Jul 9, 2013|
Red Sox catching prospect Blake Swihart and Red Sox minor league catching coordinator Chad Epperson join the podcast in order to take stock of some of the more intriguing performances by Red Sox minor league catchers in 2013. Increasingly, the position represents an area of organizational strength.
With the Hot Stove season heating up, and the winter meetings just a week away, Rob Bradford and Alex Speier discuss what is left on the catching market now that Brian McCann, Carlos Ruiz and Dioner Navarro have all agreed to deals. Of particular interest to both Bradford and Speier is what may await Jarrod Saltalamacchia.
FOXBORO -- WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Chris Price recap a miracle comeback by the Patriots Sunday night over the Broncos.
Welcome back to Week 12 of the NFL Season and this week’s Fantasy Football Podcast. This week, Jim Hackett and Pete Davidson review the hottest names and questions trending throughout Fantasy Football including Shane Vereen, Wes Welker and Julius Thomas and all of the Fantasy Football opportunities and implications in this Sunday Night’s Pats vs. Broncos game. Also, Jim and Pete take an in-depth look into Pete’s Starts & Sits for Week 12 and tease what Rotobahn will be up to in the upcoming offseason…
Rob Bradford and Alex Speier examine all the off-season moves on the Hot Stove Show. Rob and Alex also catch up with Rangers hitting coach Dave Magadan and ask him about the Rangers acquiring first baseman Prince Fielder.
Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)
This week we're gonna take a look at some of the developments with catchers in the Red Sox minor league system for years and years it seemed as if there was a conversation about. Whether or -- the Red Sox were ever going to be able to develop someone capable. Of shouldering the load after Jason Varitek moved on from his seemingly eternal role as the everyday catcher for the Red Sox. Well. Varitek has moved on at this point to and obviously Jarrod Saltalamacchia ended up being the solution. But beyond Saltalamacchia the red sex now he would agree to a promise throughout their -- leaks as some at that position. In particular this year's been impressive for the standout performances. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- As well as Christian Vazquez and double they're putting together two seasons there really do potentially suggest. Futures is as perhaps every day mutually catchers. We'll talk with Red Sox catching coordinator Chad Epperson about the state of catching in the Red Sox come but first we'll check in with white -- down in Salem. Why -- relatively new to -- you only picked it up in high school. In the last year represented. Really his first extensive exposure to the position. So it's worth asking how different is it to be of a second year pro catcher as opposed to having had that first exposure. To the everyday roles and responsibilities of doing so last -- Greenville. You know it's a lot different my first you know I didn't know what to expect but you know her -- And -- -- -- this year I knew what I news do Ari do you audit ready player. Keep the play corner or if you gain -- army -- in place here and I'm a bit -- a lot more apparent I was first here. What was the most difficult to what was the biggest challenge that you face in that first year because you know I have to think it. You know from from the simple standpoint of how different professional stuff is going to be across the rotation. Theater probably seeing working with a lot of different bit this has brought a lot of a lot of first time things that you're experiencing. As a catcher in your career when you're in Greenville after having been drafted out of high school. Yes that would mean -- alert out of you catcher had never looked up or slide. Learn how to call pitches work situation where. Where to reach sleep all that so. I mean I'm just trying to perfect and now I can only -- and every day. As much of a challenge as it was that first -- where there -- birdie any because you're athletic enough to play a lot of different positions right. That was one of the things that got talked about there were some people. Who wondered are the Red Sox going to develop like as a catcher. Because that might slow down a development -- could have hit it as another position. Was there ever a point in Greenville last year or for that matter -- in Salem this year. Where Utah where you thought band I did not know what I was signing up four point when I jumped into the idea of being a professional catcher. No not at all army. Reportorial. -- to trapped in the catcher I believe. You know it's actually see it that naturally. The next problem at work are there. And they change partners which is our position right now people are. You started catching in high school that was something that you made a conscious decision I mean you sought out training I believe the Albuquerque baseball academy. I'm in order to in order to develop that skill why. Yes I did I. Why some former senior year. What -- so uncle facilities there and work out by catcher. I think my dad died Friday or or darker baseball -- -- work -- owner in the dodgers' organization and it is scheduled to learn learn from and then do what's record due to recruit there or you know -- -- -- -- -- -- at third base. -- architect like to regain sector. Here. Did you find it to be it was it was it a kind of a match for you -- your skill at the baseball player or for your personality -- for both. I think it's provoked. Me. I think complaining apparently utility guy and I think I. I think my personality of -- Are hoping that everybody being willing are they are gorgeous in their yards so you know your leader a finger -- is it different. In that first year in that first professional year that you had in Greenville what was the one area that most challenging you know you said it -- generally learning you know learning to be a catcher. It in in its entirety but was there one thing that was just punishing -- you know just like. Blocking drills were on a date that you quote -- have off they're beating the snot out of you with balls in the dirt that sort of thing. -- Well -- said they -- -- troubles they got to learn. Was reading that it's like yes -- are also. Being able to where we're both worked out for a second day. I mean if -- perfect but we're not exactly you're Brokaw users or I left right arm you know -- -- As well. It's been my biggest improvement I'd say is we'll work force that -- Then coming back in the spring training this year you know the one of the