Notes: Francona squashes Jenks-Guillen beef

Notes: Francona squashes Jenks-Guillen beef
February 27, 2011, 11:27 pm
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By SeanMcAdam and MaureenMullen

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Before the Bobby Jenks-Ozzie Guillen flareup spun completely out of control, the Red Sox and White Sox brokered a verbal cease fire Sunday morning.

Terry Francona, who had been in communication with White Sox bench coach Joey Cora earlier in the week, spoke with Guillen about calling a truce between the Chicago manager and new Red Sox reliever.

Jenks appeared to re-ignite things last week when he told the Chicago Tribune that the relationship between White Sox GM Kenny Williams and Guillen was a "distraction'' to White Sox players. Guillen returned fire Saturday and warned that his son, Oney, had more damaging information to tweet about Jenks if the reliever persisted.

Francona called Jenks into his office and advised the pitcher to drop the war of words.

"That's over,'' said Francona said of the controversy. "I spoke to Bobby and I went back and forth with Ozzie (via text). I'm confident that will be over. I dont care if they like each other, but Bobbys a Red Sox and we have to move on. I think he understands that.

"We're just making sure it goes away. It doesn't need to happen. He played for the White Sox and now he plays for the Red Sox.''

Jenks added: "It is what it is. At this point, you know, Im tired of it. I just want to move on. Im a Red Sox now, and thats all Im going to worry about. From this point on, Ive got nothing else to say. Guillen's going to have his say. Whatever. I'm a Red Sox and that's all that matters.

The Sox were set to defend their four-year streak as winners of the Mayor's Cup, awarded each spring to the winner of the spring series between Fort Myers' two teams: the Red Sox and Twins.

Francona jokingly observed that Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire had moved up Sunday's starter Carl Pavano to open the series, then noted that the Sox were using two of their own five starters: Josh Beckett and Clay Buchholz.

Reminded that the Sox had won the last four Cups, Francona said: "It's hard not to be arrogant.''

Francona noted that the Sox will face the Twins three days in a row -- Sunday night, Monday and Tuesday afternoon. That represents three of the five games between the two this month.

"There's a lot of anxiety,'' said of the games at the start of the Grapefruit League schedule. "It's like facing the Yankees on Opening Day -- it's too much, too soon.''

Newcomer Dennys Reyes, who arrived in camp Saturday after a delay caused by visa issues, threw a 32-pitch side session, which impressed pitching coach Curt Young.

"Curt was ecstatic,'' said Francona. "Reyes will face hitters on the back field Tuesday. Young said he was really pleased with how game-ready Reyes looks. He had no qualms about letting him face hitters.''

In his 16-season career, Mike Cameron has stolen 296 bases. Limited to just 48 games last season with a lower abdominal strain, he went without a stolen base for the first time since 1996, when he appeared in just 11 games for the White Sox.

Sunday against the Twins, he wasted little time demonstrating that he is healthy.

In the second inning, his ground ball to Twins second baseman Tsuyoshi Nishioka forced Kevin Youkilis at second base, with Cameron avoiding a double play. With Jarrod Saltalamacchia, the next batter, at the plate, Cameron stole second base.

I thought that was the exciting part of the night, Francona said. Cam runs down the line, his stride looks good, that was the most exciting thing of the night for me.

Hideki Okajima had a difficult outing, giving up three consecutive singles before a bases-clearing triple. He went one inning, giving up four runs on five hits with two strikeouts.

Oki had a couple grounders and then the flare into center, Francona said. And then he tried to sneak a fastball with the bases loaded and it clears the bases.

Every time it seemed like we got in trouble, balls were elevated in the middle of the plate, which is what happens.

Darnell McDonald, playing left field, nearly caught Jason Repkos second-inning triple, which scored Chris Parmelee with the first Twins run. McDonald crashed into the wall, the ball glancing off his glove.

Lars Anderson and Mark Wagner both hit solo home runs.

Brandon Duckworth gave up two runs on three hits in the eighth.

The Sox and Twins play again Monday, the second of their three straight games. The Twins now have a one-game lead in the five-game Mayors Cup series. Francona joked if they lose Monday, hell consider bringing Beckett back on Tuesday.

Dustin Pedroia, who made his exhibition debut Saturday, was not in the lineup last night, but said he felt "great . . . everything's fine,'' the day after his first spring appearance.

The Sox are likely to have their starting outfield -- left fielder Carl Crawford, center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury and right fielder J.D. Drew -- on the field Monday against Minnesota.

Sean McAdam can be reached at Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam

Maureen Mullen is on Twitter athttp:twitter.commaureenamullen