WEEI>On Demand>>Minor Details Ep. 41: Jackie Bradley Jr., Ryan Lavarnway and the pace of player development

Minor Details Ep. 41: Jackie Bradley Jr., Ryan Lavarnway and the pace of player development

Mar 24, 2013|

Two Red Sox prospects are being subject to radically different player development experiences. Outfielder Jackie Bradley Jr. has become the talk of spring training while positioning himself for a potential Opening Day call-up at the start of what would be just his second full professional season. Meanwhile, catcher Ryan Lavarnway is preparing, in all likelihood, to open the year in Pawtucket for the second straight season, his fifth full season since turning pro. The two of them take stock of their player development experiences -- with Bradley on the so-called fast track and Lavarnway being considered by some to be blocked -- in this podcast episode.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

Welcome back to another season of doubt on the farm a weekly look at the players and teams shaping the Red Sox farm system. This week well look at key Red Sox prospects. Who removing at different paces toward their big league opportunity we'll check in with Jackie Bradley junior the 22 year old center fielder. Whose outstanding performance this spring has been the talk of everyone in Fort Myers treating a lively debate about whether or not he should open the year in the big leagues or in the minors. It's pretty remarkable considering the Bradley taken with the fortieth overall pick in the 2011 draft has played just one full season of professional baseball there's a very good chance that he'll make his way from amateurs out to the big league. Faster than any -- -- position player in decades. Yet none of this seems to be overwhelming to Bradley whose first big league camp is it is noteworthy. For his comfort with the world going on off the field around them as it has been for his strong performance on it. Here he is. What what strike you as being most dramatically different from you know being in minor league camp a year ago everything. Better think that hit the league's better. The baseball as you can debate -- every day it seems -- they exposed every day so unfinished now you today but it's it's fine. Com beginning -- an -- but rather the big league guys and Tim meager watching these guys. Well I know -- I grew up watching him in and now I'm actually giving a talk with them pick their brains a little bit and interact with. What was the first thing that kind of start Q was there one person we saw sitting in here to kind of whoa that's that's a different presence there and I've -- the ones are -- lucky into your minor league camp. Well I guess the biggest wore down it was Jon Lester I didn't realize -- was that being he's a horse. But other than that big poppy down. You know he's a big this big big dazzle and you know just being anywhere on top PDAs too I heard a lot about him in high heat gets on my younger players. Of the and it would you know. Find a happy medium -- him being able to. Take it up that he did standings and are learning from -- -- Lama has been his lot of knowledge as well even though -- You know the rust out a little bit on talk with -- but. -- also help -- along give you an extra pollution attack and what do you really gotta be evident taking it and you know -- better from it. It's interesting that you point him out because he's actually from from my vantage point of getting -- -- to see you over the -- He's someone who I would I he kind of part of of his game in your game in a in a way to and it. You know he's obviously driven to kind of be able to perform at a high level on all aspects of the game. In and are great off the chart you know do you do you find that you kind of due to say I kind of relate to him as a player in terms of what he does on the field. Thumb I I definitely I -- gravitate toward him. -- I think a lot more. I'm because I am I know that he he he worked so a lot of hard he works hard -- or down. And it. He's he's able to play game at a high level. And I'm beginning to talk with him. Can tell me I mean just you know little things. -- -- hurt me and he he gives sound to me as well you know keep keep it in. You know it really has now. You said earlier in camp that you know you are aware of the tactic to an opportunity to make an impression on a different set of eyes in the one. That was within the one -- what last year you know the opportunity for the Major League coaching staff you as well. You know that the front office officials were going to see you two to a degree last year what you are minor league camp but by virtue of the fact that you do have those eyes on you. What what you're trying to do how are you trying to kind of make an impression on. I blew a -- in the right way you know -- an all time. You know -- the ground ball or you know Papa. This being able to everything the town and out. You know I could you please and it really sound arm in town and the hustle and I've been going non. You can't was away -- people are. Very first game to pop up I hit reds catcher and I mean not now and I can based out of town it. Hit the ground and it was close to be a fair crowd and -- another play was yesterday. In a routine ground ball to third base I was -- first base. And on the job I'm -- mean to say can normally. You know dazzling and you know beep us in. Are facing you know like right in. Trying to showed it. You know I wanna be it would you know -- acted a little errors and played on that I can control. And I think that probably going to be the big is. I'm impression you can make -- coach because it when everything's going good and you know it's easy to point out that the teams that he's he's doing right but when things aren't. You know going your way. You know it is also easier