good things about player development -- mechanical things is that a lot of times. You get to advance with guys who you've worked with before. How different was it for instance catching guy like Henry Owens. The viewers you know obviously we've basically been connected with I think you both were on teen USA together when you're in high schools that correct. So you know you've obviously had had a longstanding history how different is it for you catching Henry Owens now than it was a year ago. I mean. If you ask -- yourself heating value of any situation now. Runner on base whatever I know exactly what they want apparently want to throw. Like Ali lit up that dummy site down their justice PNC. Dispute in the Czech the hitters had a little bit. Eight it says it's pretty amazing -- I can pick up what he wants when he wanted the big difference from. Look at -- and AFLAC all American game. I mean it's just -- informed -- that UK history teacher -- street rhetoric or. One of the things that did it has struck me is that when we you and I talked -- the last time that we talked was just sometime in the middle of spring training. Entering last entering the 2012 season. And at that point you said you know what I've never really had a home on the baseball field because if if memory serves replica is allowed to move all over the place. How different is it just going through. A season going through basically your professional baseball life. With everything being you know with with that kind of security with that knowledge that every day you're showing up. Whenever you're going to be in the lineup it's going to be as a catcher. -- -- -- I mean it's it's like -- -- what you gonna do what are your play well I mean I just like you're on the new planets is the Specter so. I mean just blow in the air knowing your catcher in the east China UW lead on you've got to be the coach -- pretty much. I think the best per person learn from assert that whatever -- orchestrated -- -- and and -- just -- like I mean I got atmosphere. Was this spirit that anybody there. How much interaction have you had with Varitek to point. Talking silent spring training and it came out the Salem couple weeks ago its first series in our park everyday about. He gave -- How helpful is it to have a guy like Ameritech grieving like a Chad Epperson Europe. That they're catching coordinator in the Red Sox system. Who would not only guys -- were catcher has professionally but also switch hitting catchers who kind of understand the workload the different elements that you're managing. Also for being there to support -- whatever works in her. I need something answered -- -- all -- -- text -- and well me out after being. Right there. Comedy called republic. Once -- week. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Talking with Red Sox catching prospect Blake's wife heart. This year you've been able to play a lot more than you did last year I think you're almost at the same number of games played at this stage of the season that you played. All of last year as as a catcher behind plate. How different is that how how intense is the workload. Or do you not feeling yet physically. Off on a little guilty yeah -- feel. I mean like Islam better this year I'll actually happened was working on both our first years ago they -- Wear down her purse here that -- -- gains. Just keep experience while that this year. They in -- muscles are little I'm on what you know. These cardinals we gains in because of that acting like a morning group really gain more control of the game just like. From just idiots that are out of -- our morning group there. I I was going to ask to what degree is it is -- offense different this year toward degrees your routine to the you know kind of different this year than it was a year ago in terms of being able to manage. You know. Getting ready to hit right -- getting ready you had like -- left handed catching. And to in what have you -- about where you are as a hitter this year vs a year ago. -- Sadler in Cutler had a these are my approach actual ball close -- without. The other what they -- these -- topics you know. And now I had to learn I had to learn arrow to get approach Cutler. In. All that so I mean I've improved a lot there in my approach is -- my -- election is a lot better. There is a big improvement but I keep. With regard to -- with regards to your your season -- professional development. And how closely has has what happened in your in your professional career aligned with your expectations of what signing in turning pro is going to be like. In law I had a lot of help now treaty on Saturday night at east lake yeah that's a big old eight bit or what to expect a lot of -- It's apparently or by Brad inexperienced retreating well. I don't -- or Oprah or so before the fact that they were willing to talk. Talking only be realistic about -- -- -- all the liquid or wherever. It's what it's like the ark -- it's a lot longer term. Any you know you were you were obviously a huge University of Texas. In -- -- -- even before you were a commit -- you know even before you -- you had committed to wanted to get to play a scholarship there. Have you ever had any moment of like in the middle of the whatever ten now her bus -- saying. Mean that would have been kind of way to go to school. I never I mean you can't look back evening out or -- is certainly liked this. They're little like in this bill we. -- I never thought I'd never looked back on I. They'd rather make the most of it because our look back -- let -- -- -- -- -- fireworks are called upon -- -- level. Global all I have to go through anyway. -- you would probably have to. Go ahead I'm sorry. Yeah. Yeah it really is interesting because. As the the phenomenon of catching like has a different development path oftentimes so that even a guy who's -- a pretty advanced you know catcher coming out of college. May still have to sort out its single they -- is that another position. You may have to start at Heidi you may you may have the opportunities are high like Jackie Bradley did last -- something. It of it is it is also interest and revisit that though I realized they don't look back but you would've been draft eligible after this season Texas correct. Yes I will be an alternate structural -- Right so you know so -- saw you kind of have that opportunity like take stock of where you are in your career. Which is obviously you know playing at a pretty advanced level -- -- high EA and say you know this is. And here's where I am vs having been at Texas and kind of getting ready for the draft and it