Buchholz: Sox situation 'blown out of proportion'

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Buchholz: Sox situation 'blown out of proportion'

BALTIMORE Some would describe whats gone on over the last calendar year for the Red Sox as a nightmare.
The worst September collapse in Major League Baseball history, the sacking of Terry Francona and airing of nasty grievances over the winter and a 2012 baseball season that appears like it was over before it even started.
The latest is a Yahoo! Sports report that Dustin Pedroia and Adrian Gonzalez were ringleaders in a player insurgency designed to get Bobby Valentine fired as the Sox manager. Pedroia and Gonzalez have made their statements or lack thereof in the last 24 hours, and some of their teammates have weighed in as well.
It's not a nightmare. I think some things get blown out of proportion a little bit every now and then everything goes from there, said Buchholz. "Everybody's here for the same reason. We're here to win, and that's still what we're trying to do.
Nobody likes losing. There's always going to be a little sour taste in your mouth after you lose some games. This team's jelled very well, even with the stuff that we gone through. Everybody's happy. Everybody comes to the field ready to play, throws it all out there and leaves it on the field.
Yes, everybody is clearly happy. Except for the 17 players that hastily called an organizational meeting in New York City last month and now appear to be scrambling for excuses and alibis. Nobody knows whether Buchholz attended the meeting in question, but it appears the players know that Valentine is going to be there manager for the remainder of the season.
He does his job. It's just like anything else, when something goes wrong, somebody has to be blamed for it. It's usually us. It is what it is, said Buchholz. There has been a lot of stuff that's been going around, a lot of it false. It's hard for a player to sit here and say that it's not true because everybody thinks you're backing up your guys. But he's doing a good job. It's a game, man, it doesn't always work.
For his part, Bobby Valentine doesnt understand where all the manager vs. players stuff is coming from via unnamed sources, but said that its patently untrue. Sox owner John Henry released a statement defending his manager once again, and clarifying that the meeting was an organizational assessment meeting to get on the same page. Henry also denied that the players were attempting to get their skipper canned.
Im not following the whole actively, but I regret that John Henry has come out there to defend me, said Valentine. I regret that were not 10 games over .500 and in first place because I dont think hed have to make any statements.
I dont know that its weighing on me, but the guys are upset that every time we win a game something else pops out of the bag of tricks. I guess this guy has been sitting on the story for three weeks, so he was sitting there waiting for the Yankees series or whatever to pop it out there. Its great stuff really good stuff.
Stay tuned to As the World Turns in the world of the Red Sox because nobody knows whats going to happen next.

Felger: Will October be a dance or a dud?

Felger: Will October be a dance or a dud?

For a Red Sox team that has been the best in baseball in September and had won 11 straight prior to last night, you have to admit: There are a lot of things that could go the other way with this team in the playoffs that wouldn't surprise you.

To wit:

-- Would it surprise you if David Price blew up again in the postseason? He has a 5.12 career postseason ERA and has never won a playoff start. Was last night a precursor? He looked like his old shaky October self with a chance to clinch the division in Yankee Stadium.

-- Would it surprise you if Clay Buchholz crapped his pants when it mattered most? This is your No. 3 starter, folks, or No. 4 at worst. He's getting the ball in the playoffs either way, and if I told you that two months ago you'd tell me the Sox are sunk. He looks good now, but we all know he is the ultimate tease.

-- Would it surprise you if John Farrell blows a game with a bone-headed decision from the bench? Of course not; he's been doing that for nearly four years. Yes, he did it all the way to a title in 2013, but the possibility remains very real. It's in the back of most everyone's mind.

-- Would it surprise you if Koji Uehara regresses and the eighth inning once again becomes a problem? Uehara certainly has the experience and has pitched well recently, but the fact is that it feels like his arm is attached by a noodle.

