|09.02.15 at 2:19 pm ET|
As the Red Sox have begun to expose their outfielders to other outfield spots with Rusney Castillo debuting in left field Wednesday, Mookie Betts could be the next to play either left or right field.
“That will be the next part of this and Mookie’s been working hard in left and right,” interim manager Torey Lovullo said. “Once again Arnie [Beyeler] will sign off on that when he thinks the timing is right. Also get something from Mookie to make sure he’s comfortable and ready. There all very athletic guys. They are all very gifted with their movements in any direction. We feel it’s going to be a lot sooner than later.”
As for Castillo, he’s been working with outfield coach Arnie Beyeler for almost two weeks and he and Castillo felt the timing was right.
“Arnie has been with him since the middle of last homestand and Arnie signed off on it,” Lovullo said. “We decided that he was going to be the lead dog in the situation. Get some feedback from Rusney and mentally see what he’s doing and also verbally see where he’s at. Everything checked out. Rusney was ready for that challenge and we thought the timing was right today.”
— With Matt Barnes (elbow) and Steven Wright (concussion) unable to pitch, the Red Sox haven’t been able to go to a six-man rotation like they had hoped. With the off day Thursday they will keep their starters in line over the weekend and not skip anyone.
Discussions are taking place of how they can get a six-man rotation, as they monitor Henry Owens and Eduardo Rodriguez’s innings.
“We’re talking about that right now,” Lovullo said. “We’re trying to figure out if there is another candidate. We’re trying to see if those two guys can’t go then maybe there’s a bullpen day. We’re throwing a lot of different options at one another. Obviously the two candidates are [Barnes] and Steven [Wright]. We’ll see where they’re at.”
With the team having only one Thursday game in the month of September there were off days built in, but even with those Lovullo and the team want to have a six-man rotation.
“We were aware of those day off, but we wanted to also throw in that sixth guy despite those days to give them a little bit more time in between and monitor the workload,” Lovullo said. “We were aware of that. We built those in and still decided to try the six-man thought. Obviously we’re trying to find the right candidate right now.”
|09.02.15 at 12:37 pm ET|
On Tuesday interim manager Torey Lovullo said the younger Red Sox outfielders could see time at other spots in the outfield other than their accustomed ones and that will begin Wednesday with Rusney Castillo debuting in left field.
The Yankees and Red Sox each have a chance to take the series, as both have picked up wins in the first two games.
Jackie Bradley Jr. will play right field, while Mookie Betts will stay in center field as the Red Sox go up against right-hander Masahiro Tanaka.
Blake Swihart will catch Red Sox starter Henry Owens.
For an extensive look at the matchups, click here.
Here is a complete Red Sox lineup:
Mookie Betts, CF
Pablo Sandoval, 3B
Xander Bogaerts, SS
David Ortiz, DH
Travis Shaw, 1B
Rusney Castillo, LF
Brock Holt, 2B
Blake Swihart, C
Jackie Bradley Jr., RF
Henry Owens, LHP
|09.02.15 at 10:01 am ET|
A look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Tuesday:
TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX (55-83): W, 10-2, vs. Lehigh Valley (Phillies)
— The PawSox tied a season-high with eight extra-base hits. Left fielder Chris Marrero had three of them, going 3-for-5 with a solo home run and two doubles. Marrero is hitting .270 on the season with seven home runs and has homered in three of his last five games.
— Second baseman Marco Hernandez and first baseman Garin Cecchini also posted three-hit games for the PawSox. Hernandez finished the day 3-for-5 with a triple, three RBIs and a run scored. Cecchini went 3-for-5 with a solo home run and two RBIs.
— Shortstop Deven Marrero went 2-for-4 with a double, two RBIs and two runs scored. Catcher Luis Martinez went 2-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored.
— Left-hander Rich Hill earned the win with a seven-inning performance. He allowed both Lehigh Valley runs on solo home runs but gave up just two additional hits and two walks and struck out a season-high nine batters. Hill improved to 5-3 on the season with a 2.06 ERA. He has posted a 3-1 record in four starts since joining the PawSox and has a 1.37 ERA in those four outings.
— Right-hander Dayan Diaz relieved Hill in the eighth and pitched a perfect frame. Righty Pat Light tossed a perfect ninth to close out the win.
|09.02.15 at 8:31 am ET|
The Red Sox and Yankees will wrap up their three-game set Wednesday afternoon when rookie Henry Owens toes the rubber against Masahiro Tanaka.
Owens has lived up to his billing through five big league starts. Projected as a solid middle-of-the-rotation arm to potential No. 2, he’s gone 2-1 with a 4.03 ERA and a 1.31 WHIP.
