Report: Jason Varitek Says Reports of Friction in Red Sox Clubhouse 'Grossly Exaggerated'While the blame game has been in full swing since the Red Sox' late-season collapse, Jason Varitek has remained silent. On Tuesday, the captain spoke.

Varitek said that reports of friction within the Red Sox clubhouse were "grossly exaggerated," according to The Boston Globe.

Varitek reportedly called the Sox' historic collapse "embarrassing," but insisted that it didn't happen because the team stopped trying or stopped caring about each other. He told the Globe he never had a sense that the team wasn't on the same page.

The Red Sox captain said he was therefore surprised about some of Terry Francona's comments at a news conference earlier this month. Francona said there were some things that frustrated him about the Red Sox this past season, including the way in which players didn't care about each other as much as he had hoped.

"That's Tito's personal opinion and based on what was going on with him personally and maybe how he related to the team," Varitek said. "But I never had that sense. We lost because we played poorly and we had some health issues and we probably taxed the bullpen too much. … We didn't lose because of some issue in the clubhouse. That's a lot of crap."

Varitek also discussed the issue of players drinking in the clubhouse with The Boston Globe's Peter Abraham, calling it a "miniscule issue."

The 15-year veteran reportedly said he wants to play in 2012, and although he's a free agent, he wants to remain with the Red Sox.

"I'm a free agent, that's out of my hands," he told the Globe. "But I've bled in this uniform for a long time and I want to continue that. Hopefully that will be the case."