Ellsbury, Gonzalez, Pedroia win Gold Gloves

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Ellsbury, Gonzalez, Pedroia win Gold Gloves

BOSTON For the third time in team history -- and first since 1979 -- the Red Sox have three Gold Glove winners.

Center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury, first baseman Adrian Gonzalez and second baseman Dustin Pedroia all were honored at their respective positions. The winners were announced Tuesday night in a special awards show on ESPN2.

It was Ellsburys first time winning a Gold Glove, but the second honor hes been given for his remarkable 2011 season. (He was also named the American League Comeback Player of the Year.) Ellsbury made no errors in 394 chances over 154 games, the only qualifying center fielder to record a perfect fielding percentage, with six assists this season. Ellsburys UZR of 15.6 was tops among all qualified center fielders.

Pedroia won the second Gold Glove of his career, along with his MVP season of 2008. Although his seven errors were the most in his career, and his .990 fielding percentage matched the lowest of any of his full seasons (in 2007), it was second among qualifying AL second basemen, behind only the Angels Howard Kendricks .992. Pedroias UZR of 17.9 was tops among all qualified second basemen.

Gonzalez won his third Gold Glove, after winning in 2008 and 2009 with the Padres. His .997 fielding percentage (four errors, 1,351 chances) was the highest of his career, and second only to that of the Rays Casey Kotchman (.998, two errors, 1,201 chances) in the A.L. His UZR of 11.1 was the best among all qualified first baseman.

Gonzalez appeared on the live broadcast on ESPN2 as the awards were announced.

It feels great, Gonzalez said. Its pretty awesome hearing Dustin won, as well. Its pretty awesome playing alongside him. Being able to win in both leagues, Im pretty grateful to everyone who voted for me.

We try to cover the whole right side of the infield there and hopefully we can do it for many years to come.

"I try to be a complete player. You can always go into offensive slumps, but defense is something that should never leave you.

"I always say pitching and defense is whats going to win championships . . . I take a lot of pride in it."

The last time the Sox had three Gold Glove winners in one season was 1979, when center fielder Fred Lynn, right fielder Dwight Evans, and shortstop Rick Burleson all won. The Sox also had three Gold Glovers in 1968: First baseman George Scott, left fielder Carl Yastrzemski, and center fielder Reggie Smith.

Since Gold Gloves were first awarded in 1957, Evans is the all-time Sox leader with eight, while Yaz is second with seven.

Youkilis weighs in on Valentine possibly being Japan ambassador

Youkilis weighs in on Valentine possibly being Japan ambassador

Among the reactions to the news that Bobby Valentine was possibly being considered to be the US amassador to Japan in President Donald Trump’s administration was this beauty from Kevin Youkilis. 

Valentine famously called out Youkilis early in his stormy tenure as Red Sox manager in 2012. Remember? "I don't think he's as physically or emotionally into the game as he has been in the past for some reason," Bobby V said of Youk at the time. 

The Red Sox traded Youkilis to the White Sox for two not-future Hall of Famers, outfielder Brent Lillibridge and right-hander Zach Stewart, later that season.

Youkilis, now Tom Brady’s brother-in-law by the way, had a 21-game stint playing in Japan in 2014 before retiring from baseball. 

 

Report: Bobby Valentine could be Trump’s US ambassador to Japan

Report: Bobby Valentine could be Trump’s US ambassador to Japan

Major league manager. Inventor of the wrap sandwich. Champion ballroom dancer.  And…

US ambassador to Japan?

Bobby Valentine is on the short list for that position in President Donald Trump’s administration, according to a WEEI.com report.

The former Red Sox manager (fired after a 69-93 season and last-place finish in 2012), and ex-New York Mets and Texas Rangers, skipper, also managed the Chiba Lotte Marines in Japan’s Pacific League for six seasons. 

When asked by the New York Daily News if he's being considered for the post, Valentine responded: "I haven't been contacted by anyone on Trump's team." 

Would he be interested?

"I don't like to deal in hypotheticals," Valentine told the Daily News.

Valentine, 66, has known the President-elect and Trump's brother Bob since the 1980s, is close to others on Trump’s transition team and has had preliminary discussions about the ambassador position, sources told WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford. 

Valentine, currently the athletic director of Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn., is also friendly with current Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who, like Valentine, attended the University of Southern California.