Friday, May 24, 2019

Ryan Weber Delivers Unexpected Gem, Pearce Gets Hot, Sox Prevail, 8-2

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Who knew? Unheralded spot-starter Ryan Weber was expected to hold the fort for three or four innings—saving an over-worked bullpen corps. Instead, he delivered a six-inning gem—just one earned run on only three hits. It was the 28-eight-year-old's first MLB win as a starter and allowed the Boston offense to unload once again on the hapless Jays. Steve Pearce led the way with three hits and three RBIs‚ including his first home run of 2019. Also joining in on the fun were: Rafael Devers (2-5, 2R, 2 RBIs); Xander Bogaerts (2-5, 2 R) and Eduardo Nunez (2-5, R, RBI). The Red Sox bullpen delivered three innings giving up just one eared run in the eventual 8-2 win. The victory keeps the Red Sox 5.5 games off the pace in the American League East—and pushes them four games over .500 (27-23).

Thursday, May 23, 2019

'The Kids Are All Right'—Red Sox Outlast Blue Jays In 13 Innings, Win, 6-5

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The Red Sox have an early bus to SkyDome this morning (never to be known as RogersCentre). So, when Rookie-Of-The-Year-In-Waiting Michael Chavis went yard in the 13th inning to give Boston the lead for good, many of his teammates were ecstatic. Boston won the see-saw match 6-5 and can take three of four in America Lite with a win this afternoon. The Red Sox got homeruns from Chavis, Rafael Devers and Mookie Betts. Boston's bullpen was uncharacteristically weak—failing twice to close out the game with two outs. But, these are the kinds of wins that can define a season—and a championship team. Rick Porcello was strong again—going six solid innings, giving up just one run on three hits. Xander Bogaerts went 3-6 with an RBI. The win keeps Boston 5.5 games behind The Evil Ones.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Confusion Over London Series On-Field Hats "Cleared Up" By MLB

Leave it to Major League Baseball to "royally" screw-up a good thing. The upcoming June series between the Red Sox and The Evil Ones in London is the first time a regular-season baseball game has been played in Europe. Originally, the teams were to wear Union Jack-styled on-field hats—with a cute little crown on the back. Then, controversy erupted. Maybe something about Lexington, Concord, The Boston Massacre, and Redcoats? We're not sure. Anyway, now, the players will wear their regular caps—with a bland "MLB London Series 19" logo on the side. Fans can still purchase the Union Jack/Crown hats (hey, money is money to Rob Manfred)—but you won't see them on the artificial turf. Which reminds us, MLB says there isn't enough time to put down real grass in London. So for the first time in their long history, the Red Sox and Yankees will play on fake grass. Heresy! Grounds for another Boston Tea Party!

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E-Rod Gets "Left" Behind, Red Sox Get Smacked By Blue Jays, 10-3

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Eduardo Rodriguez, a left-handed starter, can barely get lefties out anymore. Last night, he gave up two monster home runs to a left-hand-hitting Blue Jay—and (before last night's debacle) he was being punished by port-siders to the tune of a .351 average in 2019. The Red Sox had won the last seven games Rodriguez started—that ended on Tuesday. The lefty went just five innings—giving up six earned runs on six hits (three of them home runs). He had gone five straight starts without yielding a round-tripper. Boston's offense was exclusively by the long-ball as well—unfortunately all of the solo variety. Mitch Moreland (#13), Rafael Devers (#5) and Jackie Bradley, Jr. (#2) all went yard for The Carmine Hose in the eventual 10-3 loss. The loss dropped Boston to just two games over .500 (25-23) and placed them 5.5 games behind The Evil Ones in the American League East.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Offense Explodes For 16 Hits, David Price Returns, Sox Pummel Jays, 12-2

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When the offense clicks and the starting pitching is solid, teams tend to win games. At SkyDome yesterday, the Red Sox did both—clouting out 16 hits, while David Price returned to his old stomping grounds and delivered five strong innings. The Boston bats were keyed by three three-hit performances: Xander Bogaerts (3-5, HR, 3 RBIs 3 Rs); Mitch Moreland (3-5, 3 Rs); Rafael Devers (3-5, HR, 3 RBIs, 2 R). Also contributing big were: Michael Chavis (2-5, HR, R, 2 RBIs) and Jackie Bradley, Jr. (1-5, HR, R, 2 RBIs). Price gave up two runs on just three hits over his five innings of work—bringing his ERA to 3.29 with his second win of the year. Four Red Sox relievers delivered a shutout inning each in the eventual 12-2 victory. The win puts Boston at 25-22—4.5 games behind The Evil Ones.

