Examining Bobby Dalbec's 'private lessons' with Red Sox

Rob Bradford
September 25, 2019 - 10:13 am

(The following is an excerpt from the latest "The Sunday Baseball Column" which ran on Sept. 21.)

Bobby Dalbec had already made his presence felt with the Red Sox' big league coaching staff. That's why he survived until the very last cuts of spring training.

But even after 1 1/2 months in Fort Myers, and then a minor-league season which saw the 24-year-old hit a combined 27 home runs between Double- and Triple-A, the most impactful impression may have come courtesy Dalbec's week or so visit at Fenway Park earlier this month.

"We got to spend so much time on him, one-on-one time," said Red Sox assistant hitting coach Andy Barkett. "He’s a really smart kid and communicates really well so in that time you’re able to go back and forth and talk through things. The adjustments he made while he made when he was here was really cool. Tim, him and I started a texting thread and so we’re going to keep in touch throughout as he prepares for the Premier 12. But I thought it was huge.

"These were like private lessons every day. It was a week’s worth of Bobby Dalbec and us. Spring training it’s transient. You have one guy in and one guy out. This was complete focus and we were able to prepare for it before he got here."

And while many had hoped Dalbec's existence in Sept. would be participating in real major league games instead of partaking private lessons preparation for an international tournament in Nov., this ultimately might have been the best path to prepare him for his shot at the big leagues next season.

"Move to the ball. His connection with his lower half. His path. These are all things we worked on," Barkett said. "He cleaned all of that up during that time. He had done it during the season but I think he took it to another level of understanding and application. It was good."