The Sox have been interested more with Santos learning the nuances of pitching rather than with his results.
“They look more for improvement, like throwing four sliders and making sure at least two of them are strikes,” Santos said. “I’m now able to throw first-pitch sliders for strikes and on 3-2 counts, and changeups on 2-0 counts. It’s a daunting challenge, but I’ve learned in four months what other pitchers have done in their entire careers.”
Sergio loves Buddy:
Santos credits the Sox, particularly farm director Buddy Bell for the support that enabled him to make a position change. Santos was one of the first cuts of spring training in March but threw a bullpen session in front of several team officials before Bell asked him his preference. Santos wanted to give the infield one more try, so he was dealt to the Giants for future considerations before encountering a position logjam that resulted in him returning to the Sox to embark on a pitching career.
“To this day, I’m thankful for Buddy Bell,” Santos said. “He’s the best guy I’ve run across in baseball.”
Santos will play Winter Ball with Hermosillo in the Mexican Pacific League to be ready to compete for a spot in the Sox bullpen in the spring.