BOSTON (CBS) — In case you hadn’t heard, there’s been a bit of hubbub around these parts regarding an on-flight showdown between Red Sox pitcher David Price and Hall of Famer Dennis Eckersley.
While fans will have to wait until Price comes off the disabled list to voice their support or displeasure for him, they’ll get a chance to let Eckersley know how they feel on Tuesday evening.
Included in the many Boston-specific nuggets in Dan Shaughnessy’s column from Hall of Fame induction weekend in Cooperstown was this:
“Eckersley planned to drive home from Cooperstown Sunday night, then appear at Fenway’s Legends Suite on Tuesday.”
The Legends Suite, for the uninitiated, is a luxury box on the first base side of home plate at Fenway Park, in which a Red Sox legend mingles with fans throughout the night. In between an inning, the Fenway video board will show highlights from that player’s career, followed by a live shot of the player in the suite. That player is, as one might imagine, showered with cheers from the Fenway faithful.
It’s generally an uneventful moment, but given the current unresolved situation between Eckersley and Price, this one ought to be interesting.
“I think that this is a perfect opportunity for Red Sox fans to show Dennis Eckersley a little love,” Marc Bertrand said during Monday’s Zolak & Bertrand, while Shaughnessy was a guest in studio. “We already know and love Eckersley — it’s more about the ‘eff you‘ to David Price, is what it is. Go over the top on that tomorrow night. Don’t be so concerned about booing Price; be more concerned about cheering Eckersley in the booth.”
Shaughnessy also wrote in his column that there was “back-channel efforts by Red Sox and Hall of Fame officials” to get Price and Eckerlsey to meet. Bertrand asked Shaughnessy for more details.
“There’s two guys with local roots that are [in Cooperstown], and the Red Sox PR people have been in touch … they wanted while Eck was in Cooperstown to get to him and explain that they’d like to help make things right,” Shaughnessy explained.
Shaughnessy added some more color to the situation, based on numerous interviews and off-the-record conversations he’s conducted in recent weeks.
“I believe that there’s a tone in the clubhouse where they all think Eckersley is too hard [on the team],” Shaughnessy said. “The ones who care. The guys like Hanley [Ramirez] don’t even know or care, but the guys who are paying attention, I would say there’s a tone. And that includes the manager. So I think the people that are paying attention were not mad about this [confrontation] or they thought it was OK.”
Listen to more from Shaughnessy on Zolak & Bertrand below: