Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling was one of the loudest voices to defend former Boston Red Sox strength and conditioning coach Dave Page in the immediate aftermath of Boston's collapse this past September. After Page was fired along with assistant athletic trainer Greg Barajas on Thursday, Schilling went on The Big Show on WEEI in Boston to reiterate his support for his former coach.
"You can’t instill pride and integrity in people. It’s something you’re born with. You have to have it," said Schilling. "The thing that sickens me is we’re talking about grown men. They have a responsibility and an accountability first of all to their families, to the team, to the organization and to the fans. It clearly didn’t motivate these guys when they were going through the worst collapse in the history of the game last year to change anything. … There’s a personal accountability piece that is unbelievably lacking."
For Schilling, the only way the Red Sox can put a stop to the malaise that caused some of the players to become out of shape toward the end of the season is to bring in a player who is a "game-changing" clubhouse presence.
"It's the Oralndo Cabrera guy who walks in and says, ‘Manny, you're not taking yourself out of the lineup. I don't care. You're playing.' Physically, you'll get into a physical confrontation if another player is not giving everything that they can give," he added. "It's the player that makes other players uncomfortable not doing their parts. It's got to be the verbal guy who says, ‘Are you not doing drills with the pitchers? You hurt? Well then, OK, get better and do them.' That guy who makes other players uncomfortable if they're not working off the field. That guy does not exist in that clubhouse."