BOSTON — The war of words between the Rays and Red Sox dragged into Saturday.
During Bobby Valentine's pregame news conference, he took issue with the Tampa Bay coaching staff's behavior during Friday's tussle. And Valentine didn't mince words, ripping into opposing manager Joe Maddon's staff.
"I thought their coaches were really aggressive. Matter of fact, I took offense to the aggressiveness of their coaches," Valentine said. "I thought it was very unprofessional. … They seem very immature and out of control.
"Coaches are supposed to try to stop things from happening. Their coaches were actually aggravating, agitating and instigating."
When both benches emptied Friday, Red Sox bench coach Tim Bogar and Rays first base coach George Hendrick were among the coaches to get into it. Boston pitching coach Bob McClure was also seen yanking Tampa Bay first baseman Carlos Pena's jersey.
But Valentine's comments occurred hours after Maddon criticized Boston's staff on Twitter. A day later, the Red Sox manager offered a vote of confidence in his coaches and condoned their behavior.
"I really was proud of the way my coaches were trying to do what they were supposed to do in those situations," Valentine said.
After getting word of the Red Sox manager's tweaks before Saturday's game, Maddon didn't prolong the banter. But as he expressed his sentiments, the Rays skipper seemingly fired subtle jabs toward Valentine's crew.
"The thing I'd like to cover, if I may, is how much respect I have for the Red Sox players," Maddon said, emphasizing the word "players." "They've been doing this now for seven or eight years in the American League East, and I've had a strong feeling for the professionalism of the Red Sox players the entire time. … I definitely want to put out there how much respect I do have for the Boston Red Sox players."
Maddon, however, made no mention of respecting the opposing team's staff — even though Bogar used to be his quality assurance coach.