stresses. Yes that Miami. Like a man Irvin. We know we don't have experience now nominee what approach. Why maturity according -- Where are what are the areas of your game at this point where you're hoping to see the most progress going forward. I mean honestly everywhere know that -- everybody that what I can improve everywhere any catching. It will actually blocking balls don't eat up every -- -- -- and so -- partisan who -- here. That's a much better universal response then those have been Tim if ever when responded nowhere I'm fine with where I am. One thing that does that is interesting to me I know fit in in Albuquerque in high school you know you had a reputation as being a guy. Who who hit with a fair amount of power. In he's in Salem is a tough hitting environment and the Carolina league to be tough home run hitting environment. And you -- that's the same time you're average has been excellent to hear -- on base has been excellent -- here. You've got you know you've got two homers at this point here is that something that you care about. I mean. Really no ego and his -- dropped. Are pretty impressive scene there like OK they thought about it let the fight already able it -- isn't it publicly what it's all. I doubt about it. Because of where we play. The way to market the balls are there so I'm not to worry about it -- So at this stage you know are you starting to our -- now that you kind of have developed routines now that you started to kind of understand. You know understand. How to improve your game and also. You know the direction that you wanna take your game does that start to make the idea of moving up the player development matter more realistic. That's me and everyone else so I just had to be able to do what I do when he's been there and I -- And accurately. You know I hope it -- I don't know. At this point is there anyone -- game whose whose game you you would you model your own after or who you would like to kind of resemble as a player. Honestly though I mean. All -- or anything they're awful but nobody. Dug out there -- around my experience actually almost lower so what will that they've never gave up four I don't. I honestly don't know enough yet -- -- actors you know look fort. -- -- -- how to act like what how they're -- is developing and I'd rather. Do my coaches omitted doing and learn to be like myself. What an interesting thing that you know at this young part of your professional for your party had an opportunity get feedback from Varitek you've already had an opportunity to have. The guy like you know a guy like -- you know put eyes on him. -- -- -- One of school she yielding just one day we hear from the -- over that you'd better. Just be clear here which -- are we talking about -- touched his current pudge Rodriguez. Yeah that's a good one man well I guess they're both pretty good ones and their own right no doubt. To me it's always so it it there really isn't -- -- to think about how development works with catchers because. You know you'll almost have to be. A community unto your cells can mean is is that notion reinforced. In spring training you know do you guys. Another third always been a tradition of you know of bear attack in some in the other Major League catcher is taking out basically every catcher in the organization. Is there's still that kind of that dynamic that -- you know group amongst themselves. Oh definitely I mean I can sort of partially Blair. While my back will lower my brother I mean you're. Optics is very old Ahmad at page in I don't live on the block it and look like they're there but I doubt on under an -- The last is -- and help each other -- You're named an all -- this year -- in for the Carolina league California League all star game how much does that mean to you. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Thanks very much for joining Blake really appreciated it -- You've now heard from Blake's wife -- who may well be the Red Sox highest ceiling catching prospect. But he's not alone in having a terrific 2013 campaigned as someone behind the plate. There are other in the system who are all are having standout years in various pass of the game. -- you'd be hard pressed to find a person more eager to talk about some of those performances the Red Sox catching coordinator Chad Epperson. Personal works closely with all the -- throughout the minor league system in hopes of helping them. It against their games and he's seen a considerable amount of progress over the course of this season. Would discuss a few different catchers. But first and why heart was someone who represented something of a project or -- player with a considerable amount of development work in front of him. When he signed with the Red Sox after being taken in the first round of the 2011 draft. Will start there what has had a person seen in terms of why -- step forward in the 2013 season. He was more in our scouts were were dead unless I mean obviously what you just mentioned there's limited time on the plate as high school. You know career too -- it just -- they have let -- -- as. Don't you made a point to me that he only caught a couple games and those are against teams. Is coached. Teams were running and actually put my on the plate the other tries to put shorter so are added so that was very limited time -- play. But our scouts do and it's -- not. To say this kicking get it immediately know is that well as citizens -- this kid has all church make up. Though there was no doubt that money got him what he came here -- they were that army you'd be taken through this. -- program the Red Sox cap -- that tell -- he's he's adapted to a well. And -- it's almost with -- why argue that this say OK listen. -- you saw him point eight -- -- and he wanted to move part of national and that's how what was this cute or so. Still kudos to those guys -- mean they were right dollars what destruction of -- we all knew we could swing the bat handle it. And he's just he's done a great job and what a great -- make a plot to charge them in this guy's always. Bringing that consistent demeanor and approach to the park daily. The trust is routines I mean as is routine and eighty's he's reaping the benefits from now. Touching such a highly technical undertaking you know there are so many areas for for refinement and and improvement that are just you know so difficult to appreciate you. You know to those were unfamiliar with it where would you where would you identify the areas where granted technical areas for Blake has gotten better since he got hands on. Well is receiving obviously it's a the biggest