Full Count
A Furiously Updated Red Sox Blog
WEEI.com Blog Network

Saturday’s Red Sox-Orioles matchups: Rubby De La Rosa vs. Chris Tillman

09.20.14 at 5:58 pm ET
By   |   Comments

The Red Sox will play the second game of their three-game series against the Orioles on Saturday night, as Rubby De La Rosa will face off against Chris Tillman.

Rubby De La Rosa

Rubby De La Rosa

De La Rosa’€™s last two starts have not gone exactly as planned. Against the Royals last Saturday, the right-hander (4-7, 4.31 ERA) was charged for two runs in the first inning and then allowed three more in the fifth. De La Rosa’€™s final four-inning line included six hits and two strikeouts.

Manager John Farrell said after De La Rosa’€™s last start that the team plans on restricting the pitcher’€™s innings because of the amount he’€™s pitched in both the major and minor leagues this season.

“We are limiting his innings pitched, but we don’t want to shut him down,” Farrell said. “There’s some benefit to be had by continuing through his work routine through the end of the season, and that’s a primary goal right now.”

His start vs. the Blue Jays on Sept. 7 was almost identical to his one against Kansas City. De La Rosa lasted four innings and gave up three runs on seven hits. The big blow in the game came when Jose Bautista hit a three-run home in the fifth inning, ending Dela Rosa’€™s afternoon.

Since the second half of the season began, De La Rosa has struggled to have any consistency. In 11 starts since the All-Star break, he has an ERA over five and a 2-5 record. Hitters have feasted on him with a .325 batting average. By the time De La Rosa reaches the 26-pitch mark in a game, players are hitting .340 with a .894 OPS against him.

De La Rosa made one start vs. the Orioles back on June 11. He was roughed up for three runs in the first inning, but recovered to pitch 5 2/3 innings, allowing four runs.

“I thought tonight was an important learning experience for him, the way in which he needs to use his fastball,” 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.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Chris Tillman, rubby de la rosa,

David Ortiz: ‘They call me Super Papi’

09.19.14 at 11:54 pm ET
By   |   Comments

BALTIMORE — Decades from now, assuming that baseball does not hurtle towards a clockless extinction, David Ortiz will remain a reference point in Red Sox history, a necessary landmark and point of comparison for any slugger in the team’s uniform.

Ortiz slammed a pair of homers — the 33rd and 34th of his season — while driving in three runs, not only propelling his team to a 5-3 victory over the Orioles in 10 innings but also eclipsing 100 RBIs, in the process, crossing the 30-100 threshold for the eighth time in his Red Sox career. He now stands alone in team history for the most such seasons in Sox history, leaving behind Ted Williams, who had seven in his illustrious career.

The volume of seasons Ortiz has produced while reaching recognizable slugging plateaus is impressive enough in its own right. The fact that he is still producing at this level as a 38-year-old qualifies as astonishing and historic. Ortiz became the sixth player in big league history at the age of 38 (or older) to reach 30 homers and 100 RBIs, joining Babe Ruth, Fred McGriff, Barry Bonds, Rafael Palmeiro and Frank Thomas.

How?

“They call me Super Papi,” Ortiz grinned. “That’€™s right. Put it down like that.”

Manager John Farrell, however, suggested that there was a bit more to it than that. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: David Ortiz, Ted Williams,

Why You Should Have Cared About Friday’s Red Sox Game: David Ortiz keeps making history; Feats of Mookie’s Feets

09.19.14 at 10:49 pm ET
By   |   Comments

(For the final month of the regular season, ‘€œClosing Time’€ will be called ‘€œWhy you should have cared,’€ looking beyond the final score ‘€” at a time when losses are arguably more valuable to the Sox than wins (for draft and waiver position) ‘€” for either meaningful signs for 2015 or simple aesthetic considerations.)

