Just more than an hour before the Red Sox series-opening game against the Yankees Tuesday, Sox manager Bobby Valentine held a team meeting to reiterate the importance of playing the right way for the final 21 games.
"Nobody really knew what was going on," said Red Sox outfielder Cody Ross. "We just got together. It was just really positive, and needed. … It was positive. We have 2 1/2 weeks left and the season hasn't been what we thought it would be, so we can go out and play hard, win ball games and stay positive."
The meeting wasn't the first called by Valentine this season, with the manager having addressed the team in a much more pointed get-together June 19 prior to sweeping the Marlins in a three-game home series.
The end result of this meeting was a 4-3, walk-off win for the Red Sox, with Jacoby Ellsbury being mobbed by his teammates after claiming a ninth-inning single, scoring Pedro Ciriaco with the game-winning run.
"It was just a good meeting to make a final push and finish the season as strong as we could," said Red Sox outfielder Daniel Nava. "It was a good meeting. I think he got his point across. Hopefully we can have a walk-off every time and he can be the best motivational speaker of all-time."
Besides encouraging the Red Sox to play the game right for the final few weeks of the seasons, another emphasis from Valentine was to remember the importance of performing for the Red Sox fans.
"At this point in the year we've found ourselves in a hole we can't really dig out from, so it's all about playing the last games hard and playing good baseball," said Red Sox shortstop Mike Aviles. "It's unfortunate we're not going anywhere this year, so it was just one of those meetings where he said, 'Play hard for the fans, they're out there, cheering us on every day.' That was pretty much the gist of it.
"It's one of those situations where our fans have been here every day so we owe it to the fans to play competitive baseball. It's been a struggle, and that's unfortunate with the amount of talent we have. But hopefully this one good game is one of many to finish the season on."
Valentine did vaguely reference the meeting when speaking to reporters after the game.
"I told the guys before the game that the fans are still pulling for us and they want to see us play well," he said. "The season's not over and we owe it to them, to the organization, to give it everything we had, and I think we did tonight."
For more Red Sox news, go to the team page at weei.com/redsox.
We had an impromptu visit from Peter King from SI / MMQB to our Fenway Studios and decided to talk some NFL and Patriots with him.
Pete talks with The Senator, Phil Perry about the Patriots trading for Dwayne Allen, ruling out a return to New England for Martellus Bennett. They also talk about the potential future of Patriots backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo and some of the big names in NFL free agency
Pete, Thornton and Price give their final thoughts and predictions for the Super Bowl.
Dale, Holley and Rich Keefe discuss NBA lottery pick Lonzo Ball with his very outspoken father Lavar Ball. The guys touch on the Celtics, his feud with his sons' high school coach, Lonzo being better than Steph Curry and much more.
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Gerry, Kirk, and Trenni react to the Celtics loss against the Suns.
Dale, Michael and Rich Keefe catch-up with former Sox GM Theo Epstein who is in town with the World Champion Cubs to take on the Sox this weekend.
We sit down with the manager of the Sox, John Farrell, for our weekly interview.
Rob Bradford is joined by Minnesota Twins relief pitcher Craig Breslow, who is one of the foremost authorities among professional athletes when it comes to understanding how charities work. Not only does Breslow head up his own charity, the Strike 3 Foundation, but also proactively has taken the Boston Globe to task via a letter to the editor after a 2013 article criticizing the allocation of funds for high-profile athlete's charities. Breslow digs into the recent controversy surrounding Tom Brady's affiliation with Best Buddies, explaining why the recent Globe article was misguided.
Gerry and Kirk read some inspiring quotes from Tony Robbins and Curtis is all set to see the man himself in June.
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Night 1 of the draft has passed and Jimmy Garoppolo is still here. The general consensus on the Bears was that they screwed up their draft. And Larry Bird is out in Indiana. Is there hope for Ordway's Paul George dream?
The offensive issues for this Red Sox team are becoming more and more obvious. We also react to our interview with Pedro Martinez.
Chris Sale basically took on Tanaka and the Yankees by himself last night. And the Sox hot corner of days past seem to be gone as far as third base goes.
Dale, Holley and Keefe discuss the Celtics win and how the C's should go for the kill shot on Friday and not let this series linger any longer than it has to.
Keefe and Holley are all up in each other's faces on this argument. We compare eras, playing style, positions and much more and take your calls.
Kirk Minihane, Springsteen super fan, is joined by Garry W. Tallent, founding member of the E Street Band. Kirk and Garry talk about what it's like on tour with Bruce, how the band goes about selecting songs for the tour, Garry's projects away from the band, and Garry's upcoming solo tour that will bring him to the New England area.
Kirk Minihane, future radio hall of famer, sits down with current radio hall of famer Howie Carr. Kirk and Howie talk about Howie's latest book Kennedy Babylon. If you like famous people engaging in sex scandals, hard drug taking, and murder this is the podcast for you. Its a fascinating look at Boston's most famous family and the problems that took the family down.
Kirk Minihane, host and overlord of the morning show, brings Gerry Callahan and producers Chris and Ken into the studio to hear his show proposal. Kirk is thinking about making some changes to the morning show and wants to hear his crew's opinion.
Ken and Chris have the Good Weekend recap of a Friday Christian Arcand edition of K&C.
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Ken Laird and Chris Curtis are in after a Reimer Wednesday edition of K&C to recap a virtuoso Kirk Minihane off-the-rails performance
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