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Wednesday’s Red Sox-Orioles matchups: Aaron Cook vs. Miguel Gonzalez 08.15.12 at 11:51 am ET
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Aaron Cook will start for the Red Sox when they face the Orioles on Wednesday night at Camden Yards.

The 33-year-old will take the mound after winning his last start against Texas. The righty threw seven innings of one-run baseball and allowed three walks in the 9-2 victory.

Prior to that victory, the Red Sox had lost Cook’s last three starts, when he allowed 15 earned runs through 15 innings. Cook, who is 3-5 with a 4.70 ERA, is 1-2 on the road with a 4.26 ERA.

Cook last pitched against the Orioles on May 5. He received the starting nod, allowing six earned runs in 2 2/3 innings as the Red Sox lost 8-2. Of the nine current Orioles Cook has pitched against, he has seen Mike Reynolds the most. Reynolds is batting .250 with one home run, four RBIs and eight strikeouts in 24 plate appearances against Cook.

Opposing Cook will be right-hander Miguel Gonzalez. The former Red Sox farmhand pitched against the Sox once before, tossing four innings of one-run ball in relief on June 7 in a 7-0 Orioles loss. However, only three Sox batters from that game are on Boston’s active list for Wednesday’s contest, so there is plenty of unfamiliarity on both sides.

In his last three starts, Gonzalez (4-2, 3.42 ERA) pitched 21 2/3 innings and allowed five runs. His last outing resulted in a 7-1 victory against Kansas City, when the 28-year-old tossed eight innings of one-run baseball.

Despite his recent success, Gonzalez has struggled at home this season. In three starts he is 1-2 with a 5.23 ERA when pitching at Camden Yards, and only one of his last three starts occurred in Baltimore. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: aaron cook, Miguel Gonzalez, Mike Reynolds,
Red Sox coach Jerry Royster enjoys daughter’s budding acting career 08.13.12 at 3:05 pm ET
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When Red Sox third base coach Jerry Royster watched his teenage daughter, Kara, act in a TV show in May 2010, he couldn’t help but feel that the tables had been turned.

It was Kara’s first TV gig, an appearance on Nickelodeon’€™s ‘€œBucket & Skinner’€™s Epic Adventures,’€ and Royster was sitting backstage with Kara’€™s mother, Kathy, watching on a monitor. Jerry gave Kathy a hug and told her, ‘€˜This is pretty cool, huh?’€

‘€œWe sat there, and watching her brings tears to your eyes,’€ Royster said. ‘€œIt’€™s just so cool for me to see my kid perform after they’€™ve spent all their lives watching me perform and watching me on TV. Now I get to watch her on TV.”

Kara and her older sister, Kristie, have been following their father’€™s baseball career their entire lives, including visits to spring training.

‘€œShe’€™s such a great student and I looked at it, being in baseball, that’€™s all they know,’€ said Royster, who played third base for five teams during a 16-year MLB career from 1973-88 and is in his first season with the Red Sox. ‘€œThey know their dad’€™s travel agent, when school is out, when she gets out of school she’€™s coming to see her dad. Both her older sister and her, that’€™s the only life they’€™ve ever lived. That’€™s all they know.”

Even though baseball was a presence in their young lives, neither Kara nor Kristie wanted to devote themselves to athletics. They played softball briefly, but it was always acting and entertaining that enamored the two.

‘€œThis is what they’€™ve always wanted to do,’€ Jerry said. ‘€œThey’€™ve been independent and knowing what they want. For them to get the opportunity to pursue it makes me and their mom proud. We’€™re proud. We’€™re proud of what both of them have done.’€

Kara’€™s acting started with childhood plays at a middle school for the arts she attended in Florida and has expanded to include occasional appearances as Remi on Nick at Nite’€™s teen drama ‘€œHollywood Heights.’€

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Read More: Bobby Valentine, Dan Schneider, Jerry Royster, Kara Royster
Sunday’s Red Sox-Indians matchups: Jon Lester vs. Corey Kluber 08.12.12 at 9:37 am ET
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Red Sox left-hander Jon Lester will start against the Indians in the final game of the four-game series at Progressive Field on Sunday afternoon.