thing -- source when you get. Averaged above average archery so you know that's their formats in the back pocket you know put the receiving in the blocking ability. Is that the base -- that you can or spend a lot of time what may have and that downgrading their armor this'll work and exchange amid all that test flight. But he really -- Omar receiver because it's duke kids are coming out of high school and even college. You know that the stuff they're pretty good attitude. At times it's it's great to -- movement. He -- sliders a little bit crisper than though want to contract school. So it's been AWD's got comfortable into it into a setup where they can handle all the pitches in the strike so. Great drama that circle. It's the opportunity to work with some of my cameo and you know six foot seven lefty who's not who's got stuff that that moves that time. You know -- is that just kind of an instance in which OK you're getting thrown into the deep end to the real test. Yeah it is you know fair that's fair this is whether what they do it. You know it you find real quick because that mentality of people try -- play especially for the ball stretch processed either so. He owes some of these -- may now have their best performances are on the plate that they thought they were born to when they came to the ballpark that day. But little do they know it walk off that fill that mentality is what we see and we know that they're going to be a decision they're going to be just fine back there. Why is that Florida is an important and catchers you mention the fact that he moved all over the fuel -- kind of a little bit Buster Posey is as an amateur you know just in the fact that. He was a guy who played third base or outfielder you know basically you. I'm sure that his high school team probably had him playing up the middle after they wanted to as well why why is that Atlanta is an important behind the plate. What is important at all it is they'll do you know to catching be enabled you know. Outs on all block and a ball being able to regroup and recover if you will after blocks. It's great it's the -- support the short track at a guy like myself. I'm pleasure over I mean these guys are our athletes are horses corporate Q well certainly these guys in its very important. To be able to have those and as a shortstop you know we get -- -- -- got a short our hands but. You know you very seldom do you see people when they present strikes or catch the ball -- salt and how easy I mean this all or that network so that. You'll pitcher wanna throw to you know they don't want to chip they don't want to slow partly these -- -- a bind to a guy. Some energy that athletic that they can trust that they can -- split finger with a runner at third. So is very important. A couple of things stand out you know I'm not I don't have the opportunity to he Blake on a regular basis so I work a lot by just looking at the statistical profile. For me a couple of things stand out from afar. What is the fact that his his caught stealing percentage is gone way up this year. -- -- he had a solid one for a first year pro cut 31% of guys trying to steal on him this year that's all the way up to 43% which I think I'd be leading the Carolina league. -- -- why is that happening what what what are you seeing happen in terms of his development it's permitting that. Well I do know -- reorganization. And -- from law and and Cheryl to Ralph. And -- pitching coaches we've made it Heidi it's very conscious effort. -- Get our pitchers quicker to the point. Com and that that's and that's a big -- and toward you know -- -- the importance -- you know as a pitcher Nolan. Other brother -- with a guy at first base second base so we we have a pound this into the pitchers. And they're open sessions and and then leading so. That's first -- they're -- -- -- he has so well above average arm the F let us citizen that we've talked about this school work. He's he's had to adjust. And the global thing that the what went to start up which that are -- And short matter there's a lot of gaining ground torture target. When playing those positions while throwing. Here we wanna try to be in your feet underneath that and get it off. And he's been able to adapt to that -- just -- that match that's a big reason or -- I mean. Knowing that he is not the losers are straight and shorten up what worked it's been huge for a -- -- the pitchers and making a conscious stripper. Are being quicker to the plate. And it doesn't always let's be quick to put them actually open looks -- -- been huge for all of our -- rubbish which played well. Air a little adjustment -- let them make what is what works you know he's. She and about a trauma. Look at a -- times is seen from Blake at this point. -- it can range or maybe he's not scared to step into the one -- at all oh and he plays probably. -- comfortably in in the low 19. You know. It's a news start to go over 195 beauty from. And -- you know. Maybe Russian and this is just look at a reporter just watch it may do little to ramp up but when he's comfortable he's brought in frustration at he's. In the low ones aren't. And and so just to clarify like 195 -- is would would qualify as Major League average -- we're talking about a guy who consistently. Is that average or above average in terms of his side in terms of bet on the throat and on to second base. -- time. -- And with the other thing that really stands out about Blake to me is the fact that he's already cut sixty games last year he -- 66. You know there's the guy who's now being Entrust with the pretty full size workload. While -- now while playing in -- Salem. Why is that happening what's allowing him. To -- because that that's typical that not bring usually how you guys have approached you know most of the guys coming up through your system they've often had. You know they've -- split time behind the plate at their earliest levels professional development. Why is how is Blake able to what what you're seeing from Blake in taking on this considerable workload at this stage in in why is he a guy who's who is able to withstand it. Well I I. I think it all comes out offseason. Program and what the trainer support restrict has put in for this skit. Being able to live by that swear by they know the organizers are trade -- -- as you note that he received from the David -- industry -- that they follow that program. Plate it is you know there's no issues with the -- of course that he spoke program. He'll -- this body has built to. I would say and dirt whatever needs to be down from the -- I think the all important. In