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Curt Schilling on D&C: Eduardo Rodriguez not tipping pitches 06.22.16 at 11:07 am ET
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Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling made his weekly appearance on Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Wednesday morning where he discussed all things Red Sox, including his belief that Eduardo Rodriguez is in fact not tipping pitches. To hear the complete interview, go to the D&C audio on demand page. 

“[Rodriguez] is not pitching on a short leash for his life in the sense that you think. What you don’t want to do is to continue to allow a young pitcher to completely loose his confidence. It is hard. He is struggling,” said Schilling. “He is basically a two-pitch pitcher right now, which is a big problem. He isn’t tipping his pitches. You get tired of hearing stuff like that. He is struggling right now and that is normal.

“The problem is, and you have to know your players, you don’t want a guy to pitch his way into thinking he can’t get anyone out and I think that is where he is right now. He is struggling mentality and you can see it by the body language, you can see it by the facial expressions. He doesn’t have a lot of confidence. I can tell you that is the scariest thing that happened to me. I was struggling to the point where I was afraid to throw strikes because I was afraid if I threw a strike it was gong to be a double.”

Added Schilling: “I watch him throw. He is not [tipping pitches]. If you are going to want to watch a guy tip his pitches there are two things to look at. One is how he positions his glove on every pitch because when guys generally tip their pitches their glove will be held at a different height or a different angle because they are trying to grip a ball differently. Or you watch their head or glove hand. He isn’t tipping his pitches, I’m watching him. Here is the thing: you have to tip your pitches early enough for the hitter to know, so it can’t be right in the middle of your delivery when you are doing a certain thing and the hitter says, ‘Oh my god curveball.’

“I’ll give you an example. In game six of the 2001 World Series. Andy Pettitte tipped every pitch he was throwing with a runner on base. You knew as soon as he set exactly what was coming. That is how you tip your pitches. We scored, I think, 16 runs, we beat them like 16-2 … We saw it the first inning. Someone got on and he was setting his hands high and low. High was breaking ball and low was fastball or it might have been the other way around.”

(It’s worth noting Red Sox bench coach Torey Lovullo confirmed Rodriguez is in fact tipping pitches when he was on with Mike Giardi and Rob Bradford over the weekend.)

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Curt Schilling on calls for gun restrictions after Orlando massacre: ‘The last thing in my mind that I want to see happen right now is for this corrupt, lying, fraudulent, felon-infested government to have more say in my day-to-day life’ 06.15.16 at 11:03 am ET
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Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling

During his weekly appearance on Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Wednesday morning, former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling weighed in on the Orlando massacre and defended fellow gun owners while blasting the “corrupt, lying, fraudulent, felon-infested government.” To hear the interview, go to the D&C audio on demand page.

Schilling, an outspoken conservative, said the Orlando shooter was “a radical extremist follower of Allah” and this was not a “homophobic hatred thing” as has been speculated this week following reports that Omar Mateen had previous contact with the gay community before his attack on a gay nightclub.

“He should never have been able to get these weapons,” Schilling said. “The laws are in place for this to stop people like this. We just either A) don’t enforce them, B) they’re broke, or C) both.”

If more laws are introduced in the wake of this tragedy, Schilling said it would be a mistake.

“We’ve already heard enough [about the background of mass murderers like this]. We’re going to hear more of the same thing about this guy. There’s no possible way he should have been able to hold a water gun, much less an AR-15,” Schilling said. “So again, my biggest thing is, the laws already exist. I think there’s an enormous amount of work we need to do and work on with the mentally ill. I don’t think there’s any question about that. But the fact of the matter is all the laws you want passed are already in effect. The states that they are not in effect for are the states where people have voted to keep them available.”

Added Schilling: “The last thing in my mind that I want to see happen right now is for this corrupt, lying, fraudulent, felon-infested government to have more say in my day-to-day life. I want them out and gone. And I need the federal government to do what they’re supposed to do, which is protect the country, provide for people that can’t provide for themselves, and shut up and get out of the way.”

