Gonzalez staying level-headed after hot week at plate

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Gonzalez staying level-headed after hot week at plate

ARLINGTON, Texas -- First baseman Adrian Gonzalez was named American League Player of the Week for the period covering July 16-22.

Gonzalez hit .429 (12-for-28) with three homers and 12 RBI while scoring five runs.

It's the sixth time in his career that Gonzalez has been so honored. He's hit safely in 25 of his last 27 games, batting .397 in that span, including a major league-best .538 with runners in scoring position.

"I'm going to have the same mentality at any time, whether I'm doing good or bad," said Gonzalez. "I understand it's a long season. It's not how you start or how you finish; it's the season as a whole. You're going to have great weeks and you're going to have bad weeks. That's part of the game.

"Hopefully, I'm going to have more good than bad."

Gonzalez was at a loss to explain how his hitting turned around in the last month.

"The game is the game," he shrugged. "Sometimes it clicks and sometimes it doesn't. Nobody's got the answer, I promise you that. I already understand that. I just stay the same all the way through."

With the trade deadline a week away, Gonzalez was asked what the attitude was in the clubhouse with regard to getting some outside help.

"All we can focus on is going out and playing the game today," he said. "That's all we can control. That's what, I'm pretty sure, everyone in (the clubhouse) is focused on. We're not focused on the trade deadline. I don't even know what today is, to be honest with you."

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. 

 

Sandoval: I got lazy after signing big contract with Red Sox

Sandoval: I got lazy after signing big contract with Red Sox

The Pablo Sandoval redemption tour is underway as the former World Series MVP tries to revive his career after two disastrous seasons with the Red Sox organization.

In an interview with ESPN Deportes, he admits to being “complacent” during his first two seasons in Boston after signing a five-year, $95 million deal. 

"My career had fallen into an abyss because I was so complacent with things that I had already accomplished," Sandoval said. "I did not work hard in order to achieve more and to remain at the level of the player that I am and that I can be."

After dealing Travis Shaw to the Brewers, Sandoval is expected to be the Red Sox primary third baseman in 2017.

"I am not taking anything for granted," he said. "I am here to work hard. I'm not thinking about the position or not. I am starting from scratch, and I am here to show what I can do on the field."

The 30-year-old says he’s following a “really strict routine” this offseason, and it shows. In a recent photo, Sandoval appears noticeably thinner. Sandoval says his wife giving birth to “Baby Panda” has served as inspiration.

"Watching 'Baby Panda' grow up and that he gets the opportunity to see his father play in the majors for seven, eight more years, to get back to the success I had, that's my motivation every day," Sandoval said. "The people that I surround myself with now and my family, they are the key to my success. This has been a life lesson."