Pedroia: 'I don't think Bobby should be fired'

BALTIMORE -- Dustin Pedroia reacted strongly after Tuesday's game to a Yahoo! Sports report, denying that he was a leader of a group of players that was highly critical of manager Bobby Valentine in a meeting with team ownership in July.

Here's what he said:

“It’s tough. We had a meeting. I’ll be honest with everybody. We had a meeting in New York. The coaches had a meeting. Bobby had a meeting. We all had a meeting. Basically, when I spoke, I said we all need to do better. That includes owners, Bobby, coaches, especially the players.

“I had one problem with Bobby earlier in the year and I went into his office and talked to him like a man. He talked to me like a man. We’ve been great, had a great relationship. I’ll go out there and play for him any day of the week. I’m playing for all my teammates.

“It’s unfortunate that all this stuff comes out. I know we lost last year. We had huge signings and all kinds of stuff. We’re trying to play the game the right way and have an organization that does things right and plays winning baseball. It’s tough when all this stuff comes out that everyone’s trying to get the manager fired. That’s not the case.

“I don’t know. I’ve never met the guy that wrote the story. We’re going to go out and play as hard as we can. We dug ourselves this hole, and we’ve got to try to dig ourselves out of it. We’ve got to be professional.

“I don’t think Bobby should be fired. We haven’t played well. That’s the bottom line. I’m not going to blame anything on Bobby. It’s on the players. Last year wasn’t on Tito (Terry Francona). I know he took it hard. We were 99.7 percent in the playoffs last year, and we weren’t in there. Anything can happen. Baseball’s a crazy game.”