Over his last couple of outings, Owens has settled in to his spot on the big league staff. In his last 13 innings, he’s given up just nine hits and two earned runs while striking out 10. Those numbers are good enough for a 1.38 ERA and a .191/.269/.298 opponent slash line. After Owens beat Johnny Cueto and the Royals with an eight-inning, two-run performance, interim manager Torey Lovullo lauded the left-hander’s chemistry with fellow rookie Blake Swihart.
“Quality outing for Henry,” Lovullo said. “What’s there not to say about what he did? Eight innings, one earned run, got into a great rhythm. Him and Blake were solid together. A two-pitch, at times three-pitch mix. It just seemed to really all click for him. He got into a great flow and a great rhythm. We wanted him to touch the eighth inning, those were some of the conversations we were having in the dugout, but he was so efficient that he worked through the eighth inning. That was a special night for him.”
Against the Mets last Friday, Owens was ineffective but successful. In five innings of work he scattered five hits and four walks that produced just two New York runs. He did, however, strike out six and draw 15 swinging strikes, his second most during his limited time in the majors.
|09.01.15 at 11:21 pm ET|
Since coming off the disabled list Aug. 26 after missing about a month with a right triceps injury, Rick Porcello has been a different pitcher.
In the 15 innings he’s pitched over the two games, he’s allowed just one earned run. Despite taking the loss in the Red Sox‘ 3-1 defeat to the Yankees Tuesday night, he may have pitched his best game of the year.
The right-hander went eight innings and allowed three runs (one earned) on five hits while walking a batter and striking out a career-high 13. He became the only pitcher in last 100 years with at least 13 strikeouts and one earned run or fewer allowed while taking a loss against the Yankees.
“Yeah, I think this year it’s definitely been the most consistent stuff that I’ve had,” Porcello said. “We were moving the ball around well. Blake [Swihart] called a great game back there. He was on the same page as me the entire night and we were able to execute pitches.”
Of Porcello’s 13 strikeouts, nine were looking, a sign he was on top of his game. His sinker was working well, which has been a main reason for his success over the last two starts.
“I’m basically forcing myself to throw it. That was kind of the commitment after I came off the DL — I’m going to throw my sinker and find it,” Porcello said. “If I get beat with that pitch, then so what? In order for me to have some success over here in the long run, I’ve got to find that pitch. I just took the pressure off and said, ‘Screw it, I’m throwing it.'”
The difference in the game came in the fifth inning. With the Red Sox leading 1-0, two outs and a runner on first, first baseman Travis Shaw couldn’t handle a routine Didi Gregorius grounder, as it went into right field setting up second and third with two outs.
Former Red Sox Stephen Drew made Shaw and the Red Sox pay as he lined a double into the left-center field gap scoring two runs and proving to be the difference in the game.
“That’s 100 percent on me,” Porcello said. “It was just a poorly executed pitch.”
|09.01.15 at 9:53 pm ET|
With the Red Sox leading 1-0, two outs and a runner on first in the fifth, first baseman Travis Shaw couldn’t handle a routine Didi Gregorius grounder, and it went into right field, setting up second and third with two outs.
Brett Gardner hit a solo homer in the eighth off Porcello for the third Yankees run.
Despite taking the loss, Porcello delivered his second straight great start. The right-hander went eight innings, allowing three runs (one earned) on five hits, while walking a batter and striking out 13. The 13 strikeouts were good for his fourth career double-digit strikeout game and a career-high. Since coming off the disabled list, he’s allowed one earned run in 15 innings.
“Overall, he’s been great since he’s returned,” interim manager Torey Lovullo said. “He’s throwing his fastball to both sides of the plate. From where I was in the dugout you could see it had angle. I know there were a number of called strikeouts, and that just shows you how locked in he is. He’s hitting spots with a little bit of movement and deception.”
|09.01.15 at 9:26 pm ET|
Hanley Ramirez‘s days as an outfielder are over.
“I do not,” Lovullo said.
The plan, Lovullo said, is for outfielders Jackie Bradley, Mookie Betts, and Rusney Castillo to cycle through each spot in an effort to determine where each should play next season. And once they pick a spot, they’ll stay there.
That leaves no room in the outfield for Ramirez, which is just as well, since he has not played well there. Of course, there’s no guarantee he’ll be able to play first base, either. He’s trying to learn that position now.
With Ramirez recovering from injuries to both shoulders and his hand, he’s in a holding pattern. But Lovullo does expect him to play first in the big leagues before the season is over.
“I am hopeful that he will,” Lovullo said. “I feel like what I’ve seen him do defensively in his work, I feel like there’s a chance he could play first base before the year is over. Now, is that a lock? His health will determine that.”
