|John Farrell: Jackie Bradley ‘has had a direct impact on two, possibly three, wins’||04.12.13 at 10:20 pm ET|
Despite Jackie Bradley’s slow start through the season’s first nine games, according to Red Sox manager John Farrell, the Sox aren’t regretting their decision to put the outfielder Opening Day roster.
Farrell told WEEI.com Friday that Bradley has had a “direct impact” on “two, possibly three” of the Red Sox’ five wins this season.
“He’s contributed in every area of the game, defensively, on the basepaths and at the plate. I think he has had a direct impact on two, possibly three, wins for us in the early part of the season,” the Red Sox manager said. “And it’s not always reflected in the batting average. It’s a defensive play in New York. It’s a baserunning play in that same series. It’s drawing a key walk in middle innings to either start an inning, or rally within an inning. In Jackie’s case I think you have to look beneath the batting as to the impact that he’s made.”
After a quick start, Bradley has slumped offensively, going hitless in his last 15 at-bats. The rookie, who has played in eight of the Sox’ nine games (with the team going 4-4 in his appearances), is hitting .120 with a .313 on-base percentage.
Friday marked the day which, if Bradley hadn’t been added to roster for the first nine games, the Red Sox could promote the 22-year-old without having to worry about losing a year of free agent eligibility.
Because David Ortiz is slated to return next week, it is expected Bradley will be returning to the minor leagues. The outfielder needs to spend just 20 days in the minors in order to push the year he would be eligible for free agency until after the 2019 season (instead of following ’18).
“I’m missing my pitches. I’ll see a good pitch and I’ll feel like I put a good swing on it and I’ll foul it back. That’s the frustrating part about it because I know those are the pitches I’m normally hitting and squaring up,” said Bradley, who has scored five of the nine times he has reached base. “You really can’t do much after you hit it. Like I said, they’ll start falling in holes eventually
“It’s one of those periods, every hitter goes through it. Like I said, I’m willing to work through it. It definitely is not going to affect me in the long-run.”
|Felix Doubront pushed back to Wednesday; Jon Lester still starting Saturday||04.12.13 at 9:19 pm ET|
John Farrell announced that the Red Sox were going to push Felix Doubront’s scheduled start back to Wednesday, when the Sox play in Cleveland.
The schedule for Doubront, who was originally slated to start Thursday before the team bumped him back a day, was necessitated due to the postponement of the Sox’ game against Tampa Bay Friday night (due to weather).
“Tomorrow would be his eighth day,” Farrell said. “We’ll get some kid of sim work either [Friday] if we can find a spot, or at some point early [Saturday] morning or following the game [Saturday]. That keeps us with [Jon] Lester, [Clay] Buchholz and [Ryan] Dempster in this series.”
Doubront, who will be followed in the rotation by Alfredo Aceves, is coming off a solid start in his season debut. The lefty allowed three runs over five innings, striking out six and not walking a batter.
“I was looking forward to Felix pitching tonight,” Farrell said. “His last outing in Toronto, he made some quality pitches in that game, and a guy that’s going to be important for us. Right now because of the extended time between starts, it’s a little disruption to his routine or his schedule. The disappointing thing is not seeing Felix on the mound tonight.”
Another player having to adjust his schedule is David Ortiz.
The Red Sox designated hitter, who is continuing his rehab assignment with Triple-A Pawtucket, wasn’t able to stay on schedule because of the PawSox’ rainout. It is unclear if Ortiz will be participating in the entire doubleheader at McCoy Stadium Saturday.
“We’ll still look to get a total of five at-bats,” Farrell said. “Whether or not he maintains that looseness, which we full expect, between games … That will be an in-game or game-time decision as far as he being in the lineup in Game 2. But most importantly, there’s no risk being taken with a questionable surface tonight.”
|Tim Wakefield named Red Sox special assignment instructor||04.12.13 at 4:27 pm ET|
The Red Sox announced Friday that longtime knuckleballer Tim Wakefield is rejoining the organization as a special assignment instructor and honorary chairman of the Red Sox Foundation. Wakefield, 46, played 17 of 19 major league seasons with the Red Sox, earning 186 wins with Boston, the third most in franchise history. Below is the full press release from the Red Sox:
BOSTON, MA — Tim Wakefield, whose knuckleball flummoxed Red Sox opponents for 17 years and who helped the club win World Championships in 2004 and 2007, returned to the organization today as Honorary Chairman of the Red Sox Foundation and as a Special Assignment Instructor in the club’s baseball operations.
Wakefield, who announced his retirement from baseball in February 2012, was among the most devoted Red Sox ever in community service. Major League Baseball awarded the Roberto Clemente Award, its highest honor in that area, to him in 2010. In that same year, the Boston Chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America (BBWAA) named a Red Sox community service award in his honor. The award is given annually to a player or individual who best exemplifies Wakefield’s charitable spirit.
With the foundation, Wakefield will bring his vast experience to a variety of areas, including fundraising events, community service days, and the personal visits that characterized his community commitment throughout his career.
On the field, Wakefield will handle specific instructional assignments for General Manager Ben Cherington and his staff.
|Red Sox-Rays postponed due to rain||04.12.13 at 2:50 pm ET|
The scheduled contest between the Red Sox and Rays on Friday night has been postponed due to inclement weather, the Sox announced. The game will now be played as the first part of a day-night doubleheader on June 18, starting at 1:05 p.m, with the night game slated to kick-off at 7:05 p.m. Tickets for Friday night’s game will be good only for the doubleheader’s first game.
