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Dustin Pedroia on John Farrell: ‘When he starts out by telling us that, your heart just stops’

08.14.15 at 5:23 pm ET
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Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia joined David Ortiz as the players present when John Farrell announced he has stage one lymphoma prior to the game Friday.

He described what it was like when Farrell told the team of what he’s going through.

“It’s obviously, a lot of the guys were shocked, upset,” Farrell said. “I mean, it’s our manager, the leader of our team. We’re family. We’re together so much. When he starts out by telling us that, your heart just stops. Obviously anybody in that room would do anything for John. We know he’s going to get through this, and we’ll all get through it together and do anything we can to help him out.

Farrell has been Pedroia’s manager for the last three years and Pedroia was on the club when Farrell was pitching coach from 2007-10.

“Yeah, the everyday grind of our game, you kind of have tunnel vision when it’s going on,” Pedroia said. “When the most important guy says something like that, it definitely takes away everything you’re thinking about and you focus on just him and getting better. That’€™s the one thing that guys were sitting around, we sat around there right after the meeting, just sitting there. You just care.

“We all care about each other. The voice of your team, the leader of your team says that, it hits you. We’ve got to get him better.”

Bench coach Torey Lovullo will take over as manager the rest of the season and Pedroia has confidence he will carry over Farrell’s leadership qualities.

“We love Torey. Same thing,” he said. “I think our organization does a great job of building, not just a coaching staff or people around us, but a family. Torey’s going to send the same message that John does, and that goes on down the line. It’s a chain of command. It’s one voice. I know wins and losses are not where we want to be, but that’€™s why this organization going forward is going to be back on top. We believe in each other and we send the right message from the top to the bottom.”

Pedroia discussed how Farrell is more than just a manager as he cares about his players off the field as well. He along with the rest of the players believe their manager will be able to fight off the disease.

“We love John,” he said. “We go through a lot together every day. He’s in it with us ‘€” the ups and downs, the everything. He’s a guy that, he just doesn’€™t deal with what’s going on in the field. He cares about your family, he cares about your kids, things going on at home. He’s managing 25 guys’ lives, not just baseball. He’s a pretty important part to each and every one of us’ everything.

“We need him to get better, and he will.”

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David Ortiz on Red Sox manager John Farrell being diagnosed with lymphoma: ‘We’re going to ride through this with him’

08.14.15 at 5:18 pm ET
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John Farrell has had the backs of 25 guys in the Red Sox clubhouse for three years, including this trying season. David Ortiz believes it’s now time to return the favor.

Ortiz said on Friday the clubhouse was in shock with the news that Farrell has been diagnosed with stage 1 lymphoma. And he also vowed the players’ support.

“I’ve been around John for a long time,” Ortiz said. “He first was a pitching coach, and the past couple of years he’s been our manager. John is an incredible human being. In our situation, you’ve got 25 men in the room, and he’s got to put up with each one of us, every situation. I think it’s time for us to give him back that support and that much love that he gives to all of us. We’re going to ride through this with him. We’re going to always ask God for a blessing, you know, and make sure he comes through this in the best way possible.”

As Farrell noted, Ortiz believes his manager got extremely lucky. Had he not undergone surgery to repair a hernia in Detroit earlier this week, doctors wouldn’t have found the cancer.

“In his case, one out of a million times, the cancer that he has, it gives you no sickness until it’s pretty much all over the place, from what I heard,” Ortiz said. “He got very, very lucky that he went to get that hernia taken care of and all of a sudden they find out about this.

“It’s not the news you want to hear about, but when it comes down to what it was and the way they found out, I think we should all be happy about it, because now he knows. Otherwise, if he doesn’t get that surgery, then the news would’ve been different. Like he said, he had no symptoms. There’s no way he can tell about that cancer without having that surgery. It seems to me like pretty much everything worked for the best in this case, and hopefully he gets through it. Like I said, we’re going to give him all the support like he gives to us, always.”

