LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — New Red Sox catcher A.J. Pierzynski has hit 172 home runs over his 16 seasons in the major leagues, several at ballparks that have since been torn down.
But in 121 plate appearances at Fenway Park, Pierzynski has yet to go deep. He has played 32 games at Fenway, the first in 1999 and the most recent just last season. But that darn ball hasn’t gone over the fence.
“It bothers me,” Pierzynski said. “It’s the only park I haven’t hit one in. I haven’t figured out a way to sneak one around the pole down there in right field.
“I’ve hit a few off the wall in left. But every time I seem to hit one to right, for some reason, they either catch it or it bounces. One of these days I’m going to run into one there and I’m going to have to probably get the ball.”
Pierzynski is a career .322 hitter at Fenway with 12 doubles. He actually likes hitting there.
“It’s always been a good place to hit,” he said. “It always has a good feel as a batter. It always feels like you can reach out and touch left field. It’s a good feeling when you know you can get beat and still get a hit.
“It’s a good park and I’ve always loved playing there because of the energy. There’s always a good energy. It’s one of the special places in baseball.”
Pierzynski, who lives in Orlando, stopped by the Winter Meetings to have lunch with White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf. He played eight years in Chicago, helping the White Sox win the 2005 World Series, and the two remain close.
“I was trying to go unnoticed. But it didn’t go so well,” he said while standing in front of a semicircle of reporters from Boston.Peter Abraham can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @PeteAbe.