I counted no less than four questions, all pushing Papelbon for an answer as to whether he regretted being “unavailable” on Sunday after throwing only 21 pitches this weekend, and throwing at milk bottles at the MLB Fan Cave on Saturday. Paraphrasing:
If you had to do it all over again, would you have pitched on Sunday?
You’re throwing at the milk bottles at the Man Cave on Saturday… why couldn’t you come to team’s rescue?
It gives a bad appearance, you know?
21 pitches… throwing at milk bottles that are five feet away… a lot of fans out there that are trying to figure it out… here’s a chance on Sunday… did you think of saying to Ryne during the game “I’ll take [the ball]”… was that a thought at all?
Papelbon’s answer to all of those questions was some variation of no. No, he wouldn’t pitch on Sunday if he had it to do all over again. No, he doesn’t think throwing at milk bottles gave a bad appearance– they were five feet away. No, he never thought about saying he could take the ball. His reasoning is that he has been in the Majors for 10 years and has never been on the DL. He knows how to stay healthy. He wants to be available for the last game of the season. Yada yada yada. There’s something to be said for that, for sure, but the irony that he was the guy who complained about wins and losses last year and then took just about the most nonchalant approach to costing his team a win against a division rival was completely lost on him.
Listen to the interview here.