|Bay addresses past, present and future in Boston||02.16.09 at 9:27 am ET|
Jason Bay arrived in Fort Myers this morning and seemed very much at home in a clubhouse that he was entering for the first time. Bay has made quite the Grapefruit League circuit, having been in spring training with the Expos, Mets, Padres and Pirates, but this is the first time that he has been with the Red Sox in the spring.
The development seemed a welcome one for a player who clearly relished his time in Boston after being traded there (in the Manny Ramirez blockbuster) last July 31. Bay said that his three months in Boston went by in a flash, and suggested that he would be open to the idea of staying with the Sox beyond this year (his four-year, $18 million deal is entering its final season) if they approached him about an extension, though he did offer some disclaimers to that notion.
“There’s definitely a lot of positives for me to stay (with the Red Sox),” said Bay. “I’m very familiar with it, I love it, as most people do, but it’s not the end-all, be-all. Until something concrete comes up in that arena right there, I really don’t have much opinion on it. I’m going out. I’m playing. I have one year left on the contract. I’m playing that out, and we’ll see what happens. If something comes up before that, and my agent and I think it’s worth it, I’d definitely consider it.”
In describing how he thrived in the seemingly daunting role of successor to Manny Ramirez, Bay said simply, ‘Ignorance is bliss,’ noting that his lack of detailed familiarity with Ramirez’ lifetime accomplishments helped him to focus on being his own player. He declined to set offensive goals for his 2008 season, instead suggesting that his focus is on games played (155 or more), since he believes that the numbers will be solid if he remains on the field.
Bay also confirmed that he will play for Team Canada in the WBC, an honor that will take on special significance since the squad will be based in Toronto for the first round.
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