Gordon Edes, appearing on ESPN Boston Radio on Friday (listen to the podcast HERE), said he can "understand somewhat" David Ortiz's frustration with the media after three days of answering questions about reported problems in the clubhouse and said that apparently "the bear got poked one too many times with the stick."
"All the Red Sox had heard since they got home was about Buster Olney's report that it was a toxic clubhouse and I think maybe after a third day of questioning Ortiz got a little tired of it," said Edes, who added that it's not the first time Ortiz has sounded off about the media.
Edes went on to disagree with Olney's assessment of serious problems with the team, saying, "Do I think it's a toxic clubhouse? Of course not. ... In fact, I think this group of guys gets along very well and seems to have some of the elements that were missing, particularly in September when Terry Francona said it didn't seem like guys had each other's backs the way they had in the past."
Edes gave praise to manager Bobby Valentine, saying "I think he's done a good job turning the bullpen around, managing the injuries -- particularly in the outfield," but he acknowledged that not all of the Red Sox players appear on board with their new manager.
He named two players -- Kevin Youkilis and Dustin Pedroia -- who may be particularly reluctant to embrace Valentine, citing Youkilis' tenuous status on the team and Pedroia's close relationship with Francona.
Edes pointed out that the team's issues are not unique and that he expects things to "turn in a very positive direction" in the near future.
"I think winning is going to take care of a lot of this and I anticipate this team is going to go off on a little run here," he said.
Of course, the Sox are already on a run. They've won five in a row (seven of their last eight) and have been fairly consistent since the beginning of May.
"As always, it begins and ends with pitching," said Edes, who praised the bullpen for rising to the challenge during tough circumstances and for perhaps providing a ripple effect to the starting rotation.
"It makes no sense to play a Gold Glove first baseman in right field, even though Gonzalez has made a surprisingly good account of himself in right field," says Edes.
"He insists it's not impacting his hitting, but you have to wonder," Edes adds. "It's certainly taking him out of his comfort zone."
Edes admits that the Sox may have trouble moving Youkilis at this point, saying scouts haven't been impressed with what they're seeing out of the Sox veteran.
"They see an enormous regression, and there are questions about whether or not he can help any team down the road," says Edes.
Before closing the interview, Edes was asked about his experience being the PA announcer at Fenway Park on Wednesday night. Edes called the opportunity "very enjoyable," and said he'll be writing about the memorable night shortly for ESPN Boston.
"It's remarkable all the things that are going on around you while you're doing the PA," he says. "They make it very easy for you. They've got a guy next to you who's cueing you every time you have to introduce a hitter, they give you a script. But you know ... it's quite a production. It's a multimillion-dollar production and I enjoyed being a part of it."
His biggest worries while in the PA booth?
"One, was making sure I didn't mispronounce anybody's name. Two, was what the heck do you do if you have to go to the bathroom?"