Beckett: 'Throw the rear-view mirror away'

Josh Beckett said that pitching coach John Farrell would be missed, but he's nevertheless confident he can bounce back in 2011. Steve Mitchell/US Presswire

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Some thoughts from pitcher Josh Beckett after Boston’s first official workout of spring:

* On his performance last season:

“I can’t change last year. I just have to do the best I can this year. My dad said, ‘Throw the rear-view mirror away, because you can’t change anything that’s already happened.’ As frustrating as 2010 was, I’ve got to focus on 2011.’’

* On what he did differently in offseason workouts:

“We did some core stability stuff, strengthen up the back a little bit. Mostly focused on core stability. [The back] feels good.’’

* On how much his paths crossed with Adrian Gonzalez when both were with the Florida Marlins, Beckett a No. 1 pick in 1999, Gonzalez a No. 1 pick in 2000:

“Not much. We actually were joking about it. I haven’t seen him since he was traded in 2003. I’ve seen him on TV or playing against him, but I actually talked to him just once, in instructional league, I think we had one together.’’

* On how the first day of camp went:

“Great, except [Terry Francona] thought it was Day 13 with the rag balls. He hit me right in the face. I hope somebody got that on video, because he’s going to hear from my lawyer.

“Day 1 was great. The sides went great. We’re a pretty organized group here. Tell us what to do and we pretty much just do it. I’m eager to get this year rolling. I needed a break, needed a little breather for a couple of weeks there after the season ended. Obviously I wasn’t happy with the way last season went, either for myself or as the team. Basically since then, I’ve been ready to go.’’

* On whether he ever felt fully healthy last season:

“I definitely had stints where I felt good enough to compete better than I did. It was a struggle some other times, but things still could have been better than they were.’’

* On Terry Francona suggesting he tried too hard at times:

“I don’t know. He’s not talking about effort levels. He’s talking about trying to make up two bad starts in one pitch and that aspect we’re all probably guilty of that from time to time, trying to do too much right now.’’

* On whether the contract extension he signed last April may have contributed to trying too hard:

“I don’t think so, but who knows? A lot of it comes from I got sick in spring training and tried to catch up, then when I caught up I felt like I had to do more.’’

* On how good this rotation could be:

“The sky’s the limit. We say that every year. Health is going to play an issue. It does with every rotation. You can have as many No. 1 starters as you want, but if four of them go down, you have just one. We’re trying to get out of spring training healthy and stay healthy all year. Curt Schilling said it one time, whoever makes the most starts in the division wins the division. That’s generally true in this division.’’

* On whether he is still capable of having a year like he did in 2007, when he won 20 games and dominated the postseason:

“Physically, yeah. Why not? I’m only 30. Thirty is the new 20, isn’t it? Somebody told me that.’’

* On the upgrades in the bullpen:

“It’s great. I think [Jason] Varitek said it best the other day at breakfast. All we are are setup guys now. All the starters are just setup guys.’’

* On John Farrell no longer being here as pitching coach, having gone to Toronto as manager:

“Johnny and I had a really close relationship. I’m happy I knew about that deal. I think he called all of us to tell us what was going down before it went down. He’s going to be missed. He’s in a better spot. He’s moving up the ladder like he wanted to. That was something we all knew he wanted to do.

“He’s going to be missed, but I’m looking forward to working with Curt [Young], though. Curt already has brought a lot of things to my attention, things he’s seen. I think we’re going be talking a lot in the next few weeks.’’

* On getting to know catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia better:

“I think I know him as a person. I’m definitely looking forward to throwing to him. He’s got the best catching instructor in the world [Gary Tuck] working with him. It’s funny. He does things like ‘Tek now, a lot of things. There’s not a lot of better guys to follow in that position.’’

* On whether he threw too many cutters last season:

“I ended up overusing it. I definitely think there were times I fell in love with it and tried to use it in situations it probably was not the wisest thing to do.’’

* On whether Mike Lowell, whose farewell party he attended last week in Miami Beach, missed being here:

“ I definitely think there are things he misses and some things he really doesn’t miss. He’s really excited moving onto the new chapter in his life, being a family man. Everybody knows what kind of guy Mike is, what a professional he was. I think we miss him in the clubhouse more than he probably actually misses the whole game. He’s real excited about doing some fishing and his golf game after his next hip surgery.’’