Big Mac: Gonzo still coming into his own

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Had a chance to talk to Mark McGwire, who is in his second season as hitting coach of the St. Louis Cardinals, when the Birds were in Fort Myers Sunday, and asked him about Adrian Gonzalez.

Even though McGwire lives in Southern California, he said he really hadn't seen much of Gonzalez until last year. Enough to form an impression.

"Yeah,'' he said with a chuckle. "He's really good.

"I don’t think he’s come into his own yet. He’s going to get better and better.''

McGwire, who combined with Ken Griffey Jr. and Sammy Sosa to make the All-Star Home Run Derby in Fenway Park a fabled event back in 1999, a more innocent time, agreed that Gonzalez's swing is tailor-made for Fenway.

"The thing is, that’s the way he’s swung his whole life,'' McGwire said, "but he can turn on a ball in a heartbeat, too. He’s just a really good, smart hitter. He knows what he’s doing out there.''