Tomorrow’s Hall of Famers, today

January 10th, 2007 → 11:59 am @ // No Comments

Okay, fine: that was a cheap and easy transition. But at least I’m trying…

Anyway. Lost in all the HoF commentary/hand wringing/debates is the opening today of the Red Sox’s annual “Rookie Program,” in which — and I’m quoting the press release here — “twelve of Boston’s top upper level prospects” will be exposed “to the expectations of being major leaguers for the Red Sox.” (This year’s participants: pitchers Kason Gabbard, Craig Hansen, David Pauley, Nick Debarr, Clay Buchholz, Kyle Jackson, and Edgar Martinez; outfielders Jacoby Ellsbury, Brandon Moss, and David Murphy; catcher George Kottaras; and third baseman Chad Spann.) Besides your normal workouts, the program includes (and I’m quoting again) “seminars that will focus on the assimilation into major league life off the field. A number of individuals from both in and outside the Red Sox organization will speak to the group, including President/CEO Larry Lucchino, General Manager Theo Epstein, manager Terry Francona, major league coaches John Farrell and Dave Magadan, catcher Jason Varitek, and longtime baseball writer and ESPN reporter Peter Gammons.”

I’ve written before about the ways in which the team tries to prepare rookies for the weird and wooly nature of playing in Boston (Cla Meredith could probably have used some more of this), and I don’t have a whole lot to add to that. It is worth re-recounting a conversation I had with Papelbon in ’05, in which he talked about his participation in the Rookie Program: “In January, I did the media development program. A lot of the subjects we went over in that time period are coming up now, and I’m able to go back to that and rely on it and say, ‘Hey, what did I learn and how can it help me?’ So in terms of dealing with the press and everything else that comes with playing major league baseball, yeah, it’s helped.” Not to get down on my knees — which is something I’m accused of vis a vis the Sox baseball ops folks with some regularity — this really is exactly the kind of stuff the public rarely hears much about, but really is important.

Post Categories: 2006 Hot Stove Season & Red Sox front office & Red Sox rookie development

3 Comments → “Tomorrow’s Hall of Famers, today”

  1. Ogie Oglethorpe

    17 years ago

    I absolutely agree. The local media has been working on their interviewing skills for years while most minor leaguers haven’t had to deal with more high school or local reporters. I’m sure it is common for beat writers to try to get rookies or players new to Boston to say something that they otherwise wouldn’t or do not realize what the possible ramifications of such a comment would bring.


  2. Dan Drezner

    17 years ago

    Your point about Cla Meredith is a good one, which raises a valid question: why aren’t doing this for the pitchers (Bryce Cox and Clay Buchholz) that many believe will be called up in 2007?

    It seems to me that relief pitchers in particular need this sort of training, since they’ll be subjected to the harshest media glare if they stumble.


  3. rog

    17 years ago

    I think the man’s name is David Murphy, not Dale. Glad to know that someone out there teaches the young ‘uns to repeat stuff like “we gotta give it 110%” before every game. Those seminars should be for the Boston media, though. Someone’s gotta tell Glenn Ordway when to shut his trap about whichever scapegoat he’s trying to run out of town on any given week.

    You are indeed right — the Murph had some prodigious power, but at 51 I don’t think he’s prime for a comeback. It’s fixed…
    — Seth


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: