Boston Red Sox success goes beyond just the players

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 3: Chris Sale #41 of the Boston Red Sox talks with pitching coach Dave Bush during the third inning of a game against the Washington Nationals on October 3, 2021 at Nationals Park in Washington, DC. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 3: Chris Sale #41 of the Boston Red Sox talks with pitching coach Dave Bush during the third inning of a game against the Washington Nationals on October 3, 2021 at Nationals Park in Washington, DC. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images) /
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Red Sox coaches and support staff shout out

The Boston Red Sox management is slowly developing a pitching staff among the best in the American League. The eyeball evidence supports the statistical evidence as April is now in the rear view mirror. An April that was a disaster.

Yes, this will be a feel-good column, not directed at players, especially pitchers. You will not get spin-statistics, FIP, ERA, OPS, or any other post information that is generally the red meat. This will center on the organization’s scope, where the team extends to those who get little recognition, not just players.

Injuries take the steam out of a staff and position players, but this team and pitching staff, in particular, has resilience with a next-man standing approach that has done surprisingly well. There is usually finger-pointing when things go sour, and pitching coach Dave Bush and manager Alex Cora had to endure that in April, but how things have changed.

The talking heads mention preparation, which is Jason Varitek’s wheelhouse. Varitek’s name pops up during broadcasts as the analyst du jour will comment on the former captain’s ability to dissect the opposition hitters and create a game plan. It goes deeper for me.

What preparation is being done in Worcester with manager Chad Tracy and pitching coach Paul Abbott? The WooSox team does not exist in a vacuum, as members of that staff and position know how quickly a call can come. That call has been well utilized to support the MLB team and has done remarkably well.

There is an extensive list of coaches and support personnel on the Big Club. One name that caught my attention was Rey Fuentes, who is listed as a “mental health coach.” I remember Fuentes as a Sox prospect and player who shuffled and scuffled around the MLB landscape and even did a tour with the Long Island Ducks in the Atlantic League.

I have no idea what Fuentes’s job description is, but the mental aspect is one part of the MLB puzzle that teams address – like nutrition, weight management, public relations, etc. I do not picture Fuentes as Doc Knobb from “The Natural.”

Coaches are not insular, the most vulnerable being a hitting or pitching coach. Bush went through the media trauma of a floundering staff that is now dissipating.

If hitting suddenly disappears like the bats need baseball Viagra, then the innuendo begins. Hitting coach Peter Fatse came under fire after the slow hitting start and the loss of Tim Hyers to Texas, and that has now evaporated.

The organizational chart for the Red Sox has many positions listed, and some names have already been mentioned. There are reams of information delivered to the coaching staff at all levels, not just MLB. I understand that Cora and his staff have more than 50 pages to sort through, but that does not exclude the “gut feeling” option.

Cora is the orchestra leader and one of the best managers in MLB. If Cora was set adrift tomorrow, the job offers would be staggering. Cora is that combination of Father confessor, disciplinarian, cheerleader, and in-game and before-game decision-maker. So far, he has done the job.

Next. Disproving Red Sox Nation's complaints. dark

This month will be a telling time for the Red Sox with a schedule where they play the best in their division. Wrong moves will be made, and the hindsight posse will undoubtedly point them out, but the real issue is this team will be prepared.