WEEI>On Demand>>SBNation's MLB expert Rob Neyer previews the 2012 MLB season with the Big Show

SBNation's MLB expert Rob Neyer previews the 2012 MLB season with the Big Show

Apr 3, 2012|

We talk to Rob Neyer of SBNation (formerly of ESPN) to get his take on how he thinks this 2012 MLB season will play itself out for the Red Sox and the rest of the league.

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Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

I've back here at the -- show blood -- -- Michael Hollywood now at 44 and a half hours that's safe to say 44 and a quarter hours away from. First pitch of opening day Red Sox and tigers. Going at it from Comerica on Thursday will have a four -- right here. On WEEI Michael alive giving you our predictions of the next few days we'll talk to some other people around the country. And get their predictions rob nine -- joins us from SB nation right now Iraq Mario. I'm not gonna -- that's good to have you on we're just talking about it are there any more than. Sixteen was vying for five playoff spots in the American League is there any other team that you can think of know the six obvious ones that can get him. No. I can't come up with a name that there were there will be eighteen. That at the at the very least at the all star break. Will be shocking if you know last year. The media you know last year for the pirates return power play the all star break right. And an -- to -- -- came from last played. Actually -- the whole -- anyway you want all divisions so we will be comprised. We really kicked did not try to figure out which team is going to the playoff that almost impossible. To bet that you -- -- hope to do -- come up with a few teams that have a chance to. Be better than we expect and the will be part of the conversation in July. Where do you see the Red Sox. In the in the big picture in the American League east. Well. I would say that the Yankees and the red dock and and and the -- as well. Are close enough where it's incredibly difficult to say who's going to finish where ethical treatment right after the playoff I think only one of them. Might wind up in the play out. Threat dock obviously with all the questions about the rotation. It hit it's -- -- what's gonna happen I mean there's easily five -- six game swing anymore. The last 2:2 o'clock in the rotation. I get tricky though if -- only one makes it in the American League east. Who else would make it and you have I take it you have Detroit the central right everybody does. And in -- west you have -- winning the division. I think the Rangers are still the best team out there but the angels could certainly will challenge them and -- wouldn't at all surprise me if you angels. If both those teams win ninety plus games and both make the play out. I brought that up a few minutes ago if you look at their schedule. They get a break in their division they get more games against Oakland and Seattle. And the Red Sox the Yankees in the race have to battle each other plus a pretty good Toronto team so it. You do and I actually I Iraqi People the Orioles might be surprised he's not in the sense that contending for anything but playing a lot better than we expect. And I think I'm not sure they're going to be total pushover like they were last year so yeah absolutely -- -- -- -- have a big advantage -- getting to play all the games get the given him. Our river along time ago the Greg Greg -- -- LA times wrote that there's no easier job in managing a baseball team so that's where he came down on it. Where do you come down on at least some guys think that a manager has great value in can be responsible for an extra ten or fifteen when something gets two or three. What are you thinking I'm asking specifically about Bobby Valentine and Red Sox. Well. -- -- I sort of had Marines take on it when I was younger. And certainly more foolish that I am that you cannot still cool but I look -- look there are more look at I think. 1015 years ago. I came to have a great deal of respect for the manager -- especially the things that we can't necessarily measure. And I -- I got the more appreciate that now got a new job about a year ago. And reputation and suddenly. I became a manager for the first time in my life. I -- people. I have three full time employee opened writers and I have a few part timers. And I will tell you -- it has been incredibly typical related to the it to make that transition. And give me anything greater appreciation for -- got to do with. Point five personality. Plus the coaches. But the people who -- -- I mean I think it's an incredibly difficult job in and that's why -- very few managers are able to do it without sleep for long at all. How your body -- -- Bobby Valentine as a manager he's been. A bit of a lightning rod throughout his throughout his career. Well he certainly have a strong. Personality. And I think like a lot of managers and star personality. If the -- doctor winning is going to play pretty well. If it doesn't. Coastal on the field it's not going to play well I do think that right -- he's been receptive toward the front office trying to do. I think he's got an open mind about things that they keep that it didn't. Information which is obviously a big. Priority for Opel management so. I think it's going to work out pretty well we were two or three years if the red doctor successful. You know one thing that you you have to be concerned with and we