Spring Training 2021

The Gray Eagle

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2001
14,510
New bench coach Will Venable has come up with a way to keep the coaches and players loose with the Cash Money Coach of the Day chain.
Seems like a fun, silly way to break up the grind of spring training workouts and hopefully bring the players and coaches together:
https://theathletic.com/2426186/2021/03/04/cash-money-red-sox-coaches/
“It’s just been a really nice way for us — among the coaches, among the staff — to recognize each other for the things that maybe don’t get recognized otherwise,” Venable said. “It’s just kind of (a way) on a personal level to say, ‘Hey, you’ve been helping me out, you’ve been helping the players out. I want to give you just a little bit of love,’ you know?”

“It’s this gaudy dollar sign,” pitching coach Dave Bush said. “So, it’s awfully hard to miss.”

Said Hyers: “You wear it all day, and players rag you and get all over you.”

“Camaraderie,” Hyers said. “Keep the troops moving along. And (when you give it away) you say something about the person, so you get to talk about some cool stuff that people do throughout the day that (other coaches and staff) might not hear about unless that happens.”

“The coach of the day is special, (that’s) probably why I’ve never won it,” joked first-base coach Tom Goodwin. “(But it is a) great way for us to start our day. Some of it is good old-fashioned hard work, some of it is humor, there’s a battle scar or two, and throw a birthday boy in there, and you’ve got the many sides of Cash Money Coach of the Day.”
 

brandonchristensen

mad photochops
SoSH Member
Feb 4, 2012
27,936
Maybe it’s just me but I feel like these are professional ball players, they shouldn’t need gimmicks.

Does every team have issues with their players staying focused and not caring? It seems like there’s been several seasons where the players are unfocused. Then in others (2018) they’re laser focused on winning. Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like they should be able to compete and perform at a high level because it’a their job.
 

bstoker7

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 22, 2006
140
Ferron, UT
Maybe it’s just me but I feel like these are professional ball players, they shouldn’t need gimmicks.

Does every team have issues with their players staying focused and not caring? It seems like there’s been several seasons where the players are unfocused. Then in others (2018) they’re laser focused on winning. Maybe it’s just me, but it feels like they should be able to compete and perform at a high level because it’a their job.
Couldn’t we say that about any profession? Businesses do things all the time to help keep their employees engaged and most people’s jobs don’t require the focus it takes to be the absolute best in the world at whatever it is they do. I don’t see the problem with trying to create an enjoyable work environment.
 

brandonchristensen

mad photochops
SoSH Member
Feb 4, 2012
27,936
Couldn’t we say that about any profession? Businesses do things all the time to help keep their employees engaged and most people’s jobs don’t require the focus it takes to be the absolute best in the world at whatever it is they do. I don’t see the problem with trying to create an enjoyable work environment.
Yeah, but these are elite athletes - not a paper company in Scranton. I don’t recall hearing the Yankees doing stuff like this. I don’t know any other team that can have a season like 2013 or 2018 and then suck the following year with most of the same players. It seemed like last year they had total disinterest in playing and all of their numbers were down across the board.
 

dwainw

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 20, 2005
2,347
Minneapolis, MN
Yeah, but these are elite athletes - not a paper company in Scranton. I don’t recall hearing the Yankees doing stuff like this. I don’t know any other team that can have a season like 2013 or 2018 and then suck the following year with most of the same players. It seemed like last year they had total disinterest in playing and all of their numbers were down across the board.
Seemed like last year's failure was due primarily to a total decimation of the pitching staff. "Total disinterest" is kind of harsh, and I'm not even sure how you'd measure that. Anyway, if there was a degree of increased disinterest, I'm OK chalking that up to 2020. I mean, granted we're just the fans, but who here took last season totally seriously?

I also don't really see a downside to adding some levity to the team during spring training. Seems like something not worth being bothered by.
 

brandonchristensen

mad photochops
SoSH Member
Feb 4, 2012
27,936
Seemed like last year's failure was due primarily to a total decimation of the pitching staff. "Total disinterest" is kind of harsh, and I'm not even sure how you'd measure that. Anyway, if there was a degree of increased disinterest, I'm OK chalking that up to 2020. I mean, granted we're just the fans, but who here took last season totally seriously?

I also don't really see a downside to adding some levity to the team during spring training. Seems like something not worth being bothered by.
It’s not this particular thing, it’s just the track record of things like chicken and beer. Always seemingly after a World Series victory, they become uncompetitive.

Again it could just be me. I justfeel like I don’t see the performance fluctuations that I see from this team since 2013.
 

NJ_Sox_Fan

Member
SoSH Member
Jan 2, 2006
6,852
NJ
I mean, I have to motivate my staff all the time, and we are literally taking care of human beings. These guys are being paid millions to play a game, so I could see where perhaps they slip out of that laser focus now and again.
 

curly2

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 8, 2003
4,258
Yeah, but these are elite athletes - not a paper company in Scranton. I don’t recall hearing the Yankees doing stuff like this.
The Yankees award a giant, gaudy wrestling belt to a player after a win. You can be a professional athlete and still have goofy fun.
 

brandonchristensen

mad photochops
SoSH Member
Feb 4, 2012
27,936
The Yankees award a giant, gaudy wrestling belt to a player after a win. You can be a professional athlete and still have goofy fun.
I'm not saying don't have fun. I think I've gone far enough in derailing discussion here. It was a general sentiment about the way the team has performed over the last decade - not just about this particular incident.
 

joe dokes

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 18, 2005
19,811
I'm not saying don't have fun. I think I've gone far enough in derailing discussion here. It was a general sentiment about the way the team has performed over the last decade - not just about this particular incident.
To your point, and going further back, 1968, 1976 and 1987 weren't all that hot, either.
 

Rwillh11

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 23, 2010
122
Yeah, but these are elite athletes - not a paper company in Scranton. I don’t recall hearing the Yankees doing stuff like this. I don’t know any other team that can have a season like 2013 or 2018 and then suck the following year with most of the same players. It seemed like last year they had total disinterest in playing and all of their numbers were down across the board.
Isn't this pretty much exactly what all the "cowboy up" stuff was? Seemed to create a good work environment and produce some nice results that time around.

Baseball players are people. People like to have fun at work. I can't imagine possibly having an issue with this
 

OurF'ingCity

Member
SoSH Member
Apr 22, 2016
5,511
New York City
It seemed like last year they had total disinterest in playing and all of their numbers were down across the board.
Their offense had the exact same wRC+, and essentially the same wOBA, in 2020 as they did in 2019 so regardless of what it seemed like, it's just not true that their numbers were down across the board. It's actually a testament to the strength of their offense last year that they remained so consistent despite their best offensive player being traded away and JD Martinez giving them sub-replacement-level play. It wasn't 2018 levels but it's possible no Red Sox team will ever have an offense that good again.

Pitching is a different story, of course, but the reasons for that have been discussed ad nauseum and I don't think that had anything to do with the players' "interest" unless you think that, like, Zach Godley could have been really good if he just focused a little bit more.

It's always the same with players being loose and goofy in any sport - if they're like that when they're winning it's a fun example of how team chemistry is important and if they're like that when they're losing they're disinterested and not focused enough. In reality I doubt it matters much at all in terms of on-field results.
 

brandonchristensen

mad photochops
SoSH Member
Feb 4, 2012
27,936
Isn't this pretty much exactly what all the "cowboy up" stuff was? Seemed to create a good work environment and produce some nice results that time around.

Baseball players are people. People like to have fun at work. I can't imagine possibly having an issue with this
This isn't what I was trying to convey here.
 

effectivelywild

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 14, 2005
305
Isn't this pretty much exactly what all the "cowboy up" stuff was? Seemed to create a good work environment and produce some nice results that time around.

Baseball players are people. People like to have fun at work. I can't imagine possibly having an issue with this
Also worth noting: It's not the players getting this necklace. It's the coaching staff. And the purpose of it is to acknowledge staff members putting in extra effort or otherwise being extra helpful. It's not like these are the multimillionaire players getting the necklace. It's the guys helping train and take care of the players, getting a little bit of goofy acknowledgment. Even if you think it's unseemly for the players to engage in games like this, you're really going to be concerned about the support staff?
 

Minneapolis Millers

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
2,739
Twin Cities
It’s not this particular thing, it’s just the track record of things like chicken and beer. Always seemingly after a World Series victory, they become uncompetitive.

Again it could just be me. I justfeel like I don’t see the performance fluctuations that I see from this team since 2013.
This attitude and particular post make no sense to me. Sure, the team has had greater fluctuation than we’d like. But the Henry regime has more titles than any other ownership group during their 2000s run. Are people here really that entitlement minded?

And you’re cherry picking. You cite chicken and beer (2011) and then refer to post-2013. All of which leaves out the 2005 team that made the playoffs (got waxed, but can’t say a playoff team is not competitive). 2008, which was one Matt Garza away from returning to the WS. And post 2013 includes a 3 year string of first place division finishes, the only time a Sox team has done that.

The Yankees are one of just a few teams to win more consistently than John Henry’s Sox. if you’d prefer to root for their consistency and one title instead of our 4, be my guest. Meanwhile, I’ll get a chuckle out of seeing guys do silly things to break up the monotony of spring training. And I’ll enjoy figuring out whether to wear my 04, 07, 13, or 18 WS champs t-shirt today...

Edit: One more point. From 67 to 91, the Sox had only two losing seasons. Went to 3 WS but, as we all know, lost each 4-3. If we’d won those titles, we’d all think of this team much differently - more like the Cardinals as maybe the 2d most successful franchise all time. But we didn’t. And having rooted for the team through most of that period, I have to say I much prefer the results of the last 18 years.
 
Last edited:

Red(s)HawksFan

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jan 23, 2009
13,891
Maine
Great, so he'll be out for the year, then have the surgery and lose next year as well? Why do they ever wait, it only delays the inevitable.
Because surgery isn't necessarily inevitable. Surgery should ALWAYS be the last resort remedy, when nothing else will work. If the doctors think it can be rehabbed, then he might as well try rehabbing it.

