Trucks Rolls At Noon... Jonathon Papelbon Speaks From His Heart With No Thinking Involved!
Yes, we've finally arrived at Truck Day, a day (and night) where everything Boston Red Sox heads to Florida. The Super Bowl is over and now it's time to turn our Red Sox Nation minds to BASEBALL. I couldn't be any happier. And now, let's speak about our closer supreme, Jonathon Papelbon.
He'll make twelve million dollars this year, a year that might be his last in a Boston Red Sox uniform. I hope not but the chances are he will test his value in the free agent market. Count on it, in fact. But he lets others (his agent, Theo) do all the thinking while he concentrates on striking out each and every batter. But you'll see a Paps with more finesse this year, mixing his pitches as he has never done before. Here is some of what he had to say....
"They don't pay me to think. If I'm a thinker, then I'm not a closer. That's the way I look at it, man. I don't think, man, I just do. Sometimes that gets me into trouble. I realize my situation. I realize the possibilities that could and could not happen, and I accept them and I move on. I'll go out and try and win a championship. When that's all said and done, whatever happens, happens. I realize my situation. I realize the possibilities that could and could not happen, and I accept them and I move on. I'll go out and try and win a championship. When that's all said and done, whatever happens, happens."
Hey Paps, will there be a noticeable difference in your pitch selection in 2011??
"You'll see a difference right off the bat. I will be throwing a lot more off-speed. I'll be throwing my split a lot more, my slider, I'll be throwing a heck of a lot more. The last couple of years, I've been able to develop those pitches, and the biggest thing I've gained from game experience is to learn what not to do with them. There will be a lot of situations where, instead of pitching off my fastball, I'll be pitching off my split, pitching off my slider, earlier in the count."
I like that. The more variety in his pitch selection will give the batter more to think about. The more the opposing batter has to think about, the more he is apt to make a mistake. Batter's mistakes are what a pitcher thrives on. If Paps can bring that blown save total of eight down to a normal level (3 or 4), he will become a force once again in the American League and command more riches than ever. Sure, we'll all miss him in 2012 and if he DOES have a spectacular 2011, Boston might even bid on his services. But that's then, this is now. Blow 'em away, Jonathon. We love you.
Please click on the title of this post for more on Paps and enjoy your Tuesday. I'll see you soon and as always, BE WELL.