Alfredo Aceves took the mound on Field 4 Sunday afternoon to throw live batting practice to Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The drill is designed to simulate game conditions for the pitcher and hitter.

It should have been a routine few minutes of spring training. But with Aceves, few matters are routine.

The first pitch was lobbed in, chest high and at Little League speed, as was the second.

“I wasn’t really sure what was going on,” said Christian Vazquez, who was catching.

Manager John Farrell, who was watching from the side, asked Aceves if something was wrong physically. Then he sent pitching coach Juan Nieves out to the mound.

In Spanish, Nieves explained to Aceves to pick up the pace during an animated conversation. The next pitch was a legitimate fastball, but Aceves continued to mix actual pitches with soft tosses. Not until the end of his session did Aceves start to really pitch.

Farrell was waiting for the eccentric righthander when he came off the mound. Their conversation didn’t look like a pleasant one.