SEATTLE — Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine is fighting back.
During an interview earlier today on WEEI, Glenn Ordway asked Valentine if he has “checked out” of the season.
“What an embarrassing thing to say. If I was there I’d punch you right in the mouth. How’s that sound? Sound like I checked out? What an embarrassing thing,” Valentine said. “That’s something that a comic strip person would write.”
Valentine let out a laugh as he delivered the “punch you right in the mouth” line.
Valentine was then asked about his arriving “late” at Oakland Coliseum last Friday. Valentine arrived in the clubhouse at 4:19 p.m. for a 7:10 p.m. game. As the Globe reported, Valentine was stuck in traffic after picking up his son from the San Francisco Airport.
“I shouldn’t have to explain that. That pisses me off,” Valentine said “Because whoever wrote that knew what happened, they knew that my son was coming to see me for the first time in this lousy season and I got to see him on the road. His flight was late and I was waiting at the airport for his flight to come in.
“I came in and sent the lineup in and reported to my coaches that I was going to be a little late. For someone to say that I was late is an absolute disgrace to their integrity if they have any. … I wasn’t late. When you call in and say that you’re delayed in traffic coming from the San Francisco Airport to the stupid Oakland Coliseum and that there’s a traffic jam, then you’re not late, no.”
Valentine then told Ordway that he should apologize for that accusation. The manager went on to say that Tampa Bay’s Joe Madden regularly arrives at the ballpark around that time.
According to writers who cover the Rays, Maddon gets to the park at 2:45 for home games, a little later on the road.
“Apologies to the writers for being late to today’s pregame session. My pedicure appointment ran a little late,” Maddon wrote on Twitter this afternoon.
Later in the contentious interview, Valentine was asked if he regretted becoming manager of the Sox.
“I think it’s been miserable but it’s part of my life’s journey,” he said.