Lopez Says Former Club Misled Him

By Jorge Arangure Jr.
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, August 12, 2006

BOSTON, Aug. 11 -- A week after being traded by the Baltimore Orioles to the Boston Red Sox, catcher Javy Lopez again expressed frustration with his former organization.

"The main reason I was upset at the team wasn't because I didn't get traded at the trading deadline," Lopez said. "The main reason was because I didn't get to play. I heard [Jay] Gibbons would be the new designated hitter so that put me in limbo. Being a DH already, I wasn't that [happy] about it. It was something I could deal with throughout the whole year. But the fact I wasn't even playing, that's another step. Another step down for me."

Lopez, who is 6 for 22 with the Red Sox, also said he believed the Orioles misled him about a contract extension.

"In the offseason, when they signed Ramon Hernandez, I was kind of upset because he was going to be [the] number one catcher and they wanted me to play first base," Lopez said. "I told them that in order for me to play first base, I needed insurance, an extension. They told me they were going to talk about an extension during spring training. Spring training passed and then they said at the beginning of the season. The beginning of the season passed. The fact is they never came to me for an extension."

Orioles Vice President Jim Duquette disputed Lopez's version of events.

"What we talked about was if he was going to play first base, and it was to our satisfaction, then we would be willing to discuss a contract extension," Duquette said. "But it was purely related to first base because Ramon Hernandez was the catcher. As usual, Javy seems to have a warped sense of the details. . . . From our standpoint, we didn't guarantee playing time. He had to earn it. He earned the playing time that he deserved."

UP NEXT Today at Red Sox 1:20 p.m. Benson (9-9, 4.71) vs. Johnson (3-11, 5.96) WTTG-5, WBFF-45, WTEM-980 Tomorrow at Red Sox 2:05 p.m. Cabrera (5-7, 4.95) vs. Lester (5-2, 3.86) Comcast SportsNet, WTEM-980

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