Monday, May 20, 2019

'Ice Horse' Has Babe Ruth Moment, X-Man Delivers, Sox Outlast 'Stros, 4-3

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On the first pitch after acknowledging a young fan announcing his name, Michael 'Ice Horse' Chavis launched another bomb (his 8th on the year) to bring the Red Sox to within one run of Houston on Sunday. Later in the fifth inning, Xander Bogaerts (two RBIs) knocked in Mookie Betts (three runs scored) to tie the game at three apiece. Then, in the seventh, Bogie drove in the 2018 MVP again to give Boston the lead in the eventual 4-3 victory. The win snapped a 10-game win streak by the Astros and provided a needed boost for The Carmine Hose as they head out on the road for seven games—including a Memorial Day weekend re-match with the 'Stros at MostPulp Park. Chris Sale had a so-so start—striking out 10 more batters, but oddly walking five (after giving a free pass to only one batter in all his previous May starts). The bullpen delivered 3.2 scoreless innings—with Marcus Walden getting his sixth win of 2019. The victory pulled Boston to within 4.5 games of the AL East lead (24-22).

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Red Sox Fall Behind Early 5-0, Don't Recover In Painful 7-3 Loss To Astros

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In this 'Yin-Yang' Red Sox season, the home town team is currently yang-ing it big time. After being positioned late to beat the Astros Friday (then losing), Boston never really had a chance on Saturday, falling to Houston, 7-3. Two outfield plays that might have been made led to five first-inning runs for Houston—and that's pretty much all she wrote. Starter Hector Velazquez quickly turned into an "opener"—giving up all five runs in just one-third of an inning. Christian Vazquez clouted his sixth homerun (a solo shot), but that was pretty much the sum and substance of the Red Sox offense. After that first inning, The Carmine Hose went down like lambs to the slaughter—on national television, no less. Is this team really getting better, or did they just beat up on crappy opponents over the last two weeks? They certainly can't seem to handle a clearly superior squad like the 'Stros. The loss puts Boston a full five games behind the Rays—and just one game over .500.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Porcello Turns Ugly In Eighth Inning, Yields Lead, Astros Beat Red Sox, 3-1

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Rick Porcello was cruising. His team had given him a slim 1-0 lead, but he had shut down the vaunted Astros offense for seven dominant innings—on a relatively low pitch-count. So, manager Alex Cora understandably let the righty back out for the eighth inning—wrong. A double and homerun later, Boston had squandered the lead and the game to Houston. The yin-yang bullpen coughed up a third run and that was all she wrote for your Red Sox in the eventual 3-1 loss. Frustratingly, Boston left ten runners on base—which, if even half had been cashed in—would have spelled victory. The nine-hit attacked was led by Xander Bogaerts (3-4, R) and Christian Vazquez (3-4, RBI). The loss left the Red Sox 4.5 games behind the new leaders of the division—The Evil Ones.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Red Sox Blow 5-0 Lead, 'Ice Horse' Chavis Walks-Off COL In 10 Innings, 6-5

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This would have been a horrible defeat—especially after the previous night's loss in Chris Sale's masterpiece. After being handed a 5-0 lead, Eduardo Rodriguez was unable to finish the job—going six innings plus and coughing up five earned runs. Despite striking out ten Colorado batters, his ERA jumped to 4.89. Boston's offense was keyed by: J.D. Martinez (2-4, HR, 3 RBIs, R); Andrew Benintendi (2-4, triple, 2 Rs); Mookie Betts (3-5, RBI, 2 Rs) and Michael Chavis (2-5, game-winning walk-off RBI). The "Ice Horse" is now hitting .296 and is unlikely to be moved out of this starting lineup. The Boston bullpen worked four scoreless innings—giving up just two hits. The win keeps the Red Sox four games back in the American League East as they take on the Houston Astros for three games at Fenway starting on Friday.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Red Sox Bullpen Gags Away Chris Sale Masterpiece, Rockies Win 5-4 In 11

