Since Trevor Story signed with the Red Sox on Sunday, plenty has been made about the behind the scenes work it took to get the two-time Silver Slugger to Boston. Multiple people in the organization made their pitches, including current shortstop Xander Bogaerts. However, it turns out the recruiting process extended beyond those currently with the team, to Red Sox alumni as well.
Speaking to Alex Speier of the Boston Globe, former Red Sox third baseman Will Middlebrooks shared some of the conversations he’d had with Story during the 27-year-old’s free agency process.
“I was selling it for days,” Middlebrooks told the Globe. “I laid it out. I said, ‘Look, New York smells like garbage and they have rats the size of Shetland ponies. You don’t want to go there. You don’t want to go to California. The taxes are absurd. You’ll lose all your money there. In Houston, they have hurricanes. The perfect place to go is Boston.'”
“I made that joke to him. He got a kick out of that,” Middlebrooks continued, with the Globe adding that he “bears no ill will toward those other cities.”
Middlebrooks, who is now 33 and has been retired since the 2018 season, has a long-standing relationship with Story. The two worked out together in the offseason beginning in 2011.
The following year, Middlebrooks made his major league debut in Boston. He ended up playing three seasons with the Red Sox, including the championship 2013 season. He also spent time with the San Diego Padres, Milwaukee Brewers, and Texas Rangers.
“I told him I played in five places. If you want the best experience in baseball as a player, you have to experience playing as a home player at Fenway Park in front of Red Sox Nation,” Middlebrooks concluded. “There’s nothing better than playing against the Yankees on a Sunday night or playing in the postseason. You can’t beat it.”
Story will have a to wait a bit for his first Fenway experience – the Red Sox will spend the first week of the 2022 season on the road and won’t return to Boston until April 15. However, he will get thrown right into the Red Sox-Yankees rivalry, with the Sox opening their season in the city that “smells like garbage” on April 7.
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Alex Barth is a writer and digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Thoughts? Comments? Questions? Looking for a podcast guest? Let him know on Twitter @RealAlexBarth or via email at abarth@985TheSportsHub.com.