WEEI>On Demand>>Buster Olney, ESPN, on condition of J.A. Happ

Buster Olney, ESPN, on condition of J.A. Happ

May 8, 2013|

Buster Olney joins the show to talk about the potential of pitchers wearing protective gear on the field after J.A. Happ took a line drive to the head. Buster also discusses the Sox pitching situation with the injuries in the bullpen.

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

We talked her body buster only of ESPN will get their Red Sox. We'll get to Red Sox issues here buster appreciate the time is always Tom Caron and for Lou. When you saw the JA -- thing last night what started to go through your mind as the guys covered baseball for a long time and a fortunately has seen a bunch of these around the game. Yep right glory -- it comes to mind that I met Bryce when he was in class today and the Padres organization and then I was covering the Yankees tonight that he had and that line drive by Ryan Thompson. United I did some stories on him after he left baseball. And then I'll always remember him. In talking -- own story about what he's sitting out on the mound after getting hit by the ball basically right on the right eyeball. Where he was asking if this -- was still there. And and he tried to come back and Dice-K was greatly affected. You know there's the mental component to it and and he's one of baseball's great you know great guys and you know he's teaching down and in the teaching history heavily down at South Carolina now. And he's corners basically ended by that I know he's remembers storied. That -- writers told me he visited pitch for the Mets pitcher for the Padres. And he'd been hit repeatedly I think ten times in his first five years in the big leagues there's something about the way pitch yet that corner is a right handed pitcher that. He didn't hit and I estimates of what was the worst one. Instead walked Kevin Mitchell you remember that the big slugger who -- hit forty for a 4050 homers a couple of times. He drove the ball back through the middle and hit wall early in the very upper thigh. And he never saw the ball coming. And I ask Wally you're standing here talking in the world you. Do you ever still think about that because you kidding any held at a dorm and who -- speaking he broke out and goose bumps in the cold sweat. And he can't imagine you know what these guys have to deal with -- they try to come back from that type of thing. And I do. We want them done a lot of great work for us he's a producer ESPN and -- -- -- the whole issue. Lined caps. And we -- talking this morning about it and and you know the the fact is is that we're talking about. How -- he's getting better and get more guys throwing harder. He had more guys in the throwing and higher velocity. Which only means that when the ball -- back to the middle it's coming back faster in a lot of cases and that's why the number of instances. Of this happening is actually been on the increase according to research that Willie -- And Major League Baseball out for good reason is concerned because the sixty feet six -- and not gonna change. And -- you talk about lying cap but then you look at last night and hits off the ear of happen sexually I mean. You know it's hard to imagine any sort of head protection that would protect the area he took that line drive off of last. Well heck yeah and from what do we don't really has found in dead. It having a difficult time coming up the line cap and if you go beyond you know line Kapanen. And maybe even with a line cap I think you can and get the initial response from a lot of players which is. You know but I'm also aware that -- it's kind of -- you guys remember a few years ago -- David -- -- -- bit oversized helmet. And there was definitely dad sort of old school pushed back on style. No in 2007. -- Michael it was a coach and my allegiance killed by a line drive and after that Major League Baseball. Basically made a rule saying all the base coach is apt to. Wear a helmet and initially. The it would -- back on that. And now we don't even notice we do know that every coach wears a helmet but I think when you're talking about pitchers going out there. You know wearing some kind of a cage. Right you know they were rated like cricket players cricket batters. I think that you know -- and we long long way from from players ever agreeing to do something like that. And hopefully dozens could take some terrible accident with a taken them more seriously. You know buster I I helped with youth hockey coaching over the years and USA hockey now forces all the youth hockey coaches to Wear helmets on the ice because. There have been I catastrophic injuries where are a kid will blind -- a coach loses an -- come undertake the coach and on Internet. I obviously as you said is a kickback anytime you try to change coaches didn't wanna Wear helmets on the ice. I'd take that advisors in the NHL which is still an ongoing debate and I -- everybody in the NHL agrees you're better off with a visor a protector. So we get back to baseball it would seem if you're going to do anything like that you almost have to do it. At some sort of youth level at some sort of high school or college level and let it grow in. And what we talk about that. Why has -- never been more of a push at the NCA or high school level to get rid of the cubs' bats because those things to me that ball is