were just talking about it is the opt for goodness all of your manager's sleep in this city. And that I think most people talk about the manager on a day to day basis I can remember. Gone through a day to a sports talk radio or somebody didn't call open their question and something a manager debt so the managers are always front and center but when. If he doesn't take a somewhat backseat to some of this stuff. I think what happens Robin you've been around baseball long enough to have that to see this that. That in a big city like this with a lot of media people. There -- running back to the players' lockers say hey did you hear what the skipper just said about he said that you screwed up but second. And then suddenly you create something that becomes an out of control train wreck. It's a good point and I -- -- -- the Q what happened but you know obviously Bobby Valentine did manage to -- And it went well there -- -- until it didn't but. I mean you're I think you're right it's it's it's a different environment. -- -- So a lot of things he would he would blog quite often. But. Managing an open and it doesn't think it would not payment managing in Boston so -- look the I think Bobby Valentine to. Haven't sort of personality that would be wary where you want to be. -- -- -- want to be a market like Boston or New York but whether that played well over the long term I'm not sure. So the -- -- Jonathan Papelbon in the offseason trade from an offer for Andrew Bailey Bailey now has to have some surgery. And we don't know who the next closer of the Red Sox is going to be. Where do you stand on this position I think you'll be able to find somebody for a year to not necessarily a special. Closer like Rivera or Hoffman or even Papelbon. How much do you think it's overrated underrated bodies Eackles. I think they're generally overrated. That the role but I don't know that Papelbon has been I mean you know he wasn't. He got caught up in the same breath perhaps the barbarian and nobody deserves to be pretty. In the next year blow in from probably the occasional struggles. He'd been incredibly dilute the numbers. Last week camping out -- the last three years in Papelbon has been the second. Most. -- closer in all of baseball by at least one measured outlook yet so. I can coordinate and I think losing him. Popular Doctor Who gave. People what they've got now which is you know you can make it through pregame depth somewhere else. Which you have to make them up so I think you hit it again especially when you're talking about a guy that could -- what. I give us those five teams that make it to the postseason the American like. -- -- You put him. Thought he did that because I think the last I looked at the red dot Al. I think I have read is Null and try to raise the Yankees tigers angels and Rangers but it really did think about a different I mean any. It is impossible to say which of which is if you left out but. Good team -- the academic and I think with that pretty clear. Yeah I think the you can put anyone of those teams in the National League they would -- any one of those divisions and it finally happened right when I came out. And -- I was reading out some of your articles in your very high on your starters. Do you think he's gonna be able to make the transition from Japanese Baseball to MLB without any problems. I do I really think we're looking at. I would go back to -- O'Donnell who was that tactic it hurt even with the Dodgers after coming over from Japan. You know garbage. He did you not like OK I mean we -- that sources that the obvious comparison because I can with the most recent premiere pitcher to come over. But. Garbage. Had better numbers in Japan's Daisuke. He didn't have an injury history in Japan which directly did have he wasn't overworked. Japan like that -- was I mean I don't think they're really all of that similar. Darted to the big guy yet pitches. Are not that you can win the final word I do think you can be rookie of the year and and and maybe that that the -- to -- the -- that. But that happens and police can give them anything at the end of the rotation and Joseph Nathan can -- two years out of Tommy John. And the somewhat good they're gonna be scary because as you know. They just at the cover off the ball plus they get the advantage of playing. Every single light in a 106. Degrees humidity and what other teams commit there's you know rob they don't like it. It's it they they don't like that he down there what are. People use the blame the heat for the Rangers struggled. And all the sudden they get the better pitchers and they're the plan out their year and with good pitching. So. You know it's funny you could double problem talent up I do think that if you know public is obviously not a -- -- by. I -- competitive. That it effectively replaces Pete Wilson and applicants for the angels of course. And because they have a -- back -- those guys -- really good so you know another thing if cruised up -- in right field. Josh Hamilton left -- both those guys had an injury issues -- you too. That could be a problem for them and they can't they leave that help you if they have been and that's not a sure thing either there are certainly completely yet another. No question about that Robin Joseph the baseball season thanks for a for talking it was here in Boston. The only thereof I -- ESP nation. Right here -- election.

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