|Bobby Valentine at Sacred Heart intro: ‘I thought I did a hell of a job in Boston’||02.26.13 at 2:01 pm ET|
Former Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine, appearing at a Tuesday press conference announcing his appointment as athletic director at Sacred Heart University (video below), promised that his new job is a challenge he is taking very seriously.
Asked right off the bat how he would respond to people who say his appointment is a joke, Valentine responded (via the Connecticut Post): “If it’s a joke, it’s an inside joke. I’m very serious about everything I do in my life. I deal with passion and commitment and I deal with excellence.”
Valentine, who officially takes over July 1, apparently is not locked into his position for any set time, and he did not rule out a return to baseball.
“It’s a term that will last until it’s no longer beneficial to each other,” Valentine said of his contract with Sacred Heart, a Division 1 school in Fairfield, Conn., near his hometown of Stamford.
“It’s a significant and wonderful moment for Sacred Heart University,” said Jim Barquinero, senior vice president for intercollegiate athletics and student affairs. “Bobby’s a leader and brings great energy.”
Barquinero said the school also will hire a “deputy athletics director” to work with Valentine. Outgoing AD Don Cook, 72, is retiring after two decades at the helm.
Valentine, 62, managed the Sox for one season, getting the boot last fall after a disastrous 69-93 campaign. However, he said he doesn’t view his performance as a failure.
“I thought I did a hell of a job in Boston,” Valentine said. “I thought what had to be done there was done except for winning a pennant. But Connie Mack wasn’t going to win with that team.”
Added Valentine: “It’s six months of a 62-year life. It’s six months of a 42-year career in baseball. It’s a blip, a little spot on the radar, as far as I’m concerned.”
|Dustin Pedroia on D&C: ‘We’ve got to win everybody’s trust and respect back’||02.13.13 at 9:24 am ET|
Second baseman Dustin Pedroia spoke with Dennis & Callahan on Wednesday morning at Red Sox spring training about the low expectations for the team entering the season, his experience with new manager John Farrell, and ownership reportedly calling him a “sexy” player who appeals to fans in former manager Terry Francona‘s recently released book.
“I started laughing,” Pedroia said of being called “sexy.” “I thought they hired my wife.”
Pedroia said he thinks pessimistic preseason predictions of the Sox will allow them to play an underdog role they haven’t had in a while.
“I like being the underdog,” he said. “I think our team will enjoy that, too. It’s going to be fun not having to worry about expectations or things like that — just worry about, we’re going to try to prove everybody wrong, and that’s pretty cool.”
On the topic of Farrell, Pedroia said his straightforward nature is a change from that of former manager Bobby Valentine.
“If you have a question about something with John, I would just ask him, ‘What do you think, where do you want me to play here?’ And he would give me a direct answer,” Pedroia said. “There was nothing more to it. You appreciate that because in our game there are so many situations that go on throughout the course of the year — you’re looking for something to do, you’re looking for an idea or anything, advice if you’re struggling, and you appreciate it.”
Pedroia also dismissed the idea that players like Jonny Gomes and Shane Victorino were brought in this offseason more for their reputation as character guys than for their talent.
“The guys that we brought in, it’s not like they’re just class clowns and coming to hang out,” he said. “Those guys can play.”
On what has to happen for the Sox to succeed: “Obviously, health is a big deal. Every team that is successful and never hits those bumps in the road and is always consistent, health has a factor in that. But I think guys stepping up — look at us in 2007. I don’t think anybody thought [Hideki] Okajima would do what he did in the bullpen. Nobody thought I would play the way I did. So it’s guys that step up and fill roles, and that’s what makes certain teams special.”
|Dustin Pedroia not blaming Bobby Valentine for 2012: ‘He didn’t play. We lost those games’||02.12.13 at 10:30 am ET|
FORT MYERS, Fla. — One true sign of leadership is taking responsibility. Dustin Pedroia did that Tuesday when asked about Bobby Valentine and the 2012 Red Sox that went 69-93.
“No, none,” Pedroia said when asked about the impact Valentine had on the team. “He didn’t play. It’s the players. Bobby didn’t go out there and get any hits, make any errors or do any of that. We lost those games. It’s on us.”