point out things that he's not doing right and I don't want hustling to. The -- are being -- pointed out because when you're not doing well. That usually the first thing they're able to see that to you that expression the body language and weather years you. I suppose that I know that it goes -- part of your team but the power checking that you do before the game they'll have been. An eye opener and we talked about a little bit earlier in camp. I've I've never seen an outfielder to treat batting practice with the kind of intense the that you do. What what what you're accomplishing over the course of those rounds of batting practice where you're going after out there and -- -- airing at full speed after just about any ball and sometimes. It seems that your your manufacturing plays where you like catching the ball over the shoulder being manufacturing basket catches what what's that all about. Yeah as it is definite ever really take pride in my defense and let them and I've always I've always had down. You know need to that you could be going very well. And our antique square a ball up the pitcher makes some great pitches and you like you've had a bit today if I can beat it. You gonna eat it on time more often than not you're gonna get out of that though. You know defense I don't feel like it. I'd give it a 100 and I am able to catch a couple hundred for an at a bar that I. Feel like -- should be able to catch an -- you know even on that complain about -- like that make it -- so I'm gonna try to make it can't. And you know doing that is always came in from. Been able to make the highlight plays. So what I I guess to kind of that is indeed BP I work on and you know how that means playing on the grass. I'm playing ball off the wall. But are lower from operate how my legs are feeling that David is it means and they did you not dealing. -- event but you do that be -- you know make adjustments. And that's what I've been trying to do. So it's kind of like celebrating it like it's like the guy who's shooting three pointers or something and on and outdoor court has liked throwing to. We'll figure out there now on definitely and it is a compartment routine two time I've I've been doing ever since I was in college in. In Iraq as continue to keep doing it it helps me on my conditioning sort of things. One of the other things that stood out is I feel like every time I've seen you get into a two strike count there's this bring you singled up the middle. You don't tell me about we've talked in the past about how you had that that summer after that it was a first junior high school where you cited. You are not going to swing and so there were two strikes. In terms of just think in terms to like psychologically. When you get to two strike count do you feel like you have the other guy ran for 1 -- That that that necessarily I guess it is like he he has been great really want me. That I get a chance that make a put away hits and you know I think you that I've learned. When having to strike when -- noticed right. Being able to relax and treat it. He's like another another pitch he didn't have to make another -- -- come to get me now. Whether two strikes and and I'm going to be tough out I can possibly be and my Tom got into drugs because you know I'm I'm ninety pitch and -- Or the -- and I feel like I can handle or you know do damage with -- yeah I'm willing to take that hit because he made it and it made a great -- You know I'm not gonna chase and I pitched it. You know -- perfectly placed in you know he he's he's doing his job -- and make them work a little bit. And had to try to you know final certain pitches and I'm trying to get a benefit secondhand doing and I been hit again they had to plan I guess at the middle or. It let's. Most of the time when I got two straight. What is there to in two strike approach -- mean when you do get him like are you looking earlier in count. You know maybe to ambush you know ambushed a fastball in and -- over the -- was with two strikes. You know or drive it in the gaps or something were to strike might have more of a level you know a level line drive swing or do you do you Alter at all for two strikes. Yeah if I try I try to keep my swing print your name on. You know making. Drastically change with the wing on. At -- have to like it is more shorter I like them. More own demons ranked because the he's gonna trying to make up a better pitcher or try to make his -- -- him to get you out Tom maybe with. Listing to drag you know you have room to spare so you might. And put up a little bit. Tried to and paid there and hit today you wanna make sure that you don't get beat. Well with two strikes -- kind of that you know the distance at the end of the word accountable. Get a pitch that he can handle or you know -- to count that favorably and your way and that's what I -- that would come back came my way. And if -- happens make -- -- arm. I'm down the middle or leave a ball up much in the charity initiative in the pocket. The way her up the middle. A few differences between this year much damage have been thinking about -- here if memory serves. Kind of there was. The default development debate in player development was. Is Jackie going to be ready for high AA coming out -- you hadn't had very much professional experience at all after drafted about what half a dozen games ten games. So at that point you know last last year was your goal simply don't wanna make a favorable impression and try to convince my blog and IA. I'm adding you know coming out of -- angle on the lowly. South Carolina that I hadn't had a lot of fans there and it have been like -- can -- with his. -- has been an hour and a half room. Pound you or is accurate arm. We're going to college so. You know I just wanted to you know play until then I was healthy