Tag:Kevin Youkilis
Posted on: March 6, 2012 4:35 pm
 

Kevin Youkilis is a proper gentleman

Kevin Youkilis

By C. Trent Rosecrans


Mr. Kevin Edmund Youkilis is nothing if not proper.

Not only does he own a career .391 career on-base percentage, he also has manners befitting his polite Midwestern upbringing.

From Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe, comes this tale of a child asking the esteemed Mr. Youkilis for the favor of a baseball, but doing so in a rather gruff, impersonal and some may say, rude, manner: "Hey, Youk, give me a ball," the youth crassly implored.
Kevin Youkilis looked up and said, "What's the right way to ask?"

Chagrined, the kid said, "Can I please have a ball?"

Youk tossed the kid a ball.

"Don't ever forget that for the rest of your life," he said.
Mr. Youkilis was a finance major at the University of Cincinnati, not an English major, or he would not have accepted that response. The proper why to ask the question would be, "Mr. Youkilis, may I please have a ball?"

Politeness is important, but so too is grammar.

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Posted on: February 10, 2012 6:30 pm
Edited on: February 13, 2012 11:25 pm
 

Report: Youkilis engaged to Tom Brady's sister

By C. Trent Rosecrans

Kevin YoukilisMove over Kate and Prince William, Boston's getting its own royal wedding -- Red Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis is engaged to Julie Brady, sister of Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, according to the Boston Herald.

The two, according the report, had been dating for "at least" a year and "recently" were engaged.

The report says Brady and her 5-year-old daughter will move from Califormia to Florida when spring training begins. Brady is one of three of the quarterback's sisters.

Youkilis has had a wedding before, but never married. In 2008, he had a marriage ceremony with Enza Sambataro, but never filed the paperwork to make it legal and split up in 2010.

I'm guessing beer and fried chicken won't be on the reception's menu.

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Posted on: December 13, 2011 11:02 am
Edited on: December 13, 2011 12:24 pm
 

Homegrown Team: Boston Red Sox



By Matt Snyder


What if players were only permitted to stay with the team that originally made them a professional? No trades, no Rule-5 Draft, no minor or major league free agency ... once you are a professional baseball player, you stay in that organization. This series shows how all 30 teams would look. We give you: Homegrown teams. To view the schedule/past entries of this feature, click here.

One of the main reasons we came up with this exercise was because of the massive amount of fighting in the comments sections over who "buys" their teams instead of drafting and developing their own talent. In some cases, the accusations are true. In others, they aren't. While these Red Sox don't have Adrian Gonzalez or David Ortiz or Josh Beckett, you'll certainly see several key, familiar names.

Lineup

1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
2. Dustin Pedroia, 2B
3. Kevin Youkilis, 3B
4. Hanley Ramirez, DH
5. David Murphy, LF
6. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
7. Jed Lowrie, SS
8. Kelly Shoppach, C
9. Josh Reddick, RF

Starting Rotation

1. Jon Lester
2. Clay Buchholz
3. Justin Masterson
4. Anibal Sanchez
5. Carl Pavano

Bullpen

Closer - Jonathan Papelbon
Set up - Daniel Bard, Rafael Betancourt, Frank Francisco, Hideki Okajima
Long - Kyle Weiland, Daisuke Matsuzaka? (Not sure I could stomach that ... )

Notable Bench Players

Ryan Lavarnway, Lars Anderson, Freddy Sanchez, Engel Beltre

What's Good?

The top of the order is sick. If Hanley Ramirez had one of his good years, that's a top four that few in baseball could match. The entire pitching staff is really, really strong, too. Lester as an ace works fine and Masterson and Sanchez are pretty darn good in those slots. There was one point last season (May) when Sanchez was almost as good as anyone. Then you move into the bullpen and the back-end is what it was in 2011, with Bard and Papelbon. Here, though, we get to add Betancourt and Francisco to the mix. That's quite a bridge to Papelbon, and remember, this with a good rotation.

What's Not?

The lineup thins out quickly. It's not awful by any stretch, because Lowrie, Shoppach and Reddick are a decent 7-9, but Murphy isn't good enough to be a fifth hitter in a great lineup and we still can't be sure how Rizzo pans out. Also, there is no depth, either on the bench or in the bullpen. The onus is entirely on the main guys to shoulder the entire workload.

