WEEI>On Demand>>Red Sox Manager John Farrell Believes the 2013 Red Sox Can Win the AL East

Red Sox Manager John Farrell Believes the 2013 Red Sox Can Win the AL East

Feb 13, 2013|

Boston Red Sox manager John Farrell sat down with Dennis and Callahan and discussed his expectations for the 2013 season, including the resurgence of Daniel Bard.

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Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

It is hard to date ever -- Dennis and Callahan broadcasting live from Red Sox spring training in Fort Myers, Florida as you saw that opening shot the sprinklers are all on the on the ball field down below Fenway Park south. Curly Red Sox manager John Ferrell -- those breakers he joins us right after his workout this morning -- morning John how aria undone while -- -- -- -- very very well I. I don't know if there's such a thing as a theme to weight training camp for to a spring training that may be a message to when you do get your state of the state you know dressed to the guys were all assemble here. What's the theme what's the message that John Carlos -- to this -- well first of all we've got a high number of new players here. Signed through free agency is as well known documents -- offseason I think more than anything giving what this team is come off of the last -- plus. I think we have a great opportunity in front of us it's a rewrite the story that's been the case of recent years. And talking to guys throughout the season whether it was November 1 on there was a genuine eagerness to put. What has happened behind them. Hey get down going to back in the field and prepare for the season. -- -- upset by what happened last year they embarrassed about what happened last year they angry about what happened last year and how does that then translate into moving forward which is what you wanna do you know I think the most important thing is that -- eager to get going you know to a man you know either they're going to be a little bit different whether it's based on personal performance or whether how the team. Performed as a whole but I think again the most important thing is what we can control and that's today and beyond and stay in a positive Frontline. Most people I don't think you can win this division -- most people look they keep in get the wild card or even close we get a preview right in front of us here and there. Cub predictions this the Red Sox in the cellar. Do you think you can win that division. This year. I do yes it is an and that's fine you know people are gonna think what they want to have project what they what they care to. But I think this team is got a lot of depth a lot of talent there's balance when you look at the lineup up and down their their speed is power that is left right balance. Our bullpen emerged as a strength of a year ago and that's been fortified with Hanrahan coming in here. We know that the rotation is the area that we've got to get more consistent innings higher number of quality innings from the group of five. And you look at any team. The deeper they go into the season contending or into the post season. Larger part his problem because of the -- that rotation which is that we talked to the guys that it was a whole that'll be the message we can do this we can beat us. Go to the playoffs you know I'm -- here just as you know distraught you know put a number out there we know that it's going to be in that nine win range but I I think this team. Has the talent to contend and ultimately win this division. -- is part of the template what Arizona did their bullpen two years ago to turn it around what Baltimore did with their bullpen last year to turn it around sort of the -- for what you think is the way for the team to win and be successful shortly games and get to the bullpen. On paper right now that's certainly looks to be one of the approaches we get taken we have the ability -- as the number of arms and and all the stuff that's in the spent a short game down. Still I firmly believe that what makes a very good bullpen as a rotation that can work deep in the game that can also bring a reliever to the mound when they're fresh. So I feel like we have the ability to matchup and this -- as -- said this is a strength of ours. His company competition it seems like. Most of the jobs are settled but that would we look at it out -- left field there's there's other jobs up for grabs that we should be -- here in the -- -- who's gonna win it. Yet there are they're there a couple of quick we come -- and obviously with Mike -- situation first base and he's gonna start the -- incorporate more baseball activities here. Over the weekend and start his progression back to become their. Proficient first baseman but his back up that left handed hitter that we want to be able to play left field first base possibly a combination. Who the extra outfielder isn't and there might be some moment competition as far as utility spot but that's not to take anything away from Syria are who -- great job and -- of a year ago but. When you look at the other positions. Based on the free agent signings it's pretty much spoken for loose who's usually feel -- Florida Jonny Gomes in left field because -- -- against lefties but. Not to say that he can't play -- right -- certainly than the numbers bear out -- his strengths are. But again that compliment and -- it's a strict platoon but that left him heading out so that's the spot or -- -- Lot of things have to go right you know that David Ortiz has to stay healthy and a list of the -- first and stay healthy what is the most important one. The it would that be health of the starting. For. You know it's it's a single worn out who we who -- probably taken away from the attention that what we need to pay it in every area. But again I think you when you begin to talk about the performs in this team. How we pitched night in and night out from the -- him a ball game is going to be okay. Schilling always said that goal for you know you guys missed it didn't start and that was the difference we've -- diving -- Makes all the starts that's the key to success well it's going to be one of them. For sure and you know we start off already you know played obviously -- hamstring yesterday so that's gonna put him out a couple of days we'll get a better