because presidente was more worried about Maria I'm from from an injury. So addition -- -- fully completely -- my ailment in. You know that I was I was back to know me. How different is it this year though just you know obviously you made it up to double a -- you had about a half season there you. Performed at a at an extremely high level out the heart and then you know you kind of discuss how you got tired down the stretch a little bit. Numbers may have taken a little bit of a -- at the end but. You know this camp it seemed like. You know that the fault was note that a Faulk coming in was. Is Jackie going to be able to open here and -- players AAA. It didn't you know when you went people are seeing you play or a lot of people -- they. You know -- skill that that probably isn't too far from being ready for the majors. How how different is it just having that range of possibilities available to you. You hear everything's taken I can turn. But a good thing you. Young players they've -- -- the envelope thing. You know I'm not only. You know make a good impression. But I guess on a high level so that he's learning and every day. And I and I am learn every day and you know I'm trying to learn that came because they have so much you know knowledge of us to get thrown at a daily and kind of taken on in and -- that -- -- You know pretty much of -- -- -- as much like -- went from none -- the coaches with the players. The and he wouldn't you know follow them make here like. You mean like the small things like dirt stretching in our nature and I think over the -- damning you know if you have stripped behind Miami series. I hear opening conversely in them because they got that -- him and I that's how to pick up there and things and a top of the guys down that I play with is when I'm David. Topic damning and what you think about this because this is what I her and and -- that that's right there as it is gonna help me along along the way in. Further on down the road. Have you gained any sense though in terms of because of either the people we've been -- -- you've been starting a lot even facing kind of you've been facing Major League starting pitchers that at various times to bring granted. Spring training but you've also you know years and you're also around Major League talent have you gotten any and you know. In your mind of where you're just it -- -- how close you are really to be Major League ready. Well I mean I'm I'm I'm past I was worked in -- And a solid. Guy gets completely there I would probably be here but I'm not yet though and she still work hard. In order you know you -- -- -- be -- -- -- in the Major League and now hopefully I am close. -- keep working in and trying to you know push the envelope and he -- things go. Are you surprised by how quickly you are pushing the envelope are you -- have you is there has there been any point where you kind of taken sucking like I've come. In in a pretty short period of time -- what about ago. I went 21 months removed from the draft him to him but my team from when you signed. Two in terms of thinking wow this is kind of moving quickly. Found it is moving quickly on that as a good thing because you're going into the professional ball you think. You know what that type pass Allen would do I want to. You know move ahead or you know do I want -- -- -- their -- court mood when violent. I've always wanted trying to learn fast acting. Obviously and you keep progressing -- team get better every single day and it is kind of I but I never really -- a down day. You know man I am doing I'm down to on this and doing that and act cant think like that is and I know where I'm going to be and I know that I want to be in his game for a long time so I got to continuously work and hopefully and they give it some. You -- that you try to study and learn all the guys around you obviously. You know one of the one of the obvious -- been brought up to -- good a time you signed was you know. Jacoby Ellsbury is center fielder you are center fielder there's a chance. Nothing is written in zone but there's a -- that if he were to leave as a free agent after the 2013 you could be the guy following him. What's it been like working with him what have you been able to take from him in and learn from him. Tom did just with him as a team we have really active. To get the wings complete detail about you know we don't -- what they phone road north today you know I mean we so we got -- kind of just. Watch -- and to think they they ask us. In the MP a talent to want to I'm duo I'm batting -- it they -- scenarios with each other and a -- -- childhood and Aron is and how they. How to do things -- What -- their mind. When they wanna do certain things -- situation. And -- just be able to look at his routine everything of what it was the week as it you know we're not in cages in the morning. And how he goes to his routine and dusty does -- -- -- game everything's the same like clockwork and I can pretty much hit. You know do his routine that guy out -- them. Through the past couple -- weeks and is -- great in the it's hard work and it's not his area I know we got abandoned you know to be able to do all these these great things against the got to work at it. It's gonna be hearings in that because Dave joppy who was your hitting coach and double -- last year. Also had Jacoby get -- in his first full pro season in that. When one of the things and he he compared you saw a lot of similarities between you guys but he's had one thing that Jackie can relate. Kind of dropped from his what you know to Kobe does in the cage before you know in order to get ready on the -- they've -- -- -- like sounds like you've taken today yeah. Yeah definitely the guy that China you know learn and look up everything. Than anybody on. Is -- and it's been a fun