Josh Beckett Says Criticism Got ‘Too Personal’ Near End of Red Sox Tenure, Resents Clubhouse ‘Pity Party’

Josh BeckettWith the Red Sox set to meet the Dodgers this weekend, almost exactly after last year’s franchise-shaking trade, all the major players in the deal have been asked to reflect upon their time in Boston.

Josh Beckett did so in an interview with WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford earlier this week, and his depiction of the atmosphere surrounding the Red Sox clubhouse was not a favorable one.

“It just got way too personal for me,” Beckett said. “It wasn’t just like, ‘Hey, you suck on the baseball field.’ It was now, ‘Hey, you’re a bad person.’ It was getting personal. It wasn’t even about baseball anymore. It was definitely time to make a change. I think everybody from the front office to the players recognized that, we’ve moved on and now here I am.

“I think it almost ended up being like a pity party in the clubhouse. Nobody wants to hear [expletive] like that. Nobody wants to hear the personal stuff. Everybody in the clubhouse can deal with, if someone has a bad game, then you can deal with that somebody is going to get picked on. But when the team wins and you’re still hearing about it, it’s going to too far. It was starting to affect the other guys. I don’t want to be that guy. And it wasn’t just about baseball anymore.”

Beckett did clarify, though, that sentiment did not extend to his teammates. The right-hander said reports of him being a clubhouse cancer that his fellow players were glad to be rid of have zero basis in fact.

“Probably that the guys in the clubhouse didn’t care for me. That was completely fabricated,” Beckett said when asked what the biggest misconception about his departure was. “Completely fabricated. That I was in there causing all kinds of problems. It was completely fabricated, and I don’t think one story ever came out about that being true but somehow that continued to be true.”

Injuries caught up to Beckett after he was shipped to the West Coast. He’s made just 15 starts in the year since the trade, with his National League ERA ballooning from 2.93 in 2012 to 5.19 this season before neck surgery shut him down for the season in July. But even as he spends his time away from the Dodgers, completing his rehab near Dallas, Beckett says that this past year has flown by compared to his final days with the Red Sox.

“It has gone by pretty fast,” he said. “Time goes a lot faster everywhere else besides Boston. Time goes by slow when you’re in Boston. The last few years there it went by really slow. Some of that can be attributed to losing. I’ve noticed that.

“When I was with the Marlins I remember how fast that World Series season went by and I remember how slow the other seasons went. I’m sure that had something to do with it. A lot of the negativity plays a role into. … I’m happy that I got a chance to [play in Boston], but I’m glad it’s over.”

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