Apr 28, 2013|
Torey Lovullo joins Dale and Rob at Fenway before today's game to discuss his role as bench coach and what exactly his duties include. He discusses his relationship with John Farrell and the importance of communication with the players. Lovullo explains what goes in to letting guys know if and when they will be playing in a game and why this helps certain players mentally.
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Our number two -- sports Sunday Sports Radio WEE I broadcasting live from our center field studios here at Fenway Park Dale Arnold rob Bradford. Very happy to be joined here in studio by the bench coach the Boston Red Sox -- a little good to see it. Think he's going to be here -- set a car for you to me. I think out here and if he does things right -- good guy well it's clearly in every bench coach's contract at bat ahead of a golf cart is a Marxist. You know it didn't and lets start it this way because I know I've had fans say to me in the past what does bench coach me. When Brad Mills was here is the bench coach for -- people last. What does bench coach mean as opposed to first base coach third base coach all of that. I'm probably the guy that stands behind John -- just talking baseball with him gone over situations and. You know the old adage that for -- better than to watch -- game watching the situation and kind of projection in -- am able to try to get outside of the moment John -- the manager has to stay in the moment has to make right now decisions. I'm able to kind of sit back in a pressure free environment and and think through some things. In projecting give things a John and in so nothing's Scott he's not caught off guard so. I wish I could say a little easier than that but this is paying attention of the game and manage and right behind John well. You -- part of this we've talked about -- before the Salina and in communication with the players in the clubhouse site -- like last -- for instance. You go over. You -- rival Hardaway. We've talked in the office would use I don't know what is it. But then he goes in you're the one who kind of -- -- in talks of the players out there so the lineup comes out today. Right take me through that process about oh. How the players know who's playing when they know it. And we should I guess we should mention the lineup today which is is very similar of the. Yesterday right yeah that's exactly -- -- I guess it is very similar factors Sam you know. John have a pretty good relationship we've we've we've worked together for several years I think there as we all have. Been saying John and I've been saying there was. The good connection. To start with we were -- have conversations that maybe other bench coach or managers can have because -- -- a former develop relations John and I had already gotten there. From day one so. They able to go in their talk over situations talk over lineups. Worked through different. Thought processes to make sure there were maximizing. Our ability to go out there performed that it -- lineup wise I would project. Matchups potential massive so we want to. We wanna get to. Note left on right right on left those types of things. And we just have good baseball conversation on top -- that we we talk about other things you know yesterday he made -- go -- get Ryan -- and when I think that's part of my job on to go out there and just kind of overview the clubhouse and and be the link between the players and John John has a lot of people pulled him in a lot of different directions and when I can kind of slow myself down enough to go out and and give the players a little bit of Johns feeling I can't. And well and vice Versa the players will talk to me in and I can bring their feeling to John as well so there's certain things that John takes care of there's certain things that I try to. Not late get -- far. To make John's job a little bit easier that's really what on their force to kind of take the burden off for John and some key situation Alfaro does a lot of that this lineup that -- How far out you start talking about. We Victorino to lose obviously Kline you mean he's not in the lineup today right back issue right. Were probably two days ahead of of today so were we we talked about what's gonna happen in Toronto what's gonna happen the second game in Toronto. And they're just really light easy conversation you're right when when there are injuries and that's that's good example we -- victory -- again that's talked about an awful lot between John and I. Now when he's gonna be ready what can we do to bridge the gap until he's ready. And you know the guys are responding to what we discovered is that. The communication between us in the players is vital because a player that has. No guesswork going on in their head as you -- -- -- -- -- -- very relaxed -- are very relaxed environment and be successful that's -- wanna do we want it we -- Maximize your performance by going out there thinking about playing baseball baseball. Not every manager. Feels compelled to inform players of lineup at a time and I'll leave a name out somebody who didn't think it was that big -- deal. Why do you think it's important that when the players leave the clubhouse at the end of the day today. They know what's gonna happen the next game. How he gets a great question I think for the guys -- play every day. Dustin Pedroia Jacoby Els doesn't matter -- it to them they know they're gonna walk into the clubhouse tomorrow and the next day and the day after that know where they're hidden. And where they're playing it's for those bench players where the game kind of grinds on you you're always on its it's a high -- situation where. If you can get your body to relax when you're not playing and also