Whatever trepidation Brian Butterfield may have had in regards to teaching Hanley Ramirez how to play first base seems to have left the building.

That much was clear when talking to the Red Sox third base/infield coach on the Bradfo Show podcast.

Brian Butterfield is not a fan of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports)

Brian Butterfield is not a fan of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports)

Whatever trepidation Brian Butterfield may have had in regards to teaching Hanley Ramirez how to play first base seems to have left the building.

That much was clear when talking to the Red Sox third base/infield coach on the Bradfo Show podcast.

“Hanley knows what he’s doing,” Butterfield said. “He had a great camp. He worked hard. He’s a quiet workman. He has good instincts. And I think he was really looking forward to getting back to the infield and catching the ball on the ground.

“I think it was evident early in camp that he wanted to improve as a defender. His work was consistent. All he needed really was reps in games, and he has gotten his reps in games. He still needs more. I’m sure there are some things he will bump into over the course of the season that he hasn’t seen from that area of the field. But he’s a baseball player and he’s instinctive. When he sees something once he usually corrects things and doesn’t get beat by it a second time. It’s been good. I’ve gotten to know him a lot better. He’s a good man. He’s works hard. He cares about winning, and he loves being a member of the Boston Red Sox. So far, so good. I have my youngest son coming in tomorrow and I told him I definitely wanted him to meet Hanley because he would be meeting a good man.”

Ramirez is one of five American League first basemen to not make an error, to date. But, as Butterfield explained, while it has been a good start, there is still a ways to go, and more things to experience.

“I think one of the toughest things for guys, whether they go from the outfield to the infield, or switch positions, is anchoring that base and taking throws from other infielders, or taking throws from the pitcher on an attempted pick move,” the coach said. “He’s been very diligent at that. He seems to have caught on really quick. He’s been able to adjust all types of throws from the pitchers and the infielders. He knows when to body up the ball when the throw is low. He also knows when to try to go out and scoop it. It’s been good, so far. And I think he’s gained a lot of trust from his teammates on throwing the ball across, and that’s really important. When those guys from the left side know they can let it go and not miss high and not care about if they miss wide or in the dirt because that guy is going to adjust or dig a ball, that makes them a lot better. I think he has done that to the infielders, especially on the left side.”

Butterfield also admits that watching Ramirez play first base has often times been a unique experience, such as the time he tipped his hat to the crowd during the Fenway Park opener after picking a low throw from Xander Bogaerts.

“That’s a first time I’ve seen it to. He’s got a flair about him,” Butterfield said. “If he was sitting here right now, I would say I don’t agree with all of it. But he’s having a good time, and that’s the most important thing. He’s a guy, when he’s having a good time, he’s a productive guy. I think it’s evident to everyone in the clubhouse he’s enjoying himself, he’s trying to help us win ballgames, he has a smile on his face and it seems like he’s enjoying coming to the park every day.”

On the podcast, Butterfield also discusses the defensive status of Travis Shaw, Xander Bogaerts, Dustin Pedroia and even the injured Pablo Sandoval.

As an avid Patriots fan, he also offers his prediction as to who Bill Belichick might draft when Friday’s second round comes around. The names surfaced by Butterfield? Offensive tackle Jason Spriggs, wide receiver Leonte Carroo, running back C.J. Prosise and corner back Kendall Fuller.

And, finally, when asked what he would say to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell if he was sitting across from him as the interviewer, Butterfield would only say, “First of all, you’d be laying on your back.”

BRIAN BUTTERFIELD ON THE BRADFO SHOW

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford
Henry Owens

Henry Owens

The Red Sox will send young lefty Henry Owens to the hill on Friday as they open a three-game series against the Yankees. He will be opposed by Masahiro Tanaka.

Owens will look to rebound after struggling through his first start of the season with the Red Sox on Sunday against the Astros. After his call-up from the minors, he lasted just 3 1/3 innings, allowing three earned runs on five hits. The biggest issue he ran into was issuing free passes, something that plagued him in his previous big league stint last year as well. He had four walks to go with four strikeouts and did not factor into the decision. The Red Sox would go onto win 7-5 in 12 innings.

In two career starts against the Yankees, Owens is 0-2 with a 13.50 ERA and 2.100 WHIP. He has struck out seven and walked three in 6 2/3 innings pitched. Coincidentally, both times Owens faced the Yankees, Tanaka was the opposing pitcher. Owens is looking forward to the third matchup.

“It should be fun,” he said. “It’s a rematch. It’s Tanaka again, so that should be good. Hopefully, I get a little redemption.”

Tanaka is off to a solid start in 2016, as he is 1-0 with a 2.92 ERA and 0.97 WHIP through four starts. In his last outing Sunday against the Rays, he went seven strong innings, allowing two earned runs on five hits and one walk with strikeouts. He did not factor into the decision, but the Yankees wound up victorious, 3-2.

