July 13, 2011

Epstein: We Could Have Done A Better Job Supporting Ellsbury Unconditionally Last Year

Josh Beckett was warming up to pitch the second inning of Tuesday's All-Star Game, but backed out when his left knee felt sore.
I was almost done with my warmups. I think I had about 10 pitches left. ... I'm not comfortable going out there and getting hurt in the All-Star Game and costing myself starts in the second half. ... It wasn't one pitch, it just kind of progressively got a little bit stiffer. ... I told Tito when I left if I feel [it] at all when I'm out here I'll speak up, and it just wasn't something I was comfortable going out there and messing with. I don't think I reinjured it, but I've definitely still got some inflammation in there.
Beckett's next start is scheduled for Sunday night in Tampa Bay.

Carl Crawford (left hamstring strain, out since June 18) will make three rehab starts with Pawtucket on Friday and the weekend and join the Red Sox in Baltimore on Monday. ... Jed Lowrie (left shoulder strain, out since June 17) is still not recovered enough to starting swinging a bat.
The Globe's Amalie Benjamin looks at how Jacoby Ellsbury -- hitting .465 in his last 10 games -- has put his lost season of 2010 behind him.

Hitting coach Dave Magadan calls Ellsbury "a man on a mission this year. He's played a little bit with a chip on his shoulder trying to prove a lot of people wrong, a lot of people that doubted him last year, his toughness." Theo Epstein admitted that "a big part of the unfortunate messiness [criticism from within the clubhouse] ... could have been handled better ... [W]e as an organization could have done a better job supporting him unconditionally across the board."

I've always had thick skin. I know it's part of the game when fans get on you. It's never bothered me. ... Obviously you want everybody to like you. At the same time, I'm a pretty realistic person. It's not always going to happen that way - no matter how well you do there's always going to be people that are trying to bring you down. ... When I came to spring training, I had nothing to say. Just watch me play this year. ... There was no question in my mind that I'd be doing what I'm doing.
Adrian Gonzalez finished the "first half" of the season with 128 hits, the most by a Red Sox player before the All-Star break (since 1933). But because the ASB does not occur at the same time every season, the "record" is a bit dubious. While Gonzalez has two more hits than Wade Boggs had in 1987, he also played two additional games.

                  HITS   YEAR   GMS PLAYED
Adrian Gonzalez    128   2011   89 of 90 (89 starts)
Wade Boggs         125   1987   87 of 88 (87 starts)
Nomar Garciaparra  125   2003   91 of 93 (90 starts)
Dustin Pedroia     124   2008   95 of 97 (93 starts)
Pedroia begins the second half with a 12-game hitting streak.

Since May 27, Daniel Bard has pitched 19.1 scoreless innings. It's the longest streak for a Red Sox reliever since Hideki Okajima had 20.1 clean innings from April 4 to May 20, 2007.

Kyle Weiland was, according to a report in the Globe, only the sixth player to be ejected in their major league debut. Weiland called his start on Sunday the most exciting day of his life, and said his jitters wore off by the third inning.
When it happened [hitting Guerrero and being tossed], I was like, "Oh, well, I mean, that's the rules, I guess." I didn't think the warnings were really warranted. Youkilis got hit on a changeup, so that was a little confusing we got warned.
Jason Varitek: "He obviously wasn't trying to hit [anybody]."

Terry Francona: "I just told him he was going to pay my fine."
Baseball fans across the country have registered their excitement for Tuesday night's MLB All-Star game, saying they can't wait to watch the league's annual showcase of its best players who aren't injured, aren't afraid of potentially getting injured, aren't too tired, are free the night of July 12, didn't pitch recently, aren't scheduled to pitch next week, don't mind making the trip to Arizona, and are actually willing to play two and a half innings of baseball.
Jim Litke, AP:
Absent from the endless discussions about how to improve baseball's All-Star game was the one that would solve all the problems immediately.

End it.


Anonymous said...

Hey this doesn't really have a lot to do with this post, but I'm just wondering how big on Josh Reddick the Red Sox are? Would a Carlos Beltran trade straight up for Reddick make sense for you guys? Beltran wants to sign with a winning team after this year, so it's very possible he would resign with Boston in the offseason.

allan said...

I don't see the Red Sox wanting to give up enough to get Beltran (though I'm not sure what the Mets would ultimately accept). More than that, I don't think they would want him for 2012 and beyond; Kalish and Reddick will vie for the RF job next year. But I have not read a lot about any rumours, though I know they are out there a little bit.

9casey said...

With Theo admitting , Ellsbury knowing and Boras representing. Is there any chance Ellsbury signs long term with the Red Sox..

You would imagine they would offer him a FY or Yook type deal in the offseason..

9casey said...

Reddick to the Mets has been talked about on the radio here.

Having Beltran in a contract year could be good.

If it happened would they DFA Drew.

Reddicks sample size in mlb is to short to think he could play at this level on a daily basis.

If the Red Sox are serious about him he would start in right after the break for at least the whole Tampa series, I believe......see if he could play everyday.

laura k said...

Unconditionally? They could have done a better job of supporting him, period.

Lucky for us he made in through intact and with the Red Sox. If they had shipped him off to another team, it would have been sickening to watch him become a great player elsewhere.

Amy said...

I love Jim Litke's comment.

And I hope all the mediots are eating crow about Ellsbury also.

Patrick said...

If they had shipped him off to another team, it would have been sickening to watch him become a great player elsewhere.

I was thinking about this too. People have been talking about trading away Ellsbury for a long time. Now I'm sure most of those people want to lock him up long term. That's what I want to see.

FenFan said...

Unconditionally? They could have done a better job of supporting him, period.

Especially when you consider he's LB. :-)

All kidding aside, it was unfortunate. For some reason, people could not seem to understand that rib injuries take a long time to heal. You can't do much beyond pain meds.

Case in point: my wife broke a rib as the result of a violent sneezing fit and it took almost six months to feel 100%. In contrast, Ellsbury had a fellow player knee him in the ribs. The fact that he attempted to return from that injury twice during the season told me that he was a lot tougher than how he was portrayed by the "mediots" (I've saving that one in my back pocket now!) and by his own team (Youk comes to mind here).