|Postgame Notes: Red Sox 6, Boston College 1||03.03.10 at 9:01 pm ET|
FORT MYERS, Fla. — The Red Sox finished off a long day of work with a 6-1 victory over Boston College in the second half of a day-night doubleheader at City of Palms Park. The first day of competitive action this spring thus saw the Sox outscore their collegiate opponents (BC and Northeastern) by a combined 21-1 count, with Boston outhitting their opponents by a 22-5 margin on a day that saw 47 Boston players enter into game.
A roundup from the nightcap:
–Boof Bonser sailed through his inning of work, retiring all three batters he faced and recording a strikeout. He threw seven of his nine pitches for strikes, including a swing-and-miss curve for his punchout. One scout had his fastball registering between 88-91 mph.
For Bonser, even though he was pitching against a college team, the occasion was significant. A year ago, he underwent arthroscopic surgery in the last week of February, before he could pitch in any games. The opportunity to return to competition was invigorating for the 28-year-old.
“It went great. I’m glad it’s over. This is my first spring training game in pretty much two years. People say it’s a college team. Well, to me, a college team wants to beat your brains in more than the regular team does,” said Bonser. “I was part of the team last year, but now that I’m playing, it’s kind of a whole ‘nother ballgame.”
Bonser said that less significant than his stuff was the fact that his shoulder felt “normal, like I’m healthy again without any problems,” and that he was able to loosen up easily for his outing. He was satisfied with the fastballs, curve and change that he threw (his short inning did not permit him time to throw a slider), but noted that the pitches were secondary.
“The biggest key was the shoulder, being able to let it ride,” said Bonser.
Manager Terry Francona suggested that Bonser looked like a pitcher who was healthy. In so doing, he also gave an indication of someone who can help the team.
“Looking at a guy who’s had the problems he’s had physically, then to look at his clean arm action, I think is phenomenal. It really jumps out at you,” said Francona. “That was really an encouraging inning, just to watch him go through his delivery and let the ball come out like that, we were really encouraged.
“If this works, this is a guy who knows what he’s doing and there’s some power to that fastball.”
–While Bonser’s shoulder is healthy, he has a blister on the index finger of his right hand. He suggests that he hasn’t been able to shake the problem for the last year, but that he has managed the issue thanks to the power of Super Glue (“Their stock’s up right now with how much I’m using on my finger,” said Bonser).
He has also found an expert who is more than willing to offer advice on treating an obstinate finger.
“As soon as [Josh Beckett] found out I had a finger problem, he was in my ear,” said Bonser. “I was like, great – I know the method of bad fingers, I guess you could say.”
–Batting with the bases loaded in the fourth, Jose Iglesias jumped on a first-pitch fastball down the middle from right-hander Dave Laufer, lining a three-run double down the line and into the left-field corner. He later showed an inside-out stroke in lining out to second on an 86 mph fastball.
“He looked like he was ready to play. He wasn’t messing around,” said Francona. “He was obviously very excited to play. He came out in a hurry.”
Iglesias confirmed that the opportunity to enter a game was a momentous occasion for him.
“It’s like a dream, playing here and playing the first game in a Red Sox uniform,” Iglesias said through coach/translator Alex Ochoa. “I still have to work hard, and still have to things every day to get better. That’s what I’m coming here to do everyday.”
–Ryan Kalish showed a strong first step in centerfield on a fly ball to semi-deep right-center off the bat of Golden Spikes candidate Mickey Wiswall. He also showed aggressive baserunning smarts by advancing from first to third on an infield single.
–Junichi Tazawa narrowly averted harm, as he jumped when a liner went back up the middle, elevating just enough that the ball caught mostly his shoe rather than his toe. The right-hander — one of the Sox’ top depth options this year — averted harm and recorded a clean inning, striking out two.
|PawSox Hot Stove: Meet the Prospects||01.22.10 at 3:34 pm ET|
On Saturday, Jan. 23, the Pawtucket Red Sox will host their 33rd Annual Hot Stove League Party at McCoy Stadium. New PawSox manager Torey Lovullo will be in attendance, and several Red Sox minor leaguers (potentially including Casey Kelly, Ryan Kalish, Jeff Natale, Randor Bierd, Kyle Weiland, Junichi Tazawa and Felix Doubront) are expected to be available for photos and autographs.