Ortiz said he heard the news from a crying Hanley Ramirez, who came to him in the training room.

“Pretty much all of us were in shock,” Ortiz said. “When they mention the word cancer, it’s something that doesn’t matter what it comes from, it’s going to impact you. We’re going to give John the support that we can give him so he can get through this and be back next year, back to normal.

“Hopefully everything goes well for him. We’ve got a big family around here and definitely when it comes down to health issues, you want to make sure that everything goes OK. The organization has taken a lot of responsibility on that, to make sure that John gets through it, the way it’s supposed to be.”

Read More: David Ortiz, John Farrell, John Farrell lymphoma, Red Sox

John Farrell has stage 1 lymphoma, ‘highly curable'; Torey Lovullo to manage rest of season

08.14.15 at 4:49 pm ET
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Prior to Friday’s game, Red Sox manager John Farrell announced he has stage 1 lymphoma. He had hernia surgery on Monday in Detroit and it was there that it revealed the cancer.

“It’s localized. It’s highly curable and I am extremely fortunate to be with not only people with the Red Sox, but access to MGH and all the world class talent that can handle this over at MGH,” Farrell said. “It’s been a surreal four or five days. I never had one symptom before the notification of it. No fatigue. No night sweats, loss of weight, obviously.”

“It’s been a shocker, but I take a step back and I am extremely, extremely fortunate to have caught this at this stage,” he added. “The mass was removed at the time of the hernia surgery.”

Farrell will begin chemotherapy early next week at Mass General Hospital and it is expected to last nine weeks.

The manager was emotional throughout the entire press conference, but paused and shed some tears when asked of the support from the players.

David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia were present along with general manager Ben Cherington and assistant general manager Mike Hazen when he made the announcement.

“In a way you live vicariously through their careers,” he said. “Yours is over. You try to help when you can with them and when they show that support …”

Torey Lovullo will manage the rest of the season. Farrell expects to be back with the team during spring training next spring.

“The thing that is going to suck is not being around in this capacity,” he said. “I know that there are other ways that I can stay actively involved and that will be a really needed diversion going through this.”

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Red Sox lineup: Jackie Bradley Jr. starts in LF, Rusney Castillo batting 5th

08.14.15 at 3:32 pm ET
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Jackie Bradley Jr.

Jackie Bradley Jr.

After a long road trip, the Red Sox return home for the first game of a 10-game homestand as they take on the Mariners in the first game of a weekend series Friday night.

Hanley Ramirez will miss his fifth straight game and Jackie Bradley Jr. will get the start in left field, while Rusney Castillo will play right field and bat fifth.

Ryan Hanigan will catch Red Sox starter Joe Kelly.

For an extensive look at the matchups, click here. For a series preview, click here.

Here is a complete Red Sox lineup:

Mookie Betts, CF
Brock Holt, 2B
Xander Bogaerts, SS
David Ortiz, DH
Rusney Castillo, RF
Pablo Sandoval, 3B
Travis Shaw, 1B
Ryan Hanigan, C
Jackie Bradley, LF
Joe Kelly, RHP

Read More: jackie bradley jr., Rusney Castillo,

Hanley Ramirez: ‘Way too far ahead to be thinking about’ playing first base

08.14.15 at 12:22 pm ET
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The Red Sox have a lot to figure out by Opening Day 2016. While the team fields auditions from young players over the remainder of the season, one of the biggest holes to fill is on the right side of the infield at first base.

The Hanley Ramirez experiment in left field has been unsuccessful, and Ramirez remains unsure about potentially moving to first base.

“I don’t know about that yet. I don’t know about first base,” Ramirez said after Wednesday’s loss to the Marlins. “I’m an employee here and I just want to win. I came here to win. I’m not saying I’m not playing there, and I’m not saying I’m playing there. It’s just way too far ahead to be thinking about that. This season isn’t over yet.”