experience and know what they've been in the. When last questions so. You are you become -- to the fact that you're in big league camp. You know you're no longer kind of hidden you're you know you're in plain view a lot of a lot of fans. What it would have been like to be you know to kind of be -- again because and that you became somewhat accustomed to it over your college career given the level the playing -- -- Back to back national champions and you were college World Series of these these -- not like. You were living in a security but at the same time has has this been different then then anything that you've experienced before in terms of recognition. Are known as I guess not not different count on it on the fly under radar trying to get out people. Tom radar with him because then they're paying attention he allowed more on this kind of -- to go about our business the right way and you know keep working and I pay attention to -- for anything like that I just try to keep playing baseball and Kline now I am I really am. Truly -- and finding. An injury that we've. You're not doing a very good -- enough people's radar I'm afraid to pound man hit that -- -- -- okay. And it bit loud up there though most don't Wear them but Jack keeping watch for during great document -- that. The most part to bite depictions of the contrary the Red Sox have actually been among the most aggressive teams. In the majors and certainly the American League east. In terms of relying on very young homegrown players to reinforce their big league roster having throat as many 22 and when he three year old. As any team in the fairly over the last five years. Jackie Bradley is probably going to continue that trend however there is one noteworthy exception of the teams typically aggressive approach to development. As much as any Red Sox player in recent years right the barn way is that to wait for his big league opportunity. Offensively he was considered ready for the big leagues by the middle of 2011. But you want to give him more time to refine his skills the catcher in the minors last year in with this offseason somewhat surprising signing of David Ross. He may well end up back in the minors this season though at 25 how does -- the -- way handle that reality what are his notes and thoughts on the notion that perhaps more than any Red Sox prospect. In recent years he's quote unquote blocked in his is sent to the majors. Here he is to discuss that notion I'm. When you are with -- -- sort of question can you please remind me what your area of what -- your area of study was well you're in college. As a plus -- major media and specifically what kind of philosophy did you study. More broad and then on to my senior year and gradually that I haven't. Really narrowed it down. To the field but I've noted before you love the -- of religion. Action Greek philosophy. Modern philosophy kind of a white ranch. I believe that I had encountered at some point that you had W it kind of gravitated specifically towards not towards though is that correct. Com those one of the girly things that Germany majoring in philosophy. Part of the reason why I ask is because. Met with regards to -- is Mike I find you know people often say. -- academic disciplines aren't so irrelevant to one professional life right like liberal arts colleges -- degree doesn't really match up and so with what you do afterwards although. With something like -- is -- seems like there might be. Element of it that would be you -- as a as an athlete you know specifically geared. Taught -- kind of control what you can control not to worry about other element have you have you balance. You know have you drawn on that grounding at all or is you know markets are really not exactly the forefront of your mind as you go through your professional career. Bomb. I don't know -- a I'm stoic face -- player but it'd there's a plan that -- that calm. Whether you define it that way or not of controlling what you can control and and not riding the rollercoaster of the game. Because the game. That a lot of failure built and special is a position player. And pitcher's pitches in more than not let him for them there's a lot of failures well. No more than you can avoid riding high in those markets and hear. Your personality and and your persona. And the way conflict can be. As a catcher than where do you fall into that spectrum of -- a frequent as far as you know you you're connected to the success of a pitcher which. And who should have a much higher percentage of success. Then then the then the hitter which do you do you do you which -- -- -- that do you find -- by that you're more involved in or. Or or the frustration of of the quote unquote failures and that are -- you know were hitting 300 is defined. You know complete all three out of every time every ten times at the plate is a very good out. Bomb a different take a lot of pride and a lot of concern with how the pitchers doing. -- but at the end of the day those are his success and on and on helping. Bomb and then offensively. Less important but you still go out there you try to do your best and try to perform. And in those failures are our failures for your off for the team. Calm but again if you try to you try to focus less on the -- and Juan on the x.s and hitting to really hit it 300 you you can try to can that are that a win and mom and you know you go for four with the team wins you feel like you as a catcher that you help the pitcher through that game really ticked at -- is that. And I think part of being a players finding a way to aches and positive out of every game and finding finding -- word. Where you might not in on the surface and then keeping a positive outlook and knowing that a player you are going to the next day. In that context in the way in which you view