|Former Red Sox coach Don Bryant dead at 73||01.28.15 at 1:52 pm ET|
Bryant, a former major league catcher best known for catching Don Wilson’s no-hitter for the Astros against the Reds in 1969, spent his final three seasons in the Sox’ minor league system. He was a player/coach for Triple-A Pawtucket under manager Darrell Johnson in 1973, and when Johnson was promoted to manager in Boston in 1974, Bryant followed him.
Bryant also followed Johnson when he was hired to be manager of the Mariners in 1977, serving there until 1980.
|Curt Schilling to D&C on Hall of Fame balloting: ‘I can’t spend my time being concerned about people’s opinions of me that I’ll never meet’||01.07.15 at 10:46 am ET|
Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling checked in with Dennis & Callahan on Wednesday, after falling short of election to the Baseball Hall of Fame, and the former Red Sox star said he believes some writers won’t ever vote for him because of his political leanings. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.
Schilling received 39.2 percent of the vote, well short of the 75 percent needed for election. Four players were elected: Randy Johnson, John Smoltz, Craig Biggio and former Sox star Pedro Martinez, whose surprisingly low 91.1 percent result was more evidence to Schilling that something is wrong.
“The process isn’t flawed; stupid people do stupid things,” Schilling said. “I’ve seen so many in the past, voters making their vote into a news article, protesting this or protesting that, except just voting the player on his playing merits. And that’s normal, I guess, because we’re human, we all have bias, we all have prejudice. When Pedro gets 91 percent, that tells you something’s wrong.”
A case could me made that Schilling’s statistics are comparable to those of Smoltz, yet the Braves legend received 240 more votes. Schilling said Smoltz deserves enshrinement, but he noted that Smoltz’s political views are more consistent with many media members.
“I think he got in because of [Greg] Maddux and [Tom] Glavine. I think the fact that they won 14 straight pennants. I think his ‘Swiss army knife versatility,’ which somebody said yesterday, I think he got a lot of accolades for that, I think he got a lot of recognition for that. He’s a Hall of Famer,” Schilling said. “And I think the other big thing is that I think he’s a Democrat and so I know that, as a Republican, that there’s some people that really don’t like that.”
A proud conservative, Schilling has been outspoken in his support for Republican candidates. He also received heavy criticism when he moved his video game company from Massachusetts to Rhode Island to take advantage of government assistance and then the company went bankrupt.
Schilling said there’s no question that he would have received more votes had he been more mainstream in his beliefs and less outspoken and controversial.
“Absolutely,” he said. “Listen, when human beings do something, anything, there’s bias and prejudice. Listen, 9 percent of the voters did not vote for Pedro. There’s something wrong with the process and some of the people in the process when that happens. I don’t think that it kept me [out] or anything like that, but I do know that there are guys who probably won’t ever vote for me because of the things that I said or did. That’s the way it works.”
|Wade Miley on Hot Stove show: ‘You can’t tell me Babe Ruth ever stopped eating gluten’||12.19.14 at 11:24 am ET|
New Red Sox pitcher Wade Miley checked in with Rob Bradford, Alex Speier and Mike Mutnansky on Thursday’s Hot Stove show, and the left-hander clarified his view of the gluten controversy with his former team, the Diamondbacks. To hear the interview, go to the WEEI audio on demand page.
Miley said his initial comments about the Diamondbacks pushing him to eliminate gluten from his diet were overblown.
“I said something a little sarcastic and I guess it got taken a little further than it needed to be taken,” Miley said. “They did not require you to be gluten free. They would like you to be a little healthier than I would think, than I would expect, but no, they definitely don’t require you to be gluten free. They just really worry about your health a lot.”
Added Miley: “I’m a big fan of old-school guys. You can’t tell me Babe Ruth ever stopped eating gluten.”
Asked what food he was most hesitant to give up, Miley responded, “Fried chicken.”
The 6-foot-0, 220-pound Miley is known for his durability, as he’s pitched 200 innings each of the past two seasons, after going 194 innings in 2012. While his ERA climbed from 3.33 in 2013 to 4.34 last year, Miley said he was surprised that the Diamondbacks were ready to move him.
“I had heard about some of the rumors, but I really didn’t think much of them,” he said. “Those things happen. I guess Arizona’s in the rebuilding stage and whatever they’re trying to do. I was looking forward to going back to Arizona and trying to win there, and then bam, just like that, things just got a little heavy. And I really didn’t know what team it would be, but I talked to a few people and they said looks like I’m going to get traded. And then Boston hops in the picture and then it happened.
“It was kind of nuts, those three days. It was a little drawn out more than I thought it would be. I’ve never been traded, so I didn’t really know the process it would be. It was kind of stressful a little bit, but it all worked out for the best.”
|Red Sox acquire RHP Anthony Varvaro from Braves||12.17.14 at 12:33 pm ET|
The Red Sox announced Wednesday that they have acquired right-handed pitcher Anthony Varvaro from the Braves, sending minor league right-hander Aaron Kurcz and cash to Atlanta. Varvaro had been designated for assignment Monday.
