Two years after David Price ambushed Dennis Eckersley on the Red Sox plane and screamed at him in front of the entire team, Price still thinks he deserves a say in how Dennis Eckersley handles questions about the incident.

Price fled to his nearly 2 million followers on Twitter on Wednesday to complain about a three-sentence answer Eckersley provided in a Boston Globe Magazine story. Price sent three tweets about it, including a final one that said Eckersley commented about the incident, “Because ECK needs attention!! Same as every broadcast…hahah 8 pitches are thrown and he’s sitting there talking about something he did 30 years ago (with zero mention of what’s going on).”

Eckersley, a Hall of Famer who spent eight years with the Red Sox and now works as a color analyst for games on NESN, said in the magazine article that he hasn’t spoken to Price since the pitcher went into a rage on the team plane in 2017.

“I didn’t know how to deal with that,” Eckersley said in the article. “I don’t plan on saying a word to him, I don’t plan on seeing him, never. (Broadcasters now board the plane before players.)  I don’t really give a (expletive) one way or another. I don’t think he really cares one way or the other.”

The comments might’ve flown by without major consequence in a day or two, but Price felt the need to make it a bigger story on Wednesday.

Asked what about Eckersley’s comments offended him, Price was ready to respond.

“The fact that it was over two years ago now,” Price said. “The fact that he wanted to move on but since then he’s went on the radio and talked about it, done it again.”

Price never issued an apology after the incident and thinks that Eckersley owes him the time and patience to listen to one.

“In 2017, I addressed it,” Price said. “Told you guys in front of the camera that I wished I had handled it differently. I did it again in 2018 on day one. Said the same thing. We had a meeting set up in 2017 here at the field. Got here early. An hour and a half, two hours after I get here, they come and tell me he’s not coming. We had a meeting. He backed out. I was going to tell him, I apologize, I didn’t handle it the right way and it continues to come up. There’s no reason for it. Honestly I just think it’s trash.”

The altercation is undoubtedly a part of both Price’s and Eckersley’s history in Boston. And one could argue that it would be irresponsible for a reporter who is writing a full-length magazine profile on Eckersley to complete an interview without asking him about it.

But Price wants Eckersley to answer those questions in a specific way.

“I don’t care, say he doesn’t want to talk about it,” Price said. “Like he said, he wants to move on. You want to move on? You move on. That’s it.”

Price then chose to attack Eckersley’s character while boasting his own.

“He had an unbelievable career, 25 seasons and he’s a Hall of Famer,” Price said. “But I saw his special on MLB Network. It was cool. One thing that stood out to me is he had zero former teammates in that interview. Not one talking about him. It was him talking about himself. If anybody ever does a special about me after baseball, I won’t need to go on that interview. I will have former teammates, former coaches, they can all vouch for me. He didn’t have that. To me, that’s all you need to know. That tells the entire story right there. My teammates will vouch for me, my coaches will vouch for me. He doesn’t have that, so he has to vouch for himself.”

Price was mistaken. A spokesman from MLB Network pointed toward the official press release for the documentary, which was issued last November. Many of Eckersley’s teammates were in fact interviewed for the film.

“The film features new interviews with Eckersley’s daughter Mandee, plus many who played with, against and covered Eckersley,” the press release read, “including Hall of Fame manager Tony La Russa, former A’s pitcher and broadcaster Ron Darling, former A’s first baseman Mark McGwire, A’s broadcaster Ray Fosse, former Boston Red Sox starter Bruce Hurst, 1975 American League MVP and Rookie of the Year Fred Lynn, J.G. Taylor Spink Award winners Peter Gammons and Dan Shaughnessy, and NESN play-by-play announcer Dave O’Brien, who all attest to Eckersley’s individuality, his honesty, and his lasting impact on the game.”

Though Price was complaining that Eckersley wanted attention, Price put himself in the spotlight on Wednesday.

“I’m going to stick up for myself at all times,” he said. “I don’t care what backlash I get, the negative attention, I’m fine with that. But I’m going to speak up for myself, stand up for myself and he either needs to move on or we can meet. One of the two. If he says he wants to move on, stop talking about it. That’s the way that I feel about it.”

Shortly before exploding at Eckersley in 2017, Price had an aggressive altercation with an NBC Sports Boston reporter in which Price cursed him out and pointed in his face in front of an entire media crew in the Red Sox locker room at Yankee Stadium.


Comments are not available on this story.