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Curt Schilling on D&C: ‘This is not the David Price they paid $217 million to get’ at 10:51 am ET
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David Price struck out eight more batters in his win Saturday afternoon. (Bob DiChiara/USA Today Sports)

David Price was a hard-luck loser Tuesday night. (Bob DiChiara/USA Today Sports)

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling, making his weekly appearance on Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Wednesday morning, questioned whether David Price is worth the high price the Sox paid in the offseason. To hear the interview, go to the D&C audio on demand page.

Price pitched well Tuesday, at one point setting down 19 consecutive Orioles, but he was done in by two home runs in a 3-2 loss.

“When you pitch at the top of somebody’s rotation and you’re considered to be ‘the ace,’ you have to win 1-0 games,” Schilling said. “You have to win 2-1. You have to win 2-0. You have to win the games when your offense doesn’t score. Your offense’s output other than zero means less on the day you pitch than it does on other days, because you’re the ace. … When you’re up against somebody’s ace — which [Chris] Tillman was last night — you get the best of guys, so you have to be on top of your game. Last night he was good. [But] he got outpitched.”

Asked what Price would be scored on a scale of 1-10 for major league pitchers, Schilling said the left-hander is a 6.

“This is not the David Price they paid $217 million to get,” he said. “Stuff-wise, all of that stuff. I don’t think this is the guy. Last night when I saw him, the innings I was watching, he was 92-94 [mph]. The Price that you paid for was 96-98. I think it’s a natural regression. Your stuff starts to kind of go away [with age].”

Added Schilling: “His mechanics are not conducive to keeping his velocity up. I’ve said that all year long. If you watch him, every time he finishes delivering a pitch — for the most part — he’s a guy that stands straight up. He recoils a lot. And that’s not healthy for your arm. I’ve seen a lot of guys that do that — tons of guys that do that — and they lose their velocity faster than everybody else. It’s a physical thing.

“And the challenge is he was always that guy, the 200-inning guy and the ace guy, because his secondary stuff has never been exceptional. Which is OK, because he always had the velocity. But once the velocity starts to kick down, the secondary stuff has to get better, because if it stays the same it becomes even less effective. The innings that I watched last night he had a pretty good changeup. He struck out the side one inning. He had a decent changeup. But he’s never gone out there with a Clayton Kershaw curveball or a [Greg] Maddux changeup. He’s always had kind of average secondary stuff, I thought, in my opinion. And that’s a challenge when you lose your fastball.”

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Curt Schilling weighs in on Orlando shooting 06.12.16 at 3:12 pm ET
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In the wake of this weekend’s shooting in Orlando, Curt Schilling took to Twitter on Sunday to offer his views on gun control and the root causes behind what happened.

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Curt Schilling on D&C: ‘There’s no ceiling to the numbers if [Joe Kelly] had a baseball IQ’ 06.08.16 at 10:13 am ET
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Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling, making his weekly appearance on Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Wednesday morning, heaped praise upon the Red Sox offense while questioning the mental makeup of recently demoted (and now injured) pitcher Joe Kelly. To hear the interview, go to the D&C audio on demand page.

Kelly, who suffered a groin injury during his start Tuesday night in Pawtucket, was sent down to Triple-A last week after his last start for Boston, another disappointing development in the talented right-hander’s career with the Red Sox.

“There’s a term that I think a lot of baseball players know and have used for a long time called baseball IQ,” Schilling said. “It’s just acumen for the sport. It’s the ability to learn, adapt. The analogy I use … if you’re ever put a puzzle together, you lay the pieces out on the table, and eventually you get to the place where you can see the pieces and where they’re going. I always looked at pitching as very much the same thing: Here’s my three, here’s my four pitches, here’s the lineup I’m facing, and here’s how the puzzle fits together for me to shut you down.

“I think Joe Kelly looks at the puzzle pieces and then chews gum and goes cross-eyed. I don’t think that there’s the baseball acumen, the baseball IQ. Somebody who has that good of stuff — and listen, he’s got three wipeout pitches. I’ll tell you right now, he’s got better stuff top to bottom than I ever had — 97 [mph fastball], he’s got a wipeout slider, a phenomenal changeup and a good curveball. Almost like Clay Buchholz at the beginning.”

