WEEI>On Demand>>Minor Details Ep. 42: Red Sox GM Ben Cherington on the state of the system

Minor Details Ep. 42: Red Sox GM Ben Cherington on the state of the system

Mar 31, 2013|

Red Sox GM Ben Cherington joined the show to discuss the overall shape of the farm system at a time when he suggested the talent in the team's minor league ranks is as deep as it's been since he commenced his involvement with player development in 2002. The episode also features an interview with right-handers Anthony Ranaudo and Brandon Workman, who take stock of their similarities on the mound and what would prompt them to fight.

Transcript - will not be 100% accurate

Welcome back to another edition of minor details. It's been a Red Sox spring training like few others in recent memory. What in which established big leaguers have taken a backseat as storyline of the up and coming talent. Of course no one has occupied the spotlight quite like Jackie Bradley junior but even beyond him. The other camp in out for guys like Alan Webb served -- dollar us up but people hadn't really had a chance to see before. Yet even beyond the players and big league camp activity of critical importance has been taking shape on the back field of the complex at jetBlue park in Fort Myers. They are on any given day you can find numerous team officials from manager John -- to GM bench Harrington getting a look at the prospects will help determine the shape. Of the big league team in 2014 and beyond. We recently shut down its Harrington who its fourth -- calling is the former Red Sox director of player development. To discuss the outlook for the Red Sox minor league system from his vantage point. It's worth noting that the conversation took place but for a final decision with Bradley had been made. Even though. Church offers interesting insight into the decision that faces Bradley has -- the overall shape of the player development system in what it means to the organization going forward. Here he -- How much time over the course of spring training you spend it watching the Major League team verses on the back fields looking at the shape of the entire system as a whole because. It's a unique opportunity that one stop shopping like this. Yeah I mean that I wish I could spend more time on both. Is as though those stuff going on it doesn't -- Really focus on either but. You know I tries as much as times account back feels because it's it's harder to see in my earliest in the season so this from a visual standpoint. This is an opportunity for me to see a bunch of guys and today's a good example we're sitting here and there's a Major League game today that's a -- against the back that I might be on the backfield this. As I don't know Imus he's he's -- leaders' failure so it's it's a bouncing act but. I guess my farm director roots. On the towards the -- more more often. How prevalent are the farm director roots and in what you do now how much. How much did being a farm director shape your perspective on being a general manager verses how much of that was kind of and perhaps natively in your constitution. Where being a farm directors about. Building in the long term verses the immediacy sometimes of the major -- Or practical level it it's. It's certainly influenced -- is. You know. As a front victory have to be well organized -- demands people have to. Be prepared for situations that come up and all the time and create solutions for them so -- a lot of the suit daily. Practical skills that are necessary as -- GM. You learn as a partner does are there to really get training in that respect. Philosophically. I guess to some degree you know you know certainly -- primary take a long term view it very focused on. China but. Every player every staff members that meant standpoint in the best possible -- its position to succeed opened on those who reached there. Full potential. The major leagues does is -- urgency little bit different especially in Boston. Every year's precious and so. It's important to be good right now is buses and -- needed three years from now there -- -- -- now. So that bounce a little bit different. But I don't think I'll ever you know surely lose those -- One of the things that was interesting to me your first year's general manager Lester was that there were moments where certainly from a public standpoint you know structures for the team -- -- saying this has to change you need to reconfigure the bullpen immediately need to change the -- -- in the first week of the season. All that sort of stuff and you know you were able to take a fairly measured. Respect and I realized that you know for instance BO what would do the same thing it at times and prices other GMs do that but. To what degree you know to what degree does that quote uncle's farm director perspective well I used it. Well while not sacrificing the idea that every year is precious to say. Two games is not it does not a season make. Yeah I think as you get that. It's been around baseball -- I don't know because those -- -- I think here around this. For a long time. Really can appreciate the link -- this season Brian is. And the importance. Trying to time with the game look at players and writers samples so. I noted. Some of our mistakes. Here in the past I'm a statement personal things have been resolved that. Making decisions too quickly. Based on the information. Generally that's not the right way to go in baseball. There are exceptions to that. Generally the more damage they have better. Of course again or are always -- in the Major League season in Boston rounds bouncing. Again. The importance of putting this team out there. So. It's a constant balance and I think that's where the relationship with a staff and then demands that. Their needs to be. News -- a trust there where. -- -- -- Your perspective -- their respective. Sort of push back and forth. And the more healthy that push that push back and forth is more likely it Ericsson. With this year specifically in Major League camp it's been a camp that publicly and from a media standpoint has been defined in no small part by. The state of your prospects and I think it. I would argue that it perhaps the most experienced you know group of prospects that you that you guys that are at least in with evident high ceilings. In some time you know between Jackie Bradley junior Alan Webster was spectacular video -- -- some special things -- -- Bogart's getting a bit of an opportunity in camp. Has that been has that been your perspective as well I mean has it struck you as being kind of very intriguing group. Of exciting players this year. I suppose so but I guess we -- he thought they were. So for me although it's great to see some of those guys do well in. And and and understandably that's gotten some attention. In my position. I'm really more focused on the work that's been done every day. It's not as. Easy to write about it's not as easy it'd be sort of focus on publicly. But from a general manager's perspective that's what I'm that's I care about more this spring. Than any particular player. Doing well because you know that a lot of guys that have done well. We expected to and but but as as as an offshoot is returning -- nice to see young players -- and and and performance and get that kind of attention. How mindful of. Are you fit the typical trajectory of player development suggest that as as outstanding is as some of the talents look that there's probably going to be attrition -- Not all these guys are going to hit on their ceilings. This is. The name of the game and we know that in order to have. Get a bunch of good players to the big leagues helping -- big league team when we need twice that many that we think have a chance to do that. And that that's just how players -- -- -- of this sort missiles -- game and it's earlier performing at a high level at the highest level. You just you never really know they're indicators we look for things that we think we give a player better chance than another. But you never really know so. And and that. And in that respect as much as we've been pleased with the you know what some of the young guys have done. We're spending isn't just as much time right now focusing on international market in the draft and other areas to. -- -- -- because. You know we have to do that every day to give ourselves the best chance to have as many guys as possible actually show -- vaguely. Let's how focused are you on the draft given that you do have that special bacon you know the number seven overall spot that you've never really had an opportunity to. To play with that kind of -- back kind of draft position before. It was early part of my routine down here in the morning you know -- everyday is just look at the look at the new reports that men. For a minute from the day before and programs for scouting department. It's it's a fun part of that job processes prepared for the draft and ultimately. Getting after yours now saying the board and strategizing it's it's a fun -- obviously really important part of the we don't make good decisions. -- -- And this year. This is higher picked them. Normal ones and -- and higher the only hope we have for a long time. -- you know. It's a little bit different approach because. We just haven't picked the size of the pool of players that. We're focusing on spending more time and it's a little bit different than. In other years and then on a personal level. I mean -- again out the end hasn't done. Spread it. It's now. You've identified the 20072008. Red Sox being to your mind perhaps the strongest teams that you guys feel that because of the minor league depth that you had. And you really did have a great group of prospects coming up obviously how close do you have any sense of how close the current. Group of prospects the current depth that you're building used to being to being able to sustain that that level of of depth. In that level -- potential big league impact. I think the system is as deep as it's been since I've been involved. You know going back to 2000. 22003. And I first get started in player development. I think this is system is deeper than any point during that time. Whether the top -- that turns into the quality of big -- that. You know Jon Lester Dustin Pedroia had done Papelbon who feels -- -- that -- Sarah -- buckles. Turned into that remains to be seen as a pretty we did have. You know really talented group that. For the most part those guys I mention -- we talk about attrition but there is a group of guys that came through during those years that. A lot of them had you know a lot of them really did. Make it just in the big leagues and we're really good players and so it for remains to be seen is whether this current group. Make that adjustment. Quite the way the previous group did and it has the same upside as the previous group. But I think in terms of total talent in the system -- we're as strong as we've we've been since I've been involved. And you didn't even mention handling in that group that it -- to me that 2005 Portland team which had almost all of us guys except for Els Berrian -- that you mentioned. You know at once was was an extraordinary thing. Does that did that they are you mindful that that that might be difficult to repeat it's it's difficult to have as they expect. -- -- 2004 Sarasota team sort of turn into the 2005 Portland team and between those two teams this year's. It wasn't the same exact through all the time of those two teams that. A lot of the leaders. You know it's an anagram mosques on those teams -- -- There's -- it is it was a lot of a lot of pretty good big -- so. Again it it. For whatever reason at that time of that group. Eventually they did all they -- straight line. This emergency data. Had to go through some adversity and found himself and Texas's. Turn in a really good player. But you know a lot of those guys -- -- a higher percentage than normal of that group. Really did reach their ceiling and became. Could be there the health city that