just exploding bag the pitcher. From somebody huge high school and college players. All the bad I think -- -- so that -- in recent years they they feel like I have. Decelerated. The ball I differ from lack a better way to describe it that they do you think that that situation getting a little better and I totally agree -- -- At any -- the change would happen literally take place guy to have me you know kids are learning -- a pro ball because it. It's not only have a style component but let's say yeah you know let -- pick out some of the older guys you know Ryan Dempster. Let's say MLB that you know we wanna have had protection and on a pitcher you know what there's mechanical issue there too because. You know the way Egypt and strike heads -- hand and suddenly has some sort of behavior device. I mean that would not be something that could be embraced overnight by anybody no matter what the risk was. Because religious. You know literally Alter how these guys would have to throw the baseball. And so your point is well taken that -- pinned back their keys and hit the ball. Don't want to keep accelerating as we get more more than that I think it's only natural that the conversation did take place it would have to first take place in Little League. We're talking about stroll -- ESPN -- every single week at this time as for the Red Sox dealing with. A lot of injuries in one of the results is a move in the rotation buster they're gonna go Felix -- brought into the pan. They safer start but Allen Webster was awesome the first time now they have scouts around him. Think he's thrown a hundred with a Derek Lowe likes water right now Pataki is there a chance that. Now Webster pitches well tonight in this 'cause spot start that he ends up replacing Felix -- brought long term and the Red Sox rotation. I don't think there's any question of what their plan is is to get Brian back into the rotation because -- value. They've seen it. You know certainly they weren't happy necessarily with the conditioning but date. In order to maximize what he is probably better off in the big picture having him back in the rotation the guys you know week. We always talk about in a small sample size and he and you have to look at the big picture in those type of issues. But these players can absolutely forced an issue with a one game. If someone comes up and they look fantastic. They can help to plan my goodness look at Jackie Bradley in spring training I don't think any -- the Red Sox didn't didn't go to at a Fort Myers thinking we opened this tidbit. He forces went into the situation and I think. I don't think it's gonna happen but I think you always leave open the possibility that it could happen because it. Pitched so well that the Red Sox say you know what. We're trying to win and it looks like it's going to be a bullet Bob division and at this -- -- different maker we keep that but -- and I don't think that's what the thinking going into it. -- gets an opportunity to close football Bailey and Hanrahan out and you know when you hear forearm injury for a pitcher is that something that would lead to believe it could be a bigger issue if they don't be careful here would Joel -- the Red Sox closer. No yeah and I said general -- privately say to -- through the years they look when we -- -- we're really talking about a potential -- thing now I don't know what's wrong with Hanrahan. You know hopefully it's just some sort of a muscle strain. But typically does lead to an -- thing but I will say that I think the Red Sox. You know or uniquely positioned to deal with it because. To Dallas stopped probably the best stuff -- that ball and I remember early in spring training talk with David Ross. And he would talk he'd just caught -- down in the bullpen for the first time. And he said to me and I think that's the best splitter that I've seen. Since I -- John Smoltz. And you know that's the type of electric stuff that he has no I think for the -- like he's he's going to be. You know feeling and that -- than. You know whether or not down the road simulated Derosa gets moved and -- back into release spot as you get called up later today. Check the trade market during the course the year you know quality -- being made available by a team like the Astros. You know or know who knows maybe they decide that they have to. Tito credit that it can come up and be someone who can help them and that's the reason why they are not doomed by all the issues because he does provide depth. Buster obviously we talk so much last week here in Boston about the whole Clay Buchholz. The situation after pitching up in Toronto we've heard. Major League Baseball -- reviewed the video they have found. Nothing that would indicate he was doing anything it is a case closed as far as Major League Baseball is concerned. I think it is -- in -- that they guys you know we all grew up with stories of. One Whitey Ford who's pitching how old he wanted to catcher it would cut the ball. At least returning it with a with the machine guards how they would you know. Covered the ball would muttered put some sort of subsidize it to the ball stayed in the game we get it -- -- -- game. A ten days ago in Detroit it was kind of rainy. And it was kind of a messy night and I wind up today and I don't you know plate umpire between innings -- -- to figure out there and how often thrown the ball