you view -- success -- -- -- you know as a kind of interesting one to contemplate in terms of your performance as a hitter. Because it was it was a year that was different from. You know from the one that you would have previous namely -- been kind of you know a twenty home run a year hitter. And every phase of the way last year as has made the transition to being basically an everyday catcher for the first time in your career. The power numbers were down beyond a numbers were elect and the batting average was still excellent. During your time in triple -- Pawtucket. Did that the numbers ultimately however -- different from your prior minor league trajectory did it feel like it was a different year or didn't do it feel like you. Were able to. Both have him approach and I keep the same approach with just different outcomes than you had in the past. I was definitely definitely different feel calm. So I got my body -- it was a different play with backs are catching on Philly area pitch differently than I have had it in the league the year before. Calm but again I -- -- -- here. I can't honor and a game which is almost double what I had ever -- before. Mom and I you know my my -- numbers were up play and I mean I was selected to the all star team. I consider the a compliment from the league. Com and I'm pretty happy with with what happened -- here. At the end of the year you know it it was during your -- -- that with the red -- you're -- -- performance there that you chuckled at various times. In you really haven't dealt with a lot of a lot of periods of a struggle for. You know more than earlier weaker a couple of times that I've I've seen it well you've been in moving through the minors. What was that challenging or given the fact that you were. That you were getting significant opportunity catcher in the major leagues I'm in near every day basis were you able who was was that what you took out of the last couple months of the. -- for me arm over the past few years the biggest question mark has been on defense. And I think that I can finally just put those questions to rest because. I have significant opportunity catch what you said and I feel I did a very good job and and the pitchers are very pleased and the coaches are very pleased. Com and I have a lot of confidence going to this here with my with my defense and not feel very confident in my hitting as well so. I feel like this is going to be a very good year and I can gullible a lot of velocity of. Then you know given that you have had that Major League effort to me at this point. In your in your professional trajectory you you were drafted in 2008 you've moved up through the ranks of them all our multiple levels. Do you feel as if you know and do you feel secure quote unquote Major League ready that you're ready for you know that you were. They based on where your player development has taken you that you you kind of took the next challenge really is. You know is approve it you know is proof that what -- your performance through the minor league is now ready to translate to Major League. And I feel confident I feel prepared and I feel ready for the test. And -- an opportunity gone and that is where the final question ways is now let me go with the decision maker. That didn't Beckett took an interest important part of that is you know is draws back to that issue you know to be approach of of who is a more controlling what you can control. It's it's a weird game sometimes where you know the one thing that I've been struck by recently to bring even just. Sometimes talent doesn't necessarily dictate opportunity. You know sometimes. Sometimes you need kind of circumstance to a line in order to in order for. You know really great players I mean I was talking with David Ortiz recently about the fact that while he was with the twins didn't get the opportunity that. He'd be the opportunity to play every day -- it was only really kind of a sport up fortuitous. That a corkum and they gave him one with the Red Sox even he didn't start as an everyday player here. To what degree are you kind of mindful of the idea that that the opportunity is something that you -- early control. And I had talked to David about. You -- kind of the same way and catering and all that that he had to -- to get -- there for his opportunity to come around. Well I believe that that we create our own opportunities and and in this in this short option is having given. I feel like if I hit a home run every at bat. You know there be another situation and know Mel Brooks through the last -- were you given the note temporary role for an injured player and you know played. So well that. You know they traded away a multiple time all are so. I've played in my ability opportunities will be given and I recognized this and I'm under about this here. About that you know given that there's this opportunity figure you're taking the approach of I can create my own opportunity was there are nonetheless any and of you know any -- surprised when I'm I think a lot of us in the media and elsewhere were caught off guard by the signing. -- David -- a great catcher someone who you know who had a very impressive career but I'm glad you know I think -- We kind of expected that it was going to be. That you might have that opportunity. Entering 2013 and you know with his acquisition. That that clear path didn't know that clear path was not -- nearly as clear it had been. I think that's true arm go to the same time David is David is a great addition to the team -- -- -- -- characteristic of us as well the physical abilities on the field off. I'm happy that it that is on our end and I think -- can learn a lot from. There is it last year you know it was it was and because when you had gotten into the grind of catching on an everyday -- you