Red Sox not interested in swagger showdown with Dodgers

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Earlier in the postseason, Alex Cora told a story about a spring training meeting he held with Mookie Betts, Jackie Bradley Jr. and Xander Bogaerts. His message: “You guys are good. You should play the part.”

In other words, it’s OK to show a little emotion out there.

“They’re great kids. They’re awesome. Very humble,” Cora explained. “But I think people should know who they really are with the way they act on the field. Like Mookie and I talk about him smiling, and Jackie, who is very quiet, the other day he hit that double and he celebrated, finally. And that’s what it’s all about. This is October.”

This World Series is a matchup of two historic franchises from opposite coasts with big payrolls and rosters full of stars. It’s also, in part, a showdown of swagger. The Dodgers have the ultimate showman in Yasiel Puig and an even more controversial sidekick in Manny Machado. The Red Sox … well, maybe it’s not exactly fair to call them old school, but you’re not going to see many bat flips from them or see them posting Instagram videos taunting the opposition. The celebration revolution is changing the culture of baseball, but don’t tell the Red Sox.7

I asked David Price if that spring training meeting changed the way Betts, Bradley and Bogaerts played this season. He paused and then laughed a bit. “No, not really,” he said. “Those three guys stay about as even keeled as I’ve seen in the big leagues. They don’t get too high, they don’t get too low.”

Bogaerts remembered the meeting, if not the nike

“It was me, Jackie and Mookie,” he said. “I don’t recall if there was one more guy. I might be missing someone. But I remember it was us three for sure with [Cora]. He does it the whole season — every day giving us daily reminders no matter if we’re going up or down, if we’re struggling or playing good, just try to remind us how good we are and stay even keeled, don’t get too high, too low.”