According to WEEI.com’s Rob Bradford, the Red Sox have at least internally discussed playing either Ramirez or Pablo Sandoval at first. They have not approached either of them about the possibility.

Other options for the Sox, according to Bradford, include trading for a first baseman or starting Travis Shaw, who has performed well since being called up to the Red Sox. The team could also explore the possibility of moving catcher Blake Swihart to first once catcher Christian Vazquez returns from Tommy John surgery.

Read More: hanley ramirez, Pablo Sandoval,

Red Sox-Mariners series preview

08.14.15 at 11:40 am ET
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Nelson Cruz (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

Free agent signee Nelson Cruz has been a hit for the Mariners, but the team has underperformed this season. (Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

In a clash of two teams disappointingly not in playoff contention, the Red Sox will take on the Mariners this weekend at Fenway.

The Sox remain in the cellar of the American League East and the entire AL, owning a 50-64 record and .439 win percentage. The Blue Jays are winners of 11 straight and are new division leaders, sitting 13 games ahead of the Sox.

The Red Sox have been better while playing in the friendly confines of Fenway, where the team owns a more mediocre 27-28 record. On the season in full, the Sox have a minus-75 run differential, which is the worst in the AL and third worst in all of baseball.

The Red Sox are not the only team to yield disappointing on-field results this season. The signing of slugger Nelson Cruz (among other offseason moves) looked to put the Mariners in a position to contend. Instead, the tea M’s have fallen flat in a manner not unlike the team on Yawkey Way.

Seattle has a 54-61 record, placing it fourth in the AL West. The Mariners are eight games behind the division-leading Astros and have won seven of their last 10 contests, including a Hisashi Iwakuma no-hitter on Wednesday.

Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon was cautiously optimistic about the team’s momentum and the rest of the Mariners’ season after Iwakuma’s no-no.

“If you look at this club since the All-Star Break we’re playing real good baseball,” McClendon said. “Probably should have won three out of four in Minnesota. Took the series in Colorado and we won our last three series in a row. So we’re starting to pick it up. This type of game only helps.”

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Read More: David Ortiz, Nelson Cruz,

Friday Red Sox Farm Report: Justin Haley tosses gem for Portland; Andrew Benintendi triples, has 7-game hit streak

08.14.15 at 10:08 am ET
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A look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Thursday:

Quintin Berry

Quintin Berry

TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX (44-75): L, 3-2, at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (Yankees)

— RHP Shawn Haviland pitched into the eighth inning in his second Pawtucket start since being acquired by Boston earlier this month, but he took the loss with a final line of: 7 1/3 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 3 SO (104 pitches, 66 strikes). Haviland (4-7, 4.32 ERA) allowed two runs in the first on three singles but recovered to pitch six scoreless innings as he scattered just a hit, two walks and a hit batsman over his next 20 batters faced. However, in a 2-2 game in the eighth, Haviland allowed back-to-back singles and was removed for RHP Noe Ramirez, who allowed the go-ahead RBI single with Haviland’€™s inherited runner scoring.

A Harvard graduate, the 29-year-old Haviland was acquired by Boston earlier this month in a trade with Colorado for cash considerations after making 19 appearances (13 starts) with Triple-A Charlotte and compiling a 4-5 record with a 4.19 ERA over 77 1/3 innings. In his first start with the PawSox, the 6-foot-2 Haviland allowed four earned runs over five innings, walking two and striking out two.

— The Pawtucket offense had nine hits, all singles, and finished 1-for-8 with runners in scoring position. Pawtucket tied the game 2-2 in the third inning on an RBI ground out from third baseman Carlos Rivero, scoring first baseman Matt Spring, and an RBI single from catcher Sandy Leon, scoring shortstop Deven Marrero (Boston’€™s No. 10 prospect at MLB.com).