he said. That pretty much the nice -- did just about every kind of ball -- -- any kind of surface and generally speaking you guys know that's how it is now. You know where. It didn't Alter rotated out of the game so often it's not like you can load up one half of the ball. With a great effect without people really noticing it it is doing something really bad now. I've also had been accused only that they will try to get some sort of -- -- big you know they might put a little -- -- Someplace but not in in a way that either they're gonna try to be Gaylord Perry but they're literally trying to get a grip on the ball and when he talked to pitchers. They say hitters get these pride -- to be able to grip the bat. How come we can't do that you know in the -- not loaded up big on one side I really don't think you can -- at the ball in the game pursue -- short time why not. It's a great point and last night and our show Tim Wakefield. Was talking about the resin bag you know. In an effort to speed of the game that the -- bag now -- all the way back up on do we -- pitcher walking off the edge of the mounted to touch the resin bag and if as we've -- -- calls really is just banging that resin bag against -- get a little bit of a better grip. You know we try to speed up the game the last thing we need is guys walking off the mound to -- the resin bag right. Yeah exactly and and that's all they're going for I think -- -- Some sort of composite something that. In that they can have their did you get a little -- tactic is especially when we're talking about games played early in the season. Could you hear pitchers talk all the time when he gets colder it feels like -- going to -- ball and it just trying to get a little bit more grip in fact I. I kind of wish baseball would liberalize the rules to make it clear. That you know -- Putting some sort of you know and liquid on your arm and then putting -- and on your arm. He's not a bad thing is it allows you to see your point content to be able to do you know -- it in and be able to get a grip on the baseball. Buster last one for me you link to a today in your daily column David Ortiz stuck in less hot starts from hard work not steroids Dan Shaughnessy I asked him some questions yesterday. Tom and I've gone back and forth on this and and maybe it's just going to be -- for the next -- -- years while this new testing policy. Goes in a place that any player a certain age to successful. Is going to be asked these questions or -- at least. Rumored right do you see an end -- this at all or is this gonna continue to be something we talk about in Major League Baseball. Now it's gonna go on forever as long as we covered baseball this could be part of the conversation actually had a conversation spring with David about. Steroids and and and how he felt angry. Dad a lot of I'll you know a lot of that's gone on in the last few years we're Dick clearly has been used to ride these two performance enhancing drugs that he thinks it. It reflects poorly -- all of them but that's the way it goes I was in the -- that answers similar question. The other night I actually had a thing to Melky Cabrera who has had a nice couple days but generally speaking is open yet his 300 points lower this year. The last year and I just waited it out. -- these numbers are down so much Chipper Jones actually -- back. He said boy that's a surprise sarcastically. And I you know a lot of people are saying you know that's not fair to suggest that and my feeling is. You know like it is and it's the players are upset about it then they can blame the guys can use in the past they complain that people didn't do anything about a twenty years. Yeah the only you know -- the only state and I made about that was I just always said I think you have to suspect everybody. But it gets it becomes very slippery slope when you start -- you know. Say individuals that do examined just because their numbers are so good when a guy you know we -- Derek Jeter last year people that's a while you must be taking something I mean it gets to the point where. It's not fair to individually call our guys whereas I don't believe you can be a suspicious of the entire industry. Yeah and you could have you private suspicions and our job that whoever I've always felt. You know when -- Bartolo Cologne came up a couple of years ago was suddenly thrown the heck out of the ball. Do I think it might be something going on you're darn right I think everybody did in baseball Melky Cabrera picture about the -- Yet -- think it but can't really say it that they get busted after that to me it's all fair game. Buster is always great stuff enjoy the week we'll talk you next Wednesday. Are great insight from Basra only obvious peony joins us every single Wednesday at this time buster joins us. He's brought to you by our friends at Toyota of Nashua go see them go see Bob Draper Rick will agree. And the older Toyota national megaplex during their ongoing spring saving sales event and comes through with the buzz is all about. By an arrest restoration specialist and Michael space 61777979378. TT tech line. 37937. Your phone calls and they follow up to. He's roster decisions that are what you will be for the Red Sox including -- Webster in the long term. Prognosis for him in this rotation of going to work.

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