|Jerry Remy on D&C: Interleague play ‘stinks’||06.29.11 at 10:47 am ET|
NESN Red Sox analyst Jerry Remy joined the Dennis & Callahan show Wednesday morning, following the Sox’ 5-0 loss to the Phillies in Philadelphia. To hear the interview, go the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
With the Sox in the mist of the interleague portion of their schedule, Remy expressed how much he dislikes the format of interleague play.
“I think it stinks, the whole thing stinks,” Remy said. “I’ve never liked interleague play. To play nine games in a row, for a team not to be able to use a DH is totally wrong. If you split it up that might be okay. … It would be a little different because at least the guy gets 15 at-bats and is not totally lost for a week and a half. The whole system stinks and is unappealing to me and always has been and I hope they do something about it.”
One of the major topics the past week has been how to get both David Ortiz and Adrian Gonzalez into the lineup in National League parks. That would mean that Gonzalez would need to play the outfield and Ortiz first base. The team has been reluctant to do that because of injury concerns with Gonzalez in the outfield. Remy believes the Sox need to have them both playing because the bottom half of the lineup has been devastatingly thin without Ortiz.
“They can’t continue with the lineup that they have been putting out there during these interleague games on the road,” he said. ”It’s been ridiculous. You get past the four hitter and you have a guy like Cameron hitting .100, and McDonald that is hitting .100. There’s nothing going on in the lineup.
“Last night, a guy like Cliff Lee is going to beat any lineup, but the fact is they are losing games that they could be winning. To me, the only resolution to this is to put [Gonzalez] out there [in right] and hope for the best.”
Remy said that he thinks it is up to the organization rather than the player to determine whether Gonzalez should play in the outfield for the first time since he did so in Mexico after the 2005 season.
“I don’t know if it is up to him, I think it is up to the organization,” Remy said. “The biggest concern through all of this is that he is going to get hurt. How can they live with themselves if they put him out there for a few games and he gets hurt and you lose the guy for the whole season? That’s been their biggest concern all the way through.
“I think there’s been some discussion in the front office that, ‘We don’t want him to play out there,’ and then Francona wants him to play out there. [Sox GM] Theo [Epstein] was here yesterday and they had a meeting and decided that this is the way it has to be because you cant keep playing they way you are now.”
Lee continued his dominance in Tuesday’s game against the Sox. He held the Sox to just two hits in the Phillies 5-0 win.
“We saw last night what the rest of baseball has been seeing the last five starts,” Remy said. “He’s been basically unhittable, giving up just one run in his last five starts. That’s incredible. Thank goodness he signed with Philadelphia, and not with the Yankees or even back with Texas because they are in the American League. They got a pretty good rotation here in Philadelphia.”
Right field has been an area of concern for the Red Sox and its lack of offensive production. Remy thinks that the team will stick with J.D. Drew and hope that he can turn things around, but would not be surprised if someone like Josh Reddick gets more playing time.
“I think they are going to try and stick with J.D. and hope that he puts together a month or something like that like a couple of years ago,” he said. “Reddick has been impressive, there is no doubt about that. I was hoping to see him against the left-hander [Lee, last night] because he had a couple of hits back in Pittsburgh against left-handers.
“I was hoping they would give him a shot against a left-hander and see how he’d do. J.D.’s not playing well right now, none of them are. I wouldn’t be against Reddick getting some starts out there.”
Remy was asked what Drew’s teammates think of him and how much he plays. He suggested that the right fielder, in the final season of the five-year, $70 million deal he signed with the Sox after the 2006 season, is somewhat comparable to Remy’s former teammate, Fred Lynn.
“I think [members of the Sox] think probably what a lot of people think,” Remy said. “That is that J.D. doesn’t play unless he is 100 percent. I think that is well known among everybody. Even he admits it himself. He feels that if he is 75 percent, he’s not as good as somebody else that could go out there. Whether it is the right approach of the wrong approach, that is totally up to him.”
Remy feels that Drew’s performance has not lived up to his contract. He expects that the Sox’ right fielder will retire following this year.
“It’s a crazy salary for a guy who just doesn’t give you those kind of numbers that you’ve expected,” said Remy. “I don’t think [Drew will play after this season]. I really don’t. My guess is that his skills are sliding. I don’t think he’s the type of guy, as a matter of fact, I know he’s a guy that’s not going to stick around if that’s the case.”
John Lackey will get the start Wednesday night for the Sox and Remy said he needs to pitch a better than in his last time out when he gave up 5 runs in 3 1/3 innings to the Padres.
“Lackey has to step it up,” Remy said. “He had three decent starts before that terrible start the last time out. He’s got to pitch better than what he’s pitched, but I think they will stay with him in the rotation, I don’t know what else they could do with him. You could put him in the bullpen, but I don’t see how that helps the team at all. He’s getting a lot of slack back home but he has to pitch like John Lackey and that’s nothing like the last time out. That was terrible.”
Remy closed by discussing Bobby Jenks’ role with the team the rest of the year.
Remy said: “They are looking for him to be a seventh-inning guy along with [Daniel] Bard and [Jonathan] Papelbon. I was impressed with him the other night. He threw the ball well. His fastball was up around 97 and his changeup was good. He just needs to stay healthy. … I think Jenks will be a positive contributor to the Red Sox before it is over.”
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