In time of transition, Loney 'excited' to come to Sox

In time of transition, Loney 'excited' to come to Sox

In time of transition, Loney 'excited' to come to Sox
BOSTON -- James Loney's first day in professional baseball with an organization other than the Dodgers left him a little weary. The 28-year-old started at first base for the Red Sox on Sunday, in an afternoon game at Fenway Park against the Royals.

"I've been up a lot," Loney said in a five-minute news conference before the game. "I had a late flight last night, but I'm excited to be here."

Loney acknowledged that he was still in something of a state of shock after Los Angeles traded him Saturday in the blockbuster that sent Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford and Adrian Gonzalez to the West Coast. The Dodgers drafted him in the first round in 2002, and he's a free agent after this season, leaving him in a time of transition.

"That's all I've known," Loney said of the Dodgers. "But I'm also looking forward to this change -- I think it'll be great for me and my career. I'm looking forward to playing and winning in this city."

Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington on Saturday said he believed Loney's swing would play well at Fenway Park. Most parks other than Dodger Stadium would probably be a help to Loney, who entered the day hitting .254 with four home runs and a .302 on-base percentage. He's never had more than 15 home runs in a season.

"Not any particular reason," Loney said when asked about his low numbers this year. "Sometimes I think early on in the season may try too hard, timing gets a little off, that's probably what I could say to that."

Loney said Fenway was one of his favorite parks when he visited for Interleague Play. He has a locker next to Dustin Pedroia for now, and has played at various levels with Scott Podesdnik, Vicente Padilla, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Cody Ross.

Joked Loney of Pedroia: "I'll keep him loose, make sure he talks."

"I know they're always trying to build a championship team," said Loney of what he knew about the Red Sox. "It didn't work out last year, and I guess this year there was some things going on."