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Photos: David Ortiz Weekend at Fenway Park

10.02.16 at 4:44 pm ET
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David Ortiz played his final regular-season series at Fenway Park this weekend, and the Red Sox, fans and all kinds of special guests honored him over the course of three days. Check out some photos from the weekend here.

David Ortiz, with his father by his side, thanked Red Sox fans on Sunday. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today)

David Ortiz, with his father by his side, thanked Red Sox fans on Sunday. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today)

MLB gave Red Sox opportunity to reverse Drew Pomeranz trade with Padres

10.02.16 at 3:39 pm ET
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Drew Pomeranz

Drew Pomeranz

The Red Sox declined an opportunity to rescind the trade that sent left-hander Drew Pomeranz to the Padres for top prospect Anderson Espinoza, commissioner Rob Manfred said on Sunday.

Speaking at Fenway Park before the David Ortiz retirement ceremonies, Manfred said the Red Sox were given the chance to nix the deal over the Padres’ failure to disclose Pomeranz’s full medical history. The Red Sox declined, he said, because doing so after the trade deadline would’ve left them no way to fill a starting pitching void.

“We offered early on the opportunity to seek rescission in the trade and for good baseball reasons, the biggest one being we were past the trading deadline, they elected not to seek rescission,” Manfred said.

Padres general manager A.J. Preller ended up being suspended for 30 days over the deceptive practice of maintaining two separate injury databases — one for view by other clubs in potential trade discussions, and a more detailed one for the team’s use.

In the case of Pomeranz, the Padres reportedly hid the use of anti-inflammatories to treat a sore elbow. Pomeranz was recently removed from the Red Sox rotation because of a forearm injury, leaving his postseason status as a reliever in doubt. He went 3-5 with a 4.68 ERA in 13 starts with the Red Sox.

The Padres had two issues at the trade deadline. They sent right-hander Colin Rea to the Marlins, but had to take him back after he left his first Miami start with an elbow injury.

“For a very, very long time, there has been a rule in baseball that if something happens in terms of lack of complete information or disclosure with respect to the trade that the remedy is to rescind the trade,” Manfred said. “And you saw that baseball rule operate. Unfortunately, again with the Padres, and again with their trade with the Marlins.”

That leaves one question unanswered: Could the Red Sox have sought some other relief for the trade beyond simply undoing it? Manfred said no. Their only option was taking back Espinoza, a talented young right-hander who went 1-3 with a 4.73 ERA in seven starts at Class-A after the deal.

“Once that happens the rule in baseball has always been that we do not reconfigure trades,” he said. “And why is that? Every institution, even the Commissioner’s office, as fond of I am of the institution, has limitations. And to figure out once the player has moved, begun playing for another franchise — his physical situation may evolve. Figuring out exactly what happened when is extraordinarily difficult, if not impossible. And even if we can figure that out, we are not institutionally capable of deciding who would have traded what for what. Even in retrospect. It’s just something that the institution can’t do. That’s why we have the rescission in the first place.”

Read More: A.J. Preller, anderson espinoza, Drew Pomeranz, Padres

Red Sox announce David Ortiz’s number will be retired in 2017

10.02.16 at 2:47 pm ET
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Leo Ortiz joins his son, David, in celebrating the slugger's final regular season game. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)

Leo Ortiz joins his son, David, in celebrating the slugger’s final regular season game. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)

As part of ceremony honoring David Ortiz prior to Sunday’s regular season finale, the Red Sox announced Ortiz’s No. 34 would be retired in 2017.

The ceremony also included …

– Third base coach Brian Butterfield giving Ortiz a pair of L.L. Bean boots.
– The presentation of a solid gold bat by president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski and physical therapist Dan Dyrek, who Ortiz credits for getting him physically able to play for the past few years.
– The announcement by Massachusetts governor Charlie Baker and Boston mayor Marty Walsh that the bridge on Brookline Ave leading to Fenway Park, and the street on the way to the Fenway T stop would both be named after Ortiz.
– A check of $500,000 the David Ortiz Foundation, which was matched by the Red Sox’ ownership, pushing the total to $1 million.
– A cavalcade of former Red Sox teammates, along with the three World Series trophies. Some of those in attendance included Pedro Martinez, Manny Ramirez, Mike Lowell, Curt Schilling, Derek Lowe, Jonny Gomes and J.D. Drew.

