FORT MYERS, Fla. -- The first official full-squad workout for the Boston Red Sox went as planned.
Prior to hitting the field for their normal daily routines, the Sox held their annual spring training meeting with ownership and management. Manager John Farrell’s message to the defending World Series champions was a simple one.
“It’s to get back to a mindset that was the first day of spring training last year, and not the most recent memory, which was a great one, but to recognize that there was a lot of work, a journey that went into getting to that final out recorded at Fenway,” Farrell said. “As you’ve been around the guys since they’ve reported, the conversation, the talk is about what we do today and not what has happened previous.”
During a quick morning of workouts, position players participated in baserunning and fielding drills before taking batting practice. Some pitchers threw bullpen sessions, while other worked on rag-ball drills and fielding practice.
Pawtucket Red Sox pitching coach Rich Sauveur runs the rag-ball drill every spring, and the pitchers have turned it into a friendly competition. Sauveur rifles ground balls and line drives at the pitchers from home plate, and the results are always entertaining.
* According to Farrell, MLB has not released any more information on the rule regarding collisions at home plate. General managers and managers from a few teams training in Florida will meet with MLB on Sunday in Port Charlotte to discuss instant replay, but questions remain about how aggressive catchers can be when blocking the plate.
"My understanding right now is they’ve got to abide by a swipe tag,” Farrell said. “Anytime there’s going to be a rule change, there’s going to be further clarification needed, and that’s what this spring training will do.”
Farrell also explained that if the umpire determines the baserunner intentionally causes a collision, he is automatically out. He can also be ejected, suspended and/or fined.
* Red Sox pitcher Jake Peavy, who had been dealing with a slight finger issue earlier this week, threw his first bullpen session of the spring, and Farrell was impressed with the reports. The veteran right-hander did not experience any discomfort in his hand, but will need to throw a few more bullpen sessions before he begins throwing live BP.
* Speaking of live BP, some Red Sox pitchers will begin that on Friday.