Spring Training so far certainly has a theme going on this year..."Alumni Weekend".
...Tuesday morning, there was another familiar face back in a Boston
uniform for the first time since he retired in 2010: Mike Lowell.
Former teammate Dustin Pedroia reached out to Lowell recently and
asked him to come in and work with third baseman Will Middlebrooks.
"It's just something, we've been in touch with him over the past few
days,'' said Middlebrooks. "He's in Miami, so he's close. I didn't want
to pull him away from his family and his kids. I was like, 'Hey, if you
get a chance.' Pedey and I had been talking to him, 'Come over, just
talk about stuff.' He had a couple days, so he came by.''
"Pedroia mentioned to [Middlebrooks] that we had a good relationship
turning double plays,'' said Lowell. "I'm not sure it's something he
does wrong, but maybe something he wants to do better. I spoke to him a
little this morning, spoke to [third base coach and infield instructor
Brian] Butterfield. I think sometimes it might be something someone says
that maybe triggers doing something mechancially a little better.
"He's very impressive when you see him. He has all the makings of
being a tremendous player so I'm actually looking forward to it.''
CSNNE.com: Lowell finds the Will to return to Red Sox
Joining Pedro Martinez, Jason Varitek, and Tim Wakfield, Lowell has joined a solid group of Red Sox alumni to mentor younger players. The former Red Sox third baseman will be working with current third baseman and, possible future face of the franchise, Will Middlebrooks.
The fact that Pedroia reached out to Lowell seems to indicate that Middlebrooks could use some fine defensive tuning, especially turning double plays. Who better to track down than Lowell? He's a champion and a World Series MVP, defensively gifted at third base, and is the utmost professional.
As long as the "Alumni Team" isn't showing up on NESN's goofy programming or passing out food vouchers, I have zero problem with this. This is the right core of guys these current youngsters should be learning from.
For fun, who's next to show up at camp? Trot Nixon? Curt Schilling? EL GUAPO??