BOSTON James Loney made his Red Sox debut Sunday, playing first base, batting fifth against the Royals.
Loney, who was acquired in the nine-player deal with the Dodgers on Saturday, took a red-eye flight to Boston, arriving in the home clubhouse Sunday morning.
Ive been up a lot, he said of the last few days. I had a late flight last night. Im excited though to be here.
On Friday there was a lot going on, taken out of the lineup. So I knew something was probably going, and then I figured something would probably happen by the morning, which it did.
Im excited. This has always been one of my favorite parks. I got to come here in 2010 to play. It was fun. Just everything about the atmosphere here, the fans are great here, you got a lot of support, its a good atmosphere.
In three games at Fenway in 2010, Loney went 1-for-11, with a walk, two strikeouts, and two RBI, for an .091 average, his lowest mark at any park other than Oakland Coliseum. He was a first-round (19th overall) pick of the Dodgers in 2002 and had spent his entire career with them until Saturday.
Yeah, thats all Ive known but Im also looking forward to this change, said Loney, who turned 28 in May. I think Itll be great for me and my career and Im looking forward to playing and winning in this city.
Ive played for a few years only with the Dodgers, last five or six years. So Im kind of in the middle of my career and just bringing that experience and just I think just going out there and playing hard, showing that.
Hes familiar with several of his new teammates, including Dustin Pedroia, Jarrod Saltalamacchia from playing with them in the Arizona Fall League, and Vicente Padilla, Scott Podsednik, and Cody Ross from their times with the Dodgers. Loney, who can be a free agent after the season, is aware the Sox have had a difficult season, just as hes aware Boston can be a difficult place to play.
Ive heard that, he said. You hear that. I think a lot of big market, big city teams is like that. So you dont think about that when youre out there. You just go have fun.
A career .284 hitter, with a .341 on-base percentage and .344 slugging percentage, those numbers are down this season -- .254.302.344.
No particular reason, he said of the decline this season. Sometimes I think early on in a season you might try too hard and your timing gets a little off. But thats probably what I could say to that.