With the annual exhibition game against the Boston Red Sox slated for this afternoon, we sat down with Bryan Joiner of Over the Monster to talk about what to expect and what this game means to the 2016 baseball season.
BC Interruption: This is obviously just a spring training exhibition, but every year, it seems like there's an excitement around the annual games against both Boston College and Northeastern. What is it about these games that has a draw for Red Sox fans?
Over The Monster: I think there are a few reasons the game is so exciting. It's the first game of the year, which obviously makes it a big deal for anyone fiending for Red Sox baseball since October. Second, given that these games are against college teams, you know that everyone on one side will talk about this specific game and remember it for the rest of their lives --- it's what separates it from the boring, interminable spring training games to come.
Third, Hanley Ramirez will play first base, so everyone in the stands might get a souvenir baseball, and maybe some people at home.
BCI: The Red Sox will roll out a split squad for their games against BC and Northeastern, with pitching assignments typically preassigned. How many of the big leaguers can the Eagles expect to face in the early game, and what can fans expect to see out of the game?
OTM: Hey, you'll have to watch and find out!
BCI: Have the rosters been announced yet?
OTM: I only see confirmation that Hanley is playing so far, but other big names are sure to show their faces. Otherwise, why bother playing these games? This is a game for college students to get to face the best in the world for maybe the only time in their lives. And maybe Pablo Sandoval, too.
BCI: With new faces in camp and last year's miserable season, what are the expectations facing down the Red Sox in Spring Training?
OTM: I think the Red Sox expect to have a strong seasong...and get really frustrated with Hanley and Pablo. So if they can put together a good Spring Training, we might be able to forget that Spring Training generally doesn't matter for a little bit longer.
BCI: What could the Red Sox hope to take away from the entire day against the college teams, either on the field or in the scouting rooms?
OTM: If Hanley Ramirez can catch a single ball at first base over the course of the afternoon, a World Series win is probably assured, despite what I just said about Spring Training not mattering. Seriously, if he looks good, forget I said that.
BCI: Last question. There's a groundball to third. Pablo Sandoval has to charge it and throw to Hanley. How many Xanax are you taking?
OTM: How many do you have?
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