The event will run from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.
Enter the ballpark through the entry tower in left field. The 2010 Hot Stove Party will once again be held inside the McCoy Clubhouse and batting tunnels. Food and drink will be served. Fans in attendance can purchase regular-season tickets at the McCoy Box Office, which will be open for walk-up business.
The PawSox have also partnered with the Rhode Island Chapter of the American Red Cross to raise monetary contributions for the Haiti Earthquake Relief Fund during the Hot Stove League Party.
Red Cross workers will be stationed at the main entry tower at McCoy throughout the free Hot Stove event.
“The PawSox are proud to team with the American Red Cross Rhode Island Chapter to, in our small way, help the people of Haiti who have gone through indescribable devastation in the past week,” PawSox president Mike Tamburro said. “We want to provide PawSox fans with an opportunity to contribute in any way they can and we thank them for their consideration.”
“We are thrilled that the PawSox are helping us — and the citizens of Haiti — out in response to the catastrophic earthquake that has devastated that nation,” said Bruce Rutter, CEO of the American Red Cross Rhode Island Chapter. “This is just another example of the generosity of the people of this area and we thank them for their continued support.”
All monies collected during the PawSox Hot Stove Party this Saturday at McCoy Stadium will be donated directly to the American Red Cross Rhode Island Chapter.
|Sox Announce Rookie Development Program Details||01.11.10 at 12:43 pm ET|
The Red Sox’ Rookie Development Program, which helps to prepare players who could be in line for promotions to the major leagues within a 12- to 18-month timeframe, began today. The two-week program offers top Red Sox minor leaguers the opportunity to work with members of the major-league coaching staff, to work on strength and conditioning as well as fundamentals, and a chance to become familiar with such details as the layout of the clubhouse at Fenway Park.
The release — which also includes details of an autograph session with the prospects — is below. For a closer look at the program participants, click here. Josh Reddick — who also took part in the program last year — was added to the initial roster of 11 program participants. For a closer look at the right-fielder’s path to the majors, click here.
BOSTON, MA– The Red Sox 2010 Rookie Program began today in Boston. Twelve of Boston’s top prospects are taking part in the two-week program, which is designed to expose the players to the expectations of being Major Leaguers for the Red Sox.
Eleven of the participants in the Rookie Program spent all of 2009 in the Red Sox organization: pitchers Randor Bierd, Felix Doubront, Casey Kelly, Ryne Miller, Junichi Tazawa, Kyle Weiland; catcher Luis Exposito; infielder Yamaico Navarro; and outfielders Ryan Kalish, Che-Hsuan Lin and Josh Reddick. Also taking part will be infielder Jose Iglesias, who was signed as a free agent in September 2009 and played in the Arizona Fall League.
The program includes two workouts daily that emphasize conditioning and strength training as well as concentration on fundamentals. In addition, the players are attending a number of seminars that will focus on the assimilation into Major League life off the field.
A number of individuals will speak to the group, including President/CEO Larry Lucchino, General Manager Theo Epstein, manager Terry Francona, Major League coaches John Farrell and Dave Magadan, sports psychology coach Bob Tewksbury, right-handed pitcher John Lackey, infielder Kevin Youkilis, Hall of Fame baseball writer and NESN reporter/analyst Peter Gammons, and Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers.
There will also be a public autograph signing with the Rookie Program participants at the Best Buy in the Landmark Center, located at 401 Park Drive in Boston on Monday, January 18 from 3:30 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. Fans making a $20.00 donation to the Red Sox Foundation will be able to take part in the signing on a first come, first served basis.
|Red Sox Bullpen Moves On After Braves Plunder||12.04.09 at 4:55 am ET|
The Red Sox would have been content to bring back either left-hander Billy Wagner or right-hander Takashi Saito. Though both veterans will require careful health management to ensure their productivity, both the 38-year-old Wagner and the 39-year-old Saito proved effective in 2009.
