Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 3/20/13
One glance at David Ross‘ stat line this spring training paints an ugly picture. But then the veteran catcher speaks, and it becomes clear why the Red Sox made bringing him in an offseason priority. Ross went 0-for-3 against the Yankees on Wednesday, dropping his spring average to .050 (1-for-20) and his on-base percentage to .240. He has struck out seven times in 20 at-bats, and his lone hit was a three-run home run against the Rays on March 10. Despite the lack of production at the plate, though, Ross is working to get more familiar with the team’s pitching staff, and Wednesday was another step forward in that regard. Red Sox starter Felix Doubront got lit up in the second inning against the Bronx Bombers. He allowed four runs on five hits in the frame, which paved the way for a 4-0 New York win. But while Doubront got hit hard, Ross was quick to rush to his pitcher’s defense after the game, even shouldering much of the blame. “I was out of synch with him, not knowing his pitching style and how he gets out of trouble,” Ross told reporters in Tampa. “I think that bad inning was as much to do with me as anything.” “I don’t think I called a great game, especially in that inning. It got better as we went. But I really think I was a big hinderance in that bad inning.” Given Ross’ marginal offensive potential, the 36-year-old’s leadership and game-calling skills need to be apparent in order to justify the two-year, $6.2 million deal he signed with the Red Sox this offseason. Seeing Ross shoulder the blame on Wednesday doesn’t immediately prove a whole lot, but such accountability is still refreshing. Manager John Farrell stressed the importance of each player in the Red Sox’ clubhouse holding himself accountable this season, and it’s a theme that seems to have taken off in the months since the skipper’s hiring. What was most encouraging about Ross standing up for his pitcher, though, was his acknowledgment that adjustments needed to be made and were made in the wake of the second-inning implosion. Anyone can stand up and take the heat following a difficult team performance, but when flaws can be recognized and overall damage can thus be minimized, the potential for success becomes much greater. There were too many times last season when things spiraled out of control for the Red Sox’ starters, and it led to short outings and the bullpen consistently getting taxed. Take away the second inning on Wednesday, and Doubront’s outing wasn’t all that bad. It looked as if the left-hander had a one-way ticket to the showers, but he battled back to pitch 2 1/3 more scoreless innings before exiting in the fifth. That not only kept the Red Sox in the game, but it meant valuable time for the two battery mates. “What I want to learn is the fixes mechanically,” Ross said. “I learned today [that] posture is a big deal for him. If I learn that, I can coach in the middle of a pitch or the middle of an at-bat, ‘That one ball, you cut your changeup. You’re just bending over and getting to the side of it. Keep your posture.’ He’ll be like, ‘OK.’ That’s the thing I want to learn — to fix the problem in the middle of the battle.” It’s that “let’s fix this thing, here and now” mindset that needs to be adopted by the entire team. (And it appears the wheels are already in motion.) It’s especially important when it comes to the starting pitching, though, and Ross could play a big role in getting everyone on the same page. Have a question for Ricky Doyle? Send it to him via Twitter at @TheRickyDoyle or send it here.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Vin Scully will return to the Dodgers in 2016

Rob Gronkowski’s younger brother, Glenn, trying to make NFL as fullback

Michael Bennett fined over $17K for nasty hit on Alex Smith

Cam Cameron battling prostate cancer

RG3 to be held out 1-2 weeks after doctor changes mind

LA Kings offer Peter Budaj a professional tryout

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Carlos Boozer hoping roster spot opens on playoff team

Starting EJ Manuel not a bad idea for Bills’ third preseason game

Tim Beckman fired by Illinois amid mistreatment allegations

Chip Kelly reveals thought process behind Bradford trade

Charles Barkley on ex-agent: ‘I’d blow his damn brains out’

Bryce Harper doesn’t seem to care if Nationals make playoffs

The WWE Divas Revolution is getting ugly

The NFL’s season kickoff isn’t going as planned, but plans don’t matter in the NFL

Jonathan Kraft: Patriots haven’t apologized to ESPN’s Chris Mortensen

Ballmer declines $60M/yr TV deal, could start streaming

Nationals forced to re-issue massive bobblehead order

Jay Gruden would like the media to stop calling him fat

Spieth: New irons the reason for missed cut at Barclays?

The Opening Drive: Where have all the great UM tailbacks gone?

The 1980s Lakers represent the NBA’s ultimate creation story

The Orioles’ frustrating season

Andy Reid perfect play: 'That’s like a good cheeseburger'

Five greatest NBA players of all-time

Finding signs of life for the Boston Red Sox

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The WWE Divas Revolution is getting ugly

The NFL’s season kickoff isn’t going as planned, but plans don’t matter in the NFL

The Opening Drive: What happened to all the great Michigan tailbacks?

The 1980s Lakers represent the NBA’s ultimate creation story

The Orioles’ frustrating season

Five greatest NBA players of all-time

Finding signs of life for the Red Sox

10 NFL players set for down seasons in 2015

Why NFL preseason games matter

August's winners and losers in sports

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker