Report: Pedroia tries to set the record straight

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Report: Pedroia tries to set the record straight

Dustin Pedroia was once -- along with David Ortiz -- one of the team's most popular players, but this year he has seen his likability take a bit of a dive.

The Red Sox are on pace to have a losing season, and Pedroia has found himself mixed up in some of his team's off-the-field tumult that has seemingly worn on much of the fan base.

On Wednesday night in California, Pedroia spoke with WEEI.com to set the record straight on some of the most noteworthy issues of this turbulent season.

First and foremost, he wanted to make clear just how badly he hopes to remain in Boston for the duration of his career.

"I want to be a Red Sox my whole career," Pedroia said. "I want to be here during the World Series times, during the September collapse, the biggest trade, and I want to be here when we're world champs again. I want that. I've been through times when not a writer said a bad thing about me, or the talk show hadn't said a bad thing about me, and I want to be here when they say a bad thing about me. I look in the mirror every day and at the end of the season I'm going to look back and say I did everything I could to help us win. Were there parts I regret? Yeah, without question. There were a lot more than in the past, but I learned from those things. It's going to make me better, I believe that. Yeah, I have to believe that. It's going to."

On the shot he took at Bobby Valentine early in the year after Valentine critiqued Kevin Youkilis' effort:
"Basically I was trying to get Youk's back and just say, basically, if someone had a problem with somebody just come to them and talk to them about it. It came out wrong. I messed that up. No question about it. Obviously I don't want to call out our manager by any means. I've never been put in that situation before and I didn't know how to respond. I regret that all that happened. I probably should have looked and saw what was going on and tried to check the pulse of how the fans and everyone was reacting to our team. I had no idea."

On the meeting Red Sox players had with ownership in New York, where players reportedly tried to have Valentine fired:
"Obviously we weren't playing very good and this meeting was of bigger magnitude because we're all trying to figure out why we're not playing well. Why are we losing ballgames, and how come we're not like we were last year before September? Basically everybody spoke, everybody gave their opinions on why we weren't winning. My intentions when I spoke was to talk about how we can improve and be better. It had nothing to do with Bobby. How many pitches has Bobby thrown this year? How many hits has he got?"

On the photo Pedroia reportedly took, mocking Valentine as Valentine slept in the clubhouse:
"We were in Oakland and Bobby passed out, he was sleeping, taking a nap. We were all tired. We were grinding. David was right there and I took a picture, put two thumbs up, smiled and took a picture. I was trying to keep the guys We weren't playing very well, trying to keep a loose atmosphere. That was it. You have to enjoy your life. It was funny. I'm not trying to be disrespectful. I had no idea First off, I don't know how, maybe somebody was just joking around with somebody and told them, 'Hey man, this was hilarious,' and this guy thought it was a story I was disrespecting the manager. That was basically it. I was just trying to keep the guys loose, having fun, playing the game right. That's it.

"Listen, when you have a different manager, it's a different environment. I was basically thinking, 'This is fine.' Me and Bobby have built a relationship that's pretty darn good. The other night I led off the inning, struck out, and we ended up four or five, and Bobby looked at me and said, 'Hey, way to start it.' I'm laughing. It's normal as a team and normal when you have a good relationship to do things like that, because we're around each every day. We're in the fight together. When times are tough people would view that, 'Oh, can you believe he said this, or did this.' All of our intentions are good. We all want to win the game. Everybody wants to have fun doing it. It's not to disrespect anybody. I've never disrespected anybody."

On why he missed Johnny Pesky's funeral:
"We got in at 3:45 or 4 a.m. and we had a note on our chair. I didn't even get my luggage that day because my wife is nine months pregnant and I wanted to get home. I was under the impression when I got up -- her mom had left town the day before to go back to Chicago, so I've got to make sure I take care of Dylan, who's 3-years-old and flat-out wild. She can't handle him one-on-one right now. When I found out I didn't have any help to have somebody to help with him. We did that night because we knew about Josh's event for so long. So when Dylan woke up I took care of him.

"Johnny meant the world to me, just like he did to everybody. That's something I'm going to have to live with, not being at his funeral. It was just a tough situation. Then I got my wife out for a couple of hours at Josh's thing, she was starving and we went out to dinner real quick and went back to the event. When you look back, yeah, it looks bad, but I had no intentions of disrespecting anybody. That's all I can say. I wish everybody handled it differently. I wish we would have known earlier. Don't get me wrong, if we had known earlier then a lot of guys It was tough on the timing. It was hard."

