The boys are back in town
Sure, it was cool by Florida standards, as the temperature hovered in the low 50s for John Lackey’s first side session with the Sox.
But baseball was in the air. In the morning, it was all about Lackey, who participated in his first workout with his new team and then spoke to the media. Lackey reeled off about 40 pitches — all heaters — and MLB.com’s own Brita Meng Outzen was there to capture the action.
For a while, Dice-K took the stage, speaking openly about how it wasn’t all that wise of him to conceal injuries last year. Then, Victor Martinez, embarking on his first full season in Boston, held court with a small group of reporters.
Here are some snippets from pitchers and catchers reporting day.
Dice-K on his increased comfort with the Sox:
“I think I’m able to approach the season and come to work here just as I was able to do in Japan, so I think that I’ve definitely gotten used to things over here. With each passing year, as I’ve become more and more accustomed to how things work, I think I look forward to the season just that much more every year,” Matsuzaka said.
Lackey on the competition that could build among Boston’s packed starting rotation:
“I think I’ll fit in good. [Beckett's] a competitor,” said Lackey. “He gets after it on the mound. I’ve got a little bit of that in me too. I think if we all get rolling a little bit, you can kind of have a healthy competition between starters and it turns into kind of a relay race kind of thing. You don’t want to drop the baton from the next guy. It’s fun when you get into that sort of situation.”
Victor Martinez on whether he’d like to stay with the Red Sox after his current contract expires following the season:
“Obviously,” Martinez said. “Who wouldn’t want to be here in the long term? This is the organization, this is the team that everybody wishes to play here, especially a team that is always in the race, always in the playoffs. As a baseball player, that’s what you want. That’s what you work for. You work really hard to make it to the playoffs and get a ring.”
Those were the main storylines today. Tomorrow, all pitchers and catchers will undergo physicals. Saturday is the first full-squad workout.
That’s all for now.