Well, that didn’t take very long. New Boston Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine took some time out of his busy spring training schedule to throw a couple of shots at the New York Yankees and add a little fuel onto the heated-rivalry’s fire. Everyone knew this was going to happen; it was just a matter of when. Valentine, who is known in baseball circles as a being a bit of an antagonist, not only took shots at the Yankees, but he specifically made mention of two “stars” of the team.
While speaking about retired Red Sox captain Jason Varitek, Bobby V was quoted as saying things such as “he is a man’s man” and “he was everything that you want from a guy that wore the captain’s C.” However, the hilarity came when Valentine proceeded to say, “And he beat up Alex.” This small statement no doubt helped him gain some street cred with Red Sox Nation and probably ruffled some feathers with Yankees fans.
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However, that was not the only shot Valentine took at a Yankees legend. When referencing the Red Sox work on relays in camp, he mentioned the “famous” Derek Jeter relay in the 2001 ALDS to catch Jeremy Giambi at the plate. Bobby V stated, “We’ll never practice that,” Valentine said. “I think (Jeter) was out of position. I think the ball gets (Giambi) out if (Jeter) doesn’t touch it, personally. That was amazing that he was there. I bet it’s more amazing that he said he practiced it. I don’t believe it.” Ouch! Take that Mr. Baseball! One point Bobby V! I am surprised he didn’t go on to rip Jeter for giving signed baseballs to the women he spent the night with. All gloves are off now.
In all seriousness, clearly this was a PR move by Valentine to gain some praise and to kick start the next chapter in the rivalry. The bottom line is the games will have to be settled on the field. Words on paper will never hurt as bad as a defeat on the field, but they definitely will make the games a tiny bit more enjoyable. This is just Bobby V being Bobby V. Get use to it Boston. You may have a new manager, but along with it, comes a complete sports personality. Play ball!