November 18, 2017

A GOOD MAN GONE:

Danny Ainge recalls Bobby Doerr as a caring mentor (Adam Himmelsbach, NOVEMBER 17, 2017, Boston Globe)

When Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge was a rookie with the team in 1981, he quickly became comfortable with the NBA game and did not feel far behind the veterans. But when he was a rookie infielder with the Blue Jays in 1979, he was much more inquisitive, much more green. So he was thankful to have Red Sox legend Bobby Doerr, who was then Toronto's hitting coach, as a mentor. [...]

"I learned a lot from him about just the mental part of hitting," Ainge said. "He would talk about that a lot. He would talk to me about strategies of most pitchers. It was just amazing how he was able to teach me about just thinking the game of baseball."

Ainge, who was just 20 years old during his rookie season with the Blue Jays, said that Doerr would often sit with him in the dugout and analyze games in real time. He had an uncanny ability to look at the pitcher, the batter, and the circumstance, and predict exactly what would happen next.

"He'd ask me what pitch was coming, and I'd say a high fastball out of the strike zone," Ainge said. "And he'd say, 'No, he's going to throw him a curve in the dirt.' And sure enough, it was a curve in the dirt. 'Now what pitch?' And I'd say, 'Fastball, outside.' And he'd say, 'No, it's going to be a fastball high and out of the strike zone.' And it was."

Posted by at November 18, 2017 11:19 AM

  

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