The source told ESPN Boston that several players were thought to have gotten out of shape as the Red Sox plummeted out of the American League Wild Card lead during the final month of the season, an opinion then-general manager Theo Epstein acknowledge after the season.
"I can't sit here and say those standards have been met across the board," Epstein said. "I'm not going to lump everyone in together, but I'll say there are certain instances where we can and have to do better it will be addressed."
Both David Ortiz and former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling have come out in defense of the job Page did this past month.
"[Page] is dedicated to his job and he's down to whatever it takes to get you going," Ortiz said in early October. "That's the kind of person you need to have around. He's always there ready for us. He's always there telling you what to do and making sure you get your work in. After that he's not a babysitter.
"It's your job to know what's good for you to be able to compete," added Ortiz. "You get paid, not only to throw the damn ball, to catch it or to hit it, you get paid to make sure your body is in good condition to play the game. If you don't know that, you're wrong, bro. That's your weapon, your secret weapon. You can't wait for them to come and tell you that you have to be in shape to play baseball."
"That team has the most committed, passionate, educated, smart strength and conditioning coach I've ever met," Schilling said last month. "I thought the team came out of spring training -- I don't want to say in bad shape, but they weren't ready to play. The strength and conditioning coach, Dave Page, is a guy who will spend 25 hours in his day doing whatever he can do to make players better. You can't make guys do stuff they don't want to do.
"These guys are 100 percent responsible for their own actions and performance, and they refuse to man up to that."