-- Would it surprise you if some of the Sox' youth shows its age? It shouldn't. Happens all the time. Would it surprise you if Craig Kimbrel can't find the plate in a big save situation? It shouldn't. He's shown glimpses of it all season and has never pitched past the division series in his career. Would it surprise you if Hanley Ramirez makes an important mistake at first? Or the Sox' hole at third becomes a factor? Nope and nope.

We could play this game all night.

Now, what do I think is going to happen? I think the Sox are going to pitch well, even Price, and the offense will remain a force. I have full faith in Dustin Pedroia, David Ortiz, Rick Porcello and the lineup in general. There's a feeling on this team that's hard to ignore, likely inspired by Ortiz, and I think they'll keep it going in the postseason. I agree with those who say the Sox have the most talent in the American League, so that's a great place to start. I don't know if that means the ALCS, the World Series or a championship. I just think they'll continue to play well into October.

But all of that is just a feeling, just a prediction -- and you know what those are good for. The point is this: If it goes the other way for the Sox, I think we already have the reasons why.

E-mail Felger at mfelger@comcastsportsnet.com. Listen to Felger and Mazz weekdays, 2-6 p.m., on 98.5 FM. The simulcast runs daily on CSN.

McAdam: Price not exactly hitting stride with postseason on horizon

McAdam: Price not exactly hitting stride with postseason on horizon

NEW YORK -- The division title was there for the taking Tuesday night at Yankee Stadium. When you've won 11 straight and steamrolled every other team in the division, what's one more?

One too many, apparently.

The Red Sox' 6-4 defeat to the New York Yankees postponed the Champagne party for at least one night. In and of itself, that's not a huge concern. The Sox' magic number remains one with five games to play and the club's epic hot streak had to come to an end eventually.

A better night by either David -- Ortiz or Price -- might have resulted in corks popping and on-field celebrations.

Ortiz was 0-for-5 and stranded a total of seven baserunners. When he came to the plate in the top of the ninth against Tyler Clippard with two outs and two on, it almost seemed scripted.

Here was Ortiz in his final Yankee Stadium series, about to inflict one final bit of misery on the rival Yankees with a three-run homer in the top of the ninth.

Talk about drama. Talk about one more famous, final scene.

Alas, Ortiz took some feeble swings and swung through strike three for the final out. Not even Ortiz, for all his clutch performances, can conjure a game-winner on-demand every time.

A far bigger concern was the work of Price. Perhaps the best thing than can be said of him for now is that he almost certainly will not have to face the Yankees again this season, against whom he's compiled a gaudy 7.89 ERA this season.

More troubling, though, is that Price is not exactly hitting his stride as the postseason appears on the near horizon. In his last three starts combined, Price has pitched 19 1/3 innings and allowed 27 hits and 14 runs.

That isn't the line of someone at peak form at the right time. To the contrary, after a run of outings in which it again appeared Price had figured everything out, he's regressed in his last three.

Most troubling Tuesday was a repeated inability to turn back the Yankees after his team had pulled close on the scoreboard.

Price spotted the Yankees a 3-0 lead, and the Sox finally scored twice in the top of the 6th to close within one at 3-2. But Price quickly gave anther run back in the bottom of the inning.

Then the Sox scored two more times in the seventh to tie things at 4-4. . . but Price gave the two runs right back in the bottom of the inning.

"Very frustrating,'' sighed Price. "It's something I talk about all the time. It's a very big deal. And it's something I feel like I've struggled with this entire year. Whenever you're going good, it's something you're doing very well. And whenever you're going bad...you get a lead, give it right back. . . that's tough.''

It also doesn't portend well for the postseason, where Price, as you may have heard, has a spotty track record.

With some strong starts in the final few weeks, he could have reached the playoffs with both momentum and confidence.

Instead, he's got one more start -- Sunday -- to straighten things out.

Ortiz? His postseason bona fides are set.

Price, meanwhile, has no such reservoir of success upon which to draw. And starts like Tuesday's only reinforce the doubts.