Why is Rafael Devers not more important? | Sports


BOSTON – There are two players in Boston Red Sox history with several 30-home seasons before the age of 25.

Of them.

One is Ted Williams, arguably the greatest hitter in baseball history. The other plays on third base for your 2021 Boston Red Sox.

Rafael Devers should be a much bigger deal around baseball. He’s been making mash from the moment he debuted at age 20, he plays with unbridled passion and as tradition enthusiasts would say, he plays the game the right way.

You’d think a young star like Devers would have his face on billboards across New England and be featured nationally as one of the next big things in the game. His jersey should be a best. -sell and it should be one of the first names that appear when you ask a child who their favorite player is.

But for some reason it isn’t.

For someone with their CV, Devers’ national profile is strangely nonexistent. Compared to peers like Fernando Tatis Jr., Ronald Acuña Jr. and Vladimir Guerrero Jr., who are regularly promoted by the league and have appeared in dozens of commercials, Devers notably flew under the radar.

Even locally, it does not seem that Devers is sufficiently respected. He never even appeared in a commercial for Dunkin Donuts. Carl Crawford had his own Dunkin Donuts ad!

It’s fair to say that Devers hasn’t received the attention it deserves, but what does he think? Does the lack of recognition bother him?

“No, I’m still playing my ball like I always have,” Devers said through a translator when asked about the matter recently. “I don’t focus on whether I’m the best or the worst, I just focus on helping the team win and compete, not on the press or someone.”

Even though Devers doesn’t stand out, it’s still weird that he hasn’t made it through. After all, it’s not like his playstyle is boring. He’s been consistently hitting doubles and homers for years at home, and Red Sox manager Alex Cora has once likened watching his batting strikes to Comedy Central, noting his tendency to talk to each other and slamming his gear when he misses a shot he thinks he should have. crushed.

Whether or not he is fully appreciated by the wider baseball fandom, Devers is certainly well-loved within the Red Sox clubhouse. Alex Verdugo described him as a hilarious, hard-working guy who brings a childish enthusiasm to the game. JD Martinez said he’s also a relentless speaker and they constantly go back and forth about their respective ages.

“He calls me old and I call him like he’s 17, like he’s a kid,” said Martinez, who recently turned 34 and joked with Devers making him old. “I’m like a mom to him.”

Devers’ teammates have different theories as to why he failed to achieve name notoriety. Verdugo said MLB’s social media challenges can have a big impact, and Travis Shaw said that he isn’t particularly flashy could have a lot to do with it.

“Your personality is your personality, and I just don’t see Raffy as that flashy, bat-knocking type of guy,” Shaw said. “When guys try to get out of character it can have a negative effect, so there’s absolutely nothing wrong with the way Raffy is and his personality. The guys here love him, I love him, that was fun playing with him.

On this point, Devers agrees, saying he’s not the kind of person who craves the spotlight and prefers to stay focused on the game. He added that while he has a lot of respect for his fellow players. high level, he is comfortable being true to himself, even if that means fewer opportunities for approval.

“I’m not a player who is going to fight to get on TV for something I’m not,” he said.

Email: [email protected] Twitter: @MacCerullo.

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