BOSTON (CBS) — The Red Sox on Monday made official the big free-agent signing of J.D. Martinez. And now that the man who hit 45 homers is officially a part of the club, the expectations have been raised for a Red Sox team that won 93 games a year ago.
While the Yankees remain a formidable foe in the AL East, first baseman Hanley Ramirez said Monday morning that the team isn’t solely focused on the Yankees.
“It’s not only the Yankees. We keep worrying about the Yankees when there are more teams that are dangerous, too,” Ramirez told reporters. “We’re going to treat everybody the same way. It’s a big league and anybody can beat you. So we just gotta go out on the field and step on everybody’s neck.”
Ramirez knows Martinez personally, as the two have trained together in the offseason. Ramirez said that Martinez’s ability to completely change his swing to revive his career several years ago speaks to the kind of worker Martinez is.
“That tells you a lot about him right there, because I’ve had the chance to work with him, and he’s a hard worker, man,” Ramirez said of Martinez. “We would go to the gym together, and then from the gym we would go to the cage. He always knew that it was more on him than he was given at that time, and he was always trying to get better. Last year I remember I asked him what was different. He told me, ‘I’m just trying to get better every day.’
In terms of fitting in a new player to the lineup and the clubhouse, Ramirez said it should be easy for Martinez.
“It’s a loose clubhouse. Everybody here comes here to win every day,” Ramirez said. “That’s our goal at the end of the day — getting prepared for the game. That game. It’s all about that night, and nothing else.”
Is it fair to say, then, that the Red Sox have their eyes set on the World Series?
“That’s our [f——] goal,” he quickly replied. “Every year. You know that. To win. To beat everybody. We’re trying to go 162-0 in the regular season. But you know how it is. We’re going to have our ups and downs, and we just gotta stick together all the way until the end. That’s what we’re doing right now, is sticking together.”