needs you know lock in terms of health and so. There -- we have reason to believe. A lot of the guys we have now had a chance to do that. But. That hasn't happened yet and things things can get away with again in his life. We need to keep bringing more town and and people. It. One thing that you said before is that a guy like Dustin Pedroia was not someone who needed it. A lot of quote unquote play hands on player development he was going to be a -- -- big reader and a good one. But regardless perhaps of what system he was placed him. Do you have a similar feeling and that's that's in part a reflection on his instincts on some of the gifts that he has such as hand eye coordination just. Anticipation a great feel for the game. Do you have some of the same feelings about. Jackie Bradley junior. You know I had when. Dustin was when doesn't come -- -- -- -- had a chance to get to know him more personally theory that during that time and so. Probably. Better able to speak -- I would have been better able to speak about dozens in about Jackie is because you know I'm not I was in the -- there's. I'm still getting to know him. Obviously watch him play in the field. -- can do a lot of different things I think generally speaking. You know that that the players that. The the demographic of amateur player that. Player development probably affects the lease is the very advanced house position players stands to reason that. Every other player whether it's college pitcher of high school player -- from Latin America. You know those. Different areas are areas where players that are. Writing feels good story need more adjustments from the time science in the big leagues that's where player development. Probably spends more of the time -- -- -- -- -- and advance college player that comes from really a major program was perform at a very high level. Who can play defense again on the businesses. To throw strikes are the things that Pedroia certainly did. And Bradley did the south Carolina's for this injury. -- that's the type of player that. Not surprisingly easily lose the quickest. When you get into the system and -- played about his job as little bit different it's it's it's more about prepared you know trying to help them prepare mentally. Four you know being in the big leagues in Boston. Helping them with the times. In smaller ways whether it's conditioning of the -- definitely changes. Physical makeup. After he signed an upside and there and and in so doing. Improve his range at second phase of her his running it so there's things that. You can do but there's no doubt -- players like that and that demographic. You know you're there they're they're probably. A lot further erode further along -- very much on their way already before player development ever -- them. I'm not sure -- you're aware of this but in spring training there's been discussion about whether or not Bradley should open the season in the major leagues or not. It -- Sorry to break it here one thing that I was a teacher is about in that context was with Pedroia in 2007 you guys made the commitment to. To him as an everyday guy coming off of a difficult you know and of the 2006 season in which is is Majorly trial had been. Tough he struggled more than he ever had in his life why did you commit to Pedroia at that when you had alternate couldn't sign Mark -- for I think a million bucks at the time. -- -- No I think we fell. We felt it is that is special it's really threshold questions is you can never beat. You know in every certain how guys perform. Wendy's Wendy's. Plain everyday and do is the first time. But if you if you feel but we feel that confident that a player has the skills necessary to dig a big league player. The mental toughness to get through the adversity period. And and this is survival skills and I mean by that is. You know the guy. You know guys gonna play defense is gonna make -- decision on the bases he's gonna. You know he's not asking him missing time. There are things that players do have. Help them survive that transition period the big leagues even if they're not hitting right away. -- Pedroia. Certainly had those skills we knew that. You know if there is that transition very offensively is gonna play good defense sees him make a decision on bases is gonna make contact. And we news mentally tough enough. -- he laid out on top of the fact that despite all its performance through the minor leagues. And then and then yes it's and then he gets -- more or. There's real value in committing to a young player if you leave him because. At some point. You know the best way to build the best teams is to have. Young impact players on the roster it'd -- that's -- someone getting commits them so. If if you feel confident enough that they have the survival skills. To get through that transition period there's value in committing to them. Even if you know there might be. Transition period in terms of their offensive performance. So that was a lot of -- -- -- And every player's different so I can't say that that. -- an exact same -- with another with other players other positions. That was -- general conversation back -- 200671. Career. Go through those programs. Service clock didn't enter into with him because you know based on that struggle you -- have sent back -- -- -- in the minors for the first couple of years and get an extra year reprieve region controlled them. Yeah. You know as a lot of factors. These decisions and certainly control service patrols one of them sometimes but. You know I think I think if we and again in Boston. Did how meaningful every year is. I think we've probably generally keep sort of simpler standard and that is if the player is. We filled players really ready to help us win. And there's an opportunity for them. Play every day. Then that's gonna drive the decision more than anything else doesn't. In the other factors disappear completely but. Those those things Tenet rather this morning. Finished with one last question you mentioned