Red Sox focusing more on mental skills this spring

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- New Red Sox manager John Farrell has added mental skills class to the team's schedule in Spring Training.

Former Major League pitcher Bob Tewksbury, who has been a sports psychology coach with the Red Sox for several years, is running the sessions.

Farrell also said that Tewksbury will do some traveling with the Major League team this season.

"It's position-specific," said Farrell, "and different topics, discussion points, depending on who he's talking to. Today's meeting was with the starters. Tomorrow is with the relievers, and then he'll start to get into the position players. It's more of an overview, setting up some parameters, setting up what ideally we're looking for in certain types of situations as it relates to the individual. There will be a number of one-on-one follow-up as we get through the Spring Training program."

Farrell doesn't minimize the value of these meetings.

"Personally, I'm a huge believer in the mental side of the game. We spend so much time on the field," Farrell said. "We spend so much time in the weight room, and sometimes what gets neglected most is what goes on up here. When we have a resource such as Tewks, to not use it, we're not giving the players everything that they can take advantage of. His role has been expanded. He'll be with us about 85 days this year and more of those on the road."