There was a lot of buzz this afternoon and early evening surrounding a somewhat odd press conference held today by Jonathan Papelbon. Chris Branch of the News Journal has all of the full quotes here, where, among other things Papelbon said he was feeling positive and healthy. Here is the Cliff’s Notes version thanks entirely to Branch:
Papelbon will try to be more positive: “This year, I’m definitely trying to be a lot more of a positive influence and be more upbeat. It starts from Ryno.”
Ryne Sandberg is a positive influence as a manger: “It’s that simple.Yeah, buying in, man. Like every morning we have a meeting with Ryno and we talk about things. If you can’t buy into your manager you’re not going to buy into anything.”
He wasn’t bothered by trade rumors: “That goes on every year, man. I understand this game is a business. I get that, man. I don’t pay attention to it, man. I’m at home, man. I’ve got kids to watch and Dora The Explorer to watch and all that other mess.”
And Papelbon revealed that he was a bit hurt last season: “I didn’t feel like I was at my healthiest (last season)… I’m feeling great [now].”
So there you have it, folks. Papelbon was a little dinged up in 2013, spent presumably the days leading up to July 31, 2013 watching Dora the Explorer, and Ryne Sandberg has him buying into the Phillies being a success in 2014. Whether or not that helps Papelbon improve his K/9 IP (down 3.51 from 2012 to 2013) or his velocity (down 2.8 MPH comparing 2011 to 2013), remains to be seen.