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07/15/2012 - 12:44pm
Valentine: Youk never got past critique
By: DJ Bean

Bobby Valentine said prior to Sunday's game that his relationship with Kevin Youkilis never recovered from a comment he made about the veteran third baseman early in the season. 

Valentine told WHDH-TV's Joe Amorosino in April that he he didn't think Youkilis was "as physically or emotionally into the game as he has been in the past for some reason." The comment got lots of attention, especially when Dustin Pedroia said criticizing players wasn't how the Red Sox handled their business. Valentine said Sunday that Youkilis, who was traded to the White Sox last month, never got past it. 

“I think that the comment I made early, he made a big issue out of," Valentine said. "And I don't think he ever wanted to get over it."

Asked what their relationship was like following the comment, Valentine said, "It was whatever he wanted it to be." 

"Like I said," Valentine added,...

07/15/2012 - 11:27am
Lineup: Gonzalez back in for Red Sox

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- After missing the first two game of the series with a sore lower back, Adrian Gonzalez is back in the Red Sox' lineup for the series finale against the Rays. Back in the lineup at second base is Pedro Ciriaco, while Daniel Nava gets another start in left field (hitting second). Josh Beckett gets the start for the Sox.

The following is the Red Sox lineup against Tampa Bay starter James Shields:

Ellsbury CF

Nava LF

Ortiz DH

Gonzalez 1B

Ross RF

Saltalamacchia C

Middlebrooks 3B

Aviles SS

Ciriaco 2B

For more Red Sox news, go to the team page at weei.com/redsox.


07/15/2012 - 8:13am
Report: Welker not expecting new deal

According to a report from ESPNBoston.com, it is unlikely that Wes Welker and the Patriots will agree on a contract extension by Monday, the deadline for franchise-tagged players.

A source close to the wide receiver told ESPNBoston.com that as Saturday night there wasn't active dialogue between the two sides regarding a deal. Welker, who signed a $9.5 million tender on May 15, wouldn't be able to sign a contract extension until after the 2012 season if a deal isn't agreed to by Monday at 4 p.m. The Patriots also have the option to again use the franchise tender on Welker after the 2012 season, though it would then be for $11.4 million.

The 31-year-old Welker led the NFL with 122 catches in 2011, and his 554 receptions since 2007 are 80 more than any other player in the league. 

For more Patriots news...

07/15/2012 - 12:38am
Crawford: 'I've been out long enough'

Red Sox outfielder Carl Crawford, who went 2-for-5 Saturday in the final game of his minor league rehab assignment with Triple-A Pawtucket, said that he was eager for his big league return on Monday night against the White Sox at Fenway Park.

"It's just good to be back, period," he told the Providence Journal. "That's what I'm looking forward to -- just being back.

"I'm just ready to get back on the field," he added. "I've been out long enough. No matter what happens, I'm just happy to be back on the field and ready to get that feeling of being back on the field and playing again."

Crawford was 4-for-12 with the PawSox and a combined 8-for-22 (.364) with a triple and three walks (.440 OBP) in six games in Double-A and Triple-A. While he suggested that his recovery process remains a work in progress -- he admitted that his "legs get a little fatigued right now" as he re-acclimates to playing...

07/15/2012 - 12:08am
Sox prospect Bogaerts OK after ball to face

Red Sox prospect Xander Bogaerts, according to eyewitnesses in Virginia, was hit in the face by a throw on an attempted force out while running from first to second following his single for the Salem (Va.) Red Sox in Saturday's Carolina League game against the Lynchburg (Va.) Hillcats. He was escorted off the field with a towel being held to his bloodied face.

However, while the scene was a frightening one, it appears that a significant injury was avoided. According to Red Sox farm director Ben Crockett, Bogaerts required some stitches to his nose but "should be OK in a couple of days."

The 19-year-old is hitting .286 with a .364 OBP, .474 slugging mark and .838 OPS with 12 homers. He played in the All-Star Futures Game last Sunday in Kansas City and is considered one of the top prospects in the Red Sox system.

For complete Red Sox coverage, visit weei.com/redsox.


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