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Monday’s Red Sox-Twins matchups: Rubby De La Rosa vs. Kevin Correia

06.16.14 at 9:34 am ET
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The Red Sox start a three-game series with the Twins at Fenway Park on Monday when they send Rubby De La Rosa to the mound against Kevin Correia.

Rubby De La Rosa

Rubby De La Rosa

De La Rosa (1-2, 3.93 ERA) has been less-than-stellar for the Red Sox in his two starts since his impressive Sox debut May 31. After dominating the Rays in seven shutout innings, De La Rosa has allowed eight runs in 11 1/3 innings in losses in Detroit and Baltimore. The right-hander gave up four runs, three of which came in the first inning, on seven hits in 5 2/3 innings in a 6-0 Red Sox loss Wednesday against the Orioles. He walked two and struck out seven.

“I thought tonight was an important learning experience for him, the way in which he needs to use his fastball,” manager John Farrell said after the game. “Quickly the word spreads around this league on what an individual pitcher will go to. I thought once he started to use his fastball more from the third inning on, he forced some swings and made his changeup and his breaking pitches that much more effective. But like I said, I think it’s more a very good learning lesson tonight.”

De La Rosa has one career start against the Twins, on June 29, 2011. He pitched seven strong innings in that game, giving up one run on six hits, but has only faced two current members of the Twins in his career. Joe Mauer is hitting .333/.333/.667 with a double and a strikeout in three career plate appearances against De La Rosa, while Eduardo Nunez is 1-for-2 against the 25-year-old.

Correia (3-7, 5.60 ERA) hasn’t had much go his way this season, especially early on. The right-hander got off to a dreadful start, going 0-3 with a 7.33 ERA in his first five outings, but has gradually found himself on the upswing. His ERA has been no lower than 5.30 since April 7, but he has had quality starts in three of his last five outings and has a 3.90 ERA in that span.

Correia enters Monday’€™s contest coming off his best game of the season. He held the Blue Jays scoreless over six innings for his first shutout of the season last Tuesday, and picked up his first win since May 20. He surrendered just six hits and one walk and had a strikeout in the 4-0 Minnesota win. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Kevin Correia, Minnesota Twins, Red Sox, rubby de la rosa

Jon Lester on The Bradfo Show: ‘I want to be here, I think they want me to be here’

06.16.14 at 9:25 am ET
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Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester joined Rob Bradford on The Bradfo Show podcast to talk about the possibility of getting traded, as well as the mindset needed to handle the constant threat of being dealt to another team. To listen to the interview, go to The Bradfo Show audio on demand page.

Despite a lackluster 7-7 record, Lester has once again proved to be one of the top southpaws in the American League this season with a 3.33 ERA and 99 strikeouts (seventh in the AL) in 14 starts.

However, Boston’€™s disappointing record so far in 2014, coupled with the uncertainty of the team being able to resign the 30-year-old to a new contract this offseason, has led some to believe that Lester is a prime candidate to be traded in order to get some value during a lost season.

While Lester stated that he wants to remain in Boston, the two-time All-Star also acknowledged that trades are just part of the game.

“€œI think every year when you get to the trade deadline, that’€™s always a possibility,”€ Lester said. “€œHow great a possibility it is, I don’€™t know because you’€™re not in that room, you’€™re not making the phone calls. I think this year, given the unique situation we could be in at that time, I don’€™t know. I always said, if they feel like trading me is going to make the Boston Red Sox better for the future, then no hard feelings. Like I said, it’€™s business.

“I want to be here, I think they want me to be here. But like I said, at the same time, I’€™m sure they wanted [Adrian Gonzalez] and [Carl Crawford] and [Josh Beckett] and [Nick Punto] to be here, but they needed to make a decision for the greater good for the future. That’€™s what they had to do. If that’€™s what they have to do then that’€™s what they have to do. There wouldn’t be any hard feelings. I would still think of my time here as great, cherish every minute that I was here, go about my business wherever I go. … This game isn’t stable. As much as we’€™d like to make it stable, it’€™s not.’€

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Read More: Jon Lester, Red Sox, The Bradfo Show, trade

Red Sox minor league roundup: Felix Doubront unhittable in rehab start; Brian Johnson dominating Double-A; Sean Coyle mashing; despite struggles, Trey Ball maintains prospect status

06.16.14 at 8:36 am ET
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Felix Doubront punched out 10 in five no-hit innings. (AP)

Felix Doubront punched out 10 in five no-hit innings. (AP)

A brief look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Sunday:



Felix Doubront threw five dominant innings, giving up no hits while striking out 10, all swinging. He also permitted just one ball to be hit into the outfield (a fly out to left). According to Mark Daniels of the Providence Journal, Doubront sat at 88-91 mph with his fastball and touched 94. Doubront did walk four and threw just 50 of 93 pitches (54 percent) for strikes, and there were times when he appeared to lose his delivery, as when he walked a pair of batters in his fifth and final inning.

“I thought he showed better stuff today,” PawSox manager Kevin Boles told Daniels. “I thought he had a feel for a breaking ball at times. His fastball ticked up in velocity and I thought he threw with quality. He got out of his delivery a few times, but thought it was pretty impressive because he was able to get back on track.”

In three rehab starts, Doubront now has a 2.63 ERA with 15 strikeouts and five walks in 13 2/3 innings.

– Right-hander Matt Barnes, piggybacking Doubront in his first professional relief appearance, tossed three shutout innings, scattering three hits (all singles) while punching out two and walking none. In his last three outings spanning 15 2/3 innings, Barnes hasn’t walked a batter while punching out 11. He has a 2.30 ERA in that span. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: brian johnson, cody kukuk, felix doubront, keury de la cruz

Stephen Drew collects 2 hits, feels healthy in return

06.16.14 at 6:17 am ET
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Stephen Drew wanted to be sure he felt right. He didn’t want the right oblique injury that had been healing over the last week to impact him at the plate, where he was already struggling, or at shortstop, where he’s most valuable. And most importantly, he didn’t want to risk worsening an injury he was unfamiliar with.

So he refused to rush it.

Drew spent the last week under supervision as he went through workouts and tested his oblique throughout the week.

“It’€™s just something where you just do checklists and going through whatever these guys have here,” he said. “Just going out there and making sure I’€™m able to go out and play a big league game. It took a little time.”

On Sunday, he was ready. And he made the most of his return.

Drew went 2 for 4 at the plate with a stolen base and strong infield play in the Red Sox‘ 3-2 loss to the Indians on Sunday. He had a pair of singles, and finished the game feeling healthy.

When asked how he felt after the game, Drew said, “Not too bad. Overall it was a good day. I’€™m still moving forward. Overall I was pretty pleased with it.”

Said manager John Farrell: “Physically, he came out of today fine. You see some consistent timing coming from him as he gets more at-bats, even with the full five days down here.”

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Brandon Workman shows consistency on mound with another strong outing

06.16.14 at 6:14 am ET
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There’s no telling where Brandon Workman will be or what role he’ll be filling when Clay Buchholz and Felix Doubront return from injury for the Red Sox, but he’s certainly making a case to remain in the big league starting rotation.

Brandon Workman

Brandon Workman

Workman was strong for the second straight outing on Sunday, allowing two runs on five hits over six-plus innings for a no-decision in the Red Sox‘ 3-2 loss to the Indians on Sunday. The right-hander had two walks and seven strikeouts and pitched into the sixth inning for the second time in as many starts.

“I thought he was very good,” manager John Farrell said. “Swing and miss at three pitches, three different types of pitches: fastball, breaking ball and his cutter. He hasn’€™t gone into the seventh inning but a couple of times this year, but still I thought he was strong. He got a number of key strikeouts with men in scoring position. He threw the ball very good. He more than did his job today.”

Workman stayed ahead in counts for most of the game, giving him the ability to use an array of pitches, including a slider that catcher A.J. Pierzynski lauded, and keep hitters uncertain at the plate.

“It definitely helps out a lot to be able to, early in counts, throw a curveball in there or something like that,” Workman said. “Throw a strike, keep guys off balance, keep them off of my fastball a little bit. Makes my fastball a little more effective.”

Pierzynski said that Workman’s ability to mix pitches has contributed to his effectiveness as of late. He also praised Workman’s aggressiveness on the mound, saying, “I know one thing about Work, he’€™s going to throw the ball and he’€™s going to throw it over the plate. He’€™s not afraid.” Read the rest of this entry »

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Red Sox’ new good luck statue gets off to a slow start

06.15.14 at 8:10 pm ET
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The Red Sox‘ new good luck charm didn’t do its job Sunday.

