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May 5, 2013

Q and A: David Ross talks catching, Red Sox pitchers

(Continued)

Smitty: Do you study more film and scouting reports to prepare yourself as a hitter or to prepare your pitchers for upcoming hitters?

Ross: Hundred percent it is more for the pitchers. I do more homework for the pitchers as far as going to the scouting reports and looking at swing percentages, locations, batting average location. I’ll watch a little bit of video on a guy (for own offense) and that’s all I need because you don’t get true knowledge until you get in the box.

Smitty: When did you start catching?

Ross: Little League. My dad said, ‘David needs to catch. See if he likes catching’ because I was playing second base at 10 years old and second basemen are a dime a dozen. I was a fat kid, too.

Smitty: The Red Sox have had trouble developing catchers. But that probably can be said about most major league organizations. Who are some of the elite defensive catchers?

Ross: They are hard to find. Buster Posey, Brian McCann, (Joe) Mauer, Russell Martin is a really good catcher. He has ups and downs.

Smitty: What do you feel makes a good catcher defensively?

Ross: It’s the game-calling, it’s the framing, it’s the blocking, it’s the target, it’s the throwing guys out. Leadership abilities. Experience goes into that. You’ve got to have a knowledge of pitchers and how they think. And you’ve got to want to think like those guys sometimes and get in their heads — and then separating that with hitting, which is a whole other ballgame.

Smitty: Ryan Dempster obviously has pitched well. How does he get outs without a blazing fastball?

Ross: His stuff is really sharp and his fastball is coming out of the same spot as his slider and his splitter.

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