GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

November 7, 2012

Crunch Time

Juan Nieves has been named the new bullpen coach by the Sox.
Gloucester Daily Times

---- — Red Sox get pitching coach

The Red Sox have named a new pitching coach, and it is somewhat of a surprise move.

Juan Nieves, a 47 year old former big league pitcher who was the Chicago White Sox bullpen coach in 2012, will be the Red Sox pitching coach in 2013.

Nieves will have his hands full attempting to turn around one of the most disappointing pitching staffs in the league in 2012.

“We’re trying to get them to be the best they can, be as consistent as possible,” Nieves told WEEI on Wednesday. “They’ve had the worst years of their career, that’s going to happen. But they’re also going to have great years. Even good players fluctuate. You’re going to have some tough years, you’re going to have some great years. It’s how consistent you can be. That’s what we want to achieve and get them back to what they used to be.”

Nieves will also have some help coaching the pitching staff as manager John Farrell is a former Red Sox pitching coach himself.

Bay terminated

The New York Mets have come to an agreement with outfielder Jason Bay to terminate his contract two years early. Bay now becomes a free agent.

Bay’s time in a Mets uniform was unproductive at best as he posted a .235 average and hit just 26 home runs with the team after signing a four year $66 million contact in 2010.

This may sound crazy, but Bay may be just what the Red Sox need. He can deliver Cody Ross’ production at a smaller price. Bay was abysmal at Citi Field, a pitcher friendly ball park, but Fenway is a perfect fit for Bay. His high 375 foot fly balls are outs in most of Citi Field, at Fenway those fly balls go over the green monster.

Payton extension rejected

The preseason contract extension signed by Sean Payton was voided by the NFL according to league sources, potentially making the suspended Saints head coach a free agent after this season.

The clause in Payton’s extension that made it invalid involved language that would allow him to leave if Saints general manager Mickey Loomis was suspended, fired or left the team. Citing that the clause would set a bad precedent for other contracts, the NFL rejected the deal before Loomis’ suspension as part of Bountygate.

-Compiled by Nick Curcuru and Chuck Frye