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Red Sox ace Chris Sale set a new career mark by striking out 17 batters (in seven innings) last night—and yet Boston's closer-free and lefty-free bullpen managed to blow the game anyway. The lanky lefty departed after seven with a 3-2 lead, but Brandon Workman and Ryan Brasier coughed up three more runs to give the Colorado Rockies a 5-4, 11-inning win. This was a deflating loss—which also included solo homeruns by Michael Chavis, Rafael Devers and J.D. Martinez. Championship teams win games when their starter strikes out 17. This team is still in dire need of a real closer—and how about a left-handed reliever? Somehow, Dave Dombrowski thinks he can slip through this season with neither of these essential elements. Craig Kimbrel is still out there and should be signed to a two-year deal now—so that he can be ready to help this team around the All-Star Break and beyond. Do it!

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Muddy Chicken Has Yet Another Rehab Setback, Suffers Left Knee Soreness

Dustin Pedroia has encountered another roadblock on his journey to get back into the Red Sox lineup. On Monday, the team announced that The Laser Show was cutting short his rehab assignment because of left knee soreness. The plan was for The Muddy Chicken to play in three more consecutive games at AA Portland before rejoining the major league club. He had played in five games for the Sea Dogs before the knee issues cropped up on Saturday. Pedroia will go back on rehab assignment after a "short delay"—whatever that means. It may be reaching a point where management needs to sit down with Pedroia and realistically look at all of the options. One option might be transitioning to a bench coach role for the remainder of the 2019 season—then re-assessing his career path in the upcoming off-season. It's a very difficult decision, but it might be the best for everyone involved.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Chavis Knocks In Five, J.D. Goes Yard Twice, Sox Sweep Away Mariners, 11-2

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Your 2019 Boston Red Sox now sit just three games out of first place in the American League East. This, after Boston mauled the Mariners again, 11-2 on Sunday. On a cold, drizzly Mother's Day at Fenway Park, the offense was hot—with Michael "Ice Horse" Chavis ending a prolonged slump (0-19) with a 3-5 day and five runs batted in. Multiple hit games were also turned in by: J.D. Martinez (2-4, 2 HRs, 3 Rs, 3 RBIs); Rafael Devers (3-5, 2 Rs, RBI); and Christian Vazquez (2-3, now hitting .278). Starter Hector Velazquez went deeper into the game than expected—tossing five stellar innings, giving up just two runs on two hits. Marcus Walden and Josh Smith each delivered two shutout innings of relief. The win moved Boston to three games over .500 and raised their home mark to 11-7.

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Red Sox Go All "Dolly Parton" On Mariners, Beat Up On Seattle "9 To 5"

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Remember when the 2018 World Series Champion Red Sox applied their prodigious offense to subjugate foes in lop-sided wins? Well, today Boston fell behind early, 4-0—then scored eight runs in the third inning off "de-throned" King Felix Hernandez, on the way to an eventual 9-5 drubbing of Seattle. Once again, The Carmine Hose used a combination of small ball, the long ball, and plate discipline (11 walks) to gain the victory. Mitch Moreland started the scoring with his 12th home run of 2019, and Sandy Leon clouted a three-run jack into The Monster Seats to power the offense. Rick Porcello gave up four runs and five hits in the first inning, then kept the Mariners hitless for the rest of his outing (6.2 innings). Rafael Devers continued his hot streak—going 3-4, with 2 RBIs and a run scored. The third-baseman is now hitting .326. Jackie Bradley, Jr. also had a clutch two-run single to put Boston ahead for good. The fourth Red Sox win in a row puts them at 21-19.

