Red Sox Manager John Farrell talks about Bogaerts' concussion and the youth movement.

[0:00:51] ... Because this is actually bothered me since Friday. I don't know what Major League Baseball does about concussions but I saw. And Bogart's stick to pitch in the helmet Friday continue in the game and then the ...
[0:04:44] ... isn't. Currently giving players some some issue. If there's a place in Major League Baseball David Ortiz likes hitting more than Fenway it might be the Rogers Centre. Given his career numbers has not been able to play the ...
[0:11:58] ... and and the three -- -- -- had with this. I don't Mike Napoli said you know you don't get any more credit when it goes as far as -- as if it goes into the ...

David Ortiz will return to the Red Sox lineup in his customary third spot for the series finale against the Blue Jays. With his return, left fielder Yoenis Cespedes will get the day off.

David Ortiz will return to the Red Sox lineup in his customary third spot for the series finale against the Blue Jays. With his return, left fielder Yoenis Cespedes will get the day off.


Brock Holt, SS

Dustin Pedroia, 2B

David Ortiz, DH

Mike Napoli, 1B

Daniel Nava, LF

Allen Craig, RF

Mookie Betts, CF

Will Middlebrooks, 3B

David Ross, C

Joe Kelly, RHP

Blog Author: 
Alex Speier
As he does every Wednesday, Buster Olney, ESPN, joins the boys of MFB to talk baseball. This week Buster shed some light on what to expect from Rusney Castillo, and how Cuban players are being viewed. He suggests that the acquisition of Castillