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Sports

Red Sox dismiss report about attendance at Johnny Pesky’s funeral

Red Sox president and CEO Larry Lucchino said Thursday it was “unnecessary” to focus on how many players showed up for the Johnny Pesky’s funeral after a report suggested only four players attended.

Among the players in attendance at the Swampscott funeral on Monday were David Ortiz, Clay Buchholz, Vicente Padilla, and Jarrod Saltalamacchia.

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“There was a tremendous turnout at the Johnny Pesky’s funeral,” Lucchino told listeners on WEEI’s Dennis & Callahan show. “We had over a 100 people there in terms of ownership, front office, current players, staff, former players. It was a very impressive turnout. I think the people who knew Johnny best had came to it.

“Our players will have had a chance on Tuesday night to participate in a ceremony on the field -- they all willingly and enthusiastically participated on that date -- and then there’s going to be another memorial service. So I think it’s unnecessary to focus on that issue.”

The Boston Herald’s Inside Track reported the the team rented buses for the players and staff to attend the funeral, but there was still a paltry turnout.

“We ordered the buses for the front office to go, knowing that any players could join us or drive separately from their homes,” Sox spokesman Charles Steinberg told the Herald. “Between the ownership, front office, current players and staff, and former players, we were well represented by the people who knew Johnny best.”

Many Red Sox players turned out for Josh Beckett’s charitable Beckett Bowl later Monday night at Jillian’s/Lucky Strikes Lanes.

“Remember, our players got in at about 4 in the morning” that day, Lucchino said. “[The buses] were designed primarily for the front office ... The buses were pretty full, entirely full.”

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