|Red Sox pregame notes: David Ortiz lingering foot/heel issues are ‘real situations’||06.21.16 at 5:25 pm ET|
Prior to Tuesday’s game, Red Sox manager John Farrell addressed some injury concerns festering the team, including one that was suspected to not be as bad as it actually is in David Ortiz’s heel and foot.
Ortiz is not in the lineup for Tuesday’s game in order to recuperate physically, as the 40-year-old is fighting off lingering foot and heel problems.
“The heel and the feet, those are real situations that he’s managing,” Farrell said. “He’s putting forth every effort with the training staff to get him ready to keep him on the field. We also monitor the number of times he’s been on base.”
Ortiz currently leads the league in extra-base hits with 48 (29 doubles, and one triple). Through June 20th of last season, he was at 21.
“When he hits the ballpark he’s going to jog,” Farrell said. “Base hit he’s probably going to go easy. It’s the home to second or first to third that’s where it really starts to pile up on David.”
Farrell added that in the Red Sox’ two remaining road interleague series this season it would be highly unlikely to for Ortiz to take the field defensively. He also noted that he has a habit of checking in on Ortiz during the middle innings to assure he is feeling okay.
The Red Sox skipper also commented on the status of injured starter Joe Kelly, currently with Triple-A Pawtucket, who is expected to start throwing off the mound this weekend.
The righty was placed on the disabled list with a Grade 1 groin strain on June 12, retroactive to June 9 while in Pawtucket following his demotion on June 2.
Said Farrell: “Long toss continues. There’s improvement with the injury that he sustained, but the bullpen is hopefully this weekend.”
OTHER RED SOX NOTES
While Dustin Pedroia returns after not starting on Monday, the Red Sox will be without David Ortiz Tuesday night against White Sox ace Chris Sale.
For his career, Ortiz 5-for-13 against the left-hander.
Hanley Ramirez will serve as the designated hitter in his absence, Travis Shaw will slide over to first base and Deven Marrero will start at third base.
Sandy Leon will catch Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz.
Here is the complete Red Sox lineup:
Mookie Betts, RF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Xander Bogaerts, SS
David Ortiz, DH
Jackie Bradley Jr., CF
Chris Young, LF
Travis Shaw, 1B
Sandy Leon, C
Deven Marrero, 3B
Clay Buchholz, RHP
For an extensive look at the matchups, click here.
|Closing Time: Eduardo Rodriguez struggles again as Red Sox fall to Orioles||06.16.16 at 10:04 pm ET|
The Red Sox needed Eduardo Rodriguez to take a step forward Thursday night and instead he took a step back.
The left-hander allowed five runs in 4 1/3 innings to take the loss as the Red Sox were blown out by the Orioles, 5-1.
“It comes down to more consistent location,” manager John Farrell said. “It’s not a matter of stuff. I thought he used a full assortment of pitches here tonight, a mix. Quality fastball in terms of just power, but it comes down to location.”
Rodriguez finished the night going just 4 1/3 innings allowing five runs on eight hits, while walking two and striking out five. He struggled with getting ahead of the count and the Orioles were able take full advantage of balls left over the plate.
After a 10-pitch second inning with two strikeouts, Rodriguez went out in the third and allowed two runs on a mammoth home run off the bat of Adam Jones, well over the Green Monster. It scored No. 9 hitter Paul Janish, who walked to open the frame.
The Orioles added another in the fourth on an RBI double from Jones and two more on the fifth on a single by Chris Davis and a double by Jonathan Schoop.
“I just have to keep going and working to be better, that’s it,” Rodriguez said.
It was the first time he allowed more than three earned runs in a night game (15 starts). In his last five starts against the AL East, he’s allowed five earned runs in all five.
On the flip side, the Red Sox were shut down by rookie right-hander Tyler Wilson. He went eight shutout innings, scattering three hits, walking one and striking out six.
David Ortiz hit his 17th home run of the year in the ninth inning to snap the shutout. It was his 209th career home run at Fenway Park, breaking a tie with Jim Rice for third on the venue’s all-time list.
Matt Barnes (1 2/3 innings) and Clay Buchholz (three innings) did give the Red Sox 4 2/3 innings of scoreless relief.
Rodriguez has given up six home runs in four starts to right-handers, which matches the total number he allowed in 21 starts last year.
