Ortiz has answer for first-half woes: Injuries

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Ortiz has answer for first-half woes: Injuries

BOSTON -- David Ortiz will be the only Red Sox player at this week's All-Star Game in Kansas City. He's also the only everyday player on his Red Sox team that enters the All-Star break hitting over .300.

Following Sunday night's 7-3 loss to the New York Yankees at Fenway Park, Ortiz gave his "state of the Red Sox" address while sitting in front of his locker.

And with a 43-43 record, tied for last place in the American League East, 9.5 games behind the Yankees, Ortiz is only looking at one thing: injuries.

"With all the injuries that we've been through, I think it could be worse, you know what I'm saying?" said Ortiz.

"It's hard to compete like that," he later added. "I mean, you try, you know what I'm saying? But, it's hard."

The Red Sox hope to get Jacoby Ellsbury and Carl Crawford back after the All-Star break. They also currently have Dustin Pedroia on the DL, and Clay Buchholz is expected to be back in the rotation next weekend.

But all season long, the Red Sox have been searching for answers. Ortiz believes he knows the answer. It's as simple as not having some of your best players healthy.

"Have all those guys in and it would be a different story," said Ortiz. "Nobody's facing the situation that we are right now, with all the injuries. One coming in and another going back out, you know what I'm saying, it's hard to play, hard to compete like that.

"That's it," Ortiz later added. "I think that'll be the key right there. Just get some guys back, and fill some holes. Injuries have taken over in the game, man. It's hard.

"If you look at the team that broke spring training, and the team that played the past two-and-a-half months, it's a totally different team. Like I said, it's hard to compete like that."

The Yankees took three-of-four from the Red Sox over the weekend, and they go into the break in first place with 52 wins. They have injuries to key players, too. But Ortiz believes that if everybody gets back healthy for the second half, the Red Sox can make other teams pay, just like the Yankees made them pay this weekend.

"Well we hadn't played the Yankees in a while, but I noticed this weekend that you can make no mistakes when you play against them," said Ortiz. "You make a mistake, they'll make you pay. That's how good teams are.

"Good teams, they take advantage of mistakes. When we are playing well, when we have everybody here, you make a mistake against us, it will come back and haunt you."

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.