Series title, Gomes said he expects opposing teams to be locked in to giving the Sox their best every night.
“I’ve been on the other side — when the Red Sox roll into town, you’re not going to catch anyone sleeping,” Gomes said. “Last year I don’t think we snuck up on anyone, by any means. And again this year, I think it’s going to be even that much more. I don’t know if people thought we were going to be that good and didn’t quite give us their best bullet, I don’t know what it was. But that’s definitely not going to be that this year. When you do throw on that Red Sox jersey, you definitely jump up into that heavyweight class.”
That said, Gomes isn’t afraid to set lofty goals for the 2013 Sox.
“We definitely have the belt and we’re going to hold it high,” Gomes said. “The passion that this team has, we want to do everything we can to protect that. Ideally go back to back? Absolutely. The first day of spring training last last year, we weren’t saying, ‘Let’s go .500 this year; hey, let’s just make the playoffs.’ I think all 30 teams need to set the goal to win the Word Series, So I think that’s something we’re going to do again, absolutely.”
We had an impromptu visit from Peter King from SI / MMQB to our Fenway Studios and decided to talk some NFL and Patriots with him.
Pete talks with The Senator, Phil Perry about the Patriots trading for Dwayne Allen, ruling out a return to New England for Martellus Bennett. They also talk about the potential future of Patriots backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo and some of the big names in NFL free agency
Pete, Thornton and Price give their final thoughts and predictions for the Super Bowl.
Dale, Holley and Rich Keefe discuss NBA lottery pick Lonzo Ball with his very outspoken father Lavar Ball. The guys touch on the Celtics, his feud with his sons' high school coach, Lonzo being better than Steph Curry and much more.
Kirk, Gerry, and Alex Reimer discuss whether or not Isaiah Thomas will win a title in Boston.
Gerry, Kirk, and Trenni react to the Celtics loss against the Suns.
Dale, Michael and Rich Keefe catch-up with former Sox GM Theo Epstein who is in town with the World Champion Cubs to take on the Sox this weekend.
We sit down with the manager of the Sox, John Farrell, for our weekly interview.
Rob Bradford is joined by Minnesota Twins relief pitcher Craig Breslow, who is one of the foremost authorities among professional athletes when it comes to understanding how charities work. Not only does Breslow head up his own charity, the Strike 3 Foundation, but also proactively has taken the Boston Globe to task via a letter to the editor after a 2013 article criticizing the allocation of funds for high-profile athlete's charities. Breslow digs into the recent controversy surrounding Tom Brady's affiliation with Best Buddies, explaining why the recent Globe article was misguided.
Gerry and Kirk read some inspiring quotes from Tony Robbins and Curtis is all set to see the man himself in June.
Tony Robbins fans were sent to the hospital after getting injured walking over coals and Pat is a massive fan of Tony Robbins.
Gerry, Kirk and Arcand react to Brady getting into a business relationship with Tony Robbins.
Night 1 of the draft has passed and Jimmy Garoppolo is still here. The general consensus on the Bears was that they screwed up their draft. And Larry Bird is out in Indiana. Is there hope for Ordway's Paul George dream?
The offensive issues for this Red Sox team are becoming more and more obvious. We also react to our interview with Pedro Martinez.
Chris Sale basically took on Tanaka and the Yankees by himself last night. And the Sox hot corner of days past seem to be gone as far as third base goes.
Final two hours of Dale and Holley with Keefe for a Friday.
Dale, Holley and Keefe discuss a variety of topics for the first two hours of Freestyle Friday.
We close out the week with another edition of the madness and LAROY!!!!!!!!!!! takes you into the weekend.
Kirk Minihane, Springsteen super fan, is joined by Garry W. Tallent, founding member of the E Street Band. Kirk and Garry talk about what it's like on tour with Bruce, how the band goes about selecting songs for the tour, Garry's projects away from the band, and Garry's upcoming solo tour that will bring him to the New England area.
Kirk Minihane, future radio hall of famer, sits down with current radio hall of famer Howie Carr. Kirk and Howie talk about Howie's latest book Kennedy Babylon. If you like famous people engaging in sex scandals, hard drug taking, and murder this is the podcast for you. Its a fascinating look at Boston's most famous family and the problems that took the family down.
Kirk Minihane, host and overlord of the morning show, brings Gerry Callahan and producers Chris and Ken into the studio to hear his show proposal. Kirk is thinking about making some changes to the morning show and wants to hear his crew's opinion.
Ben and Alex talk to Charlie Stillitano, the man responsible for the International Champions Cup. He has created tournaments for the biggest teams in the world to be played in the US every summer. This year he will bring Juventus and Roma to play in Foxboro on July 30th.
Ken and Chris have the Good Weekend recap of a Friday Christian Arcand edition of K&C.
It’s Day 1 of the NFL Draft tonight so Jim Hackett & Pete Davidson offer a little pre-draft fodder for you featuring the Top Tight Ends and Top Wide Receivers. It’s Day 1 of the draft so there’s a lot of focus on the Top Tier talent who you could see drafted tonight including analysis on OJ Howard, Evan Engram & David Njoku; all Tight Ends that could be drafted in tonight’s 1st Round – a rarity. The analysis deepens with more focus on the Top 10 Tight Ends including Jake Butt, Bucky Hodges and Jordan Leggett. Then the boys turn to the Top Wide Receivers, including John Ross, Corey Davis, Mike Williams and JuJu Smith-Shuster. We’ll see where these guys land tonight, but you can learn more and have a few laughs right now.
Christian Arcand made his triumphant return to K&C and the guys talked about the future of Jimmy Garoppolo.More from this show
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Hour 4. Kirk questions the show about whether or not anyone would have relations with another man while in prison. Jemele Hill threatened Kirk on Twitter, but did she delete her tweet?More from this show
Gerry and Kirk read some inspiring quotes from Tony Robbins and Curtis is all set to see the man himself in June.More from this show
Tony Robbins fans were sent to the hospital after getting injured walking over coals and Pat is a massive fan of Tony Robbins.More from this show