In his last outing, the 28-year-old threw 6 2/3 innings and allowed four runs in a 6-3 loss to the Rangers. Lester (5-10, 5.36) is on a two-game losing streak. The Red Sox have lost six of his last seven starts.

Boston defeated the Yankees when Lester pitched six innings and allowed four runs in late July. The lefty has not won a start since June 27, when the Red Sox defeated the Blue Jays 10-4. Lester pitched seven innings of four-run baseball in that game.

Lester hasn’t pitched against the Indians since May 25, when he allowed zero runs through six innings in a Red Sox victory.

Corey Kluber, who will be starting for the Indians, has never faced the Red Sox in his career. In two years in the majors, Kluber (0-0, 6.10) has pitched in five games. He has started twice in his career, both times this season.

Both of Kluber’s starts ended in losses. In his last outing, the 26-year-old allowed one earned run in six innings as the Indians lost to Minnesota. In his first start of the season, on Aug. 2, Kluber allowed six runs through 4 1/3 innings to the Royals. Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Asdrubal Cabrera, Corey Kluber, Jon Lester, Shin-Soo Choo
Saturday’s Red Sox-Indians matchups: Franklin Morales vs. Zach McAllister 08.11.12 at 12:10 pm ET
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Red Sox left-hander Franklin Morales will take the mound against the Indians when the two teams face off Saturday night at Progressive Field.

The Red Sox won Morales’ last start against the Twins, when he tossed six innings of one-run baseball in the 6-4 victory.

Morales (3-2, 3.14), who has switched between the bullpen and starting rotation, will be making his seventh start of the year. The lefty will be seeking his first win on the road since defeating the Rays on July 13. Morales is 1-0 with a 1.35 ERA when pitching away from Fenway this season.

Morales last threw against the Indians in May, logging back-to-back relief appearances. In total he pitched 1 1/3 innings, allowing two hits and zero runs. The 26-year-old has faced nine current Indians batters but has not faced anyone more than seven times.

Starting for the Indians will be Zach McAllister, who is coming off one of his worst starts this season. He allowed nine runs, two earned, and lasted 1 2/3 innings when he pitched against the Twins in his last start.

McAllister (4-4, 3.60) last won a game on July 16, when he allowed one run through six innings in a 3-2 victory over the Rays. He recorded his last home victory on July 3, when he tossed six innings and allowed three earned runs.

The 24-year-old, who is 2-2 with a 3.38 ERA at home, last threw against the Red Sox on May 12. He tossed seven innings of four-run baseball en-route to the 4-1 Indians loss. The righty has faced six Red Sox batters but has not thrown against any player more than four times.

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Read More: franklin morales, Zach McAllister,
Bobby Valentine on D&C: Players show too much frustration with umpires 08.08.12 at 11:15 am ET
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Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine appeared on Dennis & Callahan on Wednesday morning, saying the players often show their frustration over missed calls but have trouble moving on. To listen to the full interview visit the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

“Yeah. I think it’s just part of, you know, the combativeness of this culture that we have here and it seems that sometimes there is a prevailing attitude that affects us adversely,” Valentine said.

Felix Doubront, as well as Jon Lester, are a couple players who display emotion over missed calls. Valentine said he has been repetitively telling players to move on.

“It’s not like you just tell someone,” Valentine said. “You say it as many times as possible and you try to make it a part of the program. It’s a difficult task.”

While that may be difficult for the Red Sox, 4.5 games behind in the wild card chase, Valentine said he has not faced opposition from ownership.

“Once again, nothing mean was said to Will [Middlebrooks] and I’ve been with this ownership now for five or six months,” Valentine said. “They’ve been nothing but supportive and I have reached out to them at times and said, ‘Hey, if there’s anything you see here that I’m doing here, anyway that I can be better for what we’re all trying to accomplish, please let me know.’ ” Read the rest of this entry »

Read More: Bobby Valentine, David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, felix doubront
Saturday’s Red Sox-Twins matchups: Clay Buchholz vs. Cole De Vries 08.04.12 at 9:35 am ET
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Clay Buchholz will take the mound for the Red Sox against the Twins and righty Cole De Vries on Saturday night.