my in my point of -- are in my believes that these guys start getting a bigger workload. -- the earlier level as opposed to later levels and I think. Deal to look her right -- away you know he took the bulk of the catching. Really the first time. And AAA flasher. And that kind of wore on him a little bit so I think we done a good job as the organization of understanding the importance of do we don't want it Juli is definitely wanna make sure we're we're not running him into the ground that there are shown the ability. You know -- know -- GMP -- stay within their mechanics. Let these guys run -- this is quote go to our judgment so. Not for everybody we have you know such guys here make sure that we're we're keeping them afloat but it. You know guys like that skiing guys like. Which -- -- that are -- as much Rodham Clinton and we keep a close side -- but it. We will make sure that the or get network. Are you don't want to train for a marathon by turn by running -- -- basically. Absolutely absolutely I know so. And once again that's almost back to the port cities guys and how they work and then our our straight guys are -- There are these guys Moxley -- -- short program on out there early mass -- body weight every thanks so I mean there's just not let's run him out there Thursday map it to match that you though. Keep -- he's got some real. And then offensively how would you describe his -- how would you describe his his development over the course of this year obviously you know statistically he's he's made. He's made -- -- -- four of us -- yet to 62 with a three or seven on base. In knocking Greeneville this year higher level. Tougher league offensively and he's hitting 276 with a 358 on base but he seeing from the sky player when he's when he's got a baton hand. Well what he's got a -- strangers -- you automatically eternal watch because he's one of those guys that you know he's gonna graduate greater baton. Yeah he's not gonna get that's way too many times. And it is it's weird for for the list actors. You'd see him right in and you see him left and analysis which hitter and talk to the most switch hitters. There's always that what side you're like man Alicia was at the other side today you know because you don't see this yet and there's no fault or meet the acting church that. Just -- says well I -- or -- in the on bounds so EP that much you mean this guy gives you an AP all time. He's been worked very hard and adopt -- Department that is because -- such an apartment and has done a great job hires with. Establish -- new -- changed. And and these kids kudos to make it to get they've run what's wrong you know these guys that it buys into it in the east. Is certain. Tammy certain number or you know they don't have -- productive. You mentioned the routine how difficult is that for -- in and you've experienced this obviously but how difficult is it to define a workable routine. In that allows you to stay on the field and healthy without running yourself into the ground if you are a catcher who needs to worry about two different -- Well that's that's itself art and you know BB has got what -- made great state. You know so these routines don't have to beat a team met some interchange maybe. You know comment Eric potentially reach idol Pete since we've reached I don't know on the flip through your help. You know all of it were were actually spirit or warrior already so -- -- -- to clear our position where he -- would -- it. And the coaching I -- eight -- and that number one priority. You know when you're on the field -- -- want people that bad -- I can catch he's a good -- -- -- is -- that -- and separate. You know -- that torture all the police and trust in the world when -- aren't. Is it fair to say that catchers probably have a different there should be different expectations for catchers developmental progression because. They're development over -- is going to be a little bit different -- that for say you know third baseman in his first year in Greenville or something. Yeah army obviously there's more to take on IM MI but which I don't wanna downgrade any other position but in my believes there is that. You have there's just much more demanding -- here in every play you're you're you're calling the pitches. I mean all these other players on the field watching these two love me so you really break it down I mean these guys just to be on her game -- and you just can't come on -- real focus which together deep compared then. That's the biggest thing we try to feature -- -- the new draft picks are coming or. This commitment from another organization that. Nurses or change you know. It's not re installing -- definitely like she just followed his coaches we Campbell make adjustments we have to. Our I believe that the successful as a virtual track record and you know guys -- have both been able adapt to perform well. Talking with Red Sox catching coordinator Chad Epperson. Let's talk about about some of the other guys in the system as well -- my heart is obviously having an exceptional year. A guy who's turned a lot of heads starting in spring training and Christian Vazquez. You know people all of a sudden you know I think by virtue of his exposure to big league camp this year the fact that it was on the forty man Ross are people got to start taking stock of of his really standout defensive tool. You you've seen it for awhile tell me about you know tell me about who as a catching instructor what's it like working with the godly Christian Vasquez. Then and it's -- great. Even from the Ehrlich ornament you would realize we signed the credit seventy years old. He you know even today as we speak -- of people and the college senior maybe I mean he's that the double A level to what he's done. He's performed at the you know an air -- Foley he's gone typically can't be on the for Iran certainly. This thing you know what you organization we will look at that ministers. Typically. I -- it been drafted this year as a side end so there has been some. You know. Noticed that progress in the early going which has. You know natural or audio on it as a seventeen year old right. -- actually pretty always questioned the actions. I mean not just -- arm but he always question the actions with the the globe PO which question actually. Blocking ability and -- just -- to the like where you could sit there and oh yes right just kept all the sudden a light went on -- that this guy continues to form. Edit it everytime the stage is charted -- he breakthrough came our. And there's always shall there and take him in the -- Eric culpable