The game was the first of a scheduled four-game series between the divisional rivals.
For more team coverage, visit weei.com/redsox.
|Kevin Millar on M&M: Padres’ Carlos Quentin charging the mound ‘an overreaction and it’s kind of tired’||04.12.13 at 1:39 pm ET|
Kevin Millar joined Mut & Merloni on Friday to talk about the brawl that broke out between the Dodgers and Padres on Thursday night and about what he’s seen from the Red Sox so far.
Millar said he thinks Carlos Quentin should be punished harshly for charging the mound and breaking Zack Greinke‘s collarbone. However, he said there’s no way Dodgers manager Don Mattingly‘s proposal that Quentin shouldn’t play again until Greinke returns from the injury will come true.
“It’s a great soundbite, it’s great for Don Mattingly to say that, but it’s not going to happen,” he said. “You’re not going to suspend somebody 30-40 games for charging the mound. A lot of guys get hurt charging the mound, but that’s part of charging the mound. It’s just a typical suspension, you’re going to get fined, but if you overreact — you’re not going to sit out 30-40 games. You’ve got guys that take steroids that sit out 50 games. You charge the mound, you tell me it’s going to be close to that? No.
“There are divers in the game. You know when a guy’s throwing at you, and if Quentin really thought Greinke’s throwing at him? … I don’t think he’s throwing at him. It’s a one-run game, it’s a 3-2 count. It’s an overreaction and it’s kind of tired. … Poor Zack Greinke’s a buck-92 and Quentin’s no small guy. It’s bad for the game when somebody goes down like that, and if you’re a Giants fan you’re over there licking your chops saying, ‘We’ve got a chance to keep going.’ ”
On whether he’s worried about Joel Hanrahan: “No, not at all. His stuff’s too good. It happens early in the season and it becomes magnified, but this guy’s going to save a lot of games for the Red Sox. … He had to get out of that inning [against the Orioles], and it didn’t happen, and they lost, big deal.”
On Jackie Bradley’s recent struggles: “It’s part of growing pains. That’s why I always tell everyone, don’t get so excited about spring training statistics. … The bottom line is, I would like to see the Red Sox somewhat get some consistency with their lineup. I don’t like Jonny Gomes sitting on the bench all the time. This is a threat you signed for 10 million bucks for a couple of years. Let him get in there and get his feet going and start hitting some balls. As far as a young man like Jackie Bradley Jr. who’s going to have a great career — he’s a great kid, the work ethic’s there. He’s going through a little stretch right now.”
|Red Sox minor league roundup: Brandon Workman locked in; context for Xander Bogaerts’ early struggles||04.12.13 at 11:55 am ET|
A quick look at the action in the Red Sox system on Thursday…
TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX: 5-4 WIN VS. ROCHESTER (TWINS)
– David Ortiz collected a pair of singles in his first rehab game in Pawtucket. He also had to make a trip around the bases on the second hit, advancing to third on a double and then scoring on a single. The Red Sox will make a gametime decision, based on the weather, about the wisdom of having Ortiz play again on Friday.
– Jose Iglesias, in his first game in Pawtucket since getting sent down following his 9-for-20 performance in the big leagues, went 1-for-4 with a homer and a pair of strikeouts. The homer was his third in three seasons in Pawtucket (he had exactly one in both 2011 and 2012).
“I’ve got my confidence back, and I know what to do in the field to help the team win some ballgames,” Iglesias told the Providence Journal. “That’s what I’m going to continue to do here every single day with the same intensity.” Read the rest of this entry »
|Friday’s Red Sox-Rays matchups: Felix Doubront vs. Alex Cobb||04.12.13 at 9:18 am ET|
Felix Doubront will face the Rays in Friday night’s series opener, making his second start of the year. The Rays will send Alex Cobb, one of their many promising young pitchers, to the mound against him.
Doubront will follow Alfredo Aceves this week in an adjusted Sox rotation. He made his 2013 debut against the Jays on April 5, giving up nine hits in five innings but striking out six and limiting the damage to three runs.
In his first season as a starter for the Sox last year, Doubront recorded a 4.86 ERA and a 1.45 WHIP. When he last faced the Rays, on Sept. 18, 2012, control was an issue as he walked five in six innings, allowing three runs on just one hit. Although Doubront’s strikeout rate rose last year, some of the command issues he’d had as a reliever remained.
Cobb’s season debut was a strong one — 7 1/3 scoreless innings against the Indians in a 6-0 Rays win on April 6. He struck out six, walked three and gave up four hits.
In his first full year starting in Tampa last year, Cobb put up a 4.03 ERA and a 1.25 WHIP. He struck out 106 over 136 1/3 innings, and although he struggled in the middle of the season, he recorded a 3.38 ERA in August and a 2.73 mark in September and October.
Cobb has faced the Sox just three times, most recently in a 4-2 win for the Rays on Sept. 26, 2012. He gave up a run, walked three and struck out five over five innings in that game.
In four starts against the Rays, Doubront has thrown 25 1/3 innings. He has a 3.91 ERA and a 1.58 WHIP in those starts.
None of the Sox have done much against Cobb in the few times they’ve faced him, although Jacoby Ellsbury has a home run in one of his three PAs against him. The Rays are nearly as unfamiliar with Doubront, but Kelly Johnson has done well against him, with a .273/.385/.273 line, and Evan Longoria is slugging .667 against him in 10 PAs.
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