Jake Peavy wasn’t looking for another piece of wood to rally around, but he found it just the same. Unfortunately for the Red Sox, the good luck charm didn’t get off to a good start thanks to their 3-2 loss to the Indians Sunday afternoon.

After using a cigar store Indian as a signature memento throughout the second half of the championship 2013 season, Peavy and the Red Sox were resigned to retiring the whole statue thing to the pitcher’s property in Alabama.

But after attending an early season charity event, Peavy walked into Bradley’s Liquors on Boylston St., the heir apparent presented itself.

“I found him across the street. He’€™s a Boston native,” Peavy explained. “After last year you can’€™t but help but be drawn to him, and I was drawn to him. He’€™s a little bit bigger than last year’€™s ‘Chief.’ We had been going through a tough stretch, and we’€™ve been really going through a tough stretch all season. So I thought the coolest thing about him was that he had his hand above his eyes, almost to say, ‘€˜Keep your eyes open. Don’€™t relax on me or forget where we’€™re going or what we’€™re capable of.’€™ It was just another good rallying cry.

“I went in after a charity event and we weren’t playing well. Then there’€™s this wooden statue, like last year. He’€™s got his American Flag shorts on already, already in costume. And he had the lookout.”

The problem was that the store clerk initially told Peavy the statue wasn’t for sale, not recognizing the pitcher or the team he played for. But upon calling the store owner, a solution was found. The sympathetic Red Sox fan didn’t want a dime, just for the statue to work the same magic its predecessor managed a season before.

But that didn’t mean it was going straight to Fenway Park.

“I brought him out that night,” Peavy said. “I thought it was a little too early in the season. I didn’t feel the spiritual connection that I did with the other one just quite yet, so I dropped him off in Daisy Buchanan’s to let him get greased up in the ways of the world for about the last month. So he’€™s been in Daisy’€™s. The ‘€™04 team has kissed him, loved on him and partied with those guys when they came in.”

Then, Saturday, Dustin Pedroia led the charge to convince Peavy it was time for the statue to make the trip on over to Fenway.

“They said,” the pitcher deadpanned, “it was time.”

Closing Time: Nick Swisher’s 11th-inning home run dooms Junichi Tazawa, Red Sox

06.15.14 at 5:41 pm ET
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Junichi Tazawa

Junichi Tazawa

For four strong innings, the Red Sox bullpen looked like it has most of the season: a dominant group that gave the offense a chance to win the game. So when Junichi Tazawa came into the game in the 11th inning, it was hard to imagine anything other than a clean inning from the righty.

Tazawa has been one of the best relievers out of the bullpen this season while setting up for Koji Uehara. He came into Sunday with a 2.17 ERA with 29 strikeouts and a 1.138 WHIP.

After falling behind 2-1 to Indians designated hitter Nick Swisher, Tazawa did something he has seldom done in 2014 — leave a fastball over the heart of the plate. Swisher subsequently took advantage of the mistake and deposited the pitch into the right-field bleachers, giving the Indians a 3-2 win over the Red Sox.

The home run to Swisher marked the second day in a row that the bullpen, which had the sixth best ERA as a group at 2.86 coming into Sunday, coughed up the lead.

Brandon Workman turned in another solid outing for the Red Sox, going six innings and allowing two runs on five hits and two walks with seven strikeouts and one home run. The outing marked Workman’€™s eighth start in the majors.

As a major league starter, Workman has a 2.91 ERA and has allowed three runs or less in all of his starts. With the decision on Workman’€™s suspension appeal likely coming this upcoming week, the righty could miss his next start.


– The Brock Holt show continues. The Red Sox‘s leadoff man singled down the left-field line to open the first inning, advanced to second on a wild pitch and scored from third on a David Ortiz single off the Green Monster. Holt came into Sunday’s contest hitting .336/.366/.474 with 11 doubles, one triple, a homer and 11 RBIs since being recalled from Pawtucket on May 17.

Holt turned in another strong effort at the plate, going 2-for-4 with one run scored. Holt’€™s two hit output marked the 14th time this season the utility man has garnered multiple hits in a game this season.

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