ST. PETERSBURG -- The Red Sox beefed up their security for this three-game series at Tropicana Field against the Rays and the reason has nothing to do with the on-field hostilities that occurred between the two teams at Fenway Park in early June.
According to the Boston Herald, the Red Sox received a mailed threat which targeted black and Latino players. The newspaper reported that the threat was postmarked Memphis, Tenn., and that the suspect might be from Baltimore.
However, Red Sox director of security and emergency services, Charles Cellucci, was in the clubhouse and on the field before the game. Another high-ranking club security official was with him.
The Red Sox had no official comment on the matter during or after Monday's game against the Rays.
"I will not discuss that," said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. "Out of respect to everybody concerned, I will not discuss that. It's just not something we can discuss."
Designated hitter David Ortiz said that nobody had sent him a letter.
"You mean somebody wants to hurt Papi? If you hurt Papi, the world is against you," quipped Ortiz, who then turned serious.
"I don't know, man," Ortiz continued. "There's some people out there that have nothing to do and they like to send letters to guys like Manny [Ramirez] or myself. I guess it's part of what we are and what we do. I don't think there will be anything crazy coming out of it."
Ramirez didn't have much to say about the situation.
"I'm here to play baseball," Ramirez said.
Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.