Wagner had a 1.72 ERA in 17 big-league appearances in his return from Tommy John surgery, punching out 26 batters in the process. Saito had a 2.43 ERA in his 56 appearances.
But, with both relievers having signed with the Braves in a span of less than 48 hours, the Sox are prepared to move on. The Sox offered Wagner salary arbitration, though they anticipated that the left-hander would pursue a job as a closer elsewhere, a notion that was borne out by his $7 million deal. And yesterday, Saito — who was offered a short-money deal by the Sox, who liked the right-hander, but felt compelled to manage his usage carefully given an elbow that nearly required Tommy John surgery in 2008 — followed Wagner to Atlanta, with a deal that guarantees him a reported $3.2 million.
Now, the Sox have a pair of openings in their bullpen for 2010. Barring a trade, the team will return Jonathan Papelbon, Daniel Bard, Hideki Okajima, Ramon Ramirez and Manny Delcarmen to next year’s relief corps, the primary members of a group that forged a 3.80 ERA (second-best among AL bullpens) in 2009.
If the team wants to look internally to replace Wagner and Saito to fill out the ‘pen, it could look to left-hander Dustin Richardson (who struck out 11.7 batters per nine innings in the minors in 2009 before tossing 3.1 scoreless innings in the majors following a September call-up), Michael Bowden (who struggled to a 9.56 ERA in 16 big-league innings, but finished sixth in the International League (min. 100 innings) with a 3.13 ERA) or right-hander Junichi Tazawa (2.55 ERA in Double A and Triple A; 2-3, 7.46 ERA in the majors).
The team has also shown interest in free agents Rafael Soriano (2.97 ERA, 12.1 strikeouts per nine innings with the Braves in 2009) and left-hander Mike Gonzalez (5-4, 2.42 ERA, 10.9 strikeouts per nine innings for Atlanta in 2009).
|Report: Red Sox to Meet with Japanese High School Phenom||10.15.09 at 1:19 am ET|
According to Nikkan Sports (as translated and linked by npbtracker.com), the Red Sox are scheduled to meet with Japanese left-hander Yusei Kikuchi, an 18-year-old who has starred in Japan’s Koshien Tournament, on Oct. 19. The Sox, according to the translated report, are one of eight major league teams slated to meet with Kikuchi.
Kikuchi is deciding whether to pitch in the Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) league, or to bypass the Japanese draft to sign with a Major League Baseball team as an amateur free agent. His case is viewed as similar to that of Junichi Tazawa, the right-hander who signed with the Red Sox last December after pitching in Japan’s amateur Industrial League, though Kikuchi’s potential jump from high school directly to the United States is considered in some ways even more dramatic than was Tazawa’s.
The other MLB teams that are scheduled to meet with Kikuchi, according to the report, are the Dodgers, Rangers, Giants, Mariners, Mets, Yankees and Indians. NPBtracker also offered a scouting profile of Kikuchi. To read it, click here.
|Red Sox Announce Call-Ups||09.01.09 at 3:40 pm ET|
The Red Sox issued the following press release about a flurry of Sept. 1 activities, which featured four minor-league call-ups (outfielders Brian Anderson and Joey Gathright from Triple-A Pawtucket, infielder Chris Woodward from Pawtucket, and pitcher Junichi Tazawa from the Rookie Level Gulf Coast League) as well as the reactivation of catcher George Kottaras from the 15-day disabled list: Read the rest of this entry »
|Red Sox vs. White Sox Match-ups, 8/27||08.27.09 at 2:37 pm ET|
WHITE SOX VS. JUNICHI TAZAWA
Considering he started the season at Double A Portland, it’s doubtful the Red Sox could have expected much more out of Junichi Tazawa than they’ve received. In his first three starts in the majors, the 23-year-old Tazawa has gone at least five innings each time and has allowed just five earned runs in 16 innings as a starter.
Though he began his Boston career by serving up a walkoff homer to Alex Rodriguez in New York, Tazawa’s best performance came Saturday against the Yankees. In the 14-1 Red Sox victory, Tazawa threw six innings of shutout ball to lower his season ERA (again, inflated by the 1.2 inning, 2 earned-run inning appearance on August 7) to 3.57.
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