There werent many bright spots in Sundays football score loss to the Toronto Blue Jays, but the red-hot performance of Jacoby Ellsbury was one of them.
The Sox centerfielder was given a regularly scheduled day off on Saturday after playing in eight straight games after coming off the disabled list, and came back on Sunday with plenty of energy.
Taking more time off isnt at the top of Ellsburys priority list after missing nearly the first half of the baseball season with a separated shoulder, but hes willing to go along with the Sox medical staffs program.
I like playing. I like playing every day. Im just used to it, said Ellsbury. The more I play the more comfortable I get. I normally dont like taking days off, but you try to make the best out of it.
Ellsbury finished 2-for-5 with a pair of runs scored in the 15-7 loss to Toronto, and clobbered his first home run of the 2012 season to dead, straightaway center in the bottom of the fifth inning.
I knew it was just a matter of time. I put a good swing on it and I was just trying to drive the ball, said Ellsbury. Ive been putting some good swings on balls, and if you have a good approach with good swings then good things are going to happen.
Ellsbury is hitting .350 in his first nine games off the disabled list with six runs scored, four extra base hits and one stolen base, and has picked up where he left off last season. Its certainly disappointing that it took until late July for Ellsbury to crank his first home run of the season after he jacked 32 long bombs last year, but the Sox leadoff man is ready to make up for lost time.
But both Ellsbury and Carl Crawford have brought some energy and life to the top of the Sox batting order over the last two weeks, and thats a good start for a baseball team looking for all the help they can get.
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.
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.