If you were expecting some parting shots at Boston, you didn’t get any from A.J. Pierzynski or John Lackey in St. Louis Tuesday night.
Pierzynski — the former Red Sox catcher who was released last month before signing on with the Cardinals — went 2-for-3 and started the winning rally with a two-out hit in the eighth inning and scored what turned out to be the winning run in the Cardinals 3-2 victory Tuesday night. After crossing the plate, Pierzynski pumped his fist and looked toward the Red Sox’ dugout.
“Everyone wants me to say bad things about the Red Sox and I’m not going to do that,” Pierzynski said before Tuesday night’s game. “I’m not bitter about what happened. It just didn’t work. I don’t have one hard feeling. The only thing is I didn’t play well enough. I have nothing but respect for the organization and how they handled everything. I was proud to say I was a Red Sox.”
Pierzynski, who reportedly was a bad influence in the Red Sox clubhouse during his time here, was seen chatting with many of his former teammates prior to the game.
Lackey — the former Sox righthander who was traded to the Cards on July 31 — wasn’t overly sentimental about his time in Boston, but he didn’t sound bitter about getting dealt away either.
“I have some great friends on that team that I left and obviously I had a great last year and a ton of fun with that group of guys but it’s part of the game,” Lackey said Tuesday night. “I wasn’t really surprised. Honestly, it was about as good a place for me to be right now. I was pretty happy with where it happened, I guess.”
Lackey signed with the Red Sox as a free agent before the start of the 2010 season when he signed a five-year $82.5 million deal with Boston. He missed all of 2012 with Tommy John elbow surgery, but bounced back to help lead the Red Sox to a World Series title in 2013. He went 10-13 with a 3.52 ERA in his comeback last season, and was 11-7 with a 3.60 ERA this season with the Red Sox.
Lackey was asked to comment on his time in Boston.
“There were definitely some ups and downs, for sure, some fun and some not so fun, I guess,” Lackey said to reporters. “I’ll concentrate on last year and winning a championship and really enjoying that year and having fun with those guys.”
Lackey’s contract calls for him to make the major league minimum of $500,000 next season, and he told the Cardinals he would honor that deal. When asked if he would have done the same had he remained with the Red Sox, Lackey did not want to get into it
“I don’t know about that honestly,” Lackey said. “I didn’t get that far ahead to think about it at that point… You guys are trying to stir stuff up.”