GOODYEAR, Ariz. — Brandon Moss has heeded Terry Francona’s message about not rushing his rehab in order to be ready by opening day. The last thing Moss wants though is to remain in Arizona while the rest of the Indians’ roster departs for Houston for the opening series.
"If you are part of a team, especially if you are the new guy, you want to be ready to play 162 games," Moss said on Monday. "A lot of it is out of my control as far as if I am ready or not but I want to be ready. I want to be with these guys and be there all 162 games. Hopefully everything goes the way you want it to."
Moss did some running on the agility field on Monday following his physical and meetings with Francona and general manager Chris Antonetti. Moss has been in Goodyear since Feb. 1 continuing to rehab from offseason surgery to repair a torn right labrum. It is likely that he will do more position-specific running by the end of the week with a progression to on-field hitting next week.
"I’ve been feeling well and now is a matter of progressing and continuing to add things," he said. "Nothing has aggravated it so far. I just have to continue down that path and get to where I need to be."
Francona said he has been pleased with Moss’ progress but wants to make sure that when Moss returns, he is in the best shape possible for the beginning of the year.
"Whenever he is healthy then we will be glad to get him on the field and not before. He’s new and I understand wanting to get out there but when he plays we want him to produce and he understands that," Francona said.
Francona also said that Moss will start out playing one position to start out before expanding the workload.
Just like it will be at Progressive Field, Moss has the locker right next to David Murphy. Both of them came up through the Red Sox system and Moss considers Murphy to be one of his best friends.
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With Monday being the first day that the full squad has been here, Moss met most of his teammates during Tribe Fest in late January. When it comes to adjusting to the clubhouse, Moss thinks it won’t take long and said that he thinks he is going to fit in better with the Indians than he has at other places.
MEETING UP: One thing that Francona has brought over from Boston is meeting with players right before they take their physical for 5-10 minutes. Not only does it give the players a better indication of what expectations are for spring training but it also gives Francona and Antonetti a better understanding of the player.
The staff had 31 of those meetings on Monday. Considering that, Francona was pleased with how things went.
"Today was an exciting day. It is usually a long day but some of the younger kids are impressive and it was good to talk to them," he said.
The first full squad workout is Tuesday with the Cactus League opener against the Reds on March 3.