Originally posted on Fox Sports Florida  |  Last updated 2/27/12
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PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. New Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine is banning beer in the clubhouse after the infamous fried chicken and beer controversy that came to light in the wake of Bostons epic 2011 meltdown. But dont expect Tampa Bay Rays manager Joe Maddon to follow suit. When asked about his policy Sunday, he responded without missing a beat. Were not the Boston Red Sox, Maddon told reporters following the first full-squad workout at the teams spring training facility. As I said it a hundred times, for me at the end of the day, Id much prefer our players making good decisions and if youre of legal age and the game is over, and you sweated and lost a bunch of pounds and you wanted to sit down and have a beer, I see nothing wrong with that. According to a Boston Globe report in the aftermath of the teams collapse, pitchers Josh Beckett, Jon Lackey and John Lester engaged in a routine of drinking beer, eating fried chicken and playing video games in the clubhouse on non-start days, rather than showing their support in the dugout. The Rays skipper does, however, enforce one alcohol-related rule: Booze is not served on the final leg of flight back to Tampa Bay, based on the assumption players would be driving themselves home after landing. Drinking is permitted on the front end and in the midst of road trips, because they travel by team bus in that case. Thats been there for several years now, he said. The last leg. Of course, when it comes to the last leg of fried chicken or any part of the bird its fair game to enjoy it along with the beer in the Rays clubhouse. Depends if thats what theyre serving that night, Maddon quipped. It kind of goes well with it actually.
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