Comparison to real 2011

Let's avoid all the off-field crap and just focus on the issue at hand. Is this team better than the one that was in the AL playoff race until the final out of the season? The offense isn't as good, that's for sure. Most of the other spots are at least close, but the Rizzo/Gonzalez gap at first base is gigantic. Pitching-wise, though, this group is better, top to bottom. There's no Josh Beckett, but there also isn't a full season of John Lackey with mixed in Dice-K and then the spare-part injury replacements they had to use for most of the season. The real-life Red Sox won 90 games and this group feels like a similar one in terms of wins. It's not elite, but it's pretty good.

Next: Detroit Tigers

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Posted on: November 4, 2011 3:25 pm
 

Ex-Sox strength coach: Four players out of shape

PageBy Evan Brunell

On Friday, the Red Sox fired strength and conditioning coach Dave Page, who had been with the team since 2006, along with assistant athletic trainer Greg Barajas.

The move came as such a shock that Page, in an interview on WEEI, estimated "90 percent" of the team's roster -- plus others in the game -- reached out to him, with one such player saying "I feel this is all my fault."

Is this the same player that gave up on the season in September with no explanation? Page said there were four Red Sox players that were lax in their conditioning by the time the end of the season rolled around. He refused to name names, but did say that none of the players included Josh Beckett. Beckett, who noticeably put pounds on as the year progressed,  expressed concern to Page about his weight.

"We got to the end of the year where we had four guys -- without naming names -- we had four guys that we thought didn't make it to that part of the season where we hoped they would be: one position player -- an everyday guy -- one pitcher -- a starting pitcher -- and two bullpen guys," Page said. "For the most part, everybody else had stayed within where we wanted them to be. They were what we expected. Most of them were working."

Except for these four players, of course. And one in particular couldn't explain why he tailed off.

"I did have a good conversation with one player at the end of the year in Baltimore that really kind of opened my eyes," Page said. "I said, 'Hey, what's going on here? It seemed like you pulled the plug a little bit. Why?' He kind of looked down at the ground, looked back and me and said, 'I don't know why. I can't answer that question.' Which was kind of a shock."

Page, who earned the 2007 Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year award, named Daniel Bard, Rich Hill, David Ortiz, Jonathan Papelbon, Jason Varitek and Kevin Youkilis among those who reached out, according to the Boston Globe.

“Papelbon and Youkilis were less than pleased. I can tell you that,” he said.

On WEEI, Page admitted to being taken aback about his firing, especially since it's been over a month since the end of the season. That fact, despite the departures of manager Terry Francona and GM Theo Epstein, led Page to "believe that things weren't going to change, and it really kind of limited my opportunities to move on with another team. It was very surprising."

Page also admitted that support from coaches and the front office were "better in the past," saying he approached coaches and front office personnel on a regular basis to express concerns. He also turned in weekly reports to Francona and the higher-ups, so they were aware of any failings in player conditioning. Page's comments marries up with skipper Terry Francona saying he felt as if the front office wasn't supporting him as much as it had in years past. That leads one to ask why. Perhaps the front office thought this was a team that wasn't going to last and needed wholesale changes. As a result, they weren't as supportive as in the past. That's all speculation, however.

Page also chimed in on the whole fried chicken and beer controversy.

"There was a lot of grumblings but I think that whole chicken-and-beer thing has gotten a lot of unnecessary play, to be honest with you," he said. "I really didn't see chicken in the clubhouse all that often. I'm in and out of there a lot. I rarely saw the chicken. If they were drinking beer it was probably upstairs and I wasn't up there. You'll see the starting pitcher drink a beer when he comes out of the game, that's pretty common. In my opinion, it wasn't as rampant as it's gotten to be made out to be."

Read more about the beer drinking controversy, or check out Eye on Baseball's coverage on Theo Epstein bolting to the Cubs.

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Image courtesy BaseTrainer.com.
Posted on: September 28, 2011 6:06 pm
Edited on: September 28, 2011 9:21 pm
 

Red Sox place Youkilis on 60-day DL

Kevin YoukilisBy C. Trent Rosecrans

No matter how many games the Red Sox have remaining, they'll likely play those games without Kevin Youkilis. The team placed Youkilis on the 60-day disabled list before Wednesday's game with the Orioles.

"The writing is kind of on the wall," Red Sox manager Terry Francona told reporters before Wednesday night's game (via the Providence Journal). "I don't think you're going to see him play again. I wish he would, and he's tried so hard and he's been open to doing anything. I just don't know (if) that's going to happen."

