As manager of the Blue Jays, he was willing to challenge
legendary shortstop Omar Vizquel's assessment of his managerial style. Farrell hopes that aggressive personality will continue to translate onto the field.
"I do know this — an aggressive style is what we
want, and that takes place from the mound, on the bases and in the box,"
Farrell said. "That means attacking the strike zone early. This can be a
very simple game if you apply a game of firsts to it — first-pitch strikes,
first out of an inning, score first.
"Not to oversimplify things, but sometimes the mind
can do crazy things to a pitcher, and they start to get into a little bit of a
rut. And they want to be sure we put them in a positive environment, and
prepare them to the best of their ability."
The Red Sox could benefit from rededicating themselves
to attacking the base paths, especially with steals. Last season, Dustin
Pedroia led the team with 20 steals and Pedro Ciriaco had 16, despite playing less than half the year.
Farrell preached the
importance of playing an "up-tempo" brand of baseball during his news conference. It's a
philosophy that Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington completely endorses.
"We want to be aggressive on the base paths in a
smart way," Cherington said. "If you can advance a base without
giving up an out, that helps you score runs. The more you can do that, the
"He's going to put together a staff and ultimately a
working plan that allows players to feel like when the game starts, they've
done everything they can do physically, mentally and fundamentally to be
prepared, be aggressive and let their talent come out."
In the process, they hope to put the rest of Major League
Baseball on notice.