know that. Deport him I think threats that -- in fact looking for. Looking for an opportunity to create an avenue for you but it took probably longer than. -- -- even hoped or perhaps than you had hoped would do to get to a point in Pawtucket. Last year where. You know where it was difficult to maintain. The right attitude -- -- approach in which you are going to maintain kind of the outlook to continue developing as a player even though you know. You were kind of waiting for the next challenge. There's there was an opportunity to learn. And you know Varitek showed me that when he was around and how -- with them. And he was asking you might expect of our pitchers. So no matter how long you put the game no matter how -- you did or a you have palm there's always there's always an option to learning a better. But is that you know is that challenging from ecological importance when. It because you you do hear sometimes guys were going through you know in their progression in their career progression. Then there are periods where. People feel as if they've proven what they have to prove at a certain level and so it can be it can be difficult to Maine well while that may be true it can be difficult to continue to kind of. To kind of walk the walk. Mental -- planned and mental toughness and a split. It down. But I think that a few days strong. And you and you believe you can't create your own opportunities. -- -- -- -- -- One thing that people use the term put on -- blocked Wendy when they talk sometimes about about the -- and opportunity and you know to me I find that term objectionable right because people are at a baseball players aren't static he should be you know you should be progressing or you should be. You know you should be drawing it or evolving but. Is there ever have you ever experienced a moment in which you said you you've kind of felt blocked or have you been able to exhibit you know. It to maintain the potential to play in order to in order to overcome that. You review our feelings are for that offer -- and the man known all feel sorry for you you need to do. If you if you feel like you're gonna block and you need to play better because great players don't get blocks. And if if you play well enough there will be a spot for you them. Getting back to the issue of where you are in terms of your performance a baseball player what you're doing on the field rather than. The time rather than the odd or strange or optical wrote and I'm taking you down which I apologize. How well what what. Did you focus on this off season what areas of your game did you say OK that this should be an area of my development it. You know or what was it as simple as you know I'd need to get back to finding my power swing or anything anything along those lines. That you were focused on either entering either during the off season or entering spring training. The B we worked on the off season was was getting stronger arm. Night of my body went through a lot of changes last off season where you know I got sick and lost thirty pounds and in the way back and an unhealthy amount and then lawsuit against a threat in an attempt is healthy. And you know not that's not healthy progression for provided to go through a short period of time up. Com after the you know all the games that I caught on don't I wanted to get back to being as strong as I possibly could and nobody is greater and. How has putting been doing for you how important thing that strikes me for an in is that. You know. One you're behind the plate a lot at the heart of the game where you get an opportunity to work quite a bit with with the starters in with you know and with the pitchers were going to be on the Major League roster. In two bit. You know as as you say. As your defense progressed to put Murton don't really notice it anymore I mean I realize that you're probably that there -- aspects of your game where. That you fully focused on refining and you know things that things that are going to be very difficult to this -- -- to outside -- people who don't have. You know a true and are reaching understanding of catching but. You know. As a work with the pitchers I don't think that it's not as if you're. In it in a good way to meant to be flattering it doesn't. It doesn't Garner attention right -- you know when they're at their past often are are on notice -- many -- How you felt about. To where you are now having had a couple springs in the number of regular season games to work with. A lot of these pitchers how how how has that part of it been for you to bring him. We grade on. I have a great relationship with a lot of guys on the outs and and I really enjoy spending time and on and off the field. And -- and we have a great time and we're together in the game on the big thing for me is. Com you know I had to overcome that for action of being about catcher even beyond when I was on apart physically so. I feel like I need to over achieved and done beyond beyond not being noticed. Offer for good or bad or as I wanna get to a point where. I can be I can be out standing and be noticed and -- Remarkable way. In addition to being unnoticed and. The desirable way us. Right and -- -- much for taking a bit of time to to explain your player development into you know and where you EM where things are. At the -- of bring in 2013 really appreciate the time -- thank you. Ryan the bar and wait and Jackie Bradley junior or dreading this week's show. Will be back next Sunday with more as the Red -- get ready to start the 2013 season in the meantime if you'd like to offer any show feedback. Our first show ideas or have any questions about Red Sox prospect either hit me on Twitter at Alex -- Or send me an email at down on the farm at WEEI. Dot com. Think much producer had a day have a great week everybody.

