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Josh Beckett says clubhouse beer ban ‘doesn’t matter’

Feb 26, 2012, 6:08 PM EDT

Jon Lester, Josh Beckett AP

Publicly at least, Josh Beckett is taking the Red Sox’s decision to ban alcohol from the clubhouse and team flights in stride.

“I don’t get paid to make those decisions,” Beckett told “It doesn’t matter to me.”

David Ortiz had a similar response a day earlier on Saturday.

“It doesn’t matter,” he said. “We’re not here to drink; we’re here to play baseball. This ain’t no bar.”

Beckett was viewed as the ringleader in the Red Sox clubhouse drinking that led to the offseason controversy and this spring’s ban. Nineteen of the 30 major league clubs are believed to have clubhouse alcohol bans in effect.

  1. proudlycanadian - Feb 26, 2012 at 6:27 PM

    He can always drink his beer at a local bar. It is not as if he does not have any alternative options.

  2. 13yrsmlbvet - Feb 26, 2012 at 6:41 PM

    They are gonna bring their own beer in. Trust me, I was there for 6 seasons. Those guys will pay a clubhouse guy to get it and hide it for them. The public ban means nothing.

    • brokea$$lovesmesomeme - Feb 26, 2012 at 7:03 PM

      Are they gonna hide it in there locker? Who are you kidding “I was there” , were you in theos box or were you sitting next to John Henry? We’re you also in on the decision to let Tito as well? What did you think about the signing of Crawford, I’ll bet you told John to go ahead and do it no matter what his gut told him?

    • JBerardi - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:43 PM

      “Trust me, I was there for 6 seasons.”

      I don’t trust you.

    • baseballisboring - Feb 27, 2012 at 1:51 AM

      Uh, that’d be some pretty intensely alcoholic behavior. Don’t see that happening at all.

    • bobwsc - Feb 27, 2012 at 9:41 AM


    • vivabear - Feb 27, 2012 at 10:01 AM

      I guess even though a few commenters on this board don’t agree with you….Terry Francona does. And I’d side with him on this issue.

  3. PanchoHerreraFanClub - Feb 26, 2012 at 6:43 PM

    Of course they have no problem with a beer ban. Now if it had been fried chicken …

    • askabutcher - Feb 26, 2012 at 7:02 PM

      Nope, that’s the NFL and the NBA

      • Baseball Beer Burritos In That Order - Feb 27, 2012 at 12:25 PM


  4. bigharold - Feb 26, 2012 at 7:14 PM

    As a Yankee fan I continue to find this beer and chicken stuff amusing, .. and off point.

    Does anybody seriously think a few beers and a little take out caused the RS to tank in September? What a crock! Had the RS went to the WS the beer and chicken thing would have been a new chapter in RS lore, .. like the shots of Jack Daniels before the games that the “Idiots” supposedly consumed.

    The fact is the RS, despite prognostications to the contrary, were a flawed team last year and that manifested itself in September. Throw in a couple of injuries and a BP that was pretty thin save Papelbon, Bard and Aceves and voila a September skid of historic proportions. A few starters not sitting in the dugout and indulging in a bit of take out and beer had little if anything to do with their epic month long slide.

    The bottom line is that unless the pitchers pitch better and the line up produces more timely hits. Unless they can solve their issues at SS and RF, .. unless their highly paid LFer starts earning his keep the RS are headed for third place again. All this beer and chicken stuff is just a BS distraction.

    But, .. it is amusing.

    • 24missed - Feb 26, 2012 at 8:48 PM

      I disagree with you on so many levels.

      The highly paid LFer, as you called him, has a name, and he is Carl Crawford. Carl Crawford is my personal hero. I am totally biased and cannot be expected to be rational when it comes to Carl Crawford.

      ChickenGate and the Jack Daniels thing are so different. ChickenGate was the anti-Idiots. The 2004 team were a team. Last year, everyone was consumed with themselves and the beer, chicken, etc. were literally and figuratively symbolic of the collapse.