Sunday’s Red Sox-Blue Jays matchups: David Price vs. Aaron Sanchez

10.02.16 at 8:06 am ET
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David Price

David Price

In Sunday afternoon’s regular-season finale at Fenway Park, Red Sox left-hander David Price will prepare for the postseason when he gets the start against Blue Jays right-hander Aaron Sanchez.

Price is 17-9 with a 4.04 ERA and 1.200 WHIP. He leads the league with 34 starts and 225 innings pitched. In his last start on Tuesday, Price saw his nine-start unbeaten streak come to an end in a 6-4 loss to the Yankees that delayed the Red Sox’ AL East title. Price went 6 1/3 innings, allowing six runs on 12 hits (including three home runs) and a walk with two strikeouts.

“I’ve been throwing the baseball well the past couple of starts and to have a chance to clinch the division for us here, that’s not acceptable,” Price said (via MLB.com). “If our offense scores me four runs, I feel like I like I should go out there and be able to win. That hasn’t been the case a lot of the times this year, and that wasn’t the case tonight.”

Price has faced Toronto thrice this season — the last time on June 3 — going 1-1 with a 2.66 ERA and 1.180 WHIP. In 24 career appearances vs, the Jays, Price is 17-3 with a 2.44 ERA and 1.078 WHIP.

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Read More: Aaron Sanchez, David Price,

Everything you need to know as Red Sox head into final regular season game

10.02.16 at 2:07 am ET
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David Price will close out the regular season for the Red Sox Sunday. (NIck Churiaro/USA Today Sports)

David Price will close out the regular season for the Red Sox Sunday. (NIck Churiaro/USA Today Sports)

They’ve played 161 games. They still need another.

This we know: the Red Sox are in the postseasons, winners of the American League East division. They will be playing Cleveland in the AL Division Series, which starts Thursday.

After that, there is still plenty to digest as we wait for the Red Sox to finish off their regular season schedule, Sunday afternoon …

– When everybody wakes up Sunday morning, the Red Sox (93-68) will be 1/2 game in back of the Indians (93-67). But, the Sox own the tie-breaker with Cleveland. That’s important when trying to decipher who might end up with home-field advantage in the upcoming best-of-five showdown.

If the Red Sox beat the Blue Jays, they will force the Indians to win both their Sunday tilt with Kansas City and a make-up game in Detroit in order to have the ALDS start at Progressive Field.

If the Red Sox lose Sunday, and the Indians beat KC, the series will start in Cleveland.

If the Red Sox lose against the Blue Jays, and Cleveland loses Sunday, the Indians would play Detroit Monday. Terry Francona’s team would then decide its own fate because of the tie-breaker.

– The Red Sox will have David Price going for them in the regular season finale, although manager John Farrell noted prior to Saturday’s game that his pitch count should be somewhat limited.

– Sunday’s game means a whole bunch to the Blue Jays, who are tied with Baltimore for the top Wild Card spot, with Toronto owning the tie-breaker. The Jays and O’s are 1 1/2 games in front of the Tigers, so even if Toronto loses to the Red Sox it is guaranteed at least another game, which would be against the Tigers if they won Sunday and Monday.

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Craig Kimbrel, Red Sox confident closer can turn things around for postseason

10.01.16 at 11:46 pm ET
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Craig Kimbrel believes he can turn things around for the postseason. (David Butler II/USA Today Sports)

Craig Kimbrel believes he can turn things around for the postseason. (David Butler II/USA Today Sports)

Although closer Craig Kimbrel has had major issues of late, the Red Sox remain confident he can get things right for the postseason.

Kimbrel entered Saturday’s game against the Blue Jays in the ninth inning with the score knotted at three, but walked the lead off batter in Jose Bautista. Then, pinch-runner Dalton Pompey advanced to second on a sac bunt, third on a wild pitch and then scored on a sacrifice fly for the game-winning run as the Jays beat the Red Sox, 4-3.

“I think it’s frustrating to struggle at any time,” Kimbrel said. “It doesn’t matter when it is in the season, but we have one more game tomorrow then we have a few days off going into the series. Hopefully in the next few days we’ll get it worked out then get a little rest and I’ll be good to go.”