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Jackie MacMullan talks some Celtics with Mut and Merloni as the season is winding down and the team is positioned to have a high draft pick.

Shabazz Napier joins Joe …

Shabazz Napier joins Joe and Dave as the UConn Huskies are honored at Fenway Park

UConn Point Guard, Shabazz Napier joined the guys for a half inning and talked about his experiences in college, his reasoning behind completing his education, and growing up in Boston.

Jonny Gomes with Joe Castiglione & Rob Bradford after the crazy win at Fenway

Joe & Rob talked to Jonny Gomes after the dramatic run-off win at Fenway over the Orioles.

Joe and Dave postgame with David Ross 04-17-14

Dave O'Brien and Joe Castiglione talk with Red Sox catcher, David Ross, who had the go-ahead RBI tonight as the Red Sox beat the White Sox behind a brilliant pitching performance from Jon Lester.

Pierre McGuire, NBC Sport…

Pierre McGuire, NBC Sports, Bruins- Red Wings 4-22-14

Pierre McGuire of NBC Sports joins the program to talk about Game 3 between the Bruins and the Red Wings. He also discusses the issue of targeting player and weighs in on Matt Cooke's vicious knee hit to Tyson Barrie.

Dale and Holley with Patrice Bergeron live from Detroit

Dale and Michael speak with Patrice Bergeron on the phone from Detroit on Marathon Monday fresh off a Bruins optional skate. Patrice talks about the B's slow start in game one, putting it all together for the team in game two, how the rest of this series might play out, and what this anniversary of the Boston Marathon means to him.

Bruins' Enforcer Shawn Thornton Talk with D&C After Game 2 4-21-14

Thornton joins Dino and Gerry to recap Games 1 and 2, discuss Brendan Smith challenging Chara, and preview Game 3 in Detroit.

Boston Marathon director …

Boston Marathon director Dave McGillivray 4-22-14

Dave called in to discuss the epic Boston Marathon.

Headlines, Headlines, Headlines: David Gregory is tanking 4-22-14

The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane. Today the guys discussed David Gregory's tanking Meet The Press ratings.

A great Marathon Monday 4-22-14

The guys opened the show by discussing yesterday's Boston Marathon and Kirk's run.

Pierre McGuire, NBC Sport…

Pierre McGuire, NBC Sports, Bruins- Red Wings 4-22-14

Pierre McGuire of NBC Sports joins the program to talk about Game 3 between the Bruins and the Red Wings. He also discusses the issue of targeting player and weighs in on Matt Cooke's vicious knee hit to Tyson Barrie.

Daily Diamond: Pittsburgh and Milwaukee clear benches in big brawl, April 22, 2014

Mut and Merloni discuss the latest brawl between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Pittsburgh Pirates

Pierre McGuire, NBC Sports, Previews Bruins-Red Wings 4-18-14

Pierre McGuire of NBC Sports joins the program to talk about the creativity of Red Wings coach Mike Babcock as well as the potential for physical play in the series.

Does anyone really miss J…

Does anyone really miss Jacoby Ellsbury in a Red Sox uniform 4-22-14

We discuss the return of Jacoby Ellsbury to Fenway Park, including why he left Boston, and what the crowd reaction will be for him.

