, Newburyport, MA


October 10, 2013

Ross: Salty has become Sox on-field captain

BOSTON — Jarrod Saltalamacchia has come a very long from when he was a young Texas Rangers catcher who not only had issues throwing to second base but also had difficulty throwing the baseball back to the pitcher.

Flash forward three years. The 28-year-old Saltalamacchia’s offensive power and improved defense is one reason the Red Sox are where they are right now.

“He’s become the captain on the field,” Red Sox backup catcher David Ross said.

That certainly means a lot coming from Ross, a terrific defensive catcher (much better behind the plate than Saltalamacchia) who is not only one of the most respected players in the Red Sox clubhouse but also respected league-wide.

Saltalamacchia and the Boston Red Sox will play Game 1 of the American League Championship Series at Fenway Park on Saturday. Boston finished off the rival Rays in a best-of-five ALDS with a 3-1 victory Tuesday.

Saltalamacchia, considered more of an offensive catcher, led all American League backstops with 40 doubles and 54 extra-base hits this regular season. His 40 doubles was a new Red Sox single-season record for a catcher. The previous record was shared by Carlton Fisk (39 in 1978) and Jason Varitek (39 in 1999).

“Salty,” as he is more commonly called, went 2 for 4 with a double, walk and run in Game 1 of the ALDS last Friday, his first ever postseason game. He became the third Red Sox ever to drive in at least three runs in a postseason debut. He went 3 for 10 in the series.

Saltalamacchia was traded to Boston at the 2010 non-waiver deadline. The Rangers had given up on the 2003 first-round draft pick whom they had acquired with four others exactly three years earlier from Atlanta in a trade that sent slugger Mark Teixeira to the Braves.

The catcher got in a minor car accident in June 2009 that resulted in debilitating symptoms. His top rib basically was pinching a nerve, resulting in a tingling numbness and sometimes no feeling in his throwing arm. His arm would feel fatigued after a couple of throws, but he continued to play through the symptoms until he couldn’t feel the baseball in his hand by mid-August.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

NDN Video
Steelers feeling a sense of urgency in camp 5 things I think I think about the Atlanta Falcons Paul Breitner: We're sure Julian Green will be a great player for Bayern Reaction to Ray Rice's comments How the MLB Trade Deadline Will Affect the Postseason Recapping a Blockbuster MLB Trade Deadline Marshawn Lynch Ends Holdout - @TheBuzzeronFOX Dombrowski on bringing David Price to Detroit Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Tiger Woods: 1 on 1 3 Questions with Gary Payton: Kevin Love, Andrew Wiggins and Derrick Rose Players Only: Marcus Mariota's Course Load at Oregon How We Almost Got Johnny Cowboy Donald Sterling Loses The Clippers For Good - @TheBuzzeronFox Franklin talks leaving Vandy Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX Michael Jordan OK With LeBron James Wearing No. 23? - @TheBuzzeronFox The Cornhuskers have gone...Loco? McNabb: Two games is not acceptable for me Ortiz, Price Feud Is Upsetting To Children - @TheBuzzeronFOX
Special Features