Youkilis has been sidelined by myriad injuries this season, including a sports hernia that will require off seasons surgery. He's also suffered from back and hip injuries, limiting to 120 games this season. The 32-year-old moved back to third base from first base with the team's addition of Adrian Gonzalez in the offseason. He is signed through next season with a team option for 2013.

Youkilis had his worst statistical output in years, with his average (.258) reaching its lowest point in his career, and his on-base percentage (.373) the lowest since his rookie year. He finished with an OPS of .833 and an OPS+ of 123, while hitting 17 homers and knocking in 80 runs.

Youkilis actually played in more games in 2011 than he did in 2010, but last season's main injury was a torn thumb tendon, while the tight, back and hip injuries of this season seemed to be more lingering and hurt his performance on the field. Part of me wonders if the more grueling defensive position at third base had something to do with his problems? If so, do the Red Sox run him out there again next year and just hope his body is more used to the pounding or that they just have better luck? There's no way you supplant Gonzalez. If the team doesn't re-sign David Ortiz, he could DH, but it seems unlikely to see Big Papi in a different uniform anytime soon.

With that, do the Red Sox deal Youkilis to one of the teams that lose out on Prince Fielder or Albert Pujols? He's not cheap, but he's not as expensive as those guys. Youkilis has already talked about playing somewhere other than Boston in the future, perhaps he's seen the handwriting on the wall. And maybe, just maybe, he's already played his last game for the Red Sox. At the very least, it seems like he's played his last game for them this season.

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Posted on: September 13, 2011 4:41 pm
Edited on: September 13, 2011 5:01 pm
 

Beckett back soon, Youkilis needs surgery

By Matt Snyder

Red Sox starting pitcher Josh Beckett is recovering well from an ankle injury, as he threw long toss Tuesday and will start for the Red Sox in what could be a pivotal series against the Rays. He'll get the ball either Thursday or Friday (BostonHerald.com via Twitter).

Beckett, 31, is 12-5 with a 2.49 ERA, 0.99 WHIP and 155 strikeouts in 173 2/3 innings this season. The Red Sox desperately need Beckett back, with John Lackey continuing to struggle, the lingering injury to Erik Bedard and the major injuries to Clay Buchholz and Daisuke Matsuzaka. With Beckett down, it's a pretty patchwork rotation behind Jon Lester. So this is big news for the Red Sox.

On the flip side, third baseman Kevin Youkilis is back in the lineup Tuesday after missing four games with a hip injury, but he still isn't close to full health. In fact, he's going to have to undergo surgery to repair his sports hernia in the offseason (BostonHerald.com via Twitter). In the meantime, he'll just continue to play through the pain the rest of the way.

Youkilis, 32, is hitting .261/.375/.467 with 17 homers, 80 RBI, 67 runs and 32 doubles this season.

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Posted on: September 10, 2011 1:55 pm
 

Youkilis suffering from hip injury, hernia

Kevin YoukilisBy C. Trent Rosecrans

If the Red Sox are going to make a run to the World Series, they will do it with a hobbled Kevin Youkilis.

Boston's third baseman returned to Boston on Friday to have his sore left hip examined and came back with a diagnosis of bursitis and had an injection, manager Terry Francona told reporters. The Boston Globe reports that Youkilis has also been diagnosed with a hernia, but will try to play through it and have surgery after the season.

Youkilis, 32, switched to third base from first when the team acquired Adrian Gonzalez in the offseason. He's hitting .261/.375/.467 this season -- the average and on-base percentage are the lowest since his rookie year. Youkilis recently returned from the disabled list after suffering from lower back tightness and he's also missed a total of 27 games with injuries to his hamstring, hand, hip, shin and ankle, as well as illness.

Youkilis is 5 for 27 with two RBI since returning from the DL on Sept. 2.

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Posted on: September 2, 2011 9:40 am
 

Pepper: Royals could resemble Brewers soon

Hosmer
By Evan Brunell

Promising turnaround: The Royals figure to lose at least 90 games, but the chatter in baseball remains overwhelmingly positive for Kansas City, who is drawing comparisons to Milwaukee.

Boasting the best farm team in the bigs, K.C. has already begun integrating its young players into the team, especially on offense where the Royals have a brand-new infield. Shortstop Alcides Escobar kicked off the year with the Royals after coming over from Milwaukee in the Zack Greinke trade, while Eric Hosmer received the first minor-league promotion at first base. Mike Moustakas followed soon to play the hot corner, while Johnny Giavotella just came up to man second.

