Aug 3, 2014|
Chad Epperson joins Alex to give an update on the catchers in the Sox farm system including Blake Swihart and Christian Vazquez and his work with them.
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Where back gunned down on the farm and Chad Epperson has been the Red Sox catching coordinator since 2010. Helping to shape the current wave of Red Sox catching prospects. Suffice to say that this is -- very exciting time for him as the Red Sox make the transition to a homegrown wave of -- after having veteran guys coming in after the last few years. You've now seen what -- investors can do by the plate Blake's -- heart is emerging is the consensus best prospect in the game. And just -- an unheralded favorite of the Red Sox player development system. Got to cement his unlikely path with the column to the big leagues joined now by Chad Epperson. Red Sox catching coordinator coordinator. Chad when you have a guy like Dan Butler who was undrafted out of college make it to the big leagues what is that moment like for you as as the guy who's been working with them. For almost the entirety of his professional career. Well it's great you know obviously for him you know the guys. You know we almost background I come there and then it's and it worked at -- certain non. -- -- -- the game and you know we edition really went about it Britons and professional way and know -- you don't have that sets and other guys that you mentioned you know achieved before I shut it down with -- -- it is true. Persevere and you know introduce. Really happened toward being able to say you know I'm in the -- was. What was the first time that he emerged on your radar as being a potential big leader of when he kind of moved beyond that OK I signed I signed for five grand not for five million. I you know I was a guy who was a backup catcher in college when did he nonetheless assert himself to you as being the guy who. Holy smokes this this may be a big leader. Arctic are happening more than -- I don't know the lord -- -- -- -- here but no -- expect caught. You know partners. You know solid defender on the players just being dependable pattern that's what this guy that you know there are dependable what we call them and just goes by there government should be watched like they're the original was gonna run game you know they could do. You bought all. You know receive the ball very well so it just became you know. Where time after time at the time here you're here in the play. Nobody start off about -- you know when an the organization. Says an outstanding job. Oh well. I just look at that you know top priority guys you know these these guys next that the you know a lot Earl red and you know we're not been treated by their related you know your -- -- some. -- -- -- -- -- -- Talking to Chad -- Red Sox pitching coordinator Dan Butler has now has now arrived in the big leagues which is that which is a bit of a landmark and you know he's not the only unheralded guy. Coming up who is now on the Red Sox who's now Red Sox catcher Christian Vazquez was the ninth rounder when he was taken as a seventeen year old. Out of high school in Puerto Rico you started working with him in 2010 which was his first year in Greenville. When did you first look at Vazquez as a guy you said this guy could be not just not just a big -- -- may be an elite defender. Well you know Christian -- of -- monsoon like since he was brilliant on the you know and that it -- a process we get -- that now and you know he just needed to get reps and understand the position and the demands of the -- and you know that. That takes time you know at seventy years -- we don't expect anybody attributable to. Do that so you know the more -- cheek obviously we shall the ability and so my actions that you wanted to seat so he's obviously got a lot of reps aren't what they. And and then you don't hear I hear is you know crushing kind of figured out what it took. And know every time you know we. Well like we did challenging or lotion to another level or two. All season something are basically can't -- -- you don't expect continued to rise to the occasion then and almost like kick it into another -- and so they'll all that. Gotta put together I think that organizations are so like this that was ready to go. You know you'd use bigger scope for -- right now. Yeah -- that's an interesting player development path when it's like the guy looks like it when the -- that emerges is kind of a better and better prospect. When his performance level increases even as he's moving up the latter. Is -- is that kind of a product of of him having had having started at a very young age and so maybe kind of getting on to the other side of learning curve. You know that I'm sure -- on the do without that they their you know he he has the opportunity to. Spend the -- we're in big league camp obviously probably a little bit more than that and spring training that sports. You know -- wanted to gut it was not a -- go over and help out so I think -- bill's group on our big guys know him. That have been around them -- with the Red Sox in the apparently can't so I think he got a cute and I. One of these guys that didn't that would not going to be scared to. Go out there and play his game you know and that's all we try to colored guys don't change anything and get out there there's going to be enough you know adrenaline and then and emotions that you're gonna -- that I'm actually just been a bit. But don't change thing and I think what better be good not only does not change saying. Because so well Marshall a little bit more and is able part of that. You know that upper level impaired reproductive with a lot. He does a remarkable job of taking charge of the game from behind the plate I think that he's. As much as anyone you'll see you can kind of get a sense for him as a field general. That -- so I don't mean to obscure the overall. Body of what he's able to do behind the plate that said the things it's always going to stand out is watching this guy throw. We I was I was there in -- there in spring training. When he had that had turner a couple years ago about the one point 77 home the second time. Which is way above average is that the best time you've clocked -- met at this point. Found it in the issue had to. Cup all that you know not sure you -- watch it right I'm not ego really that happened I mean. -- he's capable of doing that you know I I don't wanna say that. You know we wanted to give back ever going that we you don't -- kind of I'm sure they -- -- keeping -- You know look what good rhythm tempo but it's not know he's got them back popular Beverly. He loves picking guys off is is that have you do you do you encourage that trait of you know of really being aggressive trying to cut guys off. On the base is not just you know not just controlling the running game from the -- -- in perspective but really trying to trying to get guys are already on base. I -- you identify the guys that you know maybe you know try to. Being a little bit more aggressive secondary and and weaken or try to do encryption that really good job that we keep a guy on. And put it in the back of the mind that you know the structure will back there in the first -- -- -- -- Matt. I think it and that slows them down just -- that we've done a good job -- would it be dire. Even if we you know throw over there -- -- there are some quarter where it's on the opposition. And that this -- will back there so it kind of slow them -- and we get a lecture out by a bullet that Britain based sort Burberry it's whatever so it is up oil weapon. Talking to red sex catching coordinator Chad Epperson Blake's Y hard is now hitting 300 he's getting on base he has a dozen homers. He's throwing out over half of the guys who tried to steal on him it is catching a pitching staff that's been ridiculously good this year in Portland. Have you ever seen a catcher with the overall tools that he. Notably special -- amenities very athletic. You know the guy and he he came in to. You know our Red Sox organization and a vote so that source Gupta right -- -- in the perspective Ketchum. -- handle the workload and you will -- she's sort out who this guy you know great talent out there and what Mubarak and -- -- them. He is just so what do on the watch groups. You know Billups open every single night that -- that they -- hardy -- that whether walk -- right handed batter popped what they have battered buck. You don't make it grow up back there you know -- A church. On a pop up that has no business and there -- always able to do that it's been special. But he if you don't use a point now that you don't you start and understand you know these guys. You know been fortunate that aspect in this organization that only a lawyer. Portland and York but it great tool or our organization you're that's what the states. And nobody's got the body in Latin. Girl. You know -- it in their own way and special and you know. Bigger it's bigger -- the -- and they're gonna get portrait. John I'm gonna finish by putting you on the spot Blake's Lara looks like he's going to be pretty good. Vazquez looks like he's pretty good back -- backed by the played so an awkward spot you can't have two pitchers on the fuel at the same time as much as you'd probably like to. What do you do when you have both investors and that's -- partners system. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Very clever -- very clever thank you so much for joining appreciated great check union has always. It. All right we'll fix this -- so much to Chet Epperson for joining as well as JJ Cooper baseball America for breaking down. Some of the an usual activity the trade deadline this year if you like to hear the complete interviews of both of them. Or for past episodes of the show check him at W got dot com slash podcast and thanks to producer -- Matt looper who saved me today. As well as to as most of Saturday and -- -- who -- most of the words. Thanks all of you for listening look for detention next.