Kalish shakes off nerves in return to Fenway outfield

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Kalish shakes off nerves in return to Fenway outfield

BOSTON Ryan Kalish acknowledged after Tuesdays 7-5 win over the Marlins at Fenway Park he felt some nerves during the game. Understandable, considering Kalish was making his first appearance at Fenway since Oct. 3, 2010. He appeared in just 24 minor league games last season, sidelined by injuries. And after off-season surgeries on his neck and shoulder he was delayed this season.

The nerves, while there, werent apparent immediately.Kalish, playing center field, got the first play of the game, fielding a Jose Reyes fly ball with a sliding catch for the first out.

I had a good read and I came in I was kind of thinking about that I would have had to dive head first, which would have been me first time, Kalish said. But it just was one of those sliding catches that a lot of good outfielders can make.

But the nerves became more apparent as the game went on. It wasnt the easiest reintroduction to Fenway for Kalish.

He was 3-for-4 in catches, manager Bobby Valentine said. Thats not bad. He got better as the game went on. Actually the first-inning catch was terrific, the first hitter of the game, and then I think there was another step to be taken on the one high fly ball and he said the ball that went in and out of his glove thatll never happen again. But the next two plays were terrific going to his right and his left.

In the fifth inning, he misplayed Logan Morrisons fly ball to the base of the wall in center for a two-run double. Later he dropped Jose Reyes fly for a three-base error to open the eighth. At the plate, he struck out with a runner on third.

Just missed it, Kalish said. Obviously I can smile about it now but at the time I wasnt. I just dropped it. Theres no excuse for that and it wont happen again.

It would have been understandable if Kalish had been leery of the wall on Morrisons fly, given his time away and his injuries. But Kalish said that wasn't the case.

It wasnt really in my head, especially with that play. It was just one of those things that you just drop a ball. I really cant remember ever dropping a ball like that in my life and its just really funny that it happened in the big leagues.

We talked about it. With two outs I probably should have tried to go to the wall first. With two outs I could have played it different. But I havent been in this park in a while. Im going to make an adjustment.

Kalish got words of encouragement from Cody Ross and Kevin Youkilis, which helped to dampen the sting of the miscues.

Ross said that he had done it himself, Kalish said. Hes done it before in his career and even Youk sat me down after that inning and that was huge, too. I was like thats the most embarrassing thing Ive ever done. He was like if thats the most embarrassing thing you do in the big leagues, then youre going to be alright. So for now, Ill keep it there.

But there were bright spots, too.

After making the error in the seventh, he also got the final out of the inning, stranding Reyes on third. He got the final out of the eighth, too.

It was fun, man, regardless of what I did out there, he said. I didnt really play my best game. I had a lot of fun. We got a win, too, so thats huge.

I think if I didnt have nerves theres something wrong. So Im just going to keep getting my confidence back and continue to work hard.

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.