One interesting note on the 27-year-old Tanaka is that after surgery to remove a bone spur from his elbow last season, he has not thrown his four-seam fastball nearly as often. He feels it is still a part of his pitching arsenal moving forward, however.

“Obviously, my four-seam fastball will be used,” Tanaka said recently. “For me, I don’t look at it so differently. There’s not that much velocity difference from the four-seam and the two-seam. But I’m moving the ball with the two-seamer and getting better results, so that’s why I’m leaning toward that way.”

In seven starts against the Red Sox, Tanaka is 4-2 with a 5.13 ERA and 1.240 WHIP. He has walked nine and struck out 32 in 40 1/3 innings of work.

Yankees vs. Owens (LHP)

Alex Rodriguez (5 plate appearances): 2-for-4 with 1 double, 2 RBIs, 1 walk

Carlos Beltran is 0-for-3 with one strikeout.

Jacoby Ellsbury is 0-for-3 with two strikeouts.

Didi Gregorious is 1-for-3 with two strikeouts.

Chase Headley is 1-for-2 with a walk.

Mark Texeira is 1-for-2 with one RBI.

Brett Gardner is 0-for-1 with a walk and a strikeout.

Brian McCann is 0-for-2.

Masahiro Tanaka

Masahiro Tanaka

Red Sox vs Tanaka (RHP)

Xander Bogaerts (19 plate appearances): .263 AVG/.263 OBP/.474 SLG, 1 double, 1 home run, 3 RBIs, 5 strikeouts

David Ortiz (18): .267/.389/.600, 2 doubles, 1 home run, 3 RBIs, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts

Brock Holt (15): .200/.200/.333, 2 doubles, 1 strikeout

Dustin Pedroia (13): .385/.385/.538, 2 doubles

Jackie Bradley (12): .091/.083/.091, 1 RBI

Mookie Betts (11): .333/.364/.556, 2 doubles, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts

Hanley Ramirez is 1-for-5 with 3 RBIs and one strikeout.

Ryan Hanigan is 1-for-5 with one RBI and two strikeouts.

Travis Shaw is 1-for-5 with two RBIs and two strikeouts.

Chris Young is 1-for-3 with a strikeout.

Christian Vazquez is 1-for-1 with an RBI.

Blog Author: 
Travis Upham

Here’s a look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Thursday.

TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX (11-9): L, 3-1, at Syracuse (Nationals)

Here’s a look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Thursday.

TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX (11-9): L, 3-1, at Syracuse (Nationals)

— Eduardo Rodriguez made his first rehab start and allowed three runs (two earned) over 3 2/3 innings, while walking three and striking out two to take the loss. He threw 75 pitches and 45 strikes. It wasn’t the ideal first outing of the year for the left-hander, but as expected he will need a few more rehab starts before joining the Red Sox.

— Blake Swihart made his first start in left field and played all nine innings. Swihart caught both balls that came his way, including a tumbling catch on a sinking line drive that ended the sixth inning. At the plate, he went 0-for-4 with a strikeout.

— Rusney Castillo went 0-for-3, but had the only PawSox RBI. He is batting .250 on the year and doesn’t seem anywhere close to being called up to the big league club.

— Center fielder Ryan LaMarre paced the offense as he went 2-for-3 with a walk.

DOUBLE-A PORTLAND SEA DOGS (6-15): Off day. Next game Friday vs, Reading.

Andrew Benintendi

Andrew Benintendi

HIGH-A SALEM RED SOX (13-8): W, 7-4, at Frederick (Orioles)

— It was another wild win for Salem as it scored seven runs between the sixth, seventh and eighth innings to come away with a win. Andrew Benintendi led the offense as he went 2-for-4 with a double and 4 RBIs. He extended his hit streak to 17 games and is batting .346.

— Former first-round pick Trey Ball made his season debut was he started the year at extended spring training because of a knee injury. The left-hander is back in Salem at least to start the year and went four innings, allowing two runs on four hits, while walking three and striking out five to take a no-decision. All in all, not a bad first outing.

— Austin Maddox picked up the win by tossing two scoreless innings of relief.

— Second baseman Deiner Lopez continued to play well in limited action. He went 3-for-4 with a double and is batting .348.

— Mauricio Dubon went 2-for-5 with a run scored. He is now batting .308 on the season.