Friday, May 10, 2019

Red Sox Move Over .500 For The First Time In 2019, Smoke Seattle, 14-1

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It was a classic 'rocking chair' win at Fenway Park tonight—but it was an extremely important win. The victory marks the first time in 2019 that the Red Sox are over the .500 mark (20-19). They have won 14 out of their last 20 games and seem to finally be resembling the team that won the 2018 World Series Championship. Eduardo Rodriguez was stellar on the hill once again—going seven shutout innings form his fourth win of the year in the eventual 14-1 victory. The offense was powered by three homeruns from left-handed batters—most notably a three-run shot by Mitch Moreland that put Boston up early. Andrew Benintendi and Rafael Devers also went yard. Devers ended the night going 3-5 with 4 RBIs, and is now hitting .314. Benintendi also had three hits, while Xander Bogaerts went 2-5 with 2 RBIs and 2 runs scored. This was a very satisfying blowout win—moving the Red Sox to within just four games of first place in the American League East.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

FenwayNation Readers More Likely To Be Apple Users Than Windows Users

Ever since FenwayNation was founded back in January of 2000, millions of readers have relied on us to track all things Carmine Hose. An analysis of the operating systems used to access FenwayNation indicate that—taken together—our readers are more likely to use Apple platforms over Windows platforms. As the chart shows, while Windows enjoys the largest single share (38.4%), the combined usage of Macintosh, iPhone and iPads total 48.8%. Even if you throw in the 9.1% who use Android devices, the non-Apple share only reaches 47.5%. So, we guess you can say that Steve Jobs edged out Bill Gatesagain.

Red Sox (Or Some Of Them) Are Headed To The White House Today At 3:45PM

The Red Sox organization gave players and coaches the choice of whether or not to attend today's White House ceremony for the 2018 World Series Champions. So far, at least eight—including manager Alex Cora—will not attend the event. Interestingly, team owners John Henry and Tom Werner (not exactly candidates to wear red 'Make America Great Again' hats) will attend. The team has generally downplayed any political divide among the players—and that seems to be genuine. Said Cora, "We’re in a good place. There’s some guys that are going home tonight and some guys are going back home tomorrow night. That’s the way we’re going to do it." An additional seven players have yet to declare their intentions. Until it was fixed, a notice on the official White House website listed the meeting to celebrate the "Red Socks". Not a good start. Stay tuned for our coverage of the event later this afternoon.

Sale Gem, JBJ Game-Saving Catch, Benny Game-Winning HR, Sox At .500

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After Chris Sale delivered his best performance of 2019 (8 innings, 14 Ks, 3 H, 0 BB), it appeared that the Red Sox would lose the game anyway. Tied at one in the bottom of the 11th inning, Ryan Brasier allowed an 0-2 pitched to be headed over the center-field fence at Camden Yards. Except that offensively-struggling Jackie Bradley, Jr. was manning that position for Boston. JBJ ran to the wall, timed his jump, scaled the wall, and pulled back a sure game-winning home-run. Oriole Trey Mancini tipped his batting helmet in tribute to the game's best defensive outfielder. Next inning, Andrew Benintendi sent a pitch deep into the right-field seats to put Boston ahead to stay—in the eventual 2-1 victory. Earlier, Mookie Betts had gone yard as well. The win finally pulled Boston to the .500 mark on the year (19-19) and gave them a stellar 5-2 mark on the road trip. Once again, the bullpen was bullet-proof—delivering four scoreless innings. The Red Sox return home to start an eight-game homestand against Seattle, Colorado and Houston.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Red Sox Homer Thrice, J.D. Clouts 200th, Red Sox Sail Past Orioles, 8-5

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J.D. Martinez reached a career milestone with his 200th home run, and the Red Sox went on to defeat the hapless O's 8-5 on Tuesday night. Boston homered three times—with Xander Bogaerts (solo shot) and Mitch Moreland (3-run blast) joining in the "yard" play. Christian Vazquez had another solid night at the plate—going 2-4.  Hector Velazquez pitched three innings in Boston's version of an "opener" game—with the bullpen again performing well (with the glaring exception of the suddenly awful Ryan Brasier). Marcus Walden got his fifth win of the year—going three innings and giving up one earned run. Matt Barnes got four outs for his third save of the year. The victory pulled Boston again to within one win of the .500 mark—but they failed to gain any ground on the Rays or Evil Ones.