Bruce Bochy: Master Motivator


Tim Sullivan from the San Diego Union Tribune hips us to something the seemingly mild-mannered Bruce Bochy did to light a fire under the Giants back in early September:

He wheeled in a television monitor, Aaron Rowand recalled, “like it was elementary school,” to prepare his players for battle with a scene from “Braveheart.”

“He says, ‘Boys, there’s a team ahead of you that has faltered. It is now your time.’ ” Giants coach Tim Flannery said. “He hits the play button and there’s (Gibson as) William Wallace telling these guys, ‘It’s your time.’ He played the clip and didn’t have to say anything after that. Everybody’s been yelling, ‘Freedom,’ ever since.”

I’m guessing this was taken as a so-bad-it’s-good thing, right? Because no one can really take Mel Gibson seriously these days.

Either way, the title of best motivation video of all time has to come down to one of the following: (a) The end of “Last of the Mohicans” when Chingachgook kicks the holy hell out of Magua; (b) the part in “Animal House” when Bluto gives the “was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor” speech; or (c) Bill Murray doing the “it JUST DOESN”T MATTER!” thing in “Meatballs.”

In other news, I’m not allowed to coach my son’s soccer team anymore.

Clayton Kershaw completes spring training with a 0.00 ERA

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Clayton Kershaw had nothing left to prove when he exited the mound during his last Cactus League start on Friday. He finished camp with a 0.00 ERA, made all the more impressive after he extended his scoreless streak to 21 1/3 innings following 6 2/3 frames of one-hit ball against the Royals.

In six spring training starts this year, the Dodgers southpaw racked up 12 hits, four walks and 23 strikeouts. His velocity appeared to fluctuate between the high-80s and low-90s from start to start, but manager Dave Roberts told reporters that he expects Kershaw to get back up to the 93 m.p.h. range next week. Kershaw is tabbed for his eighth consecutive Opening Day start on Thursday.

The 30-year-old lefty is poised to enter his 11th season with the club in 2018. He went 18-4 in 27 starts last year and turned in a 2.31 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.4 SO/9 over 175 innings. He suffered his fair share of bumps and bruises along the way, including a lower back strain that required a five-week stay on the disabled list.

The Dodgers will open their season against the Giants on Thursday, March 29 at 7:08 PM ET. Given the sudden rash of injuries that hit the Giants’ rotation earlier today, Kershaw’s Opening Day opponent has not yet been announced.