Pedroia took offense when Valentine criticized Kevin Youkilis early in the season before Valentine and Pedroia worked out their differences.
“Yeah, it was difficult,” Pedroia said of the 2012 season. “We had a tough time. We lost a lot of games. I think everybody is motivated to make sure that doesn’t happen again. We have to do everything better than we did last year. We have a lot of new guys. I think a lot of guys are excited. There are going to be a lot of different things going on. Guys have to do what they do and don’t try to do too much.”
As for working again with new manager John Farrell, someone he knew from 2007-10?
“That was one of the things when he was here before, he was always communicating with guys and open about your role. You knew what you were going to do that day. That definitely helps,” Pedroia said.
Another pain of 2012 was quite physical for Pedroia, the left and right hand injuries that limited him to 141 games. He still managed to hit .290 with 15 home runs.
“It was fine,” Pedroia said. “I had a pin in my [left] pinkie for about four weeks and they took it out. It was no big no deal. My thumb and other finger healed in about six weeks. I was fine.”
As for the offseason, Pedroia spent it in a program he called, “straight body build.”
Pedroia is also pumped and jacked about newcomers like David Ross, Jonny Gomes, Mike Napoli, Stephen Drew and Shane Victorino.
“I thought the moves were great,” Pedroia said. “We added a lot of personality to the team. These guys, Jonny Gomes, there are guys that are going to bring a lot of energy to the clubhouse and team, a lot of positive stuff and everyone is excited for everything.”
|Report: Bobby Valentine interviews for Sacred Heart University AD job||01.30.13 at 8:00 am ET|
Bobby Valentine, fired in October after one year as manager of the Red Sox, apparently is eager to find new employment. According to a report in the Connecticut Post, Valentine is a candidate to become athletic director at Sacred Heart University in Fairfield, Conn.
The report indicates that Valentine, a native of nearby Stamford, visited the SHU campus two weeks ago and interviewed for the opportunity to replace Don Cook, who is retiring after 20 years in the position.
Valentine, 62, has done some radio work since leaving the Sox. Before his stint in Boston, he was an analyst for ESPN for two years.
|Bobby Valentine to host own radio show||01.07.13 at 6:47 am ET|
According to SI.com, former Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine has been hired to be a member of the NBC Sports Radio lineup as a Major League Baseball contributor.
The report states that Valentine will call in weekly to NBC Sports affiliated stations over the next two months before co-hosting his own daily sports talk show starting in April.
“I think in my years here on earth, I have let people know I have an opinion about pretty much everything,” Valentine told SI.com. “I think I will remain true to that.”
The former Sox’ skipper added, “I don’t know that you have to be negatively biased to inform people of what is going on, or to keep them listening. I think you have to be true. If I have a fault, it’s that I tell the truth. You can’t dictate to the customer what they want and I think a good host feels his audience and understands what they want and need and tries to provide it.”
Valentine was a weekly guest on WEEI’s The Big Show throughout the 2012 season.
The report states that NBC first approached Valentine about the radio show after conducting an interview with Bob Costas shortly after the final game of the ’12 regular season.
For more Red Sox news, go to the team page at weei.com/redsox.
|Dustin Pedroia discusses Bobby Valentine, says he’s not switching agencies||11.06.12 at 4:40 pm ET|
Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia said on Tuesday’s The Big Show that he regrets the way he criticized then-manager Bobby Valentine early last season over Valentine’s comments about struggling infielder Kevin Youkilis.
Pedroia said that after his now-infamous “That’s not how we go about our stuff here” comment, he became aware that fans weren’t always on his side as they were in past years.
“I started to get aware of it during the year and it was tough,” he said. “Looking back on it, I’ve had time to think about what I said, and the way everything went down. I regret that I said that in that way, but I’m proud in that to be a team leader, you need to have your teammates’ backs under any circumstances.
“I didn’t talk to Bobby after he said it, so I didn’t know in what manner he meant his comments towards Youk, but I’m a firm believer in when a guy’s having a tough time — and everyone has, this is the major leagues, everyone’s going to go through ups and downs — those are the times when you need your teammates, you need everybody in the front office, you need the fans. We need [everyone] to stick by us, and I felt like Youk was kind of thrown into a corner by himself. When the top dog comes down on you that hard, I felt like Youk needed someone to be there for him to have his back.”