Part of Kelly’s problem, Schilling explained, is his inability to be smart about his pitch usage.

“Joe Kelly goes out in the first inning and shows you all four of his pitches inside of the first five minutes of the game, as if he’s pitching with a life vest on and he feels like he’s going to drown if he doesn’t go to the well immediately,” Schilling said. “Whereas it’s just going out and getting a feel. For me, the first inning is, hey, my fastball needs to be the four pitches I want it to be, and if I’ve got the other two it’ll be great. You’re not going to see a lot until the fifth or sixth inning, the second time around. Kelly’s emptying the tool chest in the first inning, which a young pitcher will do. He’s not a young pitcher, though.

“At the end of the day, I keep going back to the fact that when the St. Louis Cardinals trade a person that you think is extremely talented, there’s issues. Shelby Miller. Joe Kelly. So, I haven’t seen him get smarter. I haven’t seen him get smarter. And that’s the frustrating thing, because he’s a guy that there’s no ceiling to the numbers if the guy had a baseball IQ.”

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Curt Schilling on D&C: Red Sox ‘need to grab somebody that can actually pitch in October’ 06.01.16 at 12:14 pm ET
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Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling joined Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Wednesday morning and discussed how good Mookie Betts and Xander Bogaerts have been, as well as possible starting pitchers the Sox might want to acquire to shore up the rotation. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

Betts and Bogaerts continue to swing hot bats, with Betts slamming three home runs Tuesday and Bogaerts extending his hitting streak to 24 games.

“They are both playing elite, high-leverage positions. … You are looking at two potential MVPs, two potential batting champions,” Schilling said. “Here’s the thing: People want to keep waiting for this and waiting for that, the downside — it’s the same thing they are doing with Travis Shaw. [But] these guys can play.”

Schilling continued to stress the importance of the Red Sox getting another starting pitcher.

“At the deadline [the Sox] need to go back and grab a starter, and not James Shields. You need to grab somebody that can actually pitch in October,” Schilling said. “I love Julio Teheran in Atlanta. The only reason I say that is because I’ve heard that [the Braves are] very interested in making moves. I love the age, I like the potential. I don’t know how coachable, I don’t know what kind of guy he is. … Somebody on Periscope mentioned Rich Hill, which is ironic, but yeah, that could be another one. I think their bullpen will find its way. I like their bullpen. Carson Smith being gone doesn’t help, but I think they’re good enough. I want to see a starter. I want to see a starter because, listen, if David Price goes 22-4 this year and loses and gets his butt kicked in October, a lot of people are going to be saying, ‘What was that for?’ You need another guy.”

When examining the mental makeup of a pitcher, Schilling said it’s good to note which opposing hurlers step up against the Red Sox’ potent bats.

“I always relished the chance to pitch against this [type of] lineup because I knew nobody else liked it,” Schilling said. “You make your reputation on shutting teams down like this. … When you’re looking for potential pitchers, watch the guys that step up against this team. Because those are the guys that are saying, ‘Listen, I’ve got to do this to be somebody.’ And that to me is kind of a little insight into their postseason mentality and their postseason makeup.”

With the Rays struggling, Schilling speculated that Tampa Bay might consider parting ways with ace Chris Archer.

“I think there might be two teams in the league that would have the minor league talent to get Chris Archer,” Schilling said. “You would have to give up [Yoan] Moncada and somebody else probably. But I think that that might be a potential. Listen, they have him, he’s under a team-friendly contract, so there’s no doubt in my mind from a price prospective [the Rays] can maximize leverage. That would be the kind of guy I would go out and get. … I don’t think [Rays] will [send him to the Red Sox], you usually don’t trade inside the division, and I get that. But like I said, if you offer a package of players — Moncada and [Andrew] Benintendi and another guy — does that work? I don’t care what division you’re in, if I’m getting three potential impact players, I go there.”

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Curt Schilling on D&C: ‘I’m saying right now Cubs-Red Sox World Series, with Theo [Epstein] breaking the Cubs’ curse’ 05.25.16 at 11:41 am ET
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Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling

Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling joined Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Wednesday morning and said he is buying into the Red Sox offense, predicting it will carry Boston to a World Series appearance against the Cubs. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

“It is legit,” Schilling said of the Sox bats. “I don’t see a large regression to the mean. Jackie Bradley Jr. is good. I think all the things everyone talked about him when he first came up are the reasons he came to be now. I don’t see a reason he can’t win a batting championship. You look at [Xander Bogaerts] and Mookie [Betts] and you start wondering where is the hole, because Travis Shaw can hit. Is it Christian Vazquez? Because he can pick his spots. This is a lineup with no letup. You are going to see a lot of middle relievers facing the Red Sox this year.

Schilling said the Sox’ hot start is no fluke, and he’s ready to place the Sox in the World Series.

“I’m saying right now Cubs-Red Sox World Series, with Theo [Epstein] breaking the Cubs’ curse,” Schilling said.

The Sox may be in the market for another reliever after losing Carson Smith for the year following Tommy John surgery. Schilling, however, said the Sox should add another dependable starter before they try to add a reliever.

“I think if you want to win a World Series [you need a starter],” Schilling said. “Do you think on any day they can outpitch the Mets? Those are the teams you are going to see in October. I think the back of their bullpen is wonderful, but that is not a matchup you worry about before you worry about starters. … There is probably no team other than the Cubs better positioned to get that guy at the deadline.”

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Curt Schilling on D&C: No interest in debating ‘racist’ ESPN host Stephen A. Smith 05.18.16 at 10:23 am ET
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Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling

Former ESPN baseball analyst Curt Schilling, making his weekly appearance on Dennis & Callahan with Minihane, did not hold back in expressing his opinion of Stephen A. Smith, calling the ESPN “First Take” co-host a “racist” and a “bigot.” To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

Smith, appearing on Sirius XM radio earlier in the week, called out Schilling for accusing ESPN of firing him because of his conservative views. Smith said Schilling was fired simply because he did not heed the network’s warning to avoid making political comments, and he challenged the former Red Sox pitcher to debate the issue.

Responded Schilling to D&C: “What am I going to debate about? I have no interest. I’m 49 years old. I have had cancer, I’ve had a heart attack, I’m losing my hair. I’m not going to waste my time with people I don’t respect.

“I don’t respect him. I think he’s a racist, I think he’s a bigot. There’s nothing to debate, No. 1. And No. 2, there’s not a chance in hell that I would do anything that would bring that station another viewer, ever.”

Added Schilling: “I felt like I was back in fifth grade and I was being challenged on the playground at recess. What are we going to debate about? When the debate’s over, he’s not going to be any less racist. So, I don’t get that. He’s a tough guy for calling me out, that’s all.”

Schilling said he only briefly met Smith and has heard good things about him.

“I’m sure he’s a nice guy,” Schilling said. “I’ve met racists before who are really nice people. I’ve met bigots that are nice people. I’m sure he’s a nice guy. I have an issue with someone who walks into [boxer] Floyd Mayweather’s house and tries to tell us what an awesome guy he is. Or a guy who tries to say, ‘Listen, for the most part, ladies, it’s the guy’s fault [in domestic abuse], but let’s talk about provoking them and how you should avoid provoking men to hit women.’ Like, wait, what?”

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Stephen A. Smith on Curt Schilling: ‘Your ass is gone because you did not want to listen’ 05.17.16 at 11:08 am ET
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Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling’s war of words with ESPN is unlikely to abate anytime soon now that the loudest of the networks loudmouths — Stephen A. Smith — has weighed in with some pointed criticisms of gehrig38.

Speaking on SiriusXM’s MadDog Radio show, Smith blasted Schilling not for his political views, but for airing them when he knew it could get him fired.