      The individuals that played for the RS last year that didn’t care about the team aspect caused the collapse. You can throw in the usual suspects like injuries, players not contributing to the wins like they’d like…sure all teams have that. But, last year’s RS didn’t behave like a team. They isolated pitchers,position players and bullpen pitchers. They neglected their workout routines and their nutrition. The 2011 had a fabulous run during the season, but when did they begin to change? I’ve read that somewhere towards the end of the season they started to just take their first place for granted and slacked off. Not all players, of course. And, naturally, I’m too lazy right now to provide any links.

      I agree that the pitchers need to pitch better and the line up needs to produce. What team doesn’t need that? Of course, I agree there are gaping holes at shortstop and rightfield.
      You are pretty spot on in those points.

      ChickenGate is not a BS distraction, in my eyes. It broke my heart to know that I gave a rat’s bum more than some of the players on the RS did. But the RS are my RS. I’ll root for them til my last breath. Even if it is painful sometimes.

      O and by the way, my cousins are Yankees fans. They called me immediately after the RS game and they offered their sincere condolences. That was pretty sweet.

      • bigharold - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:46 PM

        The only difference between the beer and chicken thing and the Jack Daniels story is one was associated with a team that failed while the other was one that was associated with a team that won it all.

        “But, last year’s RS didn’t behave like a team.”

        How so? Because some of the starters weren’t always in the dugout? Nonsense. Lots of teams do that. Also, between their God awful start and their epic flame out the RS in fact played pretty good baseball. Their behavior wasn’t questioned then because they were winning. The appearance of playing as a team and team chemistry is not a prerequisite of winning it’s the result of it. Because baseball in large part a team sport based on individual performance. A hitter getting a timely hit or a pitcher pitching well. There have been many notable “dysfunctional” teams that were successful, .. even winning the WS. There likely have been teams that worked hard to “.. behave like a team” that won nothing but since they weren’t successful, … who cares?

        All this stuff about beer and chicken is the result of, to a large degree, the need for people to explain or rationalize failure. People need to be able to understand why things happened. In this case something bad happened so it’s cause needs to be rooted out and corrected. In general that’s good but that isn’t what is happening here. The infamous beer and chicken scandal of 2011 ignores the facts; that the RS pitching wasn’t nearly as good as it was touted to be before last season. Their line up while potent had holes. And, the inevitable injuries started to show exposing the RS bench and farm system for what it was, ..weak. Add to that the RS FO decided that there was nothing worth spending money on at the trade deadline. Perhaps they were right but from the outside looking in it sure smacked of running the team more like a business with the goal of maximizing profit than trying to do whatever was possible to win a championship. At the end of the season a flawed team wasn’t strong enough and it showed.

        This year the RS have even more questions. The BP lost two of three reliable pitchers from last season. That means the starters need to stay healthy and remain productive otherwise they could lose a lot of games in the late innings. I don’t think Bailey is as good as Papelbon and he has some question marks about his ability to stay healthy. As pointed out SS and RF are concerns as is LF. Crawford while an impact player is not a dominant player. He’s not the kind of guy that can carry a team so they need for him to at least play to the back of his baseball card. If he consumes the resources that he does and can only play an average LF the RS are in trouble. Crawford starting the season with a bad wrist is not a good sign.

        There were more than a few reasons why the RS faded last year but beer and chicken, .. if they even make the list, were down at the bottom of it. But, .. if the RS and or the Nation want to continue to flog this dead horse, .. by all means be my guess. Like I said it is somewhat amusing.

      • 24missed - Feb 27, 2012 at 2:15 PM

        Harold, Harold, Harold.

        See. Here’s the deal. You are certainly entitled to your opinion and and I am mine. I’ll try to play nice.

        I agree upon the fact that 2004 was the winning team and the other one certainly choked. The whole Jack Daniels thing was done with all of the team members while the Bud-Lite was w/ the starting pitchers only.
        So, there are two differences there that stand among the RS teams. Among myriads of other differences.