Rivero, 27, finished 2-for-5 in his third game with Pawtucket since being reacquired by Boston from Seattle for cash considerations. He also struck out to end the game with the potential tying run on second base in the top of the ninth.

Center fielder Quintin Berry also had two hits, going 2-for-4 with a successful sacrifice bunt to improve to 4-for-12 over his last three games, and DH Marco Hernandez (Boston’€™s No. 23 prospect at MLB.com) went 2-for-4 but struck out to end the third inning with the bases loaded.

— Pawtucket has lost 11 games in a row, two shy of a club record set in 1985. The PawSox also have dropped 14 of 16, and 22 of 26 overall, with a 6-36 mark since June 29.

— Reliever Jorge Marban was promoted to Pawtucket from Double-A Portland. The 26-year-old Marban made 24 appearances with the Sea Dogs, going 2-1 with a 1.36 ERA in 33 innings of work, with 26 strikeouts and 22 walks.

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Read More: Andrew Benintendi, Andy Perez, daniel mcgrath, Justin Haley

Friday’s Red Sox-Mariners matchups: Joe Kelly vs. Mike Montgomery

08.14.15 at 8:19 am ET
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Joe Kelly

Joe Kelly

On the heels of two losses to the Marlins, the Red Sox will return to Fenway Park on Friday evening to face the Mariners. Joe Kelly will get the ball for the Sox while Mike Montgomery pitches for Seattle.

Last time out on Aug. 7 against the Tigers, Kelly turned in a strong start in which he gave up just two earned runs on seven hits with as many strikeouts and two walks. Those 5 1/3 innings of work earned him the win, his second consecutive victory, though the prior outing on Aug. 1 wasn’t quite as strong as he allowed five earned runs in five full. In Detroit, Kelly was able to deliver with some help from his defense, improving his season record to 4-6 and his ERA to 5.96.

“I had a good mix of pitches going on early,” he said last Friday. “Trying to keep the hitters off balance … from the get-go. Trying not to let hitters attack us, really. Just a solid mix of offspeed. But honestly, we had great plays made out there. Jackie Bradley, obviously one of the best center fielders in the game. Brock [Holt] made a good play. I think that was just part of just trying to throw strikes and get ahead of guys, and let those guys work out there, especially with the big field.”

Kelly has just two starts against the Mariners in his career, one this year and one last year. In 11 1/3 innings, the righty has conceded just one earned run on six hits for a 0.79 ERA with seven strikeouts and a half-dozen walks. His WHIP vs. Seattle is 1.05 and he holds M’s batters to a .154/.283/.154 slash line. His appearance against the Mariners this year, a road endeavor, was 6 1/3 innings long back on May 14 and yielded one earned run on five hits with three walks and two K’s. The Sox ended up winning that game 2-1 on a ninth-inning solo home run by Shane Victorino, but Kelly did not factor in the decision.

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Read More: Joe Kelly, Mike Montgomery,

Red Sox Minor League Notebook: 2014 first-rounder Michael Chavis turning season around with new plate approach

08.13.15 at 1:04 pm ET
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2014 first-round pick Michael Chavis is having a much better second half. (Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

2014 first-round pick Michael Chavis is having a much better second half. (Rich Schultz/Getty Images)

It’s been an up-and-down first full season in the Red Sox organization for 2014 first-round pick Michael Chavis with Single-A Greenville.

On July 4, his average dipped blow .200 for the year to .197, but the past month or so Chavis has turned things around.

The third baseman’s average is up to .228, but has performed well of late — batting .282 with two home runs and nine RBIs in nine games in the month of August. This after batting .250 in July.

Chavis says the biggest difference is a more relaxed approach at the plate.

“I’ve stopped pressing and trying to do too much and I am just having fun, relaxing and letting my talent take over instead of trying to do so much at the plate and prove to everybody why I’m here,” Chavis said on the WEEI Farm Report Podcast this week. “I’m having fun and playing the game that I love.”

