David Ross: Cubs 'Out To Prove Something'

MESA, Ariz. (670 The Score) -- As the Cubs seek to regain their elite status, new manager David Ross is making team unity a preaching point.

It's a message that he's well-suited to send, as he was the player whom teammates turned to during tough times in his playing days. Ross will now be the individual the clubhouse answers to on a daily basis.

"We have a big group of guys that are already here," Ross said Tuesday of players reporting early for spring training. "There is a lot of excitement and energy going around in the clubhouse or you see walking around the hallways. There is a renewed energy, and we have talked a lot in the offseason about what we want to do. Guys have said they have enjoyed hearing that we are being counted out or hearing the what-if vibe. I think what I see in their eyes is they are out to prove something."

Ross will be a stickler for the details in spring training. There will be plenty of repetitive drills in group settings as part of his vision.

"We have a couple of new ideas and some that are kind of unique," Ross said Tuesday. "I am trying to create an environment where the guys will work together. We will have a lot of conversations, including a meeting in the morning. The meeting will be about what we want to teach and emphasize, some videos that can help to make us better. In that, showing some mistakes we made last year. We can learn from those, and it can be a part of our emphasis this spring training -- re-emphasize fundamentals but really just working and learning together. Create that environment that we can help everyone get together on. We have some new faces here, guys that have had a lot of success. They have been a part of winning, and they can impact the younger guys, who will be critical parts of the team."

Ross was asked how a team with a championship pedigree and so much talent could lost its way the past couple seasons.

"Winning a championship for the first time is really eye-opening different," Ross said. "You go through some things in the offseason that not every young player gets to experience. I think each individual player is different because of the success they had. That matters in how they grow in their career. I think it's easy to get off on your own path. When this team is strongest, they are working as one unit. I think those are really important things."

Bruce Levine covers the Cubs and White Sox for 670 The Score. Follow him on Twitter @MLBBruceLevine​.