Lovullo said Ramirez hasn’t faced live pitching in about a week, and there’s no timetable for his return.
“He’s a tough guy,” Lovullo said. “He’s a strong-bodied, tough guy and he knows his body and I think he’s very well aware of what bothers him through the course of a swing. Some players will just go up there and swing hard and they don’t know what they’re feeling. Hanley can analyze himself pretty well physically. If he’s complaining about that, I think it’s lingering. Is it hindering him? I haven’t had that type of a conversation with him.”
|09.01.15 at 5:48 pm ET|
Six members of the Red Sox have been assigned to the Arizona Fall League. They are as follows: first baseman Sam Travis, second baseman Carlos Asuaje, shortstop Tzu-Wei Lin and pitchers Chandler Shepherd, Kyle Martin, and Aaron Wilkerson.
They will likely get another infielder and pitcher added before the league begins Oct. 13.
Travis has been very impressive this season, which includes being promoted from High-A Salem to Double-A Portland. Between the two teams the Red Sox’ second-round pick in last year’s draft out of Indiana University has hit .304 with nine home runs and 75 RBIs.
Wilkerson is the other name that stands out, as the right-hander is 26 years old and currently with Double-A Portland. He’s pitched for Greenville, Salem and Portland this year, both as a starter and a reliever. Between the three teams he’s 10-3 with a 3.22 ERA. At age 26, he’s not like other prospects where they can be patient, as the peak of his career is nearing.
For more Red Sox news, visit weei.com/redsox.
|09.01.15 at 5:32 pm ET|
With the news that Hanley Ramirez won’t play the outfield again in 2015, it opens the door for the younger Red Sox outfielders to get exposure at other outfield positions as the team looks to find the best alignment possible for 2016.
Mookie Betts has just played center field, so he will get some work at left and right field. Rusney Castillo has played center and right field so he will get some work in left field, while Jackie Bradley Jr. has already played all three.
After sitting down with all three, it was determined the work will take place pregame until outfield coach Arnie Beyeler feels they are ready for game action.
“We’re going to mix and match those moving parts and until that time where we put them in the game they need to get out there with Arnie to get some work done,” interim manager Torey Lovullo said. “So you’re going to see Mookie getting some reps in left and right in pregame. You’re going to see Rusney gets some reps in left field. Jackie obviously is very good at all three so we’re going to wait for the go sign from Arnie that he feels comfortable with these guys moved in game situations into different positions.
“We’re going to explore that. We haven’t yet clearly defined who is playing where, but once we make that decision we’re going to leave those guys there. We’re not going to mix and match for their entire career. We’re going to try and piece together the best outfield for the Boston Red Sox in 2016.”
While the experimenting will take place during the final month of the year, a final determination on those players’ positions likely won’t come until next spring.
“I think what we’re going to do is we’re going to get a look, put it in our minds, let us see what it looks like to make those conversations go in a good direction,” Lovullo said. “Then you’ll see a little bit more of it in spring training. That’s the initial thought — see a little but more of it in spring training and then once we get moving towards April of 2016 we’re going to try and have that firm up and have it stay put.”
As for if this move means the three players won’t be traded this offeason, Lovullo said that decision is above him.
“That is not in my department,” he said. “I do know I love those three kids out there. I feel very comfortable when they are in the outfield playing the way they are now. That’s above my level determining of they available for a trade or not.”
OTHER RED SOX NOTES
|09.01.15 at 10:48 am ET|
Red Sox prospect Yoan Moncada is capping a tremendous second half of the season for Single-A Greenville and with his performance he’s been named to the South Atlantic League All-Star team and was also selected as the league’s Most Outstanding MLB prospect.
“In this, his first year in professional baseball, Yoan has had an outstanding debut with us here in Greenville and is very much deserving of this recognition as one of the South Atlantic League’s best players,” said Drive manager Darren Fenster via a press release.
“For him to join our organization under such a big spotlight and to perform at the level that he has over the course of the season is a testament to his work ethic and desire to become a Major Leaguer. We are very proud of the success Yoan has enjoyed this season, and couldn’t be more excited to watch his continued development over the course of his career, as this is only the beginning for him.”
In 73 games through Monday, Moncada has 45 stolen bases, good for third in the South Atlantic League. He has also posted a .291 average with 59 runs, 80 hits, eight homers, 36 RBI, 37 walks and a .391 on-base percentage. In 48 games out of the leadoff spot, he’s swiped 41 bases in 44 tries and boasts a .335 average with seven home runs.
For more Red Sox news, visit weei.com/redsox.
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