get your arms around on the day the you are playing to really help you in. Like I said we want to have guys -- go out there in. Mentality in and I think it's worth I think the guys go out there they can get there. That they know -- and not -- either -- or corporate preparing to play just helps a bench player get through those tough grinding moments knowing that they are gonna play the next day. It happens on the airplane you know John and I'll start talking about it say that say we just end the series and and or on the airplane the next city. We start talking about lineups and in all walked back to the back of the plane. Just to sit down the guys for a few minutes and get their -- and let them know who's playing who's not playing. I go -- dollar -- -- -- -- looking for the not a huge -- I can -- our -- -- nausea and has an -- job done tomorrow let me know I'm -- told -- I'm ready for just threw for a -- That that that's part of -- that's part of my connection to the players for John. And I develop my own relationships with -- but you know we're there to communicate. And make sure these guys have they have you know nothing really undermine the playing -- you don't. Almost sounds as though part of your job this team psychologist. Because. -- everybody wants to play you wouldn't be a Major League players you didn't wanna play. Some guys as you said no they're going to be in the lineup everyday some guys don't imparting your job I assume it's to keep the guys weren't going to be in the lineup every day ready when they are. I. You said it very well I think it's. -- to certain degree were were like parents were worry our psychologists we are their friends were there. Colleagues but also we have to draw a line and let them know that we're trying to we're trying to help our ball club win games so. There's a there's a very very. Interesting balance there that that we try to create. And you know. We want to make sure that we can we can clear their heads and we give them we give them the platform to express themselves in. Whether they have some that they want expressed mentally to get after Chester whether they just wanna go out there perform express themselves on the baseball field. We wanna give them every opportunity to be successful. And you know mark my advantages and I was a grinding type of player I was a bench player I I think I know the mentality of of car be in -- Jonny Gomes these guys are way better than I ever was trust me but. You know coming off the bench I know what they're thinking and -- know how their challenges. Are presented for them. And you know I'm I'm able move like John who obviously was a pitcher he does -- really. Have a great feel or didn't have a great feel for what the bench players were thinking and over the past couple years we've had great discussions at length about how to maximize the bench. The easy answer to this next question is John -- has -- changed -- that is exactly same as when I was with them in Toronto. -- you -- -- them in Toronto how how is he approaching things differently even in the slightest. You know I think -- John's great strengths is that he doesn't change he is the calm before the storm. He lets people around him were Q -- people around him express themselves look lets players go out and play. Player's manager that has changed from day one I think that he. Is. Got a really good understanding about what makes the Boston Red Sox -- he he knows this personnel very very well. I don't think there's been a change really in any area. As far as his managing style he's very aggressive he wants to go out there and attack and we call pressurized the defense impression pressurized a pitcher just. Put a little doubt in in on that side of the coin in and I have our guys go out there and take advantage of that. Pretty dynamic guy a pretty good leader and those around him really enjoyed being around him. The up the first visit to Toronto. He was a little a little emotional for a lot of the -- don't your press conference. The potter had gone. I I'm guessing this week to visit will be a little more business as usual. I think so I think so we -- first of all Brian Butterfield and had left of really released its been. Lasting impression you know and the fans of -- fans -- he he's a pretty pretty impressive guy himself and very well deserved and know that he's missed that there's their press conference with -- the need to be done so you get all those questions on one fell swoop but as far as sitting up there. To start off the season there was a lot where I am not gonna lie in it in a way I I know that there's a lot of passion I know that there's a lot of resentment towards John. Butter and myself because we we we did kind of come this way in. You know. Truth be told John was traded. Butter and I were told we were no longer. -- wanted and less the new manager was gonna come in and hire us so we were kind of left on the streets and it was time for us to kind of turn the page and move on and you know that the fan has thrown for you don't see it that way it was very unusual I spent two really really fun years there I made some great friends. And love the town and for us to walk in there and and to be treated outweighs Wofford but I understand it. John grind it through it I think you know we all we all kind of laughed and joked about it as it was happening before the game but. Once once the bell ring we were we were -- as usual it's a lot their compete in and win a baseball game this is a little. And of yesterday's news I thought it was interesting because you have elected perspective Robinson Jackie Bradley situation and Tom is still debated. About us you guys putting him on the opening day roster but as you pointed out to -- before