A five-year MLB veteran, the 30-year-old Varvaro went 3-3 with a 2.63 ERA in 2014, holding opponents to a .228 batting average. In 61 relief appearances Varvaro had a career-high 50 strikeouts vs. just 13 walks. He also set career marks for walks per nine innings (2.1) and hits per nine innings (7.6).
Kurcz, acquired from the Cubs in 2012 as compensation for Theo Epstein, pitched in Double-A Portland this past season, going 3-2 with a 2.14 ERA, 54 strikeouts and 22 walks in 34 games.
|Jon Lester to Red Sox Nation: ‘I understand the disappointment’||12.10.14 at 1:31 pm ET|
Continued Lester: Extremely difficult decision for me and my family but we love the outcome and couldn’t be more excited to join the Cubs organization!
To Red Sox Nation, I understand the disappointment. Boston will always have a big place in my heart and we'll always consider y'all family!
— Jon Lester (@JLester31) December 10, 2014
Extremely difficult decision for me and my family but we love the outcome and couldn't be more excited to join the Cubs organization! #NVRQT
— Jon Lester (@JLester31) December 10, 2014
|David Ortiz on MFB: ‘Red Sox still have the ball on the court’ in Jon Lester pursuit||12.05.14 at 1:28 pm ET|
Red Sox designated hitter David Ortiz checked in with Middays with MFB from his charity golf tournament in the Dominican Republic and shared his thoughts on the team’s contract negotiations with free agent left-hander Jon Lester and other topics. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.
“We know that this year, offensively, we were terrible,” Ortiz said. “We scored less runs than everyone else. That tells you as an owner, as a GM, if you don’t have no offense you’re going nowhere. An example of that is the Kansas City Royals. The best pitching in the game, but they still could not make it, and it’s because they need the offense.
“So right now I think if we go out there and get some pitching, we get my boy Lester on board and go out there and get another starter, I think things will look even better. And remember, this division, everybody’s getting tied up.”
Regarding the Sox’ chances of landing Lester, Ortiz said it might require the Red Sox to show their appreciation in ways other than money.
“All the conversations talking to Lester and stuff, I think the Red Sox still have the ball on the court. And it’s because we all know that Lester loves Boston,” Ortiz said. “And there’s something that we need to make up, and it was that painful trade … during the season. I know my boy’s feelings were hurt when he got traded. And the reason his feelings were hurt was because he loves Boston.”
Added Ortiz: “So I think it’s time for us to kind of make that up, and appreciate that the fact that this guy has been part of a couple of World Series. He has given everything he has. His playoff numbers are ridiculous. And he can demand whatever he deserves.”
|Buster Olney on MFB: ‘Really surprised’ about Pablo Sandoval choosing Red Sox over Giants||11.24.14 at 1:53 pm ET|
With the Red Sox reportedly close to finalizing deals to land Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez, ESPN’s Buster Olney checked in with the Middays with MFB crew for an update and analysis of the situation. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.
“I was really surprised,” Olney said. “I thought that if the bidding were close, knowing Sandoval’s history with the Giants, knowing the Giants’ history of re-signing their own players, I thought that he would go back there. I thought that if any team was going to pry Sandoval away from the Giants it was going to be with a huge offer that far outweighed what San Francisco was putting on the table, and yet the offer that the Giants were talking about, which was $95 million plus the promise if Sandoval came back to them and asked for more was for something in the range of $100 million, that Sandoval just decided, apparently, that with two equal offers he wanted to go to Boston. And the Giants actually asked him in the last 24 hours, ‘Look, is there something we can do?’ And the answer they got back was no. That part of it really surprised me.
“It doesn’t necessarily surprise me that the Red Sox would be in on Hanley Ramirez, because I think once he — through his agent, Adam Katz — got it out there that he was willing to change positions, I think people looked at him very differently. Because as I mentioned earlier today, it’s a market that’s so lacking in good offensive players. Hanley Ramirez stands out, especially when you take him out of Dodger Stadium, which is a notorious pitcher’s park. You put him in other places, he can really rake.
“So for the Red Sox to land both those guys, it’s going to be a very different-looking offense than last year when it always seemed like they were bringing a knife to a gun fight.”
|Pedro Martinez among headliners on HOF ballot announced Monday||11.24.14 at 12:36 pm ET|
The Hall of Fame ballot announced Monday includes a trio of standout pitchers, including Red Sox legend Pedro Martinez, who should take headlines back from the stars who were tainted by Major League Baseball‘s steroid era.