Pedroia admitted that he understood why fans reacted unfavorably to his comments, but noted that his priority as a team leader was to defend Youkilis.
“Without question, it came out wrong,” he said. “I’ll be the first one to tell you it sounded like I feel like I’m high and mighty and I’m trying to run everything. Everybody who knows me [knows] that’s not the case. I just wanted to make sure I was there for Youk and our whole team was there for Youk and we needed him to be who he is for us to accomplish our goal. Kicking him when he’s down, I felt like I needed to be there for him and everybody else needed to be there for him too. It’s just I’m a little bit more vocal and the media comes to me when certain things happen, and I was right there, and I was the one that wore it. I’m fine with that.
“I would rather have people calling [into radio stations] saying however they feel [about me] than for me to walk into work and have to look at Kevin Youkilis and have him say, ‘Hey, man. He didn’t have my back when I needed him the most.’ To an extent, I’m proud that I said that because Youk knows now that under any circumstances I’ll have his back. That goes for all my teammates. I love them.”
|Bobby Valentine: Red Sox player complaints ‘unique to that group of guys’||10.23.12 at 11:02 pm ET|
Former Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine, in an interview on “Costas Tonight” on the NBC Sports Network on the same day that John Farrell was introduced as his successor, suggested that he remains “incredulous” that Sox players reacted badly to occurrences such as his suggestion that Kevin Youkilis was not as physically or emotionally invested in the game, his feedback on how Mike Aviles performed in a pop-up drill in spring training and his alleged quip after Will Middlebrooks committed an error.
“The thing with Aviles, it was absolutely mind-boggling. … We were going to have a discussion about it while we were running a drill,” Valentine said. “I just said, ‘Guys, on this matter, this is not a democracy. We’re doing it the way you do it in baseball.’ I did it in a loud voice. Guys came into my office and said, ‘Please, don’t yell at Mike like that.’ … I’m still incredulous.
“Was I surprised that guys came in in that situation [after he critiqued Aviles' work]? Yes. I think … that’s unique to that group of guys. I don’t think it’s indigenous to all of baseball. At least I pray it’s not,” Valentine continued. “It’s not functional with the tail wagging the dog, and taking a vote every time you have to decide how to do things. A leader needs to lead. He leads by forming the pack, patting down the pack and having other people follow. You can’t have the guy at the back of the line coming up and deciding which direction you’re going to go in.”
Valentine described the Youkilis statement as “benign” (agreeing with the assessment of host Costas). He suggested that the Middlebrooks incident — in which members of the Red Sox other than Middlebrooks expressed concern to front-office members that Valentine said, “Nice inning, kid,” to Middlebrooks after a pair of misplays, resulting in owners sharing those concerns to him — did not occur.
“Just because we’re in the fact-checking era,” said Valentine, “I don’t think the thing with Will ever happened. He told me he didn’t remember it, and I didn’t remember it.”
Of his dismissal, Valentine said that he was not surprised, and that he did not experience disappointment upon receiving the news that his tenure with the Red Sox had come to a conclusion after the first season of a two-year deal.
“I was relieved that I was not disappointed,” said Valentine. “It was a real trying season. By September, I knew. There was writing on the wall. We had to have themeeting. We had the meeting and made it official.”
As for where his relationship now stands with the team, Valentine chuckled, “They’d kill me. If I ever say anything, they’d send out a hit man. They’d whack me, and it would be all over.” Read the rest of this entry »
- Players of the Week, May 13-19: Mookie Betts and Matt Price
- Cup of Coffee: Montas strikes out eight in Greenville loss
- SoxProspects.com Podcast #34
- ESPNBoston: De La Rosa finding his way in Pawtucket
- Cup of Coffee: Bradley, Holt shine in PawSox loss
- Xander Bogaerts, Portland to headline Futures at Fenway
- SoxProspects Video of the Week: Matt Barnes
- Cup of Coffee: Henry, Diaz propel Pawtucket to blowout victory
- Cup of Coffee: Spring's walk-off grand slam lifts Portland
- Bradley: "Everything's back to normal"