Masahiro Tanaka had a "slightly torn" UCL in 2014. He rehabbed it. Never needed Tommy John. Turned out alright for him.
 

Niastri

Member
SoSH Member
Because surgery isn't necessarily inevitable. Surgery should ALWAYS be the last resort remedy, when nothing else will work. If the doctors think it can be rehabbed, then he might as well try rehabbing it.

Masahiro Tanaka had a "slightly torn" UCL in 2014. He rehabbed it. Never needed Tommy John. Turned out alright for him.
Fair enough... Anecdotally, it feels like it always means an extended period of poor performance followed by a long recovery after surgery.

It's often been said every major league pitcher has some degree of arm injury, the movement just ours enormous stress on the arm and shoulder.

If you can see it on an MRI, it must be severe... But I'm no doctor.
 

mwonow

Member
SoSH Member
Sep 4, 2005
5,947
It’s not this particular thing, it’s just the track record of things like chicken and beer. Always seemingly after a World Series victory, they become uncompetitive.

Again it could just be me. I justfeel like I don’t see the performance fluctuations that I see from this team since 2013.
Quick note - I *love* that the bolded might be a 'thing'. Having been a fan for 50 years, I remember a long stretch where the difference between defending champs and other teams wouldn't be a point of comparison, and I (like @Minneapolis Millers) am much happier with the current state.

Now, if we had that weird pattern that the Marlins had going for a while, where Series winners were gutted, the team was terrible, and then it rose again, only to be dismantled again - I'd get the objection. But fwiw, last year's team was as far from being a title contender as any I can remember. Something - anything - to change the trajectory is okay by me.
 

dynomite

Member
SoSH Member
And how many titles do those no frills Yankees have this century? I will take gold chains, idiots, bullpen bands, outfield win dancing, and Cowboy Up all day if it gets me 4 titles in 20 years
Totally. As we've discussed many, many times, the Boston Red Sox have the most World Series titles of any franchise in the 21st century. That's wild.

The process of getting there has often been bizarre, the lows have been as low as any Red Sox team in living memory, and there have been dozens of painful departures of beloved players and coaches while a few deeply unlikeable players and coaches arrived... but ultimately, I have little to complain about as a fan of this team.
 

chawson

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 1, 2006
2,099
Interesting to see Renfroe play most of the game in CF in yesterday’s box score — he’s only started one game there in his career. I’ve had him pegged as a corner outfield guy for us but his bat would play extra well if he’s an option there.
 

jose melendez

Earl of Acie
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Oct 23, 2003
24,849
Washington DC
So... Bobby Dalbec is off to an interesting spring start 5 hits, 4 of them cranksm in 18 AB. And obviously 10K also.

He's going to drive my insane isn't he?
 

Tuff Ghost

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 15, 2005
435
Eovaldi seems healthy again.
The velocity coming off of the bats was, unfortunately, equally impressive: 8 hard-hit balls and only six swings & misses on 64 pitches. It's just spring, so the health and ability to throw that hard is promising, despite the results.

39515

The velocity was most impressive out of the gate and dipped a little as the game went on. The Buxton HR was his slowest 4-seamer.

View: https://twitter.com/SoxSpin/status/1371435104711630850?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1371435104711630850%7Ctwgr%5E%7Ctwcon%5Es1_c10&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fpublish.twitter.com%2F%3Fquery%3Dhttps3A2F2Ftwitter.com2FSoxSpin2Fstatus2F1371435104711630850widget%3DTweet


39516
 

nvalvo

Member
SoSH Member
Jul 16, 2005
17,931
Rogers Park
Today's health news is that Danny Santana has a "foot infection" for which he has been hospitalized (yikes!), and that Franchy Cordero is ahead of expectations on his post-COVID cardiovascular fitness, and Cora expects him in a game soon.

The first news seems bullish for Arroyo's chances of sticking as a bench IF, as it means that Santana will need to start in the minors/at the alternate site.

And I have to say, I'm pretty eager to see Cordero in action.
 

cournoyer

lurker
Dec 11, 2012
278
Enfield, Connecticut
Today's health news is that Danny Santana has a "foot infection" for which he has been hospitalized (yikes!), and that Franchy Cordero is ahead of expectations on his post-COVID cardiovascular fitness, and Cora expects him in a game soon.

The first news seems bullish for Arroyo's chances of sticking as a bench IF, as it means that Santana will need to start in the minors/at the alternate site.

And I have to say, I'm pretty eager to see Cordero in action.
I think Arroyo is a lock at this point, especially with the Santana news. If Franchy isn't ready for Opening day either, I'm really curious to see who Cora chooses to be on the opening day roster filling up that last bench spot. I really don't know who he would choose for that it's pretty interesting. Maybe Chavis, I didn't think he would be but he's looked good.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

Well-Known Member
Silver Supporter
SoSH Member
Jan 23, 2009
13,891
Maine
Hernandez or Gonzalez.
All of the above? In Bogaerts absence so far this spring, Arroyo has, including today, started six times at short. Hernandez has started there in five games, Gonzalez in two. That seems like a reasonable sample size for who Cora views as a back up option at SS.