David Price has been extra salty with reporters this year. Right off the bat, he declared that he wouldn’t be speaking to the media except on days when he starts, and then he got into a strange shouting match with CSNNE’s Evan Drellich after a game last month. Lately, it’s been more of the same.
After a game against the Twins on Thursday night, Price got into a shouting match with Dennis Eckersley, who works as a broadcaster for NESN, on the team flight. The Boston Globe reported the confrontation, but didn’t have any details about what had gotten Price so upset. Most people assumed that Price was angry because Eckersley had criticized his failure to cover first base at one point during the game, but yesterday Price offered a brief bit of clarity on the situation. From WEEI:
“Standing up for my teammates,” he said Tuesday night after earning his fourth win of the season. “Whatever crap I catch for that, I’m fine with it.”
While initial reports suggested the incident involved a back-and-forth between the two, those familiar with the situation point out that it was Price who did all the talking, with the pitcher waiting for Eckersley before pretty much putting the analyst on stage for the sake of the teammates Price thought he was standing up for.
Eckersley was critical of Eduardo Rodriguez during the broadcast of last Thursday’s game, and so Price may have been trying to stick up for his teammate, who is currently pitching in Triple-A.
Whatever the case may be, Price’s insistence on getting into it with the media is strange. So far, none of the precipitating incidents seem to have justified Price’s outbursts—Eckersley is allowed to be critical of players during the broadcast, and it’s still not even clear what Price was angry at Drellich about—and this routine is going to get exhausting if it continues into the second half of the season.
The good news for Price and the Red Sox is that the big lefty is finally pitching well. He got seven strikeouts in seven innings while beating the Twins on Thursday, and last night he struck out nine Rangers in six innings to earn another win. If he keeps winning games, the Red Sox can probably put up with him yelling at people for odd reasons from time to time.