Originally posted on Ted's Army  |  Last updated 12/24/11


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McClure’s reliever-to-starter experience wasn’t the only reason the Red Sox [team stats] named him as their new pitching coach yesterday. Hired recently as a scout and roving instructor, he made a good impression during a meeting with manager Bobby Valentine and received recommendations from people within and outside the organization after a six-year tenure as the Kansas City Royals pitching coach.

And after watching their starters get fat on beer and chicken in 2011, the Red Sox believe McClure has the right temperament to bring more discipline and structure to the pitching staff than predecessor Curt Young.

“He has a real true grit to him,” said Valentine, whose staff also will include a new third base coach (Jerry Royster), first base coach (Alex Ochoa) and bench coach (Tim Bogar, moving from third base). “He can be very sociable and jovial, but he also could be stern when he needs to be. And I think that’s a good prerequisite to this job.”

Herald - Bob McClure ready for Sox

"He has a real true grit to him."  That's all I need to know about McClure to be happy with this hire.

Back when Curt Young decided to head back to Oakland, Clay Buchholz let us know why Young wasn't nearly as effective as his predecesor, John Farrell.  "I have nothing bad to say about Curt. He talked to me about whatever I needed to talk about. With John it was, I don’t want to talk to him unless I have to because I’m scared of him."  I've beat this drum at least a hundred times since September, but this Sox pitching staff can't function under a buddy-buddy hands-off coach.  They need someone to come in and kick some ass.

The article also discusses how McClure himself, as a player, made the transition from the bullpen to the rotation for the Brewers in the early 80's.  As if his experience three decades ago is going to ensure that Bard's and Aceves' transition is going to be smooth.  I'm not buying that.  If they get frustrated, I'm sure he can share some words of wisdom based on his history, but it'll come down to building up their endurance and ensuring they can repeat their delivery for 5, 6, 7 innings. 

You don't need to have done it yourself to coach it, but I guess the experience couldn't hurt.  But beyond all that, I just needed to know that McClure wasn't a push over.  That he wasn't going to stand by and let Josh Beckett balloon over the course of the season.  That he's going to lead the pitchers, and not the other way around.  Mainly, that his approach can best be summed up in the title of a Coen Brothers film. 

Rest of the links:

Globe - McClure sounds like he's ready to get after it with the Red Sox | Red Sox moving cautiously so far ... remain calm | NESN - Ben Cherington's Patient Approach Could Be Costing Red Sox Potential Acquisitions | ESPN - Sox announce staff; Ochoa is 1B coach

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