are all he got what you call your -- I can -- or. You're turning the page in that I would call. -- -- partly it. Now it's consistent. It's good. He understand. And he understands what it takes now to beat beat we're not talking. Our broker or talk to gather at their ability beer for our guy. And eat the understand that. Has been unbelievable Alaska Biersch. In his game on port. There have been there're -- value greater -- who say that he has the potential to be a gold glove caliber catcher behind the plate. Do you that. Well I don't put anything pressures you know anyone anymore I mean it nightmarish game I mean I. -- -- Eritrea because not seeing this guy where he was so worried now and you know I don't know -- said that when he was seventeen net. This guy's -- vehicle but catcher. But there's nothing that he's doing now the last couple years -- says he could go. Through the corporate work ethic in and actor Robert. You're not you're there in spring training when he had the in the craziest throw I've ever seen in my life and I think that you're viewed that to you reviewed the film on the video audit. Cut tomatoes he -- was the craziest or you'd ever seen. What was it he threw it he has Honda's second time on throws like 177. Or something. Euros or seven and you. It was sort of server I think he might be to Mexico -- -- 176. So well. That would dictate from multiple sources so. Joseph obviously that ability is all the charts I mean that is you know something that not everybody's -- what a year older the good thing about. -- and I continue to sell them that it. You know he is very competent years prairie I'll vote that ability to do what he does -- patrolling in control they try to. And doesn't. He doesn't get away from the Irish people walking it would be a good what is blocking and receiving game calling their truck with that pitchers. On the mound and do good here's what Detroit and that's what makes it's special match while access I don't put it bank are. It is really interesting because he's one of one of the few people who I've ever seen who just carries himself in a fashion. That just that he knows he can change the course of the came while sitting behind the plate I mean there are those guys who who. Kind of who kind of carry themselves with this you know with his great partnership with with pitching staff. In to secure their trust in you know in Dave Dave recognized that that partnership is what changes the game. And I get that -- investors get that he loves working I and that he loves working with his pitching staff. But this is the guy who who have a huge arm. And really enjoys the opportunity to just. Shut down what other teams can do on the bases and -- potentially change the course of an inning or game what's that. No doubt it and that's the most important thing in and I see this too much. If you can break it down in real quick. You get a guy that's on the mound and it's an aid to any damage let's say two outs in the are reaching out -- -- -- Turks. Everybody in the ballpark knows about almost -- well maybe that go to the left well that are going to be the pitcher. You know it is in and Betsy -- Taylor -- hooker Booker because if you walk and so what. I got it. Any discussion not fastball he -- the -- -- you take him understand -- rhythm. Maybe -- actually maybe -- over maybe equally over the top of it you're out there. Those are little but usually the courage change. And the pitchers know it they -- yeah you're right electoral are all here at Milwaukee. You can be out accurately church going so it is there's little things like that they probably aren't in the churches -- and stuff like that. That game between their lines that you Will Arnett pitch by pitch in which that we talk about org or where. But stranger game changer and that's that's what makes it's special are true. -- Chris investor has been interesting in terms of his offensive production at the double -- level obviously facing events pitchers he's only 220. We're still young for the level. Batting average has gone up and down at different -- here right now it's sitting. You know close to 250. On base has been excellent he's struck out you know he's basically walked as much as he struck out. For the entire season a guy with you know kind of mid three hundreds on base percentages. And you've seen him since that time when he was seventeen. What is offensive progress been like when you talk about him being a front line catcher potentially is he going to have the offensive skill that has stated that. I think you well I I think this is the part of mr. Hayward Israel are out there -- competence and trudged. Like he does on the plate and you know this guy is 1819 home runs or maybe all -- -- to where. Senior debt on -- as a as a as a twenty year old in Greenville in 2011. Absolutely so he you know the power is there and you just don't walk into special baseball. In eighteen home run to power this appears it's in there it's just give it to trust and eat the one thing that. -- dust very close team and it uses a piece if you watch catch nursing goal. Given that actually it doesn't give two or three actually like maybe keep it is you know. Earlier in his career. This guy's always competing as a batch. Well I think the most thing that Jimmy's -- an honest guy is apt that cultures to take two's wings aggressively. And just -- quickly yes like catcher that's supposed to maybe our -- a lot -- it jail so. There's no doubt the -- -- that it ability to hit alt -- ball all part of the ballpark as there is just getting this got to trust -- and it will there's no doubt in my mind you these cities to do that bet. You know not so. You go where other. You know he works are what they're not eating you'll you'll the numbers shall Peter always say. What you're supposed -- at the end of the year you're going to be there no doubt about so these are seventy to eighty -- is number will be here. Talked with Chad peppers and Red Sox kept catching coordinator. I'll ask you about one Alaska could keep you on the phone all day basically better because their mother interest in guys. Whether it's a -- butlers of the world we showed great great talent behind the plate. Among others in in your system but -- the barn where you mentioned him earlier in the adjustment that he faced to a full time catching workload something he's talked about candidly how he. You know he he got to run out of steam by the time he was up in the majors. In the last six -- a week of last year. How would you describe you know. Taking stock of your entire experience with -- of -- way the many years that you've been working with with him. How drastically different is he when he's behind the plate now vs when he started you know for -- started in his professional development. And you were first working with him back him you know 2009. He got this Tuesday. Complete takeover from army from more and biscuits. A varietal partly opened the first the earlier so it it's like I'm honored by anything that nobody. This guy could not get down in the squad. You know 43 pitchers more last. Bargaining. You know he just -- Beers. Flexibility industry fought the proper way to get into despair now. Would that be sure that this guy never. Quit on. It and here's -- he was gonna master -- their worst road -- She has done I -- -- you're seeing now and and from where the Oilers. Where is now I mean this is one of the biggest makeovers -- -- saying in my short careers. Cloture player. A transition from where he was they want to -- is now and -- at work ethic to a mentality. Where I'm never gonna give then you know that's what makes him so special -- -- you know. Indiana State liquor beer coupled with perfectly club right now those -- over analyze this special like. In the my fairly complex over their city of palms they squat. When when you talked about about him wearing out I think that was most evidence of what that was that was evident at times behind the plate John -- talked about being on the other side and seeing how it just looked at times by the end of last year last September. But to transfer would get sluggish the actions were a little bit. We're a little bit slow down and they were kind of lively again this year. Behind the plate once he got spring training in and he's been up in the big leagues but. One thing that we still haven't seen and he started taking on that full time catching load. We haven't seen has power come back. As as a hitter are you surprised that this guy who you know who that basically that the scale of tipped a little bit this guy who came up. As as someone whose offensive profile said OK that's is carrying tool you know all of a sudden it seems like you know it seems like. The authentic caring to -- has diminished even as his defense skills have increased to the point where you guys are comfortable carrying him in the major leaks. Right or. I. You are actually pretty you know and that the -- run. But I without being at certain guarantees there's nobody. That that's focused guy and has baton whatever happened or transpired last year it doesn't feel good ways to -- That's that's where ago partly it was a fitting I mean he's he every time he comes apart I'm no -- expect good I know. -- and utilities are there any parent so to me yet maybe it's picture effect I don't know of from last year. -- -- -- All I do know he worked. And -- all part of the game. Religiously probably better day by an organization. And are no biscuit what he's up people at any point. So well I'll ask one last question for you Chad you know kind of taking stock of where the systems stands where. You know there there are some you know have a number of guys who rivers and you know pretty pretty impressive big league prospect. A credit at a number of levels. How do you -- when you look at at both this year inches generally at the state of tension in the Red Sox system how do you feel about it right now. -- -- -- You know it's my surgery I mean every single affiliate I go to you -- how are being used. You just try to pick or Europe when he came from Salem just wrote big bigger when you're -- a truck here now I'm sure and then Portland right now completely current echoed down the lower levels. Deal with two teams in the book because for a dozen new year earlier -- Well what a great push the field. Don't tell me. Of a very quick look told me when I became the catch recorders into the future lottery -- -- job net I don't think our. Or myself -- There it was going to be like and for the red trucks to you know Google crew. -- vote chart. Our current form typical aren't these guys. And not only the ability is -- but these guys are all the charts mr. applies these guys are scouts know. It takes a special kind of make up to catch cry and play. And -- and date they are on target every time mr. these guys you know I give them all the props -- Pleasure to work with. The worker just tremendous and when you have those -- things. In my mind you to ignore. It's pretty extraordinary when you think about it because just a few years ago there was kind of the ongoing conversation about whether or not. There was a prospect in the system who could be you know who could eventually take over the reins from from Jason Varitek. And you -- there were people who thought maybe Varitek need to play until he's forty -- her fifty in order to allow that. And order about the maturation of the system but it seems good but now the conversations teams pretty different words like okay. There are some pretty interesting guys in the in the system and it it'll be pretty interesting to see how they how they kind of claw add it to figure out who's. With which one of these guys which which one of these guys is the most qualified to. To inherit -- to. To assert himself for a potential everyday big -- job. Absolutely yeah and protect. You know obviously. Impacted are basically -- as a player and the two world championships that you will. But it pure impacted our guys. Probably more even thinks about just because that's -- -- that. And I was lucky enough to watching and be around him and understand what kind of animal he -- We don't go around trying to teach judged to be like Varitek because there's only been one. We take what she did and we tried to mold it into some kind of sort of their -- to get these -- -- or has been and then you're gonna. Put on the shin guards in the match Richard director and -- -- You better be ready and these guys -- what you can't or order. Trading toward that that they are not Jewish BO. Or kitchen a big extreme -- to special kind of a person were tortured -- -- a certain way and do. Chad has been great thing about taking some time to us to rightfully two rightfully -- you know kind of in -- about dot about the guys who you've been working with -- the system. -- I think both Chad upper and into Blake's wife -- for joining down on the farms sponsored by being one advantage tire and service dealers find a dealer near you at -- one advantage dot com. Thanks as ever also the producer -- -- She'd like to hear the complete interviews with both up since Y hard is it WEEI dot com slash podcast thanks for listening and have a great rest of the week.