DJ Bean live from Detroit previews Round One Games 3 and 4. 4-22-14

We check in with Mr. Bean live from the D to preview two games of Bruins-Wings action.

What's wrong with the 2014 version of Clay Buchholz? 4-22-14

We discuss the harsh start by Clay Buchholz, and how the turnaround from last season's start has been disturbing to watch if you're a Sox fan/

Rick Middleton joins Plan…

Rick Middleton joins Planet Mikey

Nifty jumps on the Planet for an hour.

Red Sox lose to the Orioles 2-1 on Opening Day

Lou Merloni did play-by-play with Joe Castiglione today and then joined The Planet Mikey Show to talk about what went wrong, and a few things that went right as the Red Sox started their campaign to defend their World Series title.

Chris Price joins John Ryder to talk the Patriots' newest acquisition

WEEI.com's Chris Price joins John Ryder and Chris Villani on Planet Mikey to discuss the signing of Revis Island

Fantasy Football Off-Seas…

Fantasy Football Off-Season Podcast 4

The 4th addition of WEEI’s Fantasy Football Offseason Podcast is loaded and ready. In this week’s conversation Jim Hackett and Pete Davidson of Rotobahn.com dig into the sinking draft stock of Teddy Bridgewater (much too their chagrin), while refocusing and emphasizing the immense scouting work done by Pete on players like Bridgewater, Zach Mettenberger, Blake Bortles, Bishop Sankey & Lache Seastrunk. Also, Jim & Pete touch on news from around the league regarding new Jet, Chris Johnson, Montee Ball in Denver and help you tune out all of the negative noise some in the media are trying to push. We’re not buying! Lots of Football love in this podcast for the Football lover. Enjoy!

Pod Man Rush: DJ Bean and Greg Wyshynski on Bruins-Red Wings

Greg Wyshynski of Yahoo! Sports joins DJ to break down the first-round matchup between the Bruins and Red Wings. Also discussed is Zdeno Chara's Norris candidacy, transparency with voting for the NHL awards and whether the Canadiens will get out of the first round.

Minor Details Ep. 79: The meaning of winning in the minors with Carlos Febles, Evan Lepler

The Red Sox' High-A minor league team in Salem recently had a 16-game winning streak that spanned two seasons. So what? From the standpoint of making prospects better and fostering player development, does that matter? Salem manager Carlos Febles (who managed Salem for the end of their winning streak, but who was also in charge of a 50-87 Single-A Greenville team in 2013) and Salem radio play-by-play man Evan Lepler discuss -- while also touching on a number of prospects in search of the next Earl Weaver and Vinegar Bend Mizell.

Chris Forsberg, ESPN Bost…

Chris Forsberg, ESPN Boston, joins Chris Villani on Easter to talk Celtics

With the season over, Chris Forsberg says the Celtics accomplished what they intended to this year. He also gets into what Rajon Rondo may be thinking heading into his last year in his contract. Danny Ainge has a plan and it'll be interesting to see how this off-season develops.

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Boston Marathon director …

Boston Marathon director Dave McGillivray 4-22-14

Dave called in to discuss the epic Boston Marathon.

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Headlines, Headlines, Hea…

Headlines, Headlines, Headlines: David Gregory is tanking 4-22-14

The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane. Today the guys discussed David Gregory's tanking Meet The Press ratings.

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Reflections on Marathon M…

Reflections on Marathon Monday and recapping the race with WEEI's Kirk Minihane

Dale and Michael talk about what Marathon Monday means for them, the tremendous amount of people and positivity today in the Back Bay, and then Kirk Minihane, fresh off 26.2 miles stops by to recap a great experience in today's marathon.

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Patrice Bergeron with Dal…

Patrice Bergeron with Dale & Holley: Expect it to be tight-fought, back and forth all series with the Red Wings

Dale and Michael speak with Patrice Bergeron on the phone from Detroit on Marathon Monday fresh off a Bruins optional skate. Patrice talks about the B's slow start in game one, putting it all together for the team in game two, how the rest of this series might play out, and what this anniversary of the Boston Marathon means to him.

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