Another change for Chavis has been a shift up in the order. He’s now batting second, which is something he’s never done, but something he’s enjoyed doing and has helped him perform better.

“I’ve never hit in the No. 2 hole before but now that I have gotten used to it, I like it,” he said. “I like being up in the first inning and having something to expect on defense knowing I will be one of the first batters up and it’s just fun. I like being higher up in the lineup. It’s more interesting, more at-bats. I usually get four or five at-bats a game and I like that.”

Chavis was taken No. 26 overall by the Red Sox in last year’s draft out of Sprayberry High School in Marietta, Georgia. He just turned 20 years old this week and did admit there was some pressure with being such a high pick and playing with a number of talented players in Greenville.

After maybe putting too much pressure on himself earlier in the season, he’s more relaxed now and it’s paying off.

“It’s a lot easier said than done. Earlier in the year I was trying to do that a lot and it’s not something that just clicks,” Chavis said. “I started making some better at-bats towards the end of the first half and then the second half they moved me up to the No. 2 hole and it just clicked one day. I figured it out and I am starting to feel a lot better at the plate.”

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Read More: michael chavis, Red Sox Minor League Notebook, yoan moncada,

Thursday Red Sox Farm Report: 17-year-old Anderson Espinoza continues to sizzle in Gulf Coast League

08.13.15 at 8:56 am ET
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A look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Wednesday:

Edwin Escobar

Edwin Escobar

TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX (44-74): L, 4-3 in 12 innings, at Scranton/Wilkes-Barre (Yankees)

— LHP Edwin Escobar (Boston’€™s No. 26 prospect at MLB.com) made his second start of the year for the PawSox, finishing with a no-decision final line of: 5 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 2 SO (82 pitches, 49 strikes). Escobar, 23, did not allow a run through five innings, scattering two singles and walking two, before surrendering a single to lead off the sixth. The runner would come home to score on a double allowed by RHP Jonathan Aro.

In 15 appearances this season, Escobar is 0-2 with a 6.51 ERA over 27 2/3 innings, with 16 strikeouts and 14 walks. Acquired by Boston from San Francisco in July of 2014 along with RHP Heath Hembree in exchange for RHP Jake Peavy, Escobar made 25 starts last year between Pawtucket and Triple-A Fresno, going 3-10 with a 4.94 ERA, with 45 walks and 116 strikeouts in 138 1/3 innings.

— Right fielder Quintin Berry homered for the second straight game, a two-run shot in the first inning to give the PawSox a 2-0 lead. Berry, 30, finished 1-for-4 with a walk and now has three homers on the season, after going 81 games between long-balls from April 18 to August 11.

— First baseman Allen Craig doubled in the sixth and came home to score on a sacrifice fly from Humberto Quintero, giving Pawtucket a 3-0 lead. Craig finished 2-for-5 and put his slash line at .266/.366/.332 with three homers and nine doubles through 75 games this season in Triple-A.

— RHP Pat Light (Boston’€™s No. 22 prospect at MLB.com) pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings of relief, walking three, while also allowing two hits. Light allowed a double and walked two to load the bases in the bottom of the ninth, but escaped on a ground out back to the mound. Light stayed on for the 10th inning and induced two more ground outs, one for a double play after a leadoff walk.

— Hembree also escaped a bases-loaded jam, escaping the 11th after two walks and a single, but eventually took the loss (0-5, 2.32 ERA) as he allowed a walkoff single in the bottom of the 12th. In 31 innings this year in Triple-A, Hembree has struck out 31, with opposing batters hitting just .211 against him. However, Hembree has now allowed runs in three straight appearances.

— Pawtucket has now lost 10 games in a row, three shy of a club record set in 1985. The PawSox have also dropped 13 of 15, and 21 of 25 overall, with a 6-35 mark since June 29.

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Read More: aaron wilkerson, Allen Craig, anderson espinoza, edwin escobar
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