read on his conditions morning. Felix LeBron it is probably six days behind that group will be back on the mound. On Monday so. Fortunately with the WBZ we do you have an additional week down here this year so. That's not a whole lot of time but still it gives us a little buffer. As a former pitching coach here will you got to fight or resist the urge to get tickets to lean more in that direction because you're the manager now about the pitching coach he know. Common question. It's I used the analogy of it if I was a former hitting instructor that became. Manager what I relinquish everything and just you know stay on the side amendment every here come to the plate is that what you. That same dynamic is -- -- my natural conversation with one of us are going to be based around my past experiences so. In addition -- that there are some relationships that are pre existing. And there's no reason we shouldn't take -- as a -- thinks John Ferrell can fix bark and John Ferrell explored. Well did a healthy got a lot of talent and those are ingredients for him to return to the performance of before. I do you know this as we get in the spring training as we get in some of that positive reinforcement results on the field. It'll help build back that confidence that we saw dominant late inning reliever. I was sitting greens so there we just gotta put back in place and get him on track. Which went -- -- what was that like we see it a picture you know hold them bunkers which are the animals but -- -- -- wider -- ever imagine Jackson was -- -- yeah yeah yeah yeah. The article went and things like -- his can't exist you know that's helped me shaved -- picture. Bart is a guy who lost his mind that her not a number matter what wanna. He's not a doomed there are doing the proper whatever -- You know what. And it was starting to -- it was sort of become evident in the conversations in November December January with and the further got away from last year. I'm not receive push the reset button and all goes away with took place here he knows himself better because of the challenges. But it became clear. That he had to get back to a more simplified approach when he went in the rotation he tried the local -- a little more sink the ball changeup -- a guide to baseball that doesn't work well for Daniel Bard. We've got to get back to more simplified reference or a more aggressive approach. And really eliminated a distraction to potential excuses that might exist it's. What are what is Islam I would think it's okay you're the eighth inning guy going to throw fastballs and everything would be okay he's that talented. But you have Bailey now would flee via seventh inning that what would at this point I don't know what were really defining roles for anyone other than we've already mentioned that Henry has a closer. I think the way we brought Daniel to the big -- back and in 09. You know it was in low leverage situations it was in the fifth it was in the sixth. That might be the same path we take this year just to get him going into it. Again and I think more than anything have a positive impact and it's like -- Offseason traveling around and seeing -- in Mississippi and Jon Lester George Edwards C John Lackey Doan in Dallas fumble what what is the purpose of that is not a modern day for mom and honors -- as I've been going on for quite some members out of new manager or John -- that I didn't make -- -- hunt but today and ultimately that's the one thing I would do -- 100 -- but I'm -- I. I think it's something that a number of -- number of coaches say they will do that to get face to face live certain player. You know -- did it in in 2007 just a start to build up for four and reconnect some guys in this case but to see Mike Napoli in Dallas. I think it's just important to be a good start to build our relationship before you get here and there. And the pace of the day starts as public take people and our own direction so not -- and -- I'll pay the Red Sox have always kept guys down on the farm too long in my opinion belong to a lot of seasoning and -- talk about the finally go back who's almost 26 I believe. Do you buy into the is that you agree with that philosophy yeah -- -- it goes back to Wade Boggs Kevin Youkilis and guys stand down there until there in the mid twenties. You on what would that and do you think if a guy like Jackie Bradley would have played like opening day Jesus Gardner and whatever center left. -- -- -- Well -- US a couple of questions here and it's all case by case because. If if it's a situation where positions back. Or there's. A backlog future of that player may in the back in a minor leagues maybe even if he's proven he might be ready to politically well in the case of Jackie Bradley. I think when you look at a young player. That's approach in the major leagues you always try to get the best you you can for there. Their mental capacity the mental make up there I was a mental toughness but. They're gonna they're gonna hit robot bombs they're gonna hit some challenges along the way and how they respond that have a deal of it and particularly in a in a setting like Boston -- opposite. -- more focus and confidence from other places it's how do you project that persons in response to a so. I can say that from a pitching standpoint our brother Steve Fisher stayed down a little longer. Then then come up before it's ours I think if you think of Mike Trout or the Red Sox organization -- -- -- right now. You guys would still. That's only twenty. Some guys well I think what it if we knew -- throughout the way to obviously the Angels do. We may have a different view because obviously novels is special talent is a special individual -- handle the the the stage in the major leagues and all that comes with itself. Again it is case by case what are the John Ferrell rules. Things you can't do that you wrote things that you must do the unbreakable -- rules the things that are that are critical important to -- here are our our basics that are important they -- to be on time. To be accountable to one another including yourself. And to respect the game and that's a broad brush that respect in the game because some people say what does that mean yeah what the the preparation that you go through. The way that you conduct yourself on the field whether