Joining Martinez as first-time candidates are five-time Cy Young Award winner Randy Johnson, who amassed 4,875 career strikeouts (second only to Nolan Ryan), and Braves legend John Smoltz, who is the only pitcher to record 200 wins and 150 saves.
Martinez, who won two Cy Youngs, compiled a 219-100 career record with 3,154 strikeouts.
Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa — all linked to the use of performance-enhancing drugs — are back. Clemens and Bonds both received 35 percent of the votes last year, well below the number needed for admission. McGwire dipped to 11 percent, and he only has two more years of candidacy. Sosa fell to 7 percent last year, and if he dips below 5 percent he’ll be removed from future ballots.
Results will be announced Jan. 6. The induction ceremony is scheduled for July 26.
|Dustin Pedroia on MFB: ‘There’s a lot of IOU’s to hand out to people’ next season||11.05.14 at 11:31 am ET|
Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia, who on Tuesday was named winner of his fourth Gold Glove, checked in with Middays with MFB on Wednesday morning and said he’s feeling substantially better since having surgery on his wrist. To hear the interview, go to the MFB audio on demand page.
Pedroia had surgery on Sept. 11 to repair a tendon in his left wrist. It caused an early end to a disappointing offensive season in which he hit .278 with seven home runs and 53 RBIs. In the field, however, he continued to shine, posting a .997 fielding percentage that ranks as the best ever for a Red Sox second baseman.
“It was just frustrating,” he said of the injury that nagged him during the season. “The year before, I found a way to perform, playing nicked up. The year before it was a loose feeling — I tore that ligament in my thumb and everything just felt loose, so I was able to figure it out and let the ball travel more and just try to slap balls the other way and get hits and not try to drive the ball. This year it was more, I was restricted. I didn’t have any motion. It was so swollen and tight all year, I couldn’t get a feel of how to get through it. It was tough. I fought it all year.
“Now that it’s fixed, it’s night and day. I can already tell that. There’s a lot of IOU’s to hand out to people, so I’m pretty excited about it.”
Added Pedroia: “I feel great. I’m back to a hundred percent. I’m doing all my lifts and everything. My rehab’s going good. I’m full strength and I’m pretty excited. It’s been a long time since I’ve been myself. It’s going to be a lot of fun next year.”
Pedoria received a reported eight-year, $110 million contract in the middle of the 2013 season. There are critics who say the Sox overpaid for an aging player who has struggled with injuries of late.
“Honestly, I never put any pressure on me about that,” Pedroia said. “My job is to come out and win games. For what I do to try to help the team win, I don’t know how much they’re paying for that these days but I’m sure it’s a lot, and my contract’s a lot, so there’s not anybody that puts the amount of expectations to perform well than me.
“So, trust me, I don’t need anybody to get on me or anybody to say anything bad about me if I don’t play well. Trust me, I’m pretty hard on myself as it is. I don’t ever look at it like that. I view everything as wins and losses. And obviously when your team’s in last place, that’s how I view it as not good. I’d rather live up to wins and losses than anything else.”
The Red Sox went from last place in 2012 to World Series champions in 2013 back to last place last season. Pedroia is eager to get the Sox back to the top next year.
“I’m trying to do my job, and that’s get ready to help us any way I can to win games, because we’ve got to do that,” he said. “Because last year was pretty painful.”
For more Red Sox news, visit the team page at weei.com/redsox.
|Clay Buchholz’s wife confirms nude photos of her were hacked||10.16.14 at 12:09 pm ET|
‘ Lindsay Clubine (@LindsayClubine) October 15, 2014
Talking to TMZ on Wednesday, Lindsay Clubine, a former game show model, said the photos — which were intended only for her husband — were accessed from Buchholz’s phone.
“This is a terrible crime,” she said, adding: “I have my attorneys removing the pictures. This is very upsetting to my family and I.”
She made it clear she doesn’t hold the pitcher responsible.
“Clay and I are good. I sent him pictures on the road,” she explained.
Clubine also told TMZ that some other more explicit photos making the rounds are not of her, as some have claimed.
“There are pics on his phone that [a teammate] sent some of the guys that are NOT me,” she said.
Clubine, who married Buchholz in 2009, initially vented her frustration in a tweet Tuesday, writing: A woman should be able to send her husband pics of herself with out fear of the whole world seeing them! iCloud hackers should be ashamed!!
A woman should be able to send her husband pics of herself with out fear of the whole world seeing them! iCloud hackers should be ashamed!!
‘ Lindsay Clubine (@LindsayClubine) October 14, 2014
News of the hacking scandal first broke in early September. Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander and his girlfriend, model Kate Upton, were among those victimized. Some victims, such as actress Gabrielle Union, who is married to NBA star Dwyane Wade, reached out to the FBI for assistance. Clubine would not say if she planned to take a similar approach.
“We’re taking all the necessary measures,” she said.
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