CLEVELAND ó Here are some excerpts from Terry Francona on the Boston Marathon tragedy and other topics:
Asked whether the tragedy hit home because of his Boston roots, Francona said, "I'm not sure you have to roots in Boston to care about that. Obviously I do, as you guys do too. Just seems like when you turn the TV on and when youíre there itís hard for everybody whether its personal or not. It seems like it gets personal. You turn on TV and you hear right wing and left wing. I wish there were no wings. Just wish people would get along. I donít understand it I donít pretend to. I hope there are people way smarter than me who are trying to somehow somehow someday try to figure this out so this stuff doesnít happen.
"Itís hard enough to be an adult, can you imagine being a little kid growing up now? Itís hard. It just makes you feel bad."
Jon Lester said playing could take people's mind off it for a spell and help:
"I hope so. That would be terrific if it helps anybody at all. That would be terrific. I do think that is the case. Again, just from being there the time I was, that day is so special to the people in Boston. Theyíre so proud of that day. You have the Marathon, the game itís a big deal. Itís a personal day for the city of Boston and New England. I donít know how you quantify what happened, its unfair. Hope this game does help some people."
How did he find out?
"I was actually here at the ballpark doing something and one of my daughtersÖI saw I had a bunch of missed calls. I figured something was up and I called her back and thatís how I knew. I was really tied up for a while so I couldnít get to anything. So then I turned the TV on and saw what ever it was. Itís personal for everybody. In some of those views I could see the church my daughter was married in. So itís very unsettling for everybody."
How is to face the Red Sox?
"Itís OK. Just being as honest as I can be. Weíre a year removed. Not being in Boston. I had mostly really good eight years. I didnít script it the way it ended and you move on. Sometimes itís time to move on and Iím really happy where I am here. I think it would be unfair for the players for me to have like a nostalgia week. Our job is to beat them. And it is them. It doesnít take away from people Iím close to there but I like where Iím at and they like where theyíre at so things are pretty good. I do think it will be harder when I got to Boston for me."
Has he ever had any fear of going to the ballpark?
"Fearful going to the park, but not for those reasons," he kidded. "Seen some of those Philadelphia pitchers out there. No, no. You kidding me? I can barely get to the ballpark as it is. Iím not afraid. I hope thatís never the case. That would be disappointing if that happened."
Did the year off help him deal with what happened (with the Red Sox) better?
"A ton and thatís what I was referring to. A lot. And the fact its in Cleveland helps me a lot too. Iím sure going back to Fenway bring back a lot of memories. This is my home and home team. Itís not just another series but at same time itís not that I woke up and thatís all I thought about. The idea is to beat them and if we do, good."
He said he chatted with Dustin Pedroia and John Farrell for a minute.
"Went out and saw him (Pedroia) for a miniute, he didnít get any better looking."
He said of Farrell, "The day he got hired the glass became half-full. I hope for the next three days everything goes wrong for them. But heís one of my best friends in baseball and in life and they got a good hire."