that's on the mound with some questionable calls vital part. Well that's what you have on a given that we get down a baseline and we know because we go every day. Some days it's going to be 90% because. For travel or some other reasons but give -- you have a given day so those those three things -- are. Probably my basic rules. And I think that provides the the barometer of the of the boundaries for rebuttal that what did you learn in Toronto about being a manager that you did noble for that job. We are available well what killer. -- -- 25 guys is obviously in and of itself a huge difference the clubhouse that you that you work with and you cultivate. And that you keep in touch with. Position players. Where you're not working hands -- much like you were tall pitchers. So understanding their -- you understand the needs -- they have a physical standpoint when they need to blow when they need to get off their feet. And in this position you quickly come to realize how important depth is and everyone is well aware of all the changes that took place here last year we went through 54 players. In Toronto so we got exposed and so when you look at what our ultimate vision is to become not only playoff contender but -- World Series type team. That depth becomes critical. What would you have been quite as willing to leave if you knew there were gonna acquire the Marlins and go to. You know what I don't know it was a matter of wanting to leave there was some discussion that will keep private. And you know what they're good team. There really good team and and that's what's made this division that much more tough. Much more -- apart. And this is going to be an exciting 2030 that keeping congress'. Which I have to ask him did you have the promise. Larry and Tom and John it would be -- book -- -- not a lot of football left off. We will -- all the jobs out there but here's the -- that there were no conversations with the people it's it was internal discussions. With my a boss Alex about what you -- but did you. Did you read there is what I've read the excerpts sprint it's amazing guys on that carries and tell them means they like it would. Mean it's I'm not on the list of -- and -- the but it seems to me that it is certain. You sub stuff he says just that's private conversation. In the end when there's eight years while looking back and as the years. Eight great years -- very successfully -- and I. Seven and like it's and I attempts on accurate players but you know if he had a hell of a run here lot of success and he's -- -- different and that that was -- chapped about it he likes to Wear women's clothes I get rid. Yesterday I got that aren't valid that was the secrets. It would just as Lester disappoint you talked yesterday or two days two days -- over the weekend and that. We went over the numbers seventy at least 33 point nine -- fourteen races I did my job. Disappoint me no. You think that shouldn't be thinking like I need to prove that. We used to think he was gonna be Felix -- he was going to be. And he did -- quite like holiday there's no question -- can improve on and I would think he would probably won't the first to acknowledge that it can. There were some things that you saw across the field just. Have been a guy that some changes in the delivered to players and the clubs and different actions for the bridges to the strikes on him and I think resulting in the in the numbers put up. What and I do notice that he's eager to -- zone and he started making some of those adjustments to delivery towards the end of last year. And that's continued through the early throwing here and I think he's going to be a good place setting aside maybe some of the conversation he had the other day but I'm not just you hear people like us media people talk about pitching. Recently he gets them in people's -- got. It to -- result -- people but it is easy -- easier. For instance this guy has to do pitching seems oh here just. I hope the 01 of the one of the things I hope we get back to -- is keeping it simple and basic I mean it's a matter of attacking the strike zone to the first -- for strikes a statement of account. You know. Hopefully we work a little bit quicker on the mound good idea on Long -- what do you know long eagle buckles expect that to steal the number. I don't know -- jackets like 273. Seconds between pitches which is ups weaknesses. Of this. Alters. Kept pace would do it. It's a play that it's part of what we're doing and return good and a good idea -- there's an old adage of work quick change speeds and throw strikes and minutes it's been approved. Even simple. Philosophy for quite a long time so you want to pitchers to be aggressive look much better hitters and runners is going to get aggressive baseball team. On the base path yes hopefully that's the intent as far as in the batter's box we're hopeful that we're still a grind it out at bat. Wear down starting pitching. Get on base with the highest percent as we -- but I think we can press the envelope to a one against the defense. Not to say that -- turn everybody loose in the basement and run reckless. What we can be opportunistic and more importantly how to we prepare to become aware of certain situations inside the game to take advantage. Final question for me Jon Lester was so bad so toxic that the relationship between the fans in the baseball team. Really suffered really deteriorated now this is your opportunity -- change that culture and change that relationship what would you like to fans that know about what's happening this year that's. You have talked a you have my word that we are gonna work and prepare to put together the best possible game plan and given night. We gave it to make the game the most important focal point on a given day and not anything individually that leads up to -- that's the message that I hope to convey an established here. And I think that type of people that are inside that uniform have been brought and I have a track record that and I think this will be a team that will be a hard nosed team the people identify. Just -- good luck thanks for the time this morning into the conversation always good John Ferrell John Carol Dennis and Callahan live from Red Sox spring training in Fort Myers, Florida.

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