Greinke, a former Royal, faced Hosmer in a rehab start in April and remarked that it was like facing a 10-year veteran.

“You probably know this,” Greinke told Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star. “But Eric Hosmer is really good. I mean, really good.”

Greinke is now with the Brewers, a team Mellinger says could be how the Royals look like in a few years if and when their young pitching prospects start bearing fruit.

The offense seems to have it all -- two defensive linchpins in Escobar and catcher Salvador Perez, home-run threats in Hosmer and Moustakas, and a capable bat in Giavotella. And we haven't even talked about the resurgent Alex Gordon in left field, or the fine season that Melky Cabrera has turned in. Yep, baseball in K.C. is looking sharp.

Going yard: The 1,000th career hit for Jeff Francouer was a home run. "He told us he was going to get it in his first at-bat and he did, he didn't mess around with it," manager Ned Yost told MLB.com.

Baby giraffe: Brandon Belt has gained a nickname -- that of "Baby Giraffe." Well, he met the real thing when Six Flags Discovery Kingdom named its newborn giraffe after Belt, of which you can see pictures on Belt's blog. (A Veteran and a Rook)

MVP pitcher? Cole Hamels disagrees with my assessment that a pitcher should be eligible for -- and potentially win -- the MVP, calling the Cy Young Award the pitcher's version.

"We only play once every five days and I don’t know how much we can affect a team by winning all 33 or 34 starts because you still have to win 90 something games to make the postseason," Hamels told the Dan Patrick Show, via SportsRadioInterviews.com. You need an everyday player to really go out there and play 140 to 150 games to really be a sorta MVP candidate.”

My comeback? Don't look at games played. Look at at-bats. A hitter will generally receive roughly 600 plate appearances a year, while a pitcher will face a few hundred more hitters over the course of a season. Position players may play in significantly more games, but pitchers impact the games they pitch in far more than a hitter. It all balances out.

Bryce running: Bryce Harper, on the disabled list for Double-A, ran for the first time since straining his hamstringo on Thursday. The team is hopeful he can participate in the minor-league postseason. (Washington Post)

Baseball in the Netherlands: The Dutch look to be in prime position to host a baseball game in 2014, with the Netherlands preparing to submit a bid for a game to be played in Hoofddorp, a small city outside of Amsterdam. You don't hear much about baseball and the Netherlands, but interestingly enough, it's considered "the baseball powerhouse of Europe," Alex Remington writes. (Fangraphs)

Walk angry: Adrian Gonzalez struck out on a called strike to end the Yankees-Red Sox game on Thursday, with New York coming away with a victory after Mariano Rivera loaded the bases in the ninth inning. "That pitch was down, I should still be hitting. That's all I have to say," he told the Boston Globe. Maybe, but Gonzalez shouldn't have swung at two painfully obvious balls. For someone with his plate discipline, he sure looked antsy up at the plate.

Banged-up Sox: J.D. Drew's return to Boston figures to be delayed at least a week, but Kevin Youkilis could return as early as Friday. Another injured Sox player, Clay Buchholz, made 35 throws from 60 feet and reported no progress with his back. Buchholz's return may not happen until the playoffs, but if he can come back, it's a major shot in the arm. (Boston Globe)

Hobbled Yanks: Mark Teixeira had to leave Thursday's game with a bruised right knee after being hit by a pitch, and he looks as if he will miss a few games, the New York Post writes. Alex Rodriguez, meanwhile, is hopeful he can rejoin the starting lineup on Friday but admitted he just isn't sure to the Post.

Big step: Adam Wainwright will throw his first bullpen session shortly after undergoing Tommy John surgery. The season is lost for the Cards right-hander, but he can get himself ready to go for the 2012 season. It's possible that if a St. Louis minor-league affiliate goes deep into the playoffs that he could make a rehab start before baseball shuts down. (MLB.com)

Under the knife: Twins top prospect Kyle Gibson will wrap up a disappointing year by undergoing Tommy John surgery. Gibson was expected to win a rotation spot at some point during the year, but now Minnesota will have to cast its eye to 2013 for any significant production out of the first-rounder. (Minnesota Star Tribune)

Backpacking: A new trend is emerging in baseball as part of an old one. The junior member of a bullpen has always been expected to haul a bag full of snacks, drinks and pain medications to the bullpen. Lately, however, the bag has morphed into gear designed to embarrass the player -- a Hello Kitty backpack -- for example. The New York Times looks at the increasing trend.
 
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