Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 9/23/12

BOSTON -- It's become a quirky habit. Each time Bobby Valentine saunters to the mound to making a pitching change, the Red Sox manager can usually be found sniffing the baseball while waiting for his new reliever to emerge from the bullpen. Recently, Valentine has been caught on camera smelling the baseball during his awkward exchanges with Alfredo Aceves on the mound. When asked about the unusual custom, the skipper acknowledged the strange practice. "I like the smell of it," Valentine said. "Must be the [Delaware] mud mixed in with that Taiwanese leather. I don't know why I do it....

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