Trot Nixon: I am
here and ready for your questions. Let's get started.
Justin (Baltimore): Trot, Given that you
have come up through the Red Sox farm system, I was wondering if you could
give an inside look into the strengths of the system. How about what
improvements might need to be made. Keep up the good work. You rock!
Nixon: You can always improve on the strength of your minor league teams
through the draft and free agent pickups in the minors. For us, our big
minor league guy we picked up was Brian Daubach. He has been great for us.
You have to develop players down there and not rush them. We have to rely on
our good coaches. But it all starts with the draft and with great minor
South Portland: Hey Trot I'm a hug Red Sox
fan and I was wondering if you want to end your career as a Red Sox?
Nixon: Definitely. I always said when I was younger that I would love to
end my career here. This team drafted me and it is the team that I want to
play for until the end of my days. I love it here.
Lee Insinga (Cooperstown, NY): Trot, Do
you think that the Red Sox need to invest in players of greater character
and belief in the team concept in order to become a winner next season?
Nixon: That is true. It is not just the front office's job to do that.
The players are responsible as well. When you sign a contract with a team,
you have to have the want to play for that team. But that is not always the
The prime example is the Yankees. They may not get along off the field, but
they do on the field. They know how to win.
I would like to see that in our organization next season. It is not always
up to the front office, each player should have the pride to go out everyday
and play hard. If you go out and play within the team and win ballgames, the
individual stats will take care of themselves. But who really cares, because
if you do that, you will be champs anyway.
Ryan (Providence): Trot, the Red Sox have
a great core of players but what does management need to do most this
offseason to help you guys dethrone the Yankees?
Nixon: I think we need another starter in our rotation. I would like to
see Nomo back. But it is all about health with us. If we can stay healthy we
can give the Yankees a run for their money. I think we need a couple of
vocal veterans that can help motivate the team and take some pressure off
the manager. You look at some of the great managers in the league, players
rally around them and it helps to have some players to help with that.
Pitching wins championships, look at the two teams that are left in the
World Series. But for us, it is all about staying healthy.
Ed (Toronto): Trot, do you think Nomar,
Pedro and Jason will all be 100% by opening day 2002?
Nixon: Yes. I have spoken to Jason and the process he is going through
is pretty fragile but he is just now starting to heal properly and he is
making progress. Once he is healthy it won't take him long to get in shape
because he is a workaholic. Nomar just needed time to heal and he is getting
that this offseason. Pedro's arm just wore out.
So yes, they will all be back.
Barb (Washington, DC): Trot: How is
fatherhood treating you?
Nixon: It is going good. As we speak, the little man is a little fiesty.
It is a very rewarding experience. It is great because it makes the game a
whole lot easier when you get to come home and be with him.
Vince, WA: Hey Chris, Congrats on the good
season! I'd like to ask how do you think Manny Ram likes it in Boston? I've
heard so many different reports about him being happy or unhappy there. And
who are you pulling for in the World Series? Thanks!
Nixon: Last year was a transitional period for him. I can only dream
about doing some of the things he can do. He is amazing with the bat in his
hands. But Manny had only been with one team his whole career and our fans
are tough. He wasn't used to the popularity he was getting in Boston. Stuff
he didn't get in Cleveland. He has had to get used to it, but he has good
people around him to help deal with these types of things. But Manny is a
big kid and he loves to play this game. He treats it like Little League, he
likes to go out and have fun.
We are honored to have him on the team and I think he could hit 50 home runs
next year. I would like to see us get someone to hit behind him, but he is
good enough to hit 50.
Zack (Nashville, TN): Trot, I appreciate
your passion for the game and the way you play. You were a rare Sox player
this year; you never quit playing the game. What is your opinion of Dan
Duquette? Will he remain the GM throughout the winter and next year?
Nixon: That is an area where I have no idea. It will depend on who
purchases the team. What you are reading is what I hear.
But Dan is a good man and gave me an opportunity. I have a lot of respect
for him and the guys that have given me a chance to play. They gave me a
chance to play professional baseball and I want to reward them with a
championship. I think he is a bit misunderstood because he is not real vocal
like Steinbrenner. So I think he is misunderstood a lot.
john (philadelphia): Trot! where things
really as bad in Boston as they were portrayed in the press? what do you
think should be done differently to keep players like Manny and Pedro happy
and in Boston? congrats on a great season, by the way.
Nixon: It wasn't pretty at times, but we still managed to go out and
play some decent ball. But things are never good when you are losing. We
stunk in the last part of the season and we are all responsible. We couldn't
stop it and guys were unhappy because of the high expectations we had for
ourselves. When you go 5-20 in your last 25 games it is frustrating. Most
everything you read was pretty true because we hate losing and guys didn't
like it. Losing sucks.
Mike (Bay Shore, NY): Hey Trot, Great
season, Its tough being a Red Sox fan in New York, What do you think about
big Mo's comments?
Nixon: Mo loves the East Coast. He is an East Coast guy. He likes the
challenges out here and I do think there is a difference. It doesn't
surprise me at all that he wants to come back. But I have a good friend at
first base right now. I would love to see Mo come back and split time with
Brian Daubach. He is the type of guy I talked about earlier - he is a master
motivator. But I don't think Anaheim is quite ready to give up on him just
Pat (CT): Trot Great Season...Thanks for
being a bright spot. If you could pick one free agent to add to the Sox team
for next year who would it be? Giambi, Boone, Juan Gone, a Pitcher?
Nixon: That is a good question. I would probably tend to lean toward a
front line pitcher or someone in the bullpen. Like I said, pitching wins
championships. You can't just have offense. I would like us to sign Nomo and
get another front-line guy.
But we could always use a leadoff guy and I think the Red Sox should take a
serious look at Johnny Damon, Chuck Knoblach or Kenny Lofton. I would love
to play with Johnny, although I don't know if he would want to come to the
Bill, (Oakland): Trot, do you see yourself
as the leadoff man next year, or do you think that you would be better fit
at another spot in the order?
Nixon: I would probably be better off in another spot. But I wouldn't
hesitate to leadoff. I will play where ever they play me. I like to know
where I am going to play everyday so I can have the mindset for it, but I
will play anywhere.
Bill, (Oakland): Trot, how is to play at
Nixon: It is a dream come true. My dream was to play pro ball in the
Major Leagues. Playing in Fenway you realize that all great ballplayers that
have ever played have played in that park. It is a weird feeling that it is
hallowed ground. It is old and it will be nice to have a new park. But
setting that aside, it is a privilege to get to play in this historic park.
Seth (Beantown): Trot, what has been your
best memory as a Sox player? Homer off Clemens Memorial day 00'?
Nixon: Probably that. But also going to the playoffs in '99 and having
the chance to play with Cal Ripken on his last weekend was awesome.
Matt, Lynn: What are your predictions for
the Sox next year?
Nixon: If we get the needs that we want -- pitching, a leadoff hitter
and we stay healthy - then I think the division can be ours and we can go
right to the World Series. You say that every year, but if we stay healthy
and bolster our pitching staff and all those things fall in place, it is not
a long shot that we can run the table. You just lay your chips on the deck
and go after it.
Nixon: That is all the time I have for now. Thanks to all the fans for
all the great questions and hopefully I answered your questions. To all the
fans of the Red Sox and the fans of Major League Baseball, don't give up on
the Sox. I think the Sox and Cubs will be in the World Series next season
and that will be the most watched series ever because that is two teams
yearning to get there.
Don't be afraid to holler at me at the ballpark that I answered your
question on ESPN.com, I'll tip my cap to you. If I can hear you that is.
Take care everyone and we'll try and do this again sometime.