David Price won 17 games, reached a career high in starts and contributed 230 innings in his first season with the Red Sox. But he also finished with an ERA a tick under 4.00 and failed once again to win a postseason start.
The latter remains a huge criticism of Price, who is 0-8 with a 5.74 ERA in nine career postseason starts.
"I need to get (the monkey) off my back,'' acknowledged Price as Red Sox players cleaned out their locker Tuesday, a day after having their playoff run ended in three quick games by the Cleveland Indians. "And until I do, it's going to be a topic of conversation and I'm fully aware of that. If you don't like it, pitch better. It hasn't happened yet and I definitely wanted it to happen this year and get that off my back. That wasn't the case, but I look forward to doing in 2017.''
Price understands the challenges of playing in Boston, especially when you are making $31 million per season and own the biggest contract in franchise history.
But he's confident the tide will change for him.
"I know everyone thinks we should still be playing right now,'' said Price, "but that's not the way it happened. I'll be prepared for 2017. I want to make these fans love me and I've got six more years to do it. I'm excited about it.''