Here is what went wrong (and right) in the Red Sox loss
|David Ortiz, Xander Bogaerts, Jackie Bradley Jr. lead AL All-Star voting at respective positions||06.14.16 at 12:08 pm ET|
If things go the way they are now, the Red Sox will be well-represented in San Diego for the All-Star Game.
On Tuesday, Major League Baseball released the updated voting numbers from the fans and three members of the Red Sox lead their respective positions.
David Ortiz leads the designated hitter category by a considerable amount over Kendrys Morales, Xander Bogaerts has a slight edge over Alcides Escobar at shortstop and in the outfield, Jackie Bradley Jr. is in second place behind Mike Trout. As it stands now, Trout, Bradley Jr. and Lorenzo Cain would be the American League starting outfield.
Hanley Ramirez is fourth at first place, Dustin Pedroia fourth at second base, Blake Swihart fifth behind the plate and Mookie Betts is fifth in the outfield.
Online voting ends on June 30.
For more Red Sox news, visit weei.com/redsox.
|David Ortiz reiterates he hasn’t changed mind regarding retirement||06.10.16 at 12:19 pm ET|
David Ortiz is still retiring.
Three weeks after telling WEEI.com that he is “100 percent sure” he was going to retire at the end of the 2016 season, Ortiz evidently hasn’t changed his mind.
Talking to USA Today, Ortiz reiterated his stance when it comes to calling it quits despite having gotten off to the best start of his career.
“Right now, my mind is made up,” he told Bob Nightengale. “Physically, I could do it, but mentally, I’m exhausted. Hopefully, everything keeps going well this year, because right now, everything is going perfect.
“I’m having so much fun, bro. I’m having as much fun as I’ve ever had in my life. I’m having so much fun that I actually can’t believe I’m retiring this year, either.”
Ortiz, who served as a pinch-hitter in the Red Sox’ two games in San Francisco, is headed to Minnesota as one of the best hitters in all of baseball. He leads the majors in OPS (1.153), while totaling 16 home runs and a .338 batting average.
He is now going to a ballpark, Target Field, in which he has hit .435 with a 1.385 with nine home runs in 17 games.
“Hopefully, everything keeps going well this year,” he said, “because right now, everything is going perfect.”
|Red Sox DH David Ortiz looking forward to final visit to Minnesota, where his career began||06.09.16 at 9:59 am ET|
David Ortiz is about to come full circle.
The 40-year-old slugger returns to Minnesota on Friday for the final time as a player, 19 years after he made his big league debut for the Twins, as the Red Sox open a three-game series.
“Just going to go over there and have fun,” Ortiz told reporters in San Francisco after the Red Sox dropped a 2-1 decision to the Giants on Wednesday. “Try to win some games, get back into the mojo, see some of my boys. I hear some of my boys are going to be there, that will be fun, see some of my boys.”
Ortiz believes former Twin Torii Hunter, who retired before this season, might be there. The two came up together as 21-year-olds in 1997. Reliever LaTroy Hawkins, another member of that team, did some coaching for the Twins in spring training after hanging up his cleats this winter, as well. And of course, Twins manager Paul Molitor, now 59, was finishing up his career when Ortiz started, too.
Ortiz, who will retire at the end of the season, is still going strong at age 40, though he has no idea why the Red Sox were forced to fly to San Francisco for two games.
“It is what it is, you just have to get used to this [BS], coming here across the country to play two games,” he told reporters. “I don’t see the point. But it is what it is. Ever thought about that, coming this far to play two games? I feel like I played five games here.”
Ortiz didn’t have the best experience in Minnesota, getting buried on Tom Kelly’s bench. His best season came in 2002, when he hit .272 with 20 homers and 75 RBIs, his season curtailed by a broken wrist. The Twins released him that offseason and the rest is history.
Ortiz hit 58 of his 519 (and counting) lifetime homers in a Twins uniform, so the city will always hold a special place for him. He hopes to leave it with one final reminder of what might have been. He’s a lifetime .323 hitter with a 1.042 OPS against them.
“I just try to do something and I have good success in Minnesota through the years,” he told reporters. “Hopefully that will continue through the last game that I play.”
|John Farrell on David Ortiz: ‘I don’t want to risk losing him’||06.07.16 at 9:15 pm ET|
For the ninth game this season, David Ortiz began a game on the bench.
At first glance, the rest Tuesday night in San Francisco would seem to be a product of not having a designated hitter in the Red Sox’ interleague game against the Giants.
But, as Red Sox manager John Farrell told reporters prior to his team’s series opener, the move also is being made in an attempt to manage what has become a somewhat tenuous situation involving Ortiz’s Achilles tendon and heels.
“I don’t want to risk losing him,” Farrell told the media at AT&T Park. “David’s been great as far as days where he’s not felt 100 percent but he’s pushed it. That was even on the homestand just completed. I can’t say this is a situation that’s worsening, but we’ve got to be mindful of the wear and tear that he’s gone through as a 40-year-old.”
Farrell’s cautious approach toward Ortiz was on display in the ninth inning of the Red Sox’ game against the Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon. Even with the Sox trailing by three runs and one out, the manager chose to pinch-run for the designated hitter after his run-scoring double.
“We’re in a situation right now where late in games we’re taking him out in maybe situations we wouldn’t have previous,” Farrell explained to reporters. “Just in communication with the entire medical staff, [such as] Dan Dyrek, who’s very hands-on with David. The volume that he’s increased to, we felt like he’s best-served for pinch-hit situations here.”
|Closing Time: Red Sox nearly no-hit, Eduardo Rodriguez (4 HRs) knocked around, rally falls short in loss to Blue Jays||06.05.16 at 4:21 pm ET|
Well that was a weird game.
On one side, Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez allowed four hits — all homers — and failed to record a strikeout for just the second time in his career. On the other, Jays starter Marco Estrada took a no-hitter into the eighth before Chris Young ended it with a one-out solo homer into the Monster seats.
But just as quickly as the Red Sox looked dead, they put the tying run on second base with two outs in the ninth before pinch hitter Marco Hernandez struck out to end it. The Sox scored three times in the ninth off of closer Roberto Osuna, but when it ended, the Jays had claimed a 5-4 victory to take two out of three.
“We continue to battle right through the final out,” said manager John Farrell. “We’re one swing of the bat away from tying that ballgame up, potentially going ahead. I love the fact that our guys don’t ever quit. They keep coming. There’s a tremendous amount of character in that room. You tip your hat to a quality start by Estrada, but still, we’re four outs from this one being over and against one of the better closers in the game, we took very good swings against a really good fastball and we had some momentum built late.”
The Red Sox haven’t been no-hit since April 22, 1993 by Seattle’s Chris Bosio. They last time they were no-hit at home was July 20, 1958 by Detroit’s Jim Bunning.
Estrada looked like he had a chance through seven, striking out four and walking three, aided by a pair of nice catches in center by Kevin Pillar, as well as a running over-the-shoulder grab by right fielder Jose Bautista to end the seventh.
But Young left no doubt with his blast. Estrada was lifted after allowing a leadoff single in the ninth in favor of closer Osuna, who allowed doubles to Dustin Pedroia, David Ortiz, and Hanley Ramirez, and singles to Bradley and Young before rallying from a 3-0 count to strike out Hernandez to end it.
On the other side, Rodriguez allowed home runs to Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion, Darwin Barney, and Russell Martin. Encarnacion’s was a two-run shot.
Though his velocity crept up to 93-94 mph, Rodriguez frequently found himself behind in the count as he nibbled at the corners, trying to keep the ball from the middle of the plate.
The Blue Jays entered the game ranked fourth in the American League in strikeouts, but E-Rod didn’t manage one. His only other start without a K came last July in an 11-1 loss to the Angels when he didn’t finish the second inning.
WHAT WENT WRONG
— The Red Sox offense stagnated, remaining hitless until Young’s homer in the eighth. “Estrada kept us off balance,” Young said.
— E-Rod looked shaky, allowing a first-inning homer to Bautista and lacking a put-away pitch thereafter. He allowed four hits and five runs in 5 2/3 innings, walking three and striking out none. “I feel like I missed the spot all four times — two with a changeup, two with a heater,” he said. “The Martin one was right in the middle. The third one, I feel like it was a good pitch. He just put a pretty good swing on it. That’s the whole thing — I just missed spots four times.”
— With two on via walk in the first leading off against Estrada, AL batting leader Xander Bogaerts chose to bunt. Lead runner Mookie Betts was cut down at third and the Red Sox didn’t sniff another rally until the eighth.
“He saw something there. He sees Dominguez playing back a little bit,” Farrell said. “Thought he might be able to put one down. I’m sure that if he were to revisit things, down a run, nobody out, he’s trying to move runners. He sees something there, but certainly not going to take the bat out of his hands.”
WHAT WENT RIGHT
— DH David Ortiz stroked his league-leading 26th double in the ninth to drive in the second Red Sox run.
— Young raised his average to .286 with his fourth homer of the year. He’s due for increased playing time with catcher Blake Swihart sidelined by a severe ankle sprain. “When you’re not starting you find yourself trying to playing manager in your head to see what kind of situation is coming up for you to bat, trying to get loose throughout game, try to pick opportunities you may go in the game,” Young said. “I’m happy about it, I’m happy about any opportunity I get, any time I’m playing, I’m a happy guy.”
— Relievers Heath Hembree and Clay Buchholz combined to throw 3 1/3 hitless innings, striking out five.
|Closing Time: Xander Bogaerts, Travis Shaw lead Red Sox over Blue Jays to end 3-game losing streak||06.04.16 at 7:13 pm ET|
Although the Red Sox have scuffled of late — losing three straight and six of their last nine going into the game — they still have yet to lose four in a row this season.
Led by the offense, the Red Sox snapped their skid with a 6-4 win over the Blue Jays Saturday afternoon at Fenway Park.
Like they have all season, the Red Sox were able to get to Blue Jays starter Marcus Stroman. The offense scored in five straight innings against him, as he departed with the Red Sox on top 6-4 in the sixth.
David Ortiz had a two-run single in the third and Travis Shaw added a two-out RBI single in the fifth. They added another in the sixth on a very close play at the plate involving Blake Swihart trying to score from first on a Mookie Betts double. He was originally called out, but following a challenge the call at home was overturned and Swihart was ruled safe.
Xander Bogaerts paced the offense with three hits, while Shaw and Betts each had two.
“[Bogaerts] with another big day,” manager John Farrell said. “After being stopped last night, he picks up three base hits today. I thought we did an outstanding job of running the bases — taking an extra 90 feet. Blake [Swihart] scoring from first. [Bogaerts] going first-to-third on a groundball out. Some heads up base running for sure. David with another key base hit for the two RBIs off Stroman. Each time they were able to put a run on the board, once again we were able to answer right back. That continues to be a characteristic of this team.”
In relief of Red Sox starter Steven Wright, Matt Barnes allowed a run over two innings, Junichi Tazawa threw a scoreless eighth and Craig Kimbrel closed things out in the ninth. Overall, the Red Sox’ arms limited the Blue Jays to just four hits in the game.
Wright was pulled after the fifth inning and throwing 111 pitches. The knuckleballer allowed three runs, but none of them were earned because of passed balls. Two scored in the fifth on one passed ball when Michael Saunders struck out and beat the throw to first, which allowed both Ryan Goins and Jose Bautista to score. The Red Sox led 4-1 going into the inning.
Ryan Hanigan and Swihart left the game in the seventh inning. Hanigan left with a neck strain and Swihart departed with a left ankle injury suffered hitting the wall hard in left field on a foul ball. He was helped off the field by a trainer and Farrell.
Dustin Pedroia has now hit safely in 25 straight games against the Blue Jays, tying the second longest streak in MLB history (Jerry Remy, 26, 1977-82 and Vladimir Guerrero, 25, 2001-06).
Here is what went right (and wrong) in the Red Sox’ win:
On the day following Muhammad Ali’s passing, many have recalled their memories of one of the greatest boxers of all-time.
David Ortiz was one of them, as he gave his thoughts on Ali before Saturday’s game with the Blue Jays.
“[He] was a person, his career, the way he did things, the way things went down … nobody is ever going to forget that,” Ortiz said to reporters.
Ortiz added even people who weren’t alive during Ali’s greatest years will find out just how great and impactful he was.
“I think right now with all the ways people have to learn and get to know things, especially on a day like today, the day he passed away, the younger people that don’t know much about it, they are going to be Googling his name and figuring things out,” he added.
Manager John Farrell also shared his memories of the boxer.
“I can remember as a kid, 9 or 10 years old, my dad was a fan of boxing, so to see some of his matches being televised — he was certainly a controversial figure in some people’s minds,” Farrell said. “He was clear to talk about how good he was. But the thing you remember most is, it’s almost like every big match he had had its own name, whether it’s ‘The Fight,’ or ‘The Thrilla in Manila,’ anything like that.”
“Personally, not knowing what Islam was about and to see someone change his name and become so familiar with that — that was a major shift in trying to get an understanding of what (Islam) was as a kid,” Farrell added. “It was very different, very unique.”
For more Red Sox news, visit weei.com/redsox.
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