David Ortiz keeps adding to his resume as one of the greatest Red Sox hitters ever. (Getty Images)

David Ortiz keeps adding to his resume as one of the greatest Red Sox hitters ever. (Getty Images)

BALTIMORE — Reality check: The Red Sox offense has been little better than atrocious this year. The team entered Friday with the fewest runs (583) and runs per game (3.81) of any club in the American League. And so, when a player proves capable of delivering run production within that group, it commands notice.

In an otherwise forgettable year, David Ortiz has commanded plenty of notice. The slugger continued to do just that in the Sox’ 5-3, 10-inning victory over the Orioles on Friday night, slamming a pair of homers — his 34th and 35th of the year — and driving in three runs — his 100th, 101st and 102nd of 2014 — to further distinguish his place in Red Sox history.

He now has eight 30/100 seasons with the Red Sox, breaking a tie with Ted Williams for the most such years in franchise history. He is the sixth player ever to produce a 30/100 season at the age of 38 or later (joining Frank Thomas, Barry Bonds, Rafael Palmeiro, Fred McGriff and Babe Ruth) His 34 homers are his most since hitting 35 in 2007. He is in the top five in the American League in both homers and RBIs.

On a team that has had a shortage of even average performances to buttress him, Ortiz has remained elite.

OTHER REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD HAVE CARED ABOUT FRIDAY’S GAME

Mookie Betts, in his first exposure to the big leagues, has proven capable of delivering excitement. Friday night at Camden Yards offered a glimpse of what increasingly looks like a player with game-changing offensive abilities.

Against a pitcher considered one of the top young talents in the game in Orioles starter Kevin Gausman, Betts had three tremendous at-bats in an eventual 2-for-5 game. He drilled a 2-1 fastball for a long flyout to the warning track, about 400 feet from home plate, to open the game, spit on a pair of sliders before smoking a 95 mph 2-0 fastball up the middle for a single in the third and then navigated an 11-pitch at-bat that included six two-strike foul balls (three on splitters, three on fastballs) before ripping a liner up the middle for a single. Read the rest of this entry »

John Farrell: Christian Vazquez ‘ready and capable’ of being an Opening Day catcher

09.19.14 at 6:57 pm ET
By   |   Comments
Christian Vazquez

Christian Vazquez

BALTIMORE — Jackie Bradley Jr. is hitting .203 with a .271 OBP and .272 slugging mark this year. Christian Vazquez is hitting .217/.278/.268.

Yet whereas Bradley’s offensive performance in 414 plate appearances has raised questions about his future big league role, the Sox have a more optimistic view of Vazquez’s offensive performance.

“He’€™s handled different types of pitching well. The batting average, I recognize what it is. He’€™s squared up a number of balls. Sometimes they haven’€™t fallen. I think he’€™s doing a very good job for us in all phases and I wouldn’€™t be, I guess the best way to say it … his batting average, that doesn’€™t concern me right now.”

Asked if he viewed Vazquez as a big league-caliber hitter right now, Farrell didn’t hesitate to answer in the affirmative. He cited Vazquez’s ability to execute in the details of the game, primarily by getting the bat on the ball (whether for sacrifice bunts or situational hitting), in explaining his view. (Worth noting: Bradley has struck out in 28.3 percent of plate appearances this year; Vazquez has struck out in just 16.2 percent of plate appearances.)

“Setting aside the batting average, there’€™s the ability to handle a bat. He can execute the small game. He can hit to the situation. He’€™s a very good situational hitter, including being able to sacrifice with great consistency,” said Farrell. “He’€™s probably one of the more, I would say he’€™s one of the more complete hitters that has come to us, setting aside the batting average.”

Farrell said that he could envision Vazquez as his Opening Day catcher — though he noted that having him in such a role in 2015 might depend on the shape of the rest of the roster.

“I think he’€™s ready and capable of handling that [Opening Day starting] role. I think what will be as important is who is paired up with him,” said Farrell. “That’€™s not to eliminate anyone that’€™s here. That’€™s not to suggest who that might be. Christian is, I think, in short order, has gained a reputation around the league to be somewhat of a shutdown thrower with the aggressiveness of his picks, of his throws to bags. Like we said, he’€™s a focal point for a team when they’€™re on offense, to have to contend with behind the plate.” Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: christian vazquez,

Rusney Castillo to play in Arizona Fall League and Puerto Rico Winter League

09.19.14 at 5:58 pm ET
By   |   Comments

BALTIMORE — While some members of the Red Sox are contemplating the end of their season, Rusney Castillo’s baseball season remains in its early stages, a notion made official by Sox manager John Farrell on Friday.

Farrell said that Castillo, who made his major league debut on Wednesday in Pittsburgh and is back in the Red Sox lineup on Friday against the Orioles, will continue his season by heading to the Arizona Fall League and the Puerto Rico Winter League. The goal, Farrell said, is to get Castillo (who has a total of 50 plate appearances thus far between the minors and the big leagues) up to roughly 200 plate appearances for the year. He will do so by playing with the Surprise Saguaros in the AFL and then the Caguas Criollos (run by former Red Sox Alex Cora) in Puerto Rico.

The Sox expect that Castillo’s baseball season will conclude by roughly mid-November, at which point he’ll be in position to spend several months building up to his first big league spring training in 2015.

Red Sox lineup: Rusney Castillo in center, Garin Cecchini gets first big league start

09.19.14 at 3:31 pm ET
By   |   Comments

BALTIMORE — The list of Red Sox firsts continues to expand, as new outfielder Rusney Castillo will get his first start against an American League East opponent while third baseman Garin Cecchini will get his first big league start. Castillo went 1-for-4 in his Wednesday debut, while Cecchini is 2-for-3 and has been hit by a pitch in four games this year.

RED SOX LINEUP

Mookie Betts, 2B

Xander Bogaerts, SS

David Ortiz, DH

Yoenis Cespedes, LF

Daniel Nava, RF

Allen Craig, 1B

Rusney Castillo, CF

Garin Cecchini, 3B

Christian Vazquez, C

Allen Webster, RHP

Friday’s Red Sox-Orioles matchups: Allen Webster vs. Kevin Gausman

09.19.14 at 8:40 am ET
By   |   Comments

The Red Sox open up a weekend series Friday night against the Orioles at Camden Yards. Allen Webster will pitch against Kevin Gausman.

Allen Webster

Allen Webster

In his previous outing last Friday, Webster (4-3, 6.02 ERA) had one of his finer outings of the season. He threw six innings, allowing just two runs in a winning effort against the Royals. Part of the reason for his success against Kansas City was improved control. After walking at least two batters in each of his previous eight starts, Webster walked just one Royals hitter. Manager John Farrell said he liked what he saw from Webster last time out.

“We know this is an aggressive swinging team, and if you pitch to quality locations early in the count, chances are it can work in your favor,” Farrell said after the game.

Webster has pitched into the sixth inning in his last two starts after not making it out of the fifth frame in two prior appearances. Webster has faced the American League East four times this season, but not the Orioles so far in 2014. Against division foes, he’€™s allowed 15 runs in 17 1/3 innings, leading to a 1-2 record.

The right-hander previously faced the Orioles during the last game of the season in 2013, also at Camden Yards. Over three innings in a shortened start, Webster did not allow a run, struck out two and walked three. Farrell was happy with how Webster responded after a tough beginning of the game.

“It was good to see Webby come out and settle down after a rocky beginning of the first inning. He threw the ball very well,” Farrell said.

No current Orioles player has a hit against Webster.

Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: allen webster, Kevin Gausman,
Red Sox Box Score
Red Sox Schedule
Ace Ticket
Red Sox Headlines
Red Sox Minor League News
Red Sox Team Leaders
MLB Headlines
Tips & Feedback

Verify