        I didn’t claim that they didn’t play good ball during the season. And you are right, they most certainly are individuals playing a team sport. But, some players put the team before themselves. Would it be fabulous if everything was all happy-happy/joy-joy amongst all the players, coaches, fo types? Sure. But, that’s not reality. Hunger, though, hunger to win…that has to be a commitment. That has to be a commitment to work out, to eat right, to practice drills and be a professional. Taking a wild guess here, but if they had followed the guidelines set before them, they would have won more games.

        Good points re: finding out the identifying the source of the problem and taking care of business. ChickenGate shed light on the problems and was able to create a pathway to the heart of the matter. It exposed so many of those weak areas that you spoke of and so many that needed to be addressed and still need to be addressed. That’s where you and I differ. We both agree on the need to seek the heart of the matter and handle it effectively, within the scope of reality. I just happen to think that it was a huge wake-up call to the entire organization that they weren’t handed over the WS. ChickenGate was not a way to rationalize failure, rather a way to begin to identify, analyze and concentrate on those flaws.

        Even with my broken heart from last year’s pain, I’m ready for 2012. So happy to have provided some fun in your world. I’ve had more than my share of laughs. Enjoy, Harold and thanks for your fun. Just leave Carl Crawford alone.

  5. lostsok - Feb 26, 2012 at 7:37 PM

    As fun as it is to pile on, and considering I pretty much loath Boston AND New York, I still gotta be honest: beer is a massive carbo boost. With the energy they put out, they WON’T get drunk from 1 (or even 2 or 3) beers. It actually is a poor way to hydrate, but it makes you feel more hydrated. And it’s a great way to get fast energy. How many of us have had a beer playing softball? Did it really throw your game off?

    The real problem obviously is that it’s just not the image MLB wants. That it came out was embarrassing, and the “ban” in necessary for that reason. But the reality is that this is majorly overblown.

  6. rollinghighwayblues - Feb 26, 2012 at 7:41 PM

    “I don’t get paid to make those decisions,”

    I wonder if it sounded more like this?

  7. Walk - Feb 26, 2012 at 9:18 PM

    Ale > beer
    So letter of law is followed bring on the boston ale.
    And go.

  8. randygnyc - Feb 27, 2012 at 2:10 AM

    “I don’t get paid to make those decisions,” Beckett told “It doesn’t matter to me.”

    Pardon me for saying this, but I think he ascribes this to all aspects of baseball, including winning. The only exception, payday.

    • zfreak666 - Feb 27, 2012 at 11:34 AM

      Agreed. I can’t stand the guy.

  9. dan46778 - Feb 27, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Soooo they r going to be drink jack and cokes

  10. bigleagues - Feb 27, 2012 at 12:46 PM

    Apparently, no one here actually read the Bradford post or there’d be at least one comment about the following:

    Beckett would be insulated from the chaos that ensued after season’s end, tending to his new daughter first in Boston and then on the family’s Internet-less Texas ranch. It wasn’t until November that he started catching wind of the fallout, with Red Sox team president Larry Lucchino calling him with a message of encouragement and support, already referencing 2012.

    “I’m fine with it if it takes more pressure off other guys because I can deal with it,” Beckett said of the criticism. “It’s not going to affect who I am at home. It’s not going to affect who I am in the clubhouse. I wasn’t even supposed to be here in spring training. But I was completely removed for six weeks when I went home.”

    Many of us Red Sox fans and even some in the media have speculated that if anyone was to be dealt from that clubhouse it would have been Beckett or Youkilis. That Beckett throws out that line about not being here in Spring Training floored me. No follow up from Bradford in his post.

    Now that can be read one of two ways: a sarcastic comment by Beckett that talking heads and fans had him being traded; or he let one slip – meaning that he expected to be dealt because the Red Sox had told him as such. He obtained 10/5 status early last August, which means that the Red Sox would pretty much have to keep him or his agent in the loop on any possible trade scenario.

    No follow up or clarification from Bradford as of yet.

    It’s likely a sarcastic dry quip from Beckett, but given the context, Rob Bradford needs to make sure that’s clear.

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