FORT MYERS, Fla. (CBS) — Last year, it seemed like manager Bobby Valentine spoke more often with the media than he did with his team. This year, from Day One, it’s clear things are going to be different under John Farrell.
The newest Sox skipper held his first full team meeting on Friday in Fort Myers, with all players and ownership present. The lengthy meeting covered a number of topics, but when Farrell spoke with the media later in the day, he didn’t put too much emphasis on the words spoken in the meeting.
“I think more than anything, that first talk is a way to possibly set the tone, which I think was clear. But the thing that we want to emphasize is that it’s a matter of what we do on the field, and not what we’re talking about,” Farrell said. “We’re hopeful and with every intent that our actions speak certainly more volume than our words.”
Farrell admitted that he and his team have “a lot of ground to cover” but that nothing is “drastically different than many other places.”
Red Sox chairman Tom Werner explained that that message ownership sent to the players was simple.
“We really focused on the commitment we have to winning. It’s what drive us,” Werner said. “I feel like it was important for the new players to know how, as an organization, we define ourselves by winning.”
Regarding Farrell’s speech to the players, Werner said, “I think he’s the right leader for us.”
One of the new guys, Jonny Gomes, said that the underlying message was fairly straightforward.
“One of the first priorities over here is to be professional,” Gomes said. “That says a lot about the organization and the players inside here. We do that, be professional, respect the game, put some numbers up, I think we’ll be all right.”