|Red Sox notes: Shane Victorino suffers setback; rotation still in state of flux||06.25.14 at 10:36 pm ET|
SEATTLE — As has happened so many times this season, things didn’t go quite as planned when it came to Shane Victorino‘s health.
The outfielder suffered a setback when playing for Triple-A Pawtucket Tuesday, feeling discomfort in his back. Victorino has been dealing with the ailment off and on since last season, missing a majority of spring training because of the issue.
Prior to the Red Sox‘ series finale against the Mariners, John Farrell said there was no timetable for Victorino’s return. The outfielder was thought to be on target to join the Red Sox in New York Friday before the flare-up.
According to Farrell, the Sox still would like to get back to 13 position players for the three-game set against the Yankees. It remains to be seen if the latest developments change how the Sox view a Mookie Betts, who originally wasn’t expected to get a call to the big leagues for the weekend.
“Right now, with the current position player group, we’d like to think it would be a right-handed hitter that could help balance things out,” Farrell said. “That’s why Shane’s return to us felt like a fit for a number of reasons. One, the player he is, but just the balance of right- and left-handed. So we’ll see what options are available to fix that.”
The manager said the plan remains to get Felix Doubront a start in the Cubs series at Fenway Park. He also noted that Jake Peavy still is slated to make his turn in the rotation Monday, although Farrell said once again that Rubby De La Rosa is thought to be part of the rotation.
“We’re still looking at getting him in the rotation by the Cubs series,” Farrell said of Doubront, who pitched two innings out of the bullpen Tuesday night. “That’s our intent. So the following question is, OK, where’s Rubby going? Rubby’s also factoring into this. We know we have to make a move, and yet, we’re not there yet.”
– Mike Napoli was out of the starting lineup after fouling ball off his already-injured toe.
“When he went on the DL, he was suffering from a number of different things. One was his left toe that he banged up against the wall in Texas,” Farrell said. “He fouled a ball off his foot last night. He’s available for [Wednesday], but just felt like if we can get through a couple turns in the lineup before we need him, like I said, he is available.”
– Farrell explained prior to the game just how difficult it was to designate Chris Capuano for assignment.
“Extremely tough,” he said. “When you consider his veteran presence, as talented as he is, the success he had early on with us, and all that he represents about the game, he’s a quality individual. Releasing someone or designating someone for assignment is never an easy one, but this one, because of how he handles himself, he’s a true pro. And unfortunately, had to create the spot for Clay, it felt like this was the move to make at the time.”
|Friday’s Red Sox-Athletics matchups: Felix Doubront vs. Brad Mills||06.20.14 at 8:12 am ET|
Friday marks Doubront’s first start since May 21, when the southpaw went on the disabled list with a shoulder strain. Doubront (2-4, 5.12 ERA) has made three rehab starts between Triple-A Pawtucket and Double-A Portland, allowing four runs over 13 2/3 innings (2.63 ERA) while striking out 15.
In his last Triple-A start on June 15 against the Charlotte Knights, Doubront struck out 10 batters over five no-hit innings.
“His last start was much improved in terms of overall stuff,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said Thursday. “There was increased intensity, increased velocity, increased action to his pitches that are going to be required here, and he gets the ball [Friday].”
Doubront will take the spot vacated by Brandon Workman, who began serving his six-game suspension for throwing behind Rays third baseman Evan Longoria on May 30.
Doubront’s last start against the A’s came on April 22, 2013, when the left-hander surrendered three earned runs and five walks in 6 2/3 innings of work. In three career starts against Oakland, Doubront is 1-2 with a 8.56 ERA.
Mills will be making his first start in the majors this season. The southpaw was traded from the Brewers to the A’s on Tuesday for a whopping $1. The price tag was a result of a clause in Mills’ contract that forced Milwaukee to put him on the trade market if he was not placed on an MLB roster by June 15.
The Red Sox rotation is about to get awfully crowded.
Prior to Thursday’s game against the Athletics, the Red Sox announced that left-hander Felix Doubront will return from the disabled list on Friday to start against the A’s — a contest for which Brandon Workman had been slated until his six-game suspension sidelined him for the contest. Doubront, who was 2-4 with a 5.12 ERA before landing on the disabled list due to a bruise incurred when he banged his shoulder into a car door, pitched most recently in Triple-A Pawtucket on Sunday, when he threw five no-hit innings with 10 strikeouts and touched 94 mph on the radar gun.
Sometime next week, Clay Buchholz likewise will return from the DL after throwing six shutout innings on 90 pitches for Pawtucket on Thursday afternoon. For now, the Sox have yet to announce the precise date when Buchholz will make his big league start.
“We have a number of things, moving parts, and as we get through this weekend those decisions will become more clear,” manager John Farrell told reporters.
Buchholz’s performance was such that the team is hopeful that his early-season struggles — he’s 2-4 with a 7.02 ERA — will not follow him back to the big leagues.
“Hopefully we worked through a number of things that puts him into a place where the numbers that are on the record to date this year are just that, they’re in the past and we get a guy who is straightened out a little bit and ready to go,” Farrell told reporters.
What that means for the rest of the rotation is, at this time, unclear. While Brandon Workman and Rubby De La Rosa were both added to the rotation as a result of the DL stints for Buchholz and Doubront, both have delivered strong performances, with Workman owning a 1-0 record and 3.21 ERA and De La Rosa in possession of a 2.84 ERA as a starter.
|Felix Doubront ready to go Friday if Red Sox use him in Brandon Workman’s place||06.18.14 at 5:18 pm ET|
Felix Doubront appears a good bet to get Friday’s start in Oakland, a spot that is now vacant with Brandon Workman serving his six-game suspension.
“He’s a definite candidate, Felix is,” John Farrell said Wednesday. “He’s on turn, but we’ll have that announcement by tomorrow.”
Doubront would not say whether he is starting the game for sure, but saying only, “I just heard I have to be ready for Friday.”
The 26-year-old lefty, who was dealing with a shoulder injury, is back in Boston after making three rehab starts between Double A Portland and Triple A Pawtucket.
Doubront last pitched Sunday for Pawtucket, striking out 10 batters over five innings of work.
“I feel good,” Doubront said. “Like I said, I’m ready. Ready to come back and [it's] good to be here again.”
In nine starts for the Red Sox this season, Doubront is 2-4 with a 5.12 ERA.
|One more rehab start for Clay Buchholz, Felix Doubront could return this weekend||06.16.14 at 6:33 pm ET|
At a time when Brandon Workman is expected to be unavailable for his next start due to a suspension (pending a verdict from Major League Baseball about his appeal of his six-game hiatus), Red Sox manager John Farrell said that left-hander Felix Doubront — who threw five no-hit innings on Sunday in which he punched out 10 and threw 94 pitches — could be a consideration for Workman’s next turn in the rotation on Friday in Oakland.
“He came off a solid outing yesterday where his stuff was improved. It’s yet to be determined where his next start will be,” said Farrell, who described Doubront as a “candidate” to start for Workman.
Clay Buchholz is not a candidate. He is now slated to make his next start in Pawtucket on Thursday, with the team trying to build his pitch count (he threw 62 pitches, 42 strikes, on Saturday) before considering his return to the big leagues. Though Buchholz allowed three runs and a pair of homers in 4 2/3 innings for the PawSox on Saturday, Farrell said that the team saw improved stuff, and now simply needs him to be ready to make a big league start without overtaxing his bullpen.
“Clay went out and was able to accomplish, for the most part, some of the delivery adjustments he’s been working on,” said Farrell. “Overall strikes were improved. We recognize what took place in the line score inside that, but a higher percentage of strikes, better power overall, more defined shape to the individual types of pitches. We need to get him up to 90 pitches or so this next outing.”
|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||at 8:36 am ET|
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 »
|Red Sox minor league roundup: Brian Johnson dominating; Felix Doubront’s missing velocity; Garin Cecchini goes deep||06.11.14 at 12:00 pm ET|
A look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Tuesday:
– Felix Doubront made his second rehab start (and first for Pawtucket), going 4 2/3 innings and allowing two runs on six hits and a walk while fanning three. Doubront threw 75 pitches with 44 going for strikes. Most of the six hits he allowed were struck well, with the Bats clubbing two doubles in the opening inning while scattering three line-drive singles and a ground ball single throughout the rest of Doubront’s outing.
According to the Providence Journal’s Tim Britton, Doubront’s velocity, which had been a cause for concern prior to his injury, dipped considerably, with just four of his 75 pitches hitting 90 miles per hour or higher on the stadium gun, while his fastball sat around 87-88 mph.
“It’s a process. It was nice and easy and trying to control my pitches,” Doubront told Britton. “I’m looking for strength and trying to get my fastball a little bit more velocity. Right now, I feel good where I am.”
Despite the decline in velocity and the solid contact made off of the left-hander, Doubront insists that he is healthy and making progress towards a return.
“Health is first, and results I can fix later,” Doubront told Britton. “I don’t feel anything — no shooting soreness or shooting pain [in my shoulder]. It’s strong. Better than before.”
At a time when Doubront’s stuff has been less than overpowering and his results on the year have been mixed, Brandon Workman may be making a case to take the left-hander’s spot in the rotation. For more on that situation, click here.
– Garin Cecchini had his third three-hit performance of the season, going 3-for-5 and smacking his second home run of the season, a line drive solo shot to right field. It’d been 162 plate appearances since Cecchini’s last home run. He also singled twice and scored the winning run in the 10th inning. Read the rest of this entry »
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