Tuesday, August 22, 2017

POLL: Confidence Is Still Low In Farrell Bullpen Choices

Additional voting in our latest FenwayNation Poll show a continued lack of confidence in manager John Farrell's handling of the Red Sox bullpen. As the chart shows, a total of just 17% feel any level of confidence in Farrell's relief choices—6% stating that they are "extremely confident" and another 11% who say they are "somewhat confident." Alternatively, a majority (53%) say they are "not confident at all" in Farrell's bullpen moves and  another three in ten (30%) say they are "not very confident" in his decisions. Taken together, an amazing 83% of readers express little or no confidence in the Red Sox manager on this score. You can still vote in the poll HERE.

Mitch Moreland Is Back In The Red Sox Lineup Tonight

Here is tonight's Red Sox lineup for Game Two in The Mistake By The Lake: 1. Eduardo Nunez 2B; 2. Mookie Betts RF; 3. Andrew Benintendi LF; 4. Hanley Ramirez DH; 5. Rafael Devers 3B; 6. Xander Bogaerts SS; 7. Mitch Moreland 1B; 8. Sandy Leon C; 9. Jackie Bradley Jr. CF. Pitching for the Red Sox will be RHP Doug Fister.

Matt Barnes Hits 10-Day DL With Lower Back Strain

There is no joy in Storrs, Connecticut tonight. Former UCONN Husky Matt Barnes has been placed on the 10-day disabled list with a lower back strain—one day after gagging away a win in The Mistake By The Lake. And, despite his much better home (1.95 ERA) versus road (5.53 ERA) numbers, he may be a fixture in Rhode Island soon—specifically Pawtucket. Hey, it's closer to Connecticut than Fenway Park! Right-handed pitcher Hector Velazquez was recalled from AAA to take the spot of Barnes on the roster.

Abuse Allegations Against Ex-Sox Employee Re-Surface

Don Fitzpatrick
Almost six years ago, in December of 2011, FenwayNation wrote about the sex abuse allegations lodged at former Red Sox clubhouse manager Don Fitzpatrick. At the time, two more men had come forward claiming Fitzpatrick sexually abused them—this time at Fenway Park. When the allegations first came to light in 1991, then-team-owner Jean Yawkey paid Fitzpatrick what amounted to a $100,000 'golden parachute' as he left the organization. He died in 2005 without ever having been fully prosecuted for the alleged crimes—although in 2002 he was convicted of "attempted" sexual battery. The Red Sox then "settled" claims with seven of the men who alleged the abuse. Most of the alleged assaults are said to have taken place at the former Spring Training home of the Red Sox in Winter Haven, Florida. These events are now re-surfacing—in stories by Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports and Alex Reimer of WEEI.com. Coming on the heels of the effort to re-name Yawkey Way because of Thomas A. Yawkey's bigoted views, the renewed light on these activities raises the question of whether the Yawkeys also covered-up for a sexual abuser in their long-time employ. Not a good week for the Red Sox brand, to say the least.

POLL: Scant Confidence In Farrell's Bullpen Decisions

Early voting in our latest FenwayNation Poll shows very little confidence in manager John Farrell's bullpen-related decisions. As the chart shows, a total of only 17% express any degree of confidence in the skipper's relief decisions: a minuscule 3% have 'extreme' confidence, while another 14% say they are 'somewhat confident'. On the other side of the ledger, an astounding total of 83% have low degrees of confidence in Farrell's bullpen acumen—26% saying they are 'not very confident' and a whopping 57% who say they are 'not confident at all'. You can still vote in the poll HERE.

POLL: Confidence In John Farrell's Bullpen Decisions

How confident are you in John Farrell's bullpen-related decision-making?
pollcode.com free polls

Three Days Left In 'Favorite Fenway Obstruction' Contest

Just three days remain to get your "Favorite Fenway Obstruction" pics into the plush, but not overly-ostentatious FenwayNation offices. The Grand Prize Winner will get a 6-DVD set of 'The Essential Games Of Fenway Park' (historic games from 1967, 1975, 1986, 1999 and 2007). The Second Prize Winner will receive the DVD, 'Fall Classic At Fenway Park' (highlights of the both 2004 and 2007 World Series). If your entries are not "post-marked" by Friday, September 25th, you can't win! So get that puppy in right away by emailing it HERE.

Is Carson Smith Close To Being Ready For Fenway?

Which do you want first—the good news or the bad news? OK, here's the good news: reliever Carson Smith is pitching great at Pawtucket and may be on his way to Fenway soon. Now, the bad news: John Farrell will be making the decisions on when to bring Smith into games. Multiple reports suggest that Smith is very close to a promotion to the big club—not allowing any runs or hits in 4 of his 5 PawSox outings. Again, after last night's managerial debacle, one wonders if this new bullpen talent will also be squandered by Farrell's poor judgment. Stay tuned!

Sox Icon Carl Yastrzemski Turns 78 Years Old Today

Carl Michael Yastrzemski turns 78 years old today. While there's no real need to list his achievements, we're going to anyway: MLB Hall of Fame, 18-time All-Star, 1967 AL MVP, 1967 Triple Crown Winner, .285 lifetime, 452 HRs, 3,419 hits and 1,844 RBIs. Yaz played until he was 43 years old—and was still productive right to the end (sort of like another lefty we know). And, of course, he was the heart and soul of the 1967 Impossible Dream team—the one that changed The Nation forever. Happy birthday, Yaz!

POLL: Readers Like Their NESN Games Nice And 'Salty'

Final results to our latest FenwyNation Poll indicate that fans are warming up to the color commentary of former Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The ex-backstop's low-key, but informative approach is resonating with our readers. As the chart shows, fully 82% give him positive marks—34% "excellent" and 48% "good". Less than one in five readers give Salty a negative review—13% "only fair" and 5% "poor". If Saltalamacchia fails to secure another MLB playing gig—which he wants—he clearly has a future in the booth.

Start Of A New Error? Sox Blow Lead, Fall to Tribe, 5-4

(AP Photo)
Brock Holt was at first base replacing an ailing Mitch Moreland. Unfortunately, it was his error in the ninth that let in the winning run in a crushing 5-4 loss to the Indians. But, this game really came down to a puzzling managerial decision by John Farrell—ahead 4-3 to use Matt Barnes and avoid Addison ReedBrandon Workman and Craig Kimbrel (one of which he did use, another he intended to use in extra innings) with the game on the line. Wasted in the loss were two two-run HRs—one by Andrew Benintendi and one by Hanley Ramirez—and another decent outing by Eduardo Rodriguez. Chalk this one up as a bad managerial loss. No biscuit.

Monday, August 21, 2017

POLL: Eight In Ten Now Positive On Salty's Performance

Continued voting in our latest FenwayNation Poll shows increasingly positive assessments of Jarrod Saltalamacchia's performance on yesterday's NESN broadcast. As the chart shows, a total of 80% now give Salty positive marks—34% "excellent" and 46% "good". On the flip side, a total of 20% assign negative ratings—16% "only fair" and 4% "poor". You can still vote in the poll HERE.