Kimbrel has allowed six earned runs in his last four appearances, which includes six walks over three innings. His biggest meltdown came Wednesday in New York when the Red Sox cliched the AL East by way of a Blue Jays loss, but the Red Sox led 3-0 in the ninth and eventually lost 5-3 on a walk-off grand slam.

The Red Sox believe they have identified what the main issue is for their closer.

“Just the view from the dugout and film review and what exactly what continues to be worked on is he gets a little side-to-side and when you see the misses where he yanks to his glove side and will miss up and away to his arm side,” manager John Farrell said. “He’s not staying behind his arm as consistently as he has in many of his other outings. That’s an area we continue to work on as he’s getting loose and a throwing program.”

Kimbrel hasn’t totally been the same since returning from knee surgery in July. Before July 1, the right-hander hadn’t walked a batter in three straight outings since 2013. Since then, he’s done it twice. He also has a 5.12 ERA in non-save situations this year with 14 walks in 19 1/3 innings.

Despite this, Farrell said he is confident in him as the team’s playoff closer and he wouldn’t shy away from using him in non-save situations.

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Read More: Carl Willis, Craig Kimbrel, John Farrell,

Exclusive: Dustin Pedroia’s farewell message to David Ortiz

10.01.16 at 11:19 pm ET
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Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz have been teammates since 2006. (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports)

Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz have been teammates since 2006. (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports)

(The following is a note written by Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia to David Ortiz for WEEI.com.)

David, you’ve meant so much.

You’re one of the guys that taught me to be a major leaguer, respect the game, show up and play to win every day. That’s the reason you’re so great. It’s your preparation, and the way you show to work every single day. This has constantly inspired me.

You’ve always been team first, all about playing hard and wanting to win above everything else. That has rubbed off on every single player. I will always appreciate that. There’s a reason we’ve won and done some great thing, because of the presence and attitude you have brought.

I can’t think about what life is going to be like without you around. I’ll tell you this: I’m not looking forward to it. It is obviously going to be a huge hole. When you leave, there isn’t going to be anybody who will be able replace you. Nobody. Ever. And there’s nothing we we can do about that except just learn from the things you left with this organization.

David, you have made every single person in here better, including yours truly.

Now let’s go win a World Series!

Closing Time: Craig Kimbrel allows run in 9th inning as Blue Jays top Red Sox, 4-3

10.01.16 at 10:38 pm ET
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Craig Kimbrel had anothe rough ninth inning Saturday night. (David Butler II/USA Today Sports)

Craig Kimbrel had another rough ninth inning Saturday night. (David Butler II/USA Today Sports)

Welcome to October baseball.

Although it isn’t officially the postseason, the Red Sox and Blue Jays battled in what felt like a playoff game with the Jays eventually coming on top, 4-3.

As he has for much of the season, Craig Kimbrel struggled in a tie game once again.

The closer entered in the top of the ninth and walked the lead off batter Jose Bautista. Pinch-runner Dalton Pompey advanced to second on a sac bunt, third on a wild pitch and then scored on a sacrifice fly for the game-winning run.

“I think it’s frustrating to struggle at any time,” Kimbrel said. “It doesn’t matter when it is in the season, but we have one more game tomorrow then we have a few days off going into the series. Hopefully in the next few days we’ll get it worked out then get a little rest and I’ll be good to go.”

The Red Sox’ magic number for homefield advantage in the ALDS over Cleveland remains at two.

Trailing 3-2 in the eighth, the Red Sox were able to tie the game in surprising fashion. The Sox had runners on first and second with no outs, but then a 4-6-3 double play set up a runner on third with two outs for Jackie Bradley Jr., but closer Roberto Osuma balked, giving Bradley Jr. home.

Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez was at 102 pitches after the fifth inning and his night could have been done there, but he was brought back out for the sixth where he walked the lead off batter and was pulled from the game, but that run did hurt as Russell Martin scored on Kevin Pillar’s single up the middle to snap a 2-2 tie at the time.

Like they did Friday, the Red Sox wasted no time scoring as they scored two runs in the bottom of the first. Jays starter J.A. Happ walked three batters in the inning to load the bases with two outs and Chris Young came through with a two-out, two-RBI single to center field.

