Notes: Vázquez credits wife; intrasquads soon

July 5th, 2020

BOSTON -- How does a catcher stay sharp during a layoff of over three months?

In the case of , you get your own high-tech pitching machine and have your wife feed it with baseballs.

If Vazquez gets off to a strong start defensively this season, an assist will have to go to his wife Gabby.

“She’s the best. She would get mad when I’d drop a ball,” Vázquez said. “It was fun. My wife pitched to me with the machine in my house. I was blocking, catching live BPs. I caught a bullpen in my house. I got a machine that I can receive and block and do my work and do my best to get in shape.”

Vázquez became a father over the winter and admits that made the decision of whether to play this season a little tougher.

“We’ve got a baby, newborn, next week will be eight months. I brought them here with me to Boston because I can’t live without them," Vázquez said. "We’re safe with the doctors here. We’re in good hands. We’re better here than in Florida.”

While getting a catcher time off is important over a 162-game season, Vázquez made it clear he won’t be looking for many breaks in this 60-game season.

“I took a lot of rest in these three months,” Vázquez said. “I’m ready to roll. I’m ready to get to the playoffs again. It’s tough to play without fans, but we need to work. This is our work. We need to play hard and try to win every night and do the best we can.”

Intrasquads coming up
Red Sox manager Ron Roenicke expects the team to begin intrasqaud games on Thursday, with on track to make the start.

Eovaldi fired three innings of live batting practice on Saturday, and he will continue to ramp up on Thursday. Though Roenicke hasn’t made an announcement, all signs point to Eovaldi getting the start on Opening Day. Lefty still hasn’t reported to camp as he is awaiting results of a COVID-19 test he took in Florida.

The intrasquad games will take place on a near daily basis at varying lengths.

“It could be sometimes we may have two innings of them. Sometimes we may have seven innings. And certainly at the end, we’ll probably end up with eight or nine innings,” Roenicke said. “The intrasquads are huge when you don’t have all the games that we’re used to playing in Spring Training against other teams.”

Roenicke said that team workouts will get gradually later as Summer Camp progresses, and they could go to a night schedule in the final week before games start.

Moreland comes out swinging
Roenicke went out of his way to mention how well veteran first baseman was swinging the bat during Sunday’s BP session.

The one thing Moreland was consistent at in his first three years with the Red Sox? Getting off to a hot start.

That would certainly be beneficial this season, given that it will only be 60 games.

“If you look at the way we started last year, which we didn’t start the season well, but if you look who won those games early, the first four or five games it was Mitch,” Roenicke said. “When we have him out there on the field, hopefully he can start like he did last year. We know how important starting well is this year. Today is about as good a day as you can have for him.”