Sam Kennedy

Sam Kennedy on D&C: Pablo Sandoval, fellow Red Sox 'expected to come into camp ready to go'

February 22, 2016 - 4:24 am
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Red Sox president Sam Kennedy joined Dennis & Callahan with Minihane on Monday morning from Fort Myers, Florida, where the team has assembled for spring training, and addressed the Pablo Sandoval issue. To hear the interview, go to the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page. The big story this week has been the arrival of a hefty Sandoval, who is coming off a disappointing 2015 but indicated he felt no obligation to arrive at camp in better shape than last season. Kennedy said the bigger problem is the team's lack of success, which he terms an organization-wide issue. But he said there was no confusion about expectations for players. "I think what bothers me, what bothers all of our fans, everyone has a right to be bothered by our record last year. I think we were 78-84. That's the issue. We didn't get it done. Guys didn't deliver. We failed collectively as an organization," Kennedy said. "When that happens, especially followed by another down season in 2014, that's the real issue. We failed to meet expectations. "Coming into camp is all about being prepared, being ready to go, so you can then perform in the season and meet those expectations. So we're coming off of two very difficult seasons. "As it relates to player conditioning, let me be very, very clear: John Farrell, Torey Lovullo, the entire medical staff, the training staff, they meet with each and every player at the end of the season. They have an exit interview and they go through what the workout plan is going to be for the offseason. So there are expectations. Players are expected to come into camp ready to go and ready to perform. And if they're not, they need to be held accountable throughout the course of the season. Dave [Dombrowski], Mike Hazen, those guys will deal with these issues as they come up throughout the course of the season. "But look, it's early, there's a lot to be excited about in spring training, and we're really looking forward to this year." While trying to avoid directly criticizing Sandoval, Kennedy insisted the player was given clear instructions for the offseason. "At the end of the day, I'm not going to get into individual conversations between guys down in the clubhouse. They'll handle that," Kennedy said. "The message I want to deliver is there is an expectation for guys to be held accountable and to come into camp in shape and to be ready to go. And I do believe that that message was clearly delivered and will continue to be delivered. "I've been with this organization 15 years, and I can tell you at the end of every season there's a very rigorous plan that's laid out for everybody. Listen, when you're talking about Pablo Sandoval, this guy obviously did not meet expectations last year. As I said, we failed as an organization. But you're also talking about a guy who's won three World Series championships, he's been a great teammate, he's been around a winning environment. The only other guy that I know in that clubhouse with three Wold Series rings is David Ortiz. "So, we're going to hope that everyone's ready to go as we start the season, as we get into April." The Sox had a big offseason, highlighted by the acquisition of free agent pitcher David Price. "I think having a horse at the top of the rotation is what we really need, what's been missing," Kennedy said. "Clearly when you have that guy to set the tone for the rest of the rotation it really takes pressure off the rest of the starters, it takes pressure off the bullpen, it takes pressure off the defense. And this is a special guy. I hated David Price, working for the Red Sox for so long, watching him pitch. He was a guy that drove me crazy. I'm really glad that we were able to go out and get him. I think we should all be appreciative that John Henry and Tom Werner freed up the resources to go and get him. It was something that was very important to Dave Dombrowski. We went out, we did it. He's here. He's glad to be in camp. We think he's going to be a huge addition for 2016." For more Red Sox news, visit the team page at weei.com/redsox.