“Let me speak up on behalf of ESPN when I say this to Curt Schilling: You are gone not because you have conservative views instead of liberal views. Your ass is gone because you did not want to listen,” Smith said, per the New York Daily News. “ESPN tells me to shut up, they’re my employer whether I like it or not. If I want to keep my job, I’ve got to shut the hell up.”

Smith took particular offense to Schilling’s contention that ESPN employs “some of the biggest racists” in the sports media. Smith noted an example of being tough on Redskins coach Jay Gruden for seemingly hold quarterback Robert Griffin, who is black, to a different standard than replacement Kirk Cousins, who is white.

“What I was lamenting was the treatment of Jay Gruden and how specific he was in dissecting Robert Griffin III, compared to how celebratory he was about Kirk Cousins,” Smith told the show. “At no time did I imply or state that is why RGIII wasn’t playing because he is black. That is a lie.”

Continued Smith: “I can’t stand people who worked for ESPN that depart from ESPN clearly harboring whatever bitterness they harbor and try to throw talent under the bus — like talent has something to do with them being gone. I have nothing to do with it.”

Smith challenged Schilling to a debate.

“You want to sit here and have a debate about what really went on?” he asked. “Name the time and place and I’ll show up, with the permission of ESPN, of course. I guess listening to my boss makes me a bad guy. Well guess what? I’d rather be bad than stupid.”

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Curt Schilling on D&C: David Price’s struggles have ‘a lot to do with durability and stamina’ 05.11.16 at 11:54 am ET
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Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling

Former ESPN analyst Curt Schilling joined Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Wednesday morning to talk about David Price’s pitching troubles and his old employer. To listen to the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

Price has not lived up to the huge contract he signed as a free agent in the offseason,  posting a 6.75 ERA and 1.38 WHIP through his first seven games in a Red Sox uniform. Schilling said recent conversation about Price’s leg kick misses the point, because the focus should be on Price’s arm extension.

“The analogy I tried to use is when you slam the brakes on the car, the car doesn’t immediately stop, because if the car stopped immediately it would throw everything through the window,” Schilling said. “So when you slam the brakes on a car, it decelerates and then stops. If you look at David Price’s delivery, he has that recoil. Physically, you have to begin to decelerate to recoil before you finish. So if you think about it, you have to begin to slow your arm down before you actually finish your throw, because you’re coming back the other way. …

“I think it has a lot to do with durability and stamina over the years with your arm, No. 1, I think it takes away velocity as you do it. Physically, it’s much more demanding than throwing a normal pitch. But when you’re throwing the ball 97, 98, you can make marginal mistakes that you can’t make at 93 or 94, No. 1. Now, the other piece is, I say this in context: David Price’s secondary stuff has never been exceptional. He has a good curveball, he has a good changeup, and he has a good slider, but it’s not like [Clayton] Kershaw’s curveball or Randy Johnson’s slider or [Greg] Maddux’s changup. They’re all, to me, average pitches. They’re above average when you throw 98. They’re not above average when you throw 93, 94, 95. And the biggest issue for me: That, to me, speaks to his October troubles. In October, you have to command perfectly to be dominant, I think.”

Added Schilling: “You ever been at a bar shooting darts? You know when you throw a dart and you finish the throw, like you throw and you leave your hand out in front of you? You’re a hundred times more accurate than when you throw and you pull your hand back, you quick-flick it. Exactly the same thing pitching. When you finish a pitch and you stay down and extend, you command the ball a lot better. When you throw the ball and recoil, you give away command. You take all of those things together, and I think that’s why you have a guy not throwing as hard.

“It’s not physical. It’s not a physical injury. There’s no possible way. If he was hurt he’d be throwing the ball 87. But you take all those things together and you reduce the velocity, again, to me, with the average kind of secondary stuff, and you have what you have right now. And all of that adds up to the worst possible thing, which is a crisis in confidence, which is what I think he has. I went through it. And honest to God, you were literally afraid of contact. And you pitch away from the bat, which is the worst possible thing you can do.”

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