Originally written on Ted's Army  |  Last updated 4/11/12

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Valentine lifted starter Daniel Bard with two on and none out in the sixth and summoned lefty Justin Thomas to face left-handed-hitting Eric Thames.

When Thames walked and righty J.P. Arincibia was due up next, Valentine elected to stay with Thomas.

The result? A hard-hit single to center, which scored two runs and set up a third when Colby Rasmus followed with a sacrifice fly.

What had been a 3-1 game quickly got away from the Red Sox and became a 6-1 rout.

"I should have brought in [Matt] Albers there with the bases loaded,'' said Valentine. "It might have still been a 3-1 game if we get a ground ball there [for a double play]. Maybe we would have won that game.

"It was just a dumb move.''

CSNNE | Valentine blames himself for Red Sox loss

It's an admittedly fine line that you're looking for in honesty out of professional sports figures. On the one hand, we want them to own up to their mistakes. Think back to the whole chicken and beer scandal -- everyone was just looking for an apology, an admission of guilt. We routinely expect athletes to explain why they didn't make a shot, missed a tackle, or struck out.

The same is true for managers. We want them to own up when they're wrong. But when it becomes a refrain, it's pretty easy to wonder: Is this guy really all that good?

This is the second time Bobby V has blamed himself for bullpen woes. We're five games into the season. Now, on the one hand, I appeciate how candid he is. On the other...wasn't his bullpen mastery one of his big selling points? He was a motivator, a leader, and a bullpen guy. That's how he was billed. So why is he leaving the last man on the roster, and a lefty at that, in to face a strong right-handed hitter at a pivotal point in the game? 

It was a peculiar choice, and while the choice itself is troubling, Bobby's quick second-guessing of himself worries me a bit too. Has he just lost confidence in his time in the booth? And if he's not confident, how can he lead a group of guys out of a tailspin?

On page 2, an update on another guy who needs some confidence, Carl Crawford.

Outfielder Carl Crawford flew back to Boston to have his elbow checked for what manager Bobby Valentine described as "minor soreness." 

Valentine said following Tuesday night's loss to the Blue Jays that Crawford, who is recovering from offseason surgery on his left wrist, will refrain from throwing for about a week, but the condition will not keep him from taking his at-bats, probably as a DH, in extended spring training games. 

Valentine had said Crawford's appearance in those games was "imminent" last Saturday, but to date it has not occurred. 

ESPNBoston | Crawford has 'minor soreness' in elbow

It's good to hear Carl might not be far away from DHing. I don't really worry about his fielding, I'm sure that will come back quickly. I do worry about his timing at the plate. Let's get him as much work as possible in extended spring training. 

I still think Carl's going to be a big factor this year. Tremendously talented, and supposedly quite the leader. Hopefully last year's disappointment hasn't beaten the optimism out of him. He can come back, do some things at the plate, and help this team get going.

CSNNE | Sox take no offense at Blue Jays | Bard not great, but better than box score indicates | ESPNBoston | Sox lose again after Jays rough up Daniel Bard | Daniel Bard: Not bad for starters | Bard speaks bullpen's language | Globe | Bard is off to decent start | He did his level best but outing was uneven | Terry Francona wants no part in Fenway's celebration | Herald | Sox begin experiment | Mike Aviles ignores controversy, stays focused | Good for starters

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