Lackey was reportedly seen following a loss to the Indians on Thursday having two beers.
Some consternation followed because of the perception that the Sox had outlawed alcohol in their clubhouse, but that is actually an oversimplification of how the team has operated this season.
While the Red Sox banned beer in their Fenway Park clubhouse and on the plane back to Boston after road trips, there was never any change to the team’s attitude toward alcohol on the road. That means that Lackey did not in fact violate any team rules, something that Valentine made clear when asked about it on Friday.
“That’s beer right there,” Valentine said to the Providence Journal’s Tim Britton while motioning to a mini fridge in his office at Progressive Field. “If you came in here [Thursday night], you would have seen a pretty heaping pile of empty bottles by the time I left. And I dare say there were a whole bunch of games this year at home that I would have liked to have the ability to make a big pile.”
Britton goes on to mention that many Red Sox players spoke up on Lackey’s behalf, defending his presence around the team and pointing out that he has “helped keep the clubhouse loose” over the course of the year.
Lackey is currently rehabbing from offseason Tommy John surgery, but has been traveling with the Sox.