In his appearance on Dale and Holley Tuesday, Red Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis clarified his stance on outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury. Limited to 18 games last season, Ellsbury spent much of the campaign in Arizona rehabbing, and not with the team. Youkilis had said in June that "there's a lot of guys here that are hurt and supporting the team. We wish Jacoby was here supporting us, too."
The third baseman noted Tuesday that he wasn't questioning Ellsbury's rib injury, but more expressing disappointment that the outfielder didn't stick around to encourage his teammates.
"What I did there was -- and I still have this feeling, and I'll say it about anyone on the team -- I think you should be with your team, because there's a lot of things that happen," Youkilis said. "I think there's a case right now that we're hearing with the Green Bay Packers players. They had guys that were going home and rehabbing. Now, look, these guys are in the Super Bowl, and now you want to go to the Super Bowl and be a part of it. Well, you should have been a part of it every Sunday. You should have been there to help your teammates."
Youkilis noted that in addition to providing moral support to the other guys on the squad, an injured starter can play a large role in the development of a younger player stepping in.
"There are young guys -- we had guys like Ryan Kalish and Lars Anderson -- when I wasn't playing, I tried to help them out. It's not even helping as much as [it is that] you should be there," Youkilis said. "When your team goes to the playoffs, or does stuff like that -- and I know it's not about money or stuff like that -- but your teammates are making money for you and they're doing stuff for you personally. I feel like you owe it to your teammates to cheer them on, because if it was the other way around, you'd want the same from them.
"That's all I was saying. Jacoby's a good guy, and he had a tough year. As a young guy, he had a tough year with his injury, and I wasn't calling out his injury. I was just saying that rehabbing away [from the team] was probably not the best thing for him to do for his teammates."
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