Pablo Sandoval isn’t making any excuses for Pablo Sandoval.
The Red Sox third baseman has been a bust since signing a five-year, $95 million contract with Boston ahead of the 2015 season, and he’s not blaming anyone but himself. Sandoval admitted in a recent phone interview with ESPN.com and ESPN Deportes that he didn’t give the Red Sox his all in his first season with the club.
“My career had fallen into an abyss because I was so complacent with things that I had already accomplished,” Sandoval said. “I did not work hard in order to achieve more and to remain at the level of the player that I am and that I can be.”
After winning three World Series with the San Francisco Giants, Sandoval posted a woeful .242 average in 2015 to go with a career-low .658 OPS, 10 home runs and 47 RBIs. He appeared in just three games for Boston in 2016 and went 0-for-6 with four strikeouts before undergoing season-ending shoulder surgery.
But Sandoval turned over a new leaf during his long recovery and said he’s now “starting from scratch.”
“I have been following a really strict routine that has taken a lot of dedication from my part,” Sandoval said. “It has not been easy to wake up every single day at 6:30 in the morning to then head to the gym and start a full day of work. But you have to have that kind of dedication if you want to achieve the goals you have set for yourself.”
For what it’s worth, Sandoval understands the hate he received from fans. But instead of lashing out, he’s using that to motivate himself.
“I certainly get it,” Sandoval said. “I understand all the frustration (fans) must have felt, and I can’t hold any grudges. I have no ill will about anything. Actually the opposite. It was another lesson for me. It fueled me. It gave me the courage to work harder every day so one day I can be a part of another Boston Red Sox championship.”
Thumbnail photo via Jonathan Dyer/USA TODAY Sports Images
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