The passing of Jerry Remy hit so many hard in so many ways. For Christian Arroyo, it offered a reminder of the impact the former second baseman/broadcaster had on the Red Sox' current infielder.
Arroyo appeared on the Live BP podcast to remember both the compliments garnered from Remy, along with one impactful round of criticism.
(Go to the 24-minute mark of the following audio to hear Arroyo reflect on Remy ...)
"I have a lot of family in the Northeast area, in the New England area, and they are all Red Sox fans. They would give me the low-down, 'Hey, Jerry Remy gave you a shutout' or whatever the case may be," Arroyo said. "For me, that was always special because we both second basemen. He was an unbelievable second baseman. Obviously, the career that he had in Boston. The fact that he was doing still what he did for Boston. Obviously, the trials and tribulations that he overcame. Any time you have someone of that magnitude speak about you in that manner or in that light, it's truly special.
"I do remember the broadcast. I felt like that was even one of the games where I really felt, 'OK, this is starting to click. I'm starting to get this now.' For him to comment on that, and the words he said all year ... The best thing was that my first Remy moment was when I first got called up last year in 2020 in the shortened season, Remy actually roasted me and I loved it. You know what, though? Where some people get a little offended, I loved it because I knew in the moment I messed up and I was happy somebody called me out on it, especially someone the caliber of player Remy was. I never forget, there was a runner at first - Harper was first - there was no outs, I get a ground ball hit to me and Harper - because I was playing a million miles a minute trying to impress everyone - Harper stop in the baseline, I go to tag him, I miss the tag, so I run back to the bag, but he kind of does this ole move to get around me, gets to second, he's safe. J.T. Realmuto and I want to say he beat the throw. I just remember in my mind, 'That was an awful play. You're so much smarter than that.' I remember the broadcast, listening to it and thinking, 'What Remy have to say about it?' My buddy said,'Oh, he roasted you.' I listened to it and he was basically was like, 'What was that? That was an awful play.' From that moment on I was like, 'That guy cares. He actually cares about the game of baseball.' That was the first Remy moment I had. I was like, 'Damn, I have to tighten up because Remy is going to be all over me.'
"He always knew what to say. He really knew how to bridge the gap between the casual fan and the diehard fan and bridge the gap between the older crowd and the younger generation. He would kind of bring everyone together. He's going to be sorely missed. To think about a season without Remy in the box, it aches my heart. Again, I miss I had more time to really talk to him and really just bounce information off of him and ask him how he did it at second. 'What were you thinking here? What were you thinking here? In this situation what were you thinking?' He was a great baseball mind. He picked up on things immediately. Obviously, there are a lot of really good announcers in baseball but he was one who was very special. He just got it, like that. He's going to be sorely missed. For the short amount of time I was able to play in front of him, I'm very happy I got the chance to play in front of Jerry Remy."