Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester admitted today that he drank beer in the clubhouse during games this season and that, “it was the wrong thing to do.” But he was adamant that such behavior was not to blame for the team’s September collapse.
Lester said the drinking was confined to starting pitchers who weren’t in the game that day. “It was a ninth-inning rally beer,” he said. “We probably ordered chicken from Popeye’s like once a month. That happened. But that’s not the reason we lost.”
Lester added that the team “probably needed more structure” but did not blame manager Terry Francona for the collapse. He said he “didn’t have permission” to speak for John Lackey or Josh Beckett or any of the other players named in the previous Globe article, but felt he needed to because:
“Consider us a unit when it comes to these accusations,” he said. “We either fall together or rise above it all together whether they like it or not. Things got magnified because we lost and sources started telling people what happened, which has me upset because if you’re going to say something, be a man to put your name to it. But we’re not bad people and we’re not a bad group of guys.”
The Pete Abraham article ends with the somewhat ominous words “more to come”. (Hoping that doesn’t mean more Popeye’s chicken. Greasy!)