We check in for our weekly update from Bill Belichick and get his take on the Pats win over the Texans on the road, the benching of Stevan Ridley, and Antonio Smith's thinly veiled Spygate comments after the Texans lost.
Patriots’ defensive end, Rob Ninkovich, joins Mut and Merloni on a Patriots Monday after the team’s victory in Houston. Rob addresses the postgame comments of Texans’ defensive lineman Antonio Smith and the defense struggling against the run.
Tom Brady joined the show fresh off the teams 9th win of the season in Houston. He dismissed Antonio Smith's spying allegations and told the guys he has already moved on.
Eagle checks in to give Grande and Max a perspective on the Brooklyn Nets after they acquired Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett via trade earlier this summer. He breaks down what he thinks the future holds for the Nets after completing this blockbuster deal.
Sean Grande and Cedric Maxwell take some time and look back at the history between the Celtics and the Lakers, specifically the legendary rivalry between Magic and Bird. Legendary broadcaster, Ian Eagle, checks in to give the Brooklyn perspective as KG and Paul Pierce settle into their new home. Sean and Max also reveal the behind the scenes details surrounding Max’s famous “I got the ball” moment.
In the first hour of this edition of the Celtics Summer Cooler, Grande and Max analyze the trade that sent Fab Melo out of Boston. Also in this hour, Max sets the story straight about his history with Larry Bird.
Rob Bradford and Alex Speier talk with Jon Lester about contract negotiations, losing a teammate like Jacoby Ellsbury, the World Series run, and looking ahead to 2014.
Rob Bradford and Alex Speier are back witht he Hot Stove Show. They talk about Jacoby Ellsbury signing with the New York Yankees, the Red Sox signings of AJ Pierzynski and Edward Mujica, and wrap it up with Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester, who talks about the World Series run, losing a teammate like Ellsbury and looking towards 2014.
The Red Sox new catcher, A.J. Pierzynski, joined the show to discuss his reputation as the most hated man in baseball. He also said that he turned down multi-year deals to come and win in Boston.
Shawn Thornton joined the show and discussed the teams long layoff leading into their game tomorrow night in Montreal. He told the guys that he anticipates fighting being a part of hockey for years to come.
Lucic joins Danny Picard to talk some hockey after the team’s overtime win against the Carolina Hurricanes. Danny asks Lucic about David Krejci’s game winner yesterday and hockey outsiders that are trying to change the game.
Shawn Thornton joined the show fresh off his big night at MSG and talked about his recent goal scoring prowess. Shawn said that no matter who his line mates are he is always going to be a fourth liner.
The Red Sox new catcher, A.J. Pierzynski, joined the show to discuss his reputation as the most hated man in baseball. He also said that he turned down multi-year deals to come and win in Boston.
The top stories of the day as recounted by Kirk Minihane. Today the guys discussed the first ever dog custody battle in New York City.
The guys opened the show discussing the major court decisions for Alfonzo Dennard and Jameis Winston coming today. They also touched on the Lunenburg scandal.
Jackie Mac joins Mut and Merloni to discuss Rajon Rondo, the Celtics, and the Jacoby Ellsbury deal with the Yankees.
Johnny Damon joins Mut and Merloni to clear the air about his free agent signing with the Yankees and discusses Ellsbury's signing.
Mut and Merloni react to former Red Sox OF Jacoby Ellsbury signing with the Yankees.
We check in with ESPN's great play-by-play man Mike Tirico for a look around the NFL, and a preview of Pats/Browns.
We tackle four topics centered on the movers and shakers in MLB right now.
We start talking about Robbie Cano and the reported 10 year, 240 million dollar contract on the table from the Mariners, and a little debate about him vs Pedroia broke out.
Ryder talks with WEEI.com's Chris Price about the Patriots upcoming game with the Cleveland Browns, and Stevan Ridley's status on the team.
Alex joins the show and gives his thoughts on the Jacoby Ellsbury deal, and what prospects the Red Sox have to fill the hole left in the lineup, or trade pieces to get a player who can fill the void.
John talks to Rob and gets his thoughts on the Yankees signing Jacoby Ellsbury, the Red Sox signing AJ Pierzynski, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia signing with Miami.
Mike Lupica of the Daily News joined the show to give the New York reaction to the Ellsbury signing. He said that the Yankees drastically overpaid.More from this show
The guys discuss the breaking story of Pierzynski agreeing to a deal with the Red Sox.More from this show
We check in for our weekly update from Bill Belichick and get his take on the Pats' win over the Texans on the road, the benching of Stevan Ridley, and Antonio Smith's thinly veiled Spygate comments after the Texans lost.More from this show
The Red Sox new catcher, A.J. Pierzynski, joined the show to discuss his reputation as the most hated man in baseball. He also said that he turned down multi-year deals to come and win in Boston.More from this show