The Red Sox couldn’t hold the lead for long as Rodriguez promptly walked the first three batters of the second inning and the Jays got two runs on a Pillar two-RBI single to tie the game at two.

In his final game before the postseason, Rodriguez went five-plus innings, allowing three runs on three hits, but walked five batters and struck out nine.

Closing Time note

Dustin Pedroia snapped a 30-game hit streak against the Blue Jays. It was the longest ever against the club.

Here is what went wrong (and right) in the Red Sox’ loss:

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Chris Young, Craig Kimbrel, eduardo rodriguez,

David Ortiz’s father would have told his son to wait to announce retirement

10.01.16 at 6:02 pm ET
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David Ortiz's father explained he would have advised his son to hold off on announcing his retirement before the season. (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports)

David Ortiz’s father explained he would have advised his son to hold off on announcing his retirement before the season. (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports)

It’s too late now.

When David Ortiz announced on Player’s Tribune last offseason that he would be retiring at the end of the 2016 season, his father, Enrique “Leo” Ortiz, wasn’t aware of the news, having eventually gotten word while back in the Dominican Republic.

But now, looking back, Leo admitted Saturday that he would have pushed his son toward a different approach.

“I was in the Dominican Republic when he announced here in the States but if I was here, I would have told him not to announce his retirement, just because there are so many things that can happen in a season or you might have a change of heart after the season,” the elder Ortiz said. “If I were here, I would have told him to kind of stay neutral so that his options were more open so I wouldn’t have told him to retire.”

But, as ELeo explained it, once the decision was made by his son, there has been no attempt to get Ortiz to change his mind, despite what has been a historic season for the 40 year old.

“I haven’t told him anything like that about why he’s retiring because I know it’s coming from him and it’s his decision,” Leo said. “When I look back to 2013, I remember coming here to the field and I see him what looks like two casts on his feet. I said, what’s happening to my boy? Did he get into an accident or something? What he told me was this is how your son is making this money doing all this stuff before games. It’s not a surprise to me.”

As far as the moment Leo was most proud of his son on a baseball field, that was something Ortiz’s father wasn’t ready to narrow down.

“This guy has given me so much to be proud of over the years,” he said. “I remember when he was coming up in the league, I would try to correct him still even when he was in the big leagues and he told me, ‘Dad, I got it, I’m ready, I’m ready to play in the big leagues.'”

There was, however, that 2007 World Series ring Leo was wearing while talking to the media in the clubhouse prior to Saturday night’s game. Yet, he had a perfectly good explanation while it was that ring he chose to don heading into the Red Sox’ current postseason run.

“This is the ring that called the 2013 championship, so this is the one I’m going to wear because it’s the one that brings good luck and hopefully it brings another ring for 2016,” Leo said.

“He gives me the rings after every championship. I have all of the rings because he knows what’s up. The second thing I want to say publicly is that when he signed the five-year contract, I told the Red Sox he was going to earn every cent of that contract and he was going to earn it day by day, through hard work and told him, ‘I know you’re worth more than that amount of money, but I want you to earn every single cent of that contract.’ The next day he hit two home runs and a double.”

Red Sox lineup: Xander Bogaerts back to batting 2nd vs. Blue Jays

10.01.16 at 5:36 pm ET
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Xander Bogaerts

Xander Bogaerts

Apparently, it was just a one-game thing.

A night after being dropped in the order to No. 6, Xander Bogaerts is back to batting second in the second game of a three-game series with the Blue Jays.

The Red Sox are looking to wrap up the No. 2 seed in the American League as their magic number is two with getting homefield advantage in the ALDS over the Indians.

With the Red Sox going up against Jays left-hander J.A. Happ, Aaron Hill will start at third base and Chris Young will start in left field.

Christian Vazquez will catch Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez.

Here is the complete Red Sox lineup:

Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Xander Bogaerts, SS
Mookie Betts, RF
David Ortiz, DH
Hanley Ramirez, 1B
Chris Young, LF
Jackie Bradley Jr., CF
Aaron Hill, 3B
Christian Vazquez, C
Eduardo Rodriguez, LHP

For an extensive look at the matchups, click here.

Read More: Aaron Hill, Chris Young, xander bogaerts,
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