Devers calls for additions to put Sox in 'better position to win'

February 20th, 2024

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- For his entire career, has inhabited a clubhouse loaded with veterans. But this year, things have changed.

Not only is Devers the face of the franchise -- a title, by the way, that makes him cringe -- but he has emerged into one of the most important voices in a youthful clubhouse.

On Tuesday, in his first media availability of Spring Training, Devers sounded exceedingly comfortable talking about team issues as well as personal goals.

In fact, he was pointed when asked about the club’s lack of major offseason moves to date.

“They need to make an adjustment to help us players to be in a better position to win,” Devers said. “Everybody in this organization wants to win, and we as players want to win, and I think they need to make an adjustment to help us win.

What do the Red Sox need?

“Everybody knows what we need,” said Devers. “You know what we need, and they know what we need. ... Everybody who knows the organization or knows the game knows what we need.”

Devers undoubtedly was hinting that the Red Sox need more starting pitching. That was the goal at the outset of the offseason, but it hasn’t come to fruition at this point.

was added but and were subtracted. Aside from that, the Sox have the same rotation candidates they had last year, when they finished 78-84 and out of the postseason for the second year in a row.

“I’m not saying the team is not OK right now, but they need to be conscious of what our weaknesses are and what we need right now,” said Devers.

The star third baseman made those comments at a time when lefty remains on the market as someone who would fit well at the top of Boston’s rotation. , another proven southpaw, is also a free agent but is less enticing to the Red Sox because he received a qualifying offer, which means signing him would require sending a second-round Draft pick to the Padres.

Devers didn’t say anything Tuesday that he hadn’t already expressed to team ownership, the lead members of which were in town as part of a team meeting on Monday.

“Yeah, I talked to them,” Devers said.

And what did they say?

“[That] they’re going to try to improve the team and improve our weaknesses,” Devers said.

Red Sox manager Alex Cora had no issue with Devers speaking candidly. In fact, he liked it.

“Two things: It’s his opinion and we have to respect that,” said Cora. “Second, he’s not afraid to talk to you guys. He talked to you guys for 25 minutes, which is awesome. We had conversations with him before. He likes the core. He’s probably still one of the youngest guys in the group. He understands where we’re at, and he just has to perform.

“He had a good season last year and he knows he has to work on a few things for us to get better. I like the fact he sat here and he talked and he was open about it. He’s not a kid anymore. I know he hates to be called the face of the franchise. Call him the 'Carita' of the franchise.”

"Carita," which translates to baby face, has been a nickname of Devers long before he got to Boston. And it’s going to stick, even though the man who carries the baby face is now making a smooth transition to veteran.

The 10-year extension Devers signed a year ago officially kicks in this season. He is in it for the long haul and he’s more than willing to lead Boston's young core while waiting for the front office to add some more reinforcements.

“Of course, I care deeply about this organization,” Devers said. “I love this organization so much that I want us to win, I want us to win right now, I want us to win in the future, and that’s something on my mind. But like I said before several times, I can’t control what they do, I can only control what I do on the field and everything is pretty good and I’ll keep doing that and supporting my teammates.”