The Red Sox have won Buchholz’s last three starts, taking down the Tigers, Rangers and White Sox. He is 9-3 with a 4.75 ERA on the season, and the Red Sox are 3-1 since the righty returned from esophagitis in July.

In his last start, Buchholz allowed two runs and one home run through eight innings in a 7-3 win over the Tigers. It is the first victory Buchholz has earned since returning from his injury.

The 27-year-old is 1-0 all time against the Twins with a 8.44 ERA. He last started against Minnesota on April 25, allowing five runs in 5 1/3 innings as the Red Sox won 7-6. Buchholz has faced eight current Twins batters, pitching against Justin Morneau 11 times. Morneau is batting .455 with one RBI against the righty.

De Vries (2-2, 3.98) has never pitched against any current Boston batters, as he’s making his first start against the Red Sox.

The rookie pitched five innings of four-run baseball in his last start en route to a 7-6 Minnesota victory over the White Sox. Before the victory, the Twins had lost five of De Vries’ starts in a row.

His last victory came on June 30 over the Royals, when De Vries allowed one run through six innings. The Twins won 5-1.

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Read More: Clay Buchholz, Cole De Vries, Justin Morneau,
Jerry Remy on D&C: Red Sox ‘couldn’t get a deal to their liking’ 08.01.12 at 10:33 am ET
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NESN Red Sox analyst Jerry Remy made his weekly appearance on the Dennis & Callahan show Wednesday morning and talked about the team’s lack of a major deal at the trade deadline. To listen to the interview, visit the Dennis & Callahan audio on demand page.

“I think they thought they couldn’t get a deal to their liking,” Remy said. “They probably looked around, shopped around, tried to see if they could make this particular team better [this year and] moving into next year. Those moves probably weren’t out there so you get the [Matt] Albers and the [Craig] Breslow deal and in a way it may come out looking pretty good because you get [Franklin] Morales back in the starting rotation, probably, depending on how bad [Josh] Beckett is. I’m sure they explored a lot of things, but I also believe they think the higher up and throughout the team they still have enough hitting to make a run. It wasn’t a big surprise to me that nothing big was done yesterday.”

This mindset won’t translate into the offseason if the Red Sox fail to make the playoffs, Remy said. While the Red Sox analyst believes Bobby Valentine will stay at least until the conclusion of his contract, he doesn’t think the same can be said for Boston’s roster.

“You’re in for one of the greatest runs you’ve ever seen or you’re in for [a roster blowup],” Remy said. “If the team plays the way it’s capable of playing, they can make a run at this thing and can possibly get into the playoffs. If it doesn’t, then it’s been a major disappointment and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if it gets blown up. And not blown up in a way that you’re rebuilding, blown up in a way where you’re changing parts to be a contending team.”

But the Red Sox, trying to close ground in the wild card race, are on a four-game winning streak. Continuing the streak depends on more than just offense and David Ortiz returning from injury, Remy said.

“It’s all up to the pitching,” Remy said. “It depends on what the pitching does. [Clay] Buccholz has been great recently. Beckett, we don’t know how good he’s going to be. [Jon] Lester was much better last time out. It depends on those guys. If they pitch well they can continue this run and have a good homestand.”

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Read More: Bobby Valentine, Cody Ross, franklin morales, Jerry Remy
Bobby Valentine: ‘I’ve never been told that [Carl Crawford] needs an operation’ 07.29.12 at 9:43 pm ET
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NEW YORK — With Carl Crawford back in the lineup after sitting on Saturday against left-handed starter CC Sabathia, Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine suggested that he was comfortable with the four-day plan that has been outlined for the outfielder’s usage. Valentine also said that, if his playing time is managed properly, that the injured ulnar collateral ligament in Crawford’s left elbow could improve.

“It’€™s a very simple thing. It bothers him and you don’€™t want it to get to the point where it’€™s intolerable. It made sense to me,” Valentine said of the idea of managing Crawford’s playing time. “And we’€™re hoping that it’€™s going to hurt less and bother him less and that’€™s why we have a prescribed program.’€

Given that the Sox are hopeful that Crawford’s elbow will improve, Valentine suggested that Crawford’s pronouncement that he will need Tommy John surgery may not prove accurate.

“I heard what Carl said,” said Valentine. “I’€™ve never been told that he needs an operation. I don’€™t think that’€™s a definitive situation.”

Even so, Valentine did check in with his outfielder to make sure that the two remained on the same page after what appeared to be confusion about his usage and playing time on Saturday.

“I said, hey, if I do anything to confuse you or make you anything more than as comfortable as possible, you’€™ve just got to let me know. I guess when everyone came to him at his locker, he got uncomfortable,” said Valentine. “He says he’€™s fine.’€

OTHER NOTES

  • Valentine suggested that the fact that former Red Sox manager Terry Francona held court in the Red Sox clubhouse on Saturday with a number of his former players was a non-issue.”I didn’€™t think it was any big deal. I didn’€™t see it,” Valentine said. “I wasn’€™t there partaking in the conversation but what’€™s the big deal?” Read the rest of this entry »
Read More: Alex Rodriguez, Bobby Valentine, felix doubront, jarrod saltalamacchia
Sunday’s Red Sox-Yankees matchups: Felix Doubront vs. Hiroki Kuroda 07.29.12 at 9:16 am ET
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Felix Doubront will make his third start against the Yankees this season on Sunday night in the Bronx.

The 24-year-old lost his last outing to the Rangers, allowing six runs and one home run on eight hits in five innings. On the season, Doubront is 10-5 with a 4.45 ERA.

He is 1-o against the Yankees this season, winning his most recent start against New York after allowing three runs in 6 1/3 innings. He tossed six innings in his earlier start against the Yankees, allowing one run before the Red Sox lost 15-9.

Of all Yankees batters, Mark Teixeira has been the most successful against Doubront. He has four RBIs in six plate appearances. No batter has faced Doubront more than eight times.

Starting for New York will be Hiroki Kuroda, who threw seven innings of one-run baseball in his last start. The Yankees defeated the Mariners 4-1, marking the sixth straight Kuroda start the Yankees won.

Kuroda (10-7, 3.34) pitched against the Red Sox on July 6, allowing six runs through 5 2/3 innings in the eventual 10-8 New York victory.

The 37-year-old has pitched against eight current Boston batters. Adrian Gonzalez is batting .308 with six RBIs in 32 plate appearances against Kuroda.

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Read More: adrian gonzalez, felix doubront, Hiroki Kuroda, Mark Teixeira
Closing Time: Adrian Gonzalez, Pedro Ciriaco lead Red Sox to late win over Yankees 07.28.12 at 9:25 pm ET
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NEW YORK — The Red Sox looked ready to cave in, with their season seemingly on the brink of collapse.

But after the bullpen blew a 6-4 lead in the eighth inning, the lineup responded to Mark Teixeira‘s game-tying two-run homer with a two-run rally of its own in the top of the ninth. The key damage was done by Pedro Ciriaco, who delivered a go-ahead triple and then scored an insurance run on a sacrifice fly in the top of the ninth. Ciriaco, batting second in place of  Carl Crawford, went 3-for-5 and scored three runs, improving his average to .356 on the year.

The victory brought the Sox back to one game under .500 with three games left before the trade deadline.

WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE RED SOX

‘€¢ Adrian Gonzalez had one of his most impactful games of the season, going 3-for-5 with a run-scoring double in the first against starter CC Sabathia and then later adding a three-run homer in the fifth against the giant left-hander to put the Sox in position to claim a 6-4 win over the Yankees in the Bronx.

It was Gonzalez’s 10th homer of the year, and with those two hits, he improved to .418 (best in the majors) with a 1.146 OPS with runners in scoring position. The homer snapped a string by the Sox of seven straight solo homers.

‘€¢ It was anything but perfect for Jon Lester, but the left-hander had his best stuff in some time, limiting the Yankees to four hits and two walks in six innings while striking out six. However, he was also touched for four runs as he once again proved vulnerable to the longball. He was taken deep by the Yankees twice, and has now allowed seven homers in his last three starts.

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Read More: adrian gonzalez, Jon Lester, Pedro Ciriaco,
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