you had a very similar path of Jackie -- is at a college kid. Who gets put in the major leagues after. Really you did it after it even a full. Full professional year. But as you also said you felt that Jackie was even better prepared -- you were. Looking back at that altitude now what what's your takeaways from. Well. It's easy to say. Didn't work out we made a mistake but that that's what everybody kind of thinks right now but. As we've all learned the American League east is very competitive division and one game will make a difference and that's something we talked about internally and Jackie Bradley for the first 78 games of of our season helped us. Win or. At least score extra runs. That led to win in two to three games we talk about winning you know we talk about winning an inning we talk about that leading to winning game. And Jackie did that and if we win this division by one game but we feel like we made the right decision. As far as our our pass overlapping the it is it is very -- if you look back on it's it's almost you're really similar number all the way from that the call up. Or or or the the starting the season on the big league -- roster to the numbers it's really unusual. He's -- of it was a very well prepared player he was on a bigger platform than I was with -- called World Series. He had some great numbers. He had an east who swing in the minor leagues. I guess set I was a grinder a hard working swing a lot of hustle -- we knew it was an easy bet for Jackie because he. He slowed the game down enough with his mentality slow the game -- down enough with his his fundamental approach to two. Swinging the bat. That we thought it was gonna be very successful but as we all know the big leagues is pretty special spot. He now is down in the minor leagues working hard we we definitely will see him again we know that he's an easy -- to get back here. Talking with the Red Sox bench coach -- local final question for me I hurt Pedro yesterday talking about the chemistry on the ball club. And he set from the day he arrived in Fort Myers he felt it he could see -- he could feel it he could taste it is is really only guys who -- In a big league dugout can't. Did you sense that in spring training as well. Steve no doubt I think that's the atmosphere of the John creates the that the rest of the staff we know that it's our job to go out there in in teach with energy to creating good environment. Take that take that to the next step which is kind of outside of our boundaries. Then -- -- can deal -- bring in some really really high quality guys in combination with the guys that are here. And you know you you've got a pretty special environment that's that's. This bill almost made ripe for a very eyes and I can't explain why or how I just know that we all have one another's back in in you hear that expression and there is it there's really no -- of the story it's true we are in that clubhouse as one. The 25 guy all the way the the first guy. There's no difference in we all we don't care about one thing and that's going out performing and winning baseball games. The game I'm interested because he -- Ellis who you interviewed for the managerial job here. And when you go to that interview you probably think you have pretty good handle on how to manage in Boston right now that you're kind of -- in Mercer and I know you were here before in the organization but now you've been immersed in that dugout. You look back at what you said in that interview. The very things that I really didn't. Hockey you know as maybe a little bit I think everybody has your vision isn't in their own thoughts as to what will work in. I was able sit down those guys and tell that in. You know not now a few things that I said I'm thinking they're probably laughing -- me or anybody got no idea what it's like here. So yeah you are right on the head but I think the bottom line is that. Right now they have a really good leader of great baseball guy in charge and the old saying all's well that ends well could. Couldn't every more prevalent before we let you -- I wanted to and I said the other was the last question but I just ask you this. It's been an emotional time for everybody in the Boston area since April 15. Has it been a little overwhelming at times. I'm not not overwhelming. In a sense that it's nothing now we aren't. Attached to we feel very close to it we have. Become a part of the city we are part of the city so we are. Were right there and I think we were were handling it as as the rest of Boston is in. I've never been. A part of something like that I mean -- for those for those in for now week. As -- the most emotional. Time that I've ever had in baseball that day on the baseball field. When we eventually got back to plane it was easily you know one of them they was the most emotional day and out on the baseball field outside of the birth of my children. Probably one emotional most emotional times and on my life and in this you were here mature part of that you just you don't get it and I never understood that when people talk about what happened on 9/11 in all these other emotional times happen across United States where. You're not part of you don't understand it but this town is very unique this town is very special at some bonding time to town we are Boston's strong. Torre were really appreciate taken time I'm glad routes at the limo for you to get here in the clubhouse that job -- -- He's a pretty special guy. Yet do we think about other things not working you know what it -- Probably better that you might have gotten on that I was going to say can we say that I do you -- how. Sorry thank you very much -- -- I think you take quick break back with more just a moment Sports Radio WB.