Curt Schilling

Curt Schilling on D&C: Eduardo Rodriguez 'the real deal'

June 03, 2015 - 7:01 am
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ESPN baseball analyst and former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling joined Dennis & Callahan for his weekly Wednesday morning conversation to talk about the state of the Red Sox two months into the season. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page. While the Sox haven't played well and remain under .500, they sit just 4 1/2 games out of first place in the wholly mediocre American League East. According to Schilling, every team in the division could still win it. "I think Baltimore has the best chance to win if they're going to win it big, but I don't think anybody'€™s going to win it big. I don't think anybody'€™s done anything to take themselves out of it," Schilling said. "This is not your father's American League East anymore and ... €I don't see anybody distancing themselves up front or in the back." As a former pitcher, Schilling unsurprisingly attributed the struggles of any team, not just these Red Sox, to the performance of the pitching staff. "You're never as bad as your are when you lose like this and as good as when you win big. For me, it always starts and ends on the mound. You have to be able to pitch through offensive slumps," he said. Schilling did have very positive things to say about newcomer Eduardo Rodriguez. Though Rodriguez has made only one major league start (his second will be Wednesday afternoon), Schilling has been very impressed with the young left-hander. "To me, the ace-in-waiting, the Rodriguez kid, is the real deal," Schilling said. "I still believe he was the best player that moved at the deadline last year. That creates some urgency for me to have a veteran guy in the rotation with him. He's a special talent, and I'd want that to go right mentally for me." Regarding this past offseason and the way the Sox went about trying to fix their team, Schilling said he wasn't as "excited about the winter they had as other people were." "I just wasn't as excited as everybody else about the way they addressed the offense," Schilling said. Following are additional highlights from the interview. For more Red Sox news, visit the team page at weei.com/redsox. On how David Ortiz would react to a platoon at designated hitter: "That stubbornness, that drive ... that's what makes him who he is. I wouldn't want him to be OK with it, but publicly I would not want to have to deal with him. I don't think, given him struggling against lefties right now, I don't think you'd hear a lot, I would hope not. I'd like to believe that he has always been team first and I would hope that would be the way it'd play out." On the struggles of Joe Kelly: "I think Joe Kelly has given people a lot of insight to [the fact that] pitching is a lot more than just stuff. For someone who throws in the upper-90s, that's frustrating, that's hard to watch, and you know there's something on the other side. If they do the extra work, for me from a preparation perspective, and I think that's where things fall apart for some guys." On navigating the trade market: "You'd trade almost anybody if the return is right. There's a lot of forward-thinking going on. You look at the market this winter, who's on the market, who you're going after. I'm sure there's discussions in back alleys with GMs and with agents about, 'Hey, your guy's going to be a free agent, we really want him.' "

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