Leaving no stone unturned in their never-ending search to provide players with any tool that can help them better perform on the field, the Boston Red Sox have installed bunkbeds in a “Nap Room” on the second floor of their home clubhouse, complete with custom-made mattresses, pillows, sheets, and blankies:
Major league players have long had a troubled relationship with sleep. Former Detroit Tiger Chris Brown was the most high-profile victim, suffering a sprained eyelid when sleeping on it wrong, but he is hardly the only one. Former Red Sox farmhand and Pawtucket Shuttle rider Paxton Crawford said he once fell out of bed and cut himself on some broken glass. Sammy Sosa once missed the Home Run Derby because he slept on his shoulder awkwardly. Sleeping, for big league ballplayers, can be a dangerous business.
The Red Sox, loaded with young and talented players like Andrew Benintendi (age 22), Mookie Betts (24), and Xander Bogaerts (24), are taking a proactive approach to ensuring their players get enough sleep – and have the ability to do so at the ballpark.
“We have the wherewithal to be able to provide the latest and best technology that might be out there,” [manager John] Farrell said. “This is maybe not the most publicized area, but it’s something that we do delve into. You want every advantage you can get.”
Left unspoken is that Farrell can now send a player to his room, if necessary. As the parent of a toddler, the value of a good nap cannot be overstated. Perhaps catching a few ZZZzzz’s will help the Red Sox catch a few W’s.