SINGLE-A GREENVILLE DRIVE (10-10): Cancelled due to rain. Next game Friday at Lakewood.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable
Red Sox third base/infield coach Brian Butterfield joined Rob Bradford to get his take on Hanley Ramirez, Travis Shaw and Pablo Sandoval. Butterfield, an avid Patriots fan, also predicts who the Pats might take in the second round, while giving a very pointed message to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.
Red Sox third base/infield coach Brian Butterfield joined Rob Bradford to get his take on Hanley Ramirez, Travis Shaw and Pablo Sandoval. Butterfield, an avid Patriots fan, also predicts who the Pats might take in the second round, while giving a very pointed message to NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

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[0:04:48] ... on wood are always is what the most accurate throwers arm. I've Stephen Drew was the closest I've seen yes it's it you know it it's surprising when he bring brings the first baseman off remiss ...
[0:10:57] ... if we could make a teacher right now I would have been Brian Butterfield steady over Roger Goodell on his back. The other one as they said it was some of second round Turkey and you ...
[0:13:32] ... shortstop who was very good tremendous speed and some of our computers Kelly Johnson who's with the Atlanta right now he was with our team in Toronto. He said. I want my feet to be like ...






When David Price tied his personal record with 14 strikeouts Monday night, many said to consider the opponent. Good pitchers should perform well against the Braves, who entered Thursday ranked 29th in the league with a .224 batting average.

Clay Buchholz allowed five runs over 6 1/3 innings Thursday. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today)

Clay Buchholz allowed five runs over 6 1/3 innings Thursday. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today)

When David Price tied his personal record with 14 strikeouts Monday night, many said to consider the opponent. Good pitchers should perform well against the Braves, who entered Thursday ranked 29th in the league with a .224 batting average.

Well, if a great outing against the Braves isn’t that great, a subpar outing against the Braves is bad. Such was Clay Buchholz’ night Thursday at Fenway Park.

Looking for his first win of the season, Buchholz allowed five earned runs on eight hits with four walks and two strikeouts over 6 1/3 inning of work. He struggled out of the gate, allowing one run in the first inning and two more in the third, which proved to be more than Boston’s offense could match.

Buchholz saw his ERA rise to 6.51 and was the losing pitcher in Boston’s 5-2 loss to the Braves. On the season, his record now stands at 0-3.

The Sox were quiet offensively through an eight-hit performance. Braves starter Jhoulys Chacin kept the Sox’ offense in check for five innings (two earned runs on six hits with two walks and four strikeouts) before giving way to an Atlanta bullpen that allowed two hits over the final four innings.

Thursday’s loss saw the Red Sox fail to complete a home-and-home sweep of the four games played against the Braves this week. It also ended Boston’s four-game winning streak.

The Red Sox will host the Yankees Friday in the first game of a three-game set at Fenway.

WHAT WENT RIGHT

– Hanley Ramirez picked up his second three-hit game of the season, as he had an RBI single in the first, an RBI double in the third and another single in the sixth. Ramirez finished the game 3-for-4 with a pair of RBI to bring his season total to 13.

– Dustin Pedroia couldn’t match his two-homer, 5-RBI performance of Wednesday, but he did double in the first inning Thursday and add an RBI single in the bottom of the ninth. He has now registered hits in eight of his last nine games.

– Mookie Betts extended his hit streak to nine games with a two-out single in the bottom of the ninth and scored on Pedroia’s RBI single. It wasn’t the best offensive night for Betts, however, as he had a pair of strikeouts, one of which left Jackie Bradley Jr. stranded at third base to end the second inning.

– The Braves were threatening to add to their lead when Mallex Smith doubled to deep center with one out in the top of the eighth inning. Smith tried swiping third, but was ruled out on Christian Vazquez’ throw. Atlanta challenged the call, and though video showed that Smith likely did get under Travis Shaw’s tag, the call on the field was upheld.

WHAT WENT WRONG

– Ramirez was the only Red Sox player with multiple hits Thursday, as the Sox had more hitters with multiple strikeouts (Betts, David Ortiz, Jackie Bradley Jr.) than hitters with multiple hits.

– Time out is not a given, and Xander Bogaerts learned the hard way in the first inning. With Pedroia on second base and Bogaerts on first after a walk, David Ortiz hit a grounder on which the Braves went to second for the force, allowing Ortiz to reach on the fielder’s choice.

Yet Bogaerts was called safe at second base, to the surprise of the Braves. He immediately called for time and stepped off the base, at which point he was tagged out. John Farrell came out address the confusion, but it seemed an open-and-shut case given that second base umpire Joe West had not granted Bogaerts time.

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean

Eduardo Rodriguez

Eduardo Rodriguez

Making his first rehab start with a Red Sox minor league affiliate, Eduardo Rodriguez showed he might have a ways to go before being ready for the big club.

Starting for Triple-A Pawtucket Thursday night in Syracuse, Rodriguez allowed three runs on six hits and three walks over 3 2/3 innings. The lefty, who threw 75 pitches (45 strikes), also struck out a pair.

Rodriguez gave up a run in the first, and then two more in the second, allowing four straight single to start the frame.

In the third, Rodriguez faced just three batters, negating a walk thanks to the double play ball off the bat of Brendan Ryan.

Keith Couch came on to relieve Rodriguez with one out in the fourth inning.

Also of note in the game was Blake Swihart seeing his first action in left field.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford