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Red Sox lineup: Hanley Ramirez out in series finale vs. Brewers 05.11.17 at 10:04 am ET
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Hanley Ramirez is out in the series finale vs. the Brewers. (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports)

Hanley Ramirez is out in the series finale vs. the Brewers. (Kim Klement/USA Today Sports)

After leaving Wednesday’s game with a shoulder injury, Hanley Ramirez is out of the lineup Thursday in the series finale against the Brewers.

Ramirez played first base for the first time this season and couldn’t make it through the entire game. Mitch Moreland gets the start at first base, as the Red Sox go up against Brewers right-hander Jimmy Nelson.

Josh Rutledge will be at third base and Christian Vazquez will catch Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez.

Here is the complete Red Sox lineup.

Mookie Betts, RF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Xander Bogaerts, SS
Andrew Benintendi, LF
Mitch Moreland, 1B
Jackie Bradley Jr., CF
Josh Rutledge, 3B
Christian Vazquez, C
Eduardo Rodriguez, LHP

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Hanley Ramirez claims he can get even hotter than he is now 05.02.17 at 11:30 pm ET
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Hanley Ramirez has four home runs in four games. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)

Hanley Ramirez has four home runs in four games. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)

Hanley Ramirez is heating up.

The Red Sox designated hitter hit two home runs on Tuesday night in the Red Sox’ 5-2 win over the Orioles. He led both the fourth and sixth innings with solo home runs over the Monster seats.

Ramirez has four home runs in his last four games, and three have gone 440-plus feet. All five of Ramirez’s home runs this year have come in his current eight-game hit streak.

Ramirez said he can still get better.

“Not yet. Not yet,” he said. “I’m getting close. Getting close. I’ve just been working to stay short and more compact with my swing.”

After struggling a bit to open the year, and some tough luck of late, things are starting to click.

“It’s just adjustments in the cage, going through the ball and finishing your swing,” Ramirez said. “It’s the little things that can make you drive the ball or not drive the ball. I’ve been working a lot with Chili [Davis] and Victor [Rodriguez] in the cage to drive the ball.”

Since May 20 of last season, Ramirez leads the majors with 20 home runs, 53 RBIs (tied with Nolan Arenado, a .725 slugging percentage in 45 home games.

With the Red Sox lineup going up and down of late, Ramirez hitting the way he is now would certainly help steady the ship at the plate.

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Rick Porcello: ‘Thankfully Mookie’s all right, we’ll go out there and kick their ass tomorrow’ 05.01.17 at 11:54 pm ET
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Rick Porcello didn't seem to like Mookie Betts getting hit Monday. (Winslow Townson/USA Today Sports)

Rick Porcello didn’t seem to like Mookie Betts getting hit Monday. (Winslow Townson/USA Today Sports)

Before the game it seemed like things had calmed down between the Orioles and Red Sox, but maybe they didn’t after all.

In the sixth inning the Orioles were leading 2-0 with no one on base and one out when Mookie Betts was hit by a pitch on a 2-1 count by Orioles starter Dylan Bundy.

Betts didn’t escalate the situation and took first base, and nothing else happened during the game, but the Red Sox appeared to take note of it.

While they didn’t say it, it appears they believe Bundy’s pitch was in retaliation for Matt Barnes hitting Manny Machado in Baltimore just over a week ago. Bundy and O’s manager Buck Showalter said it wasn’t intentional after the game.

Red Sox starter Rick Porcello didn’t have comment, but did add, “we’ll go out there and kick their ass tomorrow.”

“I have no comment on that,” Porcello said. “I can’t tell you what they’re thinking or what they’re trying to do there. What was the count, 2-1? Who knows? I don’t know. Thankfully Mookie’s all right, we’ll go out there and kick their ass tomorrow.”

Hanley Ramirez didn’t have much to say either, but is looking forward to the rest of the series.

“I mean, what can I say? It is what it is,” Ramirez said. “It’s baseball. I don’t know what happened. He got it. … We continued to compete after that and we’ll come back tomorrow and try to win the series.”

Dustin Pedroia on the other hand, didn’t want to get into it at all.

“Bro I don’t know,” he said. “I’m more concerned that we’re trying to play better baseball.”

Added Pedroia: “I don’t — can I go home? This is ridiculous, man. We’re trying to play baseball and win games. I don’t have time for this.

For more Red Sox news, visit weei.com/redsox.

Read More: hanley ramirez, mookie betts, rick porcello,
Sloppy defense, mental mistakes catching up to Red Sox at 11:41 pm ET
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Hanley Ramirez made a baserunning mistake Monday night. (Winslow Townson/USA Today Sports)

Hanley Ramirez made a baserunning mistake Monday night. (Winslow Townson/USA Today Sports)

While the Red Sox did take two-of-three over the weekend against the Cubs, they haven’t been playing the best of baseball of late.

It all caught up to them Monday night in their 5-2 loss to the Orioles when they committed four errors in the field and then a major baserunning mistake when they had two runners standing on second base in the eighth inning.

Manager John Farrell visibly was upset after the game.

“Defensively, those are plays that are routine plays,” Farrell said. “We’re better than that. We’ve got to clean it up. It’s a matter of anticipating the play before it’s hit to you, whether it’s a ground ball on the front end of a double play, whether it’s understanding where baserunners are with a ball to the outfield, throwing the ball accurately as best possible. We’re in a tough stretch defensively, far beyond what our capabilities are. We need to clean it up.”

Marco Hernandez committed two errors at third base while Heath Hembree and Andrew Benintendi each added one respectively. In the six games over the homestand thus far, the Red Sox have committed 12 errors. For the season, they have 23 in 25 games.

“The work is consistent as far as their daily and defensive routines,” Farrell said. “It’s a matter, to me, of making routine plays, and that goes along with anticipating what’s taking place in the moment.”

The baserunning blunder occurred in the eighth inning when Hanley Ramirez hit a ball to deep left field and continued on to second base without realizing Andrew Benintendi didn’t take third. This left both players standing on second base and Benintendi was tagged out.

“Hanley, on the other hand, overaggressive baserunning on his part, running probably with his head down a little bit, but overaggressive that ends up being another mistake in the eighth inning,” Farrell said.

Ramirez took the blame for the mistake afterwards.

“I don’t throw my teammates under the bus,” he said. “It’s my fault. That’s it. I should have paid attention.”

While the Red Sox are one game over .500, they certainly are not playing like it and need to clean things up soon.

Read More: hanley ramirez, John Farrell,
Red Sox notes: Hanley Ramirez might actually play 1B sooner rather than later; Pablo Sandoval injury update at 5:08 pm ET
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Hanley Ramirez might be getting back to playing first base. (Scott Rovak/USA Today Sports)

Hanley Ramirez might be getting back to playing first base. (Scott Rovak/USA Today Sports)

Hanley Ramirez likely will play first base after all.

With Mitch Moreland having a tough last week or so — 1 for his last 15 — manager John Farrell said he will look to give the first baseman a down day coming up.

With no real obvious candidates on the roster, it appears that will be Ramirez, who hasn’t been able to play the position yet this year because of a lingering shoulder injury.

“The fact is we’re going up against a string of right-handed starters that doesn’t provide that natural day off, or little bit of a break,” Farrell said. “But I feel like we’ve got to pick a spot here. And that’s why getting everyone capable of defensive work, including Hanley, is important in that regard.”

It would appear the Red Sox want Ramirez playing first baseball when they play in Milwaukee next week.

“[Hanley has been] taking groundballs and we’re still working to get him to that point,” Farrell said. “Where we’ve got National League games upcoming, the preference would be to have him at first base in some of those games in Milwaukee.”

The news isn’t as good for Pablo Sandoval, who hasn’t been able to do much since going on the disabled list last week with a knee sprain.

“There’s no real update as far as getting closer to baseball activities,” Farrell said. “He’s still going through the rehab, the range of motion, overall strengthening. It’s been pretty status quo.”

OTHER RED SOX NOTES

— Relievers Carson Smith (Tommy John surgery) and Tyler Thornburg (shoulder) are making progress in their rehabs with Smith to throw a bullpen on Tuesday.

“[Thornburg] and Carson Smith are getting closer to getting on a mound,” Farrell said. “Carson will actually be on the mound tomorrow, so while their rehab schedules differ a little bit – in Tyler’s case, probably a little bit longer than first anticipated – they’re both making progress. So, back to the mound for both here in the coming days.”

— Farrell explained what Joe Kelly needs to do to get into more meaningful situations out of the bullpen.

“Location,” he said. “I don’t give a darn how hard you throw. If you’re not locating the ball, it’s probably going to result in some different numbers, a different performance. When he is locating the baseball, when he his throwing his breaking ball for strikes and led some hitters with that off-speed stuff early, it has made his fastball play up a little bit more. Last night is a prime example, you have Hendricks throwing 84-86, 88 and located the ball well. When you don’t, if you throw 100, those guys can turn around 100 in a heartbeat.”

Added Farrell: “He is well-aware how great of an arm he has. He is blessed with an incredible arm and the arm speed he creates, but still it comes down to the location.”

Read More: Carson Smith, hanley ramirez, John Farrell, Pablo Sandoval
Red Sox lineup: Hanley Ramirez in, Pablo Sandoval out on Marathon Monday 04.17.17 at 10:18 am ET
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Hanley Ramirez is in the lineup Monday. (Jonathan Dyer/USA Today Sports)

Hanley Ramirez is in the lineup Monday. (Jonathan Dyer/USA Today Sports)

After leaving Sunday’s win against the Rays due to a cramp, Hanley Ramirez is in the lineup for the annual Patriots Day morning game.

“He came in and he check out OK,” manager John Farrell said. “I think even after he went through some treatment at the end of the yesterday’s game, the cramp, which was what it was not a pull, started to ease up on him and feels he’s ready to go.”

Pablo Sandoval will sit against Rays left-hander Blake Snell and Marco Hernandez will get the start in his place at third base.

Xander Bogaerts has jumped Mitch Moreland in the batting order, as the shortstop is now batting fifth and Moreland is batting sixth.

Sandy Leon will catch knuckleballer Steven Wright.

Here is the complete Red Sox lineup.

Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Andrew Benintendi, CF
Mookie Betts, RF
Hanley Ramirez, DH
Xander Bogaerts, SS
Mitch Moreland, 1B
Chris Young, LF
Sandy Leon, C
Marco Hernandez, 3B
Steven Wright, RHP

Read More: hanley ramirez, Pablo Sandoval,
Jackie Bradley Jr. could see live at-bats against David Price as both work way back from injuries 04.14.17 at 5:05 pm ET
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Jackie Bradley Jr. could face David Price next week. (Rick Osentoski/USA Today Sports)

Jackie Bradley Jr. could face David Price next week. (Rick Osentoski/USA Today Sports)

The earliest Jackie Bradley Jr. (knee) can return from the disabled list is Wednesday, and by all accounts that remains a distinct possibility.

The center fielder did some on-field work Friday afternoon at Fenway Park, including some running with a brace he has been fitted for.

“I think there is [a chance he returns the day he’s eligible],” manager John Farrell said. “I wouldn’t rule it out at this point, particularly with his comments with how he feels coming out of the strength tests that he’s going through and the work they are putting him through. He’s been upbeat. He feels good. I think the brace gives him added confidence and stability as he gets acclimated to it. I wouldn’t rule it out.”

Bradley Jr. suffered the knee injury last weekend in Detroit, but has made progress each day since.

“Good day again today from a rehab and agility standpoint,” Farrell said. “Swung the bat in the cage to determine his on-field ability to take BP, which he will today. He’s wearing a brace and will continue to advance the baseball activities.”

Farrell also said Bradley Jr. might not need a rehab game or two because he could get some live at-bats against David Price.

Price is making steady progress working his way back from an elbow injury and could be ready to face live hitters early next week, which would work out nicely for Bradley Jr. and the team.

“Well, we’re hopeful by the time that comes around, David Price is facing some live hitters at that point so we can get some at-bats in that scenario,” Farrell said.

As for Hanley Ramirez, he’s yet to play a game this year at first base and his throwing program was slowed down because he had the flu last weekend.

According to Farrell, the team isn’t boycotting him playing first base, but know Ramirez prefers to DH.

“I think he does [want to play first base],” Farrell said. “I know for a fact he thrives in the DH slot. That’s probably his preference overall, but in conversations throughout the winter, once we acquired Mitch to the conversations throughout spring training, he understands how our roster is built. He’s not boycotting it, but I know where his preference lies. What is best for our team too has him going over to first base on occasion.”

Read More: David Price, hanley ramirez, jackie bradley jr., John Farrell
Hanley Ramirez on Red Sox role: I can’t be like David Ortiz at 10:08 am ET
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Hanley Ramirez

Hanley Ramirez

Hanley Ramirez sits in David Ortiz’s old locker, fills his old position of designated hitter, and bats in his old cleanup spot. On Thursday, he even made like his retired teammate by clubbing the game-tying double in the eighth inning to spearhead a 4-3 comeback victory over the Pirates.

But Ramirez wants to make one thing abundantly clear: he’s not Ortiz.

“Not at all,” Ramirez said. “Not at all. I’m one of those students from David. I learned a lot from him, that’s it, but I don’t try to be like him. What he did in the game and off the field is something hopefully somebody one day can do, but it’s got to be far because David is David. David is David, and much love that I have for him and respect, but at the same time, it’s not easy to be him. You just have to be you and, like I say, let things go out there and learn from him.”

One aspect of Ortiz’s persona that Ramirez is willing to try to fill — sounding board for younger teammates.

“This is going to be my 13th year in the big leagues, so I learned a lot through all those years,” he said. “I just try to pass it out. I got a couple of guys asking me already — I don’t want to throw names out there — what are you trying to do against this pitcher? What are we going to try to do today? That’s good. That’s exactly what I did when I was young. Always ask Manny [Ramirez] when I was here, and David, what are you trying to do in this situation, and what are you trying to do against this pitcher? So that’s how you learn.”

Read More: David Ortiz, hanley ramirez, Red Sox,
Red Sox 4, Pirates 3: Offense comes alive in nick of time to complete delayed sweep behind Hanley Ramirez, Xander Bogaerts 04.13.17 at 5:24 pm ET
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Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez pitches against the Pirates. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)

Red Sox starter Eduardo Rodriguez pitches against the Pirates. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)

The Red Sox are getting their team back from the flu, and on Thursday it belatedly translated into runs.

Shut down for seven innings, the Red Sox finally broke through in the eighth, with Xander Bogaerts’ clutch two-out single driving in Hanley Ramirez with the go-ahead run in a 4-3 victory.

The Red Sox had done nothing offensively to that point, but they finally pieced things together in the eighth to overcome a 3-1 deficit. Two walks and a single loaded the bases with one out for Ramirez, and the DH responded with a blast to deep center that eluded Pirates outfielder Starling Marte.

Dustin Pedroia scored easily, but Andrew Benintendi had retreated to second to tag up. Mookie Betts, running right on Benintendi’s heels, tried to elude the tag of catcher Chris Stewart at the plate and was originally ruled safe before the call was overturned.

That set the stage for Bogaerts with two outs, and he responded by lining a single to right.

Craig Kimbrel then closed it out in the ninth, aided by catcher Christian Vazquez gunning down the potential tying run trying to steal.

For most of the afternoon, it didn’t look like the Red Sox would manage anything offensively. Pirates right-hander Chad Kuhl shut them down for 6 1/3 innings and Andrew McCutcheon’s two-run homer in the first appeared to be all the offense the Pirates would need.

Red Sox left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez came out flat, walking leadoff hitter Jordy Mercer before McCutchen launched a first-pitch fastball over the Monster in left.

Gregory Polanco and David Freese followed with singles before a visit from pitching coach Carl Willis calmed Rodriguez, who struck out Josh Harrison and Josh Bell to escape further damage in the 33-pitch frame.

E-Rod was on point from there. He ended up striking out eight over 5 1/3 innings, allowing four hits, four walks, and three runs (2 earned).

Meanwhile, other than Mitch Moreland doubling in his team-record seventh straight game, the Red Sox mustered little offensively. Their first run came in second, when Moreland doubled and scored on a Marco Hernandez single.

With a day game following a night game, Red Sox manager John Farrell mixed things up with his starting lineup, subbing Marco Hernandez for struggling third baseman Pablo Sandoval and inserting Brock Holt into left field instead of Chris Young.

Shattering Perceptions Game Note Image

When Vazquez caught Starling Marte stealing in the second inning, it left Red Sox catchers a perfect 5-for-5 nabbing opposing thieves on the season. That run came to an end in the sixth, however, when Gregory Polanco stole third on Vazquez and then scored when the throw sailed into left field.

Read More: Craig Kimbrel, hanley ramirez, Pirates, Red Sox
Red Sox notes: David Price (elbow) throws another bullpen; Tyler Thornburg inching towards return 04.12.17 at 5:08 pm ET
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USATSI_9544835_168383958_lowres

David Price is getting closer to a return. (Winslow Townson/USA Today Sports)

David Price threw another bullpen session on Wednesday as he works towards a return from an elbow injury suffered in spring training.

“He did 30 pitches in the bullpen after long toss, threw well, feels good about the work,” said manager John Farrell. “As we’ve been doing as of late, continue to assess how he feels tomorrow. provided there are no issues between now and Saturday that would be his next bullpen.”

The Red Sox left hander was put on the disabled list in spring training with elbow soreness, and his rehab efforts haven’t been amped up until this week.

Price is yet to feel any of the discomfort that led him to the DL stint.

“Nothing to the extent when he had to shut down after the first outing of spring training,” Farrell said as to whether Price has felt any pain. “Made steady progress, he’s thrown with intensity, he’s thrown consecutive days with long toss, three consecutive days. Physically, it’s been very positive.”

Price will have another bullpen session on Saturday that will dictate the timetable for his return, and how many more bullpens he will need to throw before facing hitters for the first time.

“I think we’ll determine that after Saturday,” said Farrell. “On purpose, we have tried not to get too far ahead of ourselves. The most encouraging thing is the way he’s handled the recent stress and intensity, it’s been positive, we’ll have a better read on that following the workout on Saturday.”

OTHER RED SOX NOTES

– Right handed reliever Tyler Thorburg is also progressing towards his return from his shoulder injury.

“He threw 60-70 feet, first day of his throwing program,” said Farrell. “Roughly 30 throws, just initiating his throwing program.”

– Mitch Moreland’s early season success has come with Hanley Ramirez missing time, but that doesn’t mean the team is planning to change its approach with Ramirez as the primary first baseman long-term this season.

“That’s not the intent right now,” Farrell said of any change. “Then it gives us Chris Young against left handers, which is why he’s here. It’s going to be predicated on his [Ramirez] ability to get to first base, and that’s been a work in progress since we got to spring training.”

Moreland has doubled in five straight contests and has been off to a torrid start to his Red Sox career, but the plan is still for Ramirez to be the full time first baseman against left handers.

“After seven games, not ready to abandon that approach,” Farrell said.

There’s still no timetable as to when Ramirez will be able to play the field.

“He just got back to us after missing five days,” said Farrell. “We’re getting him back to full strength physically first before we get back to the throwing program.”

– The bullpen continues to find its groove, with another sharp outing from the group Tuesday night. The Sox bullpen is allowing a .129 batting average against, the lowest in the majors.

“I mentioned prior to yesterday’s game, with the exception of the hiccup Friday in Detroit, the bullpen has thrown the ball well,” Farrell said. “We’re going to need it. We’ve been fortunate to get five to seven innings out of the rotation the firs time through, which is encouraging.”

Read More: Chris Young, David Price, hanley ramirez, Mitch Moreland
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