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Papi issues warning to Joba

Sox DH hopes he has seen last of Yankee throwing at Youk

A subplot in recent Red Sox-Yankees meetings has been pitches from Yankees right-hander Joba Chamberlain buzzing near Red Sox slugger Kevin Youkilis' head on more than one occasion.

David Ortiz hopes he's seen the end of that chapter as a new year dawns on the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry.

"None of that, man -- just play the game the way it's supposed to be, and that's about it," the Red Sox DH told reporters this week. "This is a guy [Chamberlain], as good as he is, the next step for him will be to earn respect from everybody in the league. He's not a bad guy, but when things like that happen, people get the wrong idea."

Chamberlain will be making the start tonight in the opener of the first three-game series between the two teams this season, matched with left-hander Jon Lester. Youkilis is expected to be in his customary spot at first base and cleanup in the batting order, behind Ortiz.

Last July 25, for the fourth time in the span of a year, Chamberlain went up and in with velocity on Youkilis, sending him sprawling to the dirt. After glares were exchanged, both benches were warned by home plate umpire Marty Foster. Youkilis did not speak to reporters after that game, but Chamberlain did.

"Nobody wants the ball right there," Chamberlain said that day. "Nobody wants the ball in at 90 [mph], whatever it was. But at the end of the day, it's 1-0, and I'm trying to get a win and it's what you have to do. It's a 2-0 count and the game's 1-0, you think I want to lose the lead and put the lead runner on with those guys behind him? No shot."

In August 2007 at Yankee Stadium, Chamberlain threw back-to-back pitches that went behind Youkilis, and was suspended for two games for it.

John Schlegel is a national reporter for
Read More: Boston Red Sox, Josh Beckett, Joba Chamberlain, David Ortiz