On 7-game skid, Red Sox have 'no time to be down in the dumps'

Mike Petraglia
May 22, 2014 - 5:36 pm
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When you're the defending World Series champions and you lose seven straight, there's some patience and latitude given. But after Thursday's 7-2 loss to the Blue Jays, the urgency of a turnaround is becoming more and more apparent in the Red Sox clubhouse. "There's no time to be down in the dumps," A.J. Pierzynski said after the Red Sox completed just the second 0-6 homestand in their 114-year history. "There's a long way to go, over 100 games to go, so there's plenty of time to turn it around. We just need to do it [Friday]. We can't waste any more time. [Friday] is a new day in Tampa and hopefully we go down there and play well, win the series. That starts [Friday]." Manager John Farrell echoed those sentiments and added that John Lackey - Friday's starter at Tampa Bay - needs to step up and pick up a starting rotation that was shelled during the series sweeps at the hands of the Tigers and Blue Jays. "Everyone in our uniform is aware of what's taking place currently," Farrell said very matter-of-factly, in a business tone devoid of any panic. "We have to remain positive in our daily work and our approach. The guy that takes the mound [Friday] night, John Lackey, we're going to look to him to set the tone and stabilize things." David Ortiz, one of the hottest hitters in the American League when the Red Sox were 20-19 last week, went hitless in four at-bats Thursday, extending his hitless streak to 17 at-bats and capping a 2-for-22 homestand that included four walks. '€œIt'€™s just one of those times where we go through a bump in the road and you just have to bounce back tomorrow and execute better," Ortiz said, speaking to both individual and team struggles. What's his take on the attitude in clubhouse after a seventh straight loss? '€œI don'€™t know, but I can tell you about mine and I am going to come back tomorrow and kick some ass," he said. After Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia has seen as much as anyone in the clubhouse, and has a pulse of what's going on as much as anyone. "Obviously, we're a little frustrated," Pedroia said. "We have to play better and that's it. We have to play one pitch at a time. You can't start winning games, like we're going to win 10 in a row. No, we're going to win the next pitch. That's how we have to start thinking. "We're trying to find a way to win. Obviously, they outplayed us, both series. We didn't play very good. Both teams were better than us. They out-hit us, they out-pitched us, they played better 'D' so you're going to lose when you do that." Pedroia was asked if he thinks there are players who are pressing. "Pressing? We're professional baseball players," Pedroia said. "We play a lot of games. We expect to win and we expect to play good, and when you don't obviously, you don't want to do that, so you try a little bit harder. I hope we don't press. Just try to come out and win the next pitch. That's all we're going to try and do. "It's not my job to think if anybody's pressing. We're all here to help our team win. We've got to find a way to do that." Might there be a players-only meeting in the offing in St. Petersburg? "I think everyone understands what we're trying to do here," Pedroia said. "If it needs to be refreshed, it will be." Maybe getting away from Fenway will help over the next five games. Pedroia can't explain why they've struggled to a shockingly bad 10-17 mark at home. "I don't really know how to answer that," Pedroia said. "We like playing here. We just haven't played good here."

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