Quotes, notes and stars: Ortiz the oldest to hit 30 home runs in a season

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Quotes, notes and stars: Ortiz the oldest to hit 30 home runs in a season

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox' 4-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays:

QUOTES:

"It's one of those freak things. You don't plan on it happening, but it's one of those things. So we'll just see what the results say and move on from there.'' - Andrew Benintendi on his knee injury.

"That's kind of a routine 3-1 play. Unfortunately, it comes at a time when you've got two outs and a guy on the move. But that's a routine play.'' - John Farrell on the deciding play in which Heath Hembree couldn't hold onto the ball at first.

"I felt good. I felt strong.I felt good out there the whole game.'' - Rick Porcello, asked how he felt going back out for the eighth inning.

"I think everybody in the ballpark knew that that ball was leaving.'' - Porcello, on the hanging curveball to Evan Longoria.

 

NOTES:

* The loss snapped a five-game winning streak against the Rays for the Red Sox.

* Three of the four Red Sox walk-off losses this season have occurred because of errors.

* The homer by Evan Longoria was his first off Rick Porcello in 40 career at-bats.

* Rick Porcello has now pitched seven innings or more in six straight starts, the longest run for a Red Sox starter since John Lackey did it in 2013.

* David Ortiz is now the oldest player to ever hit 30 homers in a season

* Ortiz has now reached the 30-homer, 100-RBI level 10 times with the Red Sox, including the last four years in a row.

* The loss was the first of Heath Hembree's career, in his 67th major league appearance.

* Dustin Pedroia tied a career high with two stolen bases, the 12th time he's swiped two bases in the same game.

 

STARS:

1) Evan Longoria

The Rays were down to their final five outs when Longoria struck, hitting a game-tying homer off Rick Porcello.

2) Brad Miller

Miller's two-run double in the third enabled the Rays to stay close until Longoria's homer tied things up five innings later.

3) Rick Porcello

Porcello gave the Sox length and was brilliant in getting out of some early jams before settling in through the middle innings.

 

Shaughnessy: Everything Farrell does blows up in his face, particularly in 8th inning

Shaughnessy: Everything Farrell does blows up in his face, particularly in 8th inning

Dan Shaughnessy joins Sports Tonight to discuss Rick Porcello giving up a game-tying homerun in the 8th, and explains why John Farrell has been very unlucky with any decision he makes.

First impressions: Benintendi injured in Red Sox' 4-3 loss to Rays

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First impressions: Benintendi injured in Red Sox' 4-3 loss to Rays

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- First impressions from the Red Sox' 4-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays:

 

The injury to Andrew Benintendi looked ominous.

Benintendi's left leg buckled as he tried to elude a tag on the bases in the seventh inning. He left the game with the help of two trainers, hobbling badly.

The Sox later announced that Benintendi suffered a left knee sprain, and will be further evaluated Thursday.

It's impossible to determine how serious the injury is. The prognosis could be anywhere from a few days, to, potentially, a season-ending issue.

Regardless, it's a blow to the Sox, who clearly have benefited from Benintendi's athleticism and energy in the three weeks since he's been promoted from Double A.

 

Rick Porcello is gobbling up innings in the second half.

Porcello gave the Sox 7 2/3 innings Wednesday night, allowing three runs. It marked the sixth straight start in which Porcello provided the Sox with a minimum of seven innings.

Through the end of June, Porcello had pitched seven or more innings just four times. Since the start of July, he's done it seven times -- and came within an out of doing it in another start.

Porcello also extended his streak of pitching at least five innings to 34 straight starts, dating back almost a calendar year to Aug. 26 of last year. Of those 34, he's pitched at least six in 31 of those.

In fact, Porcello leads the majors in innings pitched since that streak began.

 

David Ortiz continues to amaze

In the first inning, Ortiz walloped a pitch into the right field seats for his 30th homer, giving the Sox a 2-0 lead three batters into the game.

The homer was significant beyond that, too. With it, Ortiz reached two milestones -- 30 homers and 100 RBI for the season.

It marked the fourth straight season in which Ortiz has reached both, and it also marked the 10th time as a member of the Sox that he had hit both plateaus.

The homer also meant that Ortiz is now the oldest player - at 40 years, 280 days old -- to hit 30 homers in a season. And finally, it gave Ortiz 100 RBI seasons with the Sox, passing Ted Williams, with whom he had shared the record of nine.

And, remarkably, there's more than a month left in the season to add on to those achievements.