Dustin Pedroia: “The first hundred games have been (expletive)”

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The Red Sox lost 10-3 in last night’s series opener against the Yankees. It was their second straight loss and their sixth in their last seven. They now sit at 49-51 through the first hundred games of the season and currently find themselves in last place in the American League East.

Via Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald, Dustin Pedroia had a tough time holding back his frustration after the loss.

“The first hundred games have been (expletive),” Pedroia said. “We’re two games under .500. We’re the Boston Red Sox. If anyone’s thrilled about where we’re at, they need to reevaluate because I don’t like losing. I know everyone else doesn’t like losing. We’ve got to play better, man.”

Pedroia was particularly perturbed by the team’s approach in the top of the eighth inning. Yankees set-up man David Robertson made it through the frame in just nine pitches, which included ground outs by Jacoby Ellsbury and Carl Crawford, a two-out single by Pedroia and a ground out by Adrian Gonzalez.

“Late in the game, they extended themselves from us. That’s what great teams do,” Pedroia said. “We didn’t do anything. Our at-bats later in the game were not good. Swinging early in the count, you know. Heck, if their eighth-inning guy is going to come in the game, let’s at least get 25-30 pitches so maybe he can’t pitch tomorrow. Do something productive, and we’re not doing that. That’s the sign of not-a-winning team. Those are the little things that we need to do better. It’s frustrating.”

While this is a legitimate criticism on the part of Pedroia, it’s a bit of a surprise to see him single out three of the team’s biggest names. The Red Sox clubhouse just doesn’t sound like a very happy place right now. Still, the brisk pace of the top of the eighth inning likely had Joe West smiling all the way from Texas. Last night’s game finished in 2 hours and 41 minutes, the fastest Yankees-Red Sox game since September 11, 2005.

Bryce Harper will participate in the Home Run Derby if he makes the All-Star team

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Bryce Harper has, in recent years, declined participation in the Home Run Derby, with his last go at it coming in 2013, losing to Yoenis Cespedes in the final round. With the All-Star Game taking place at Nationals Park in Washington, however, he has changed his mind, saying today that he will compete if he is selected for the All-Star team.

Harper is currently second in voting among National League outfielders, so he stands a pretty good chance of making it. Even if he falls off in the voting, you have to assume that the powers that be will nudge NL manager A.J. Hinch to select Harper as a reserve, partially because of his actual power — he does have 19 homers so far this year — but mostly for his star power.

Simply put, you know dang well that both Major League Baseball and the Nationals want a home town guy with big time star power in the Derby, even if he’s not having as good a year as he’s capable of. As such, figure to see Harper hitting long balls in D.C. on July 16.