the -- that you guys have accumulated which is obviously. A potentially huge importance not just you know in terms of potential starters on the road right. When you face injuries during the year and he knows what was impressive about the 20078 teams you had you had reinforcements. That being the case you where are you guys in terms of comfort level of having this step where you can that you can deal from it vs -- the kind of hornets that that you have. The deepest this the deepest team with the most potential options available. Yeah I think generally rather -- You know I think. It's no secret this. We'd. Have had not had. Enough quality. Starting them recently. Guys that. You know -- chance itself you know we need it tends on their season. You know expect guys come up because. You know we haven't had. -- currently buckles. That level of a side air quality so. And that's hugely important. First because of what you said importance it is deafening and you know get -- season. But also because. That's where our next. Regular members that are petitioner from. You know it's much like a position players. You know it's it's it's. Less likely for a starting pitchers this. Jump right into the rotation. In any infancy without any big league experience whatsoever so. -- that first experiences. By coming up tickets and I'll spot for a few turns and then. And eventually. They're good enough to move and irritated and so for both reasons we -- -- as much of his we can we think we're. You know ahead of where we were last here but. You know still not where would like today and thanks so much for joining really appreciate the time they. The break you heard Red Sox GM bench Harrington saying that his farm system is deeper than it's been at any point in the last decade. We checked in with a couple of giants to contribute to that outlook. In 2010 the Red Sox drafted Anthony Coronado a six foot seven right hander out of LSU in the supplemental first round and Brandon Workman. A six foot six mountain from the University of Texas in the second round. The tour now both literally and figuratively big parts of the team's player development outlook. We're not post 2012 season was marred by injuries but the big right -- looked strong in spring training touching 98 miles an hour as a starter. -- -- meanwhile had a terrific 2012 season in like Varnado could be a factor at the Major League level by late in the year. The two pitchers are typically inseparable in spring training they go everywhere together so it seemed appropriate to interview the two of them together we caught up with the -- Training. Join this week by Anthony Renato and Brandon Workman and let me clarify that I'm looking straight up to both of you because I'm really really short both of -- really tall. To what degree do you guys do you guys identify with each other just is being you know. They really -- pitchers in BP really tall pitchers do it how much is how much of what you guys to a similar vs different terms of what you faced mechanically. You. I mean a whole lot of things are similar with us you know we. Were both very and by the same kind of game plan as far as pitching you know as far as -- stuff and brutal throws by curve and changeup and I think so. Things from from our actual pitching and obviously -- physical -- there are very similar. Brandon what do you what do you think in terms of when you look at when you look at Anthony do you see someone you know is primarily a similar pitcher where it where do you guys differ winner on the -- -- -- We take a lot of that same mindset out the mound we're both have aggressive kind of get after the hitters type mindset to attack their fastballs and -- off speed or half. Really many differences in what we're trying to do out there and how we've attacked hitters and that sort of thing we have the same approach. Now to clarify I met both of you guys on the same day your first day as professionals and you you both signed. With the Red Sox on the last day in that like minutes before about your -- imprint -- -- and a couple of hours before the deadline. If the F that you kept things a little bit exciting right up until the end. You know to do you guys had one prior experience or at least had known each other competitively before. You both you pitched against each other memory serves in in the college World Series championship game. In night in 2002009. I wanna say. Powell Howell ever called it into him out of might have been the winning pitcher in that game how much is that him. According over your friendship or relationship. In the last few years since you both professionals Brendan -- laughing I'm gonna let you answer this -- I'm well and that's. Have to definitely isn't is a good joke Brent and I are pretty close pretty good friends -- is a good joke between us you know. Obviously yeah. My team and and and myself had the better the more success than today and and that's here's -- -- it's pretty it's just a good joke because I got to win that game Redding got the lost. So we need to be just got to give each other hard time about it back and forth and we just throw things negative justice our personality the way we we're just friendship and I think but. It's good for our competitive nature you know like on the field everything we re re compete with each other that's a tower were pretty good friends off the field. That's pretty extraordinary experience that to have it that early stage of your life I mean what have you taken both of you obviously -- incredibly prominent college programs. How has that helped you develop mentally you know when -- Working with you know with minor leaguers who you know some of whom have on the high school background that sort of thing how does that help you as you progress that you're you know pitching among the best of the best. Thank you just kind of prepared as we both pitch on big stages and college you know in Omaha mall and just on regular home games you know they have. Thousands of fans at games and saying things like so. Makes it to where it's not quite as overwhelming as it might have been had we not gone to college and it comes straight out of high school. You know just situations we have put in her abductor prepared for that. You guys as he set our friends and you know you spend presumably a lot of time off the field together pitchers have that -- after all. You guys do you guys find yourself competing at things other than baseball off the field. Everything we competed everything. Mental side bets -- each other about everything whether it's video games sports games on TV. Just -- the competition upward on the field I think too so it says for accused things pretty fun and pretty I energy. And that's important this ever devolved into fights -- Now. We had some basketball games on video games I got pretty competitive. You know some feelings got hurt in those early in the spring training we moved past it. Specifically whose feelings who is who is the dominant force student in this best of and it. When you when you look at the kind of developmental path that you guys pad you know who. Starting in lol you guys were together a -- -- house with the start of at the start of Greenville. You know what Q when you look at each other now throwing. How has house press Alastair for symphony house Brandon evolved as a pitcher in the time you've seen him starting in the pros. Well I mean. I think if anybody if yes out among anybody in the organization he's made some pretty significant strides you know. Coming out of college during the whole year in in low A Greenville. It's kind of discouraging you know -- as a college guy as a competitor and everything you wanna move up and I think. But to you from where he went from in Greeneville. I mean obviously he wasn't he would throw current efforts here but then next year last year throw on the -- -- -- Miley picture of the year that's pretty impressive. To see him go out there and to compete throw strikes Roger there's a good fastball and throw cutter when he needs to behind in counts and even account so. -- -- this resonated from from one year than next pretty exciting and as a friend everything as critical -- and hopefully can just keep going and NBC. Branded from your vantage point how is -- changed and he's been pressuring. Today. Just on. Consistency you know coming out now and he's going you know -- jumping out of his hand I didn't -- it. Obviously I have from college side and throw them every day and that sort of thing there right now you know. Consistent placed on the ball where he wants to he's got great command of his off speed and you know just overall. I feel like presence on the mound it's. A lot better than what it was as you know balls coming out of his hand low he looks like he's carrying himself like he's. Expects dominated. You guys have had you know slightly different developmental paces and it you know. Anthony you you've moved out of Greenville after about a month and Brandon you spent all of that for -- Greenville but then last year. We kind of made up for some lost time you moved quickly from and a half season in Salem dominated been moved up to Portland State has kind of ended up in the same place. What did you guys learn it's you know in your professional career is about. The pace of player development like kind of you know what you set your mind as you know OK this is this is how it should go vs how it actually. You. I think Brandon -- obviously -- this -- a lot better because you really can't worry about those. You know obviously news definitely Ganassi moved often to rebuild effort here that obviously the organization has bigger plans -- the picture for us -- And then seeing things last year's dominating. Easily -- moved up a month earlier and now. Or two months earlier three or however much just -- you know on the as a player and think he'll answer this a lot -- what you -- -- body yeah reluctant to take care of what you can control you know folks again -- that are everything else take care of itself and obviously that organization as bigger picture timetable when they -- -- be. Okay Brandon give me a veteran of the Manson and -- -- Yeah -- -- to build off it's come. One of those things you really can't control how fast you move all you can do is out there and hits and pitched the best of your ability. And you know keep trying to work on things and when their organization -- you're ready to move up to the next level they'll move you -- and you know spending time worrying about and thinking about is only counterproductive takes mental energy away from your pitching him away from development so. Really all you can do is go out there and -- and let us take care of itself. That's an admirable philosophy right like it makes all the sense in the world since it's what you can control -- You're really good on it for a long time until last year you know. There were at -- ET where you could also it keeping it keeping the other part of your mind like when am I going to Portland. George was last year my first hearing Greenville I wasn't very good at. -- about alive and you know like I said that doctors counterproductive towards my season. So -- went into with the mindset. Last year you just worry about my pitching and everything else handle so. And I think I did a pretty good job of that not. Folks in are not wondering when I was in -- moved -- for your thoughts and removed. Why wasn't being moved up when I wanted to be and just kind of on their day by day and doing my job. What's one thing that Brandon does on the mound that you wish you could. Throw cutter that. He's got a cutter that he can throw and he commands really well you know -- play -- -- -- -- he barely works because it's just it's a natural pitchfork and when he falls behind one -- he's -- accounts one water behind you one of some from what he tells me you know. It states that Tutsis is able to throw to guys and and you know where guys are expecting fastball looks at fast -- and the than to. Has that -- action on it on the gets a lot of broken bats an easy outs on that helps with a pitch count obviously. And and in Jinan and walking must die so that's pretty pretty -- that he brought a cutter like I was at I've worked on publicist I don't know if it's in my Victoria. Well it's in your DNA right. Brandon -- one thing that Anthony does that stands out that you wish you could do. I feel like -- comes on the mound I did look too excited and situation -- dictate our emotions a little bit in. I think does a real good job staying even killed on the mound and you know -- you have. Trying to do too much and just making his pitches and you know at some moment trying to. -- -- Getting back to the question of what you can and cannot control from my vantage point you know just knowing. Kind of what the Red Sox MO has been in terms of the pace of development where guys when guys kind of get their first look completely camp. Both of you guys to me -- candidate to be you know to be brought into big league camp -- Talking to team officials they said. In other years in which maybe maybe if they hadn't traded for for an on Webster ruby tolerance. If there -- more innings available both of you would have been candidates to be in big league camp. Was there what was their curiosity. About whether or not you guys would get would get that invitation is non roster entities or was there and was there any disappointment that you didn't get that opportunity just yet. -- -- -- -- you know is our third year and everything both of us have had time at Dublin there's definitely disappointment I think there's you know. Rightfully so you know I mean obvious as a competitor you want to be at the highest level and so any time you think you might deserve a chance and and you don't get it. There with a -- little disappointment but like we talked about -- that's out of our controllers. Decisions have been made and and things that we don't know about you know and so. We just got to embrace we will we have renowned and make the most opportunity here in my early camp and and just realized the reason that we're not there and try to focus on those in and turn those weaknesses in the strikes announced that wayward we're in a position where they can't. They can't put us in a position the next time that it comes around. -- -- that's that's why you two are good friends Tennessee I'd these sorts of things. I guess speaking generally how much you know how much do you guys benefit from the idea of there's there's a pretty good chance that both of you are going to start the year in Portland. And how much does benefit from the idea of being able to you. You know to compete with one another -- you know but to work with one another as well -- -- had that experience together in which. You know you have a a decent understanding I would think -- each of its mechanics -- what what's what's helpful when you're going well and you know that sort of thing. How how beneficial. Is -- is it to have like these friendships that are forms. Over the course few minor league career. And in terms of your professional advancement. Book you know we come. Your -- -- play catch their every day and all that sort of thing so when I'm not going to write one officer you know. Or the other one it's easy to see him go to lookout and saying yesterday. You're darn changeup well playing catch and it looked like this today it doesn't look like you know and target each other little pointers on. You know what makes our stuff to work and -- You know what our mechanics or -- things are going well and you know it's nice to have the same guys they've done with for years that you can. You know -- that would that knows you and knows what you're trying to do out there. Implement. -- on -- just we set and a lot of people make little comments he notes and the organization of auto work when I was -- now is working out together is thrown together. But I think it benefits a united like prince and quickly touch with -- almost every day is so. What some isn't necessarily work -- -- we've -- both know each other in and out pretty well. President hey listen you're just get behind a ball a little bit Arenas earlier tangible order a focus on this earth and we both kind of feed off that it from each other and the latest that we compete with each other -- and we're still good friends and everything obviously we know each others. The other ones are competition you know we're so trying to -- other better and try to help each other out Thompson -- it is it definitely helps us markers I think. Just be clear there's no busting out of of a ring or there's no like wearing of of burnt orange or or purple and called him in each other's company. Annan we don't we don't do that I definitely dollar barrier around him I think I might have showed its nobody moderate rejected my offer to see the ring I'm not -- -- forget. But that we now we don't we don't really talk about this how stuff because. I mean I think we know the answer is pretty straight up a little happens so. Now we re just we keep that our our competitive nature and we at least try to focus on things that we can do now on and in future. Brandon you can take that. Obviously won the game thing comes out. Or does this has been great I really appreciate the time degree talking about the -- thank you. Thanks to Anthony Varnado and Brandon work and as well as bench Harrington the -- early season kicks up later this week. And in addition to this weekly program will once again be offering daily updates from throughout the minor league system. At the full count blog on WEI dot com book market and come back again and again and again. And as always feel free to get in touch with me either by emailing down on the farm at WEI. Dot com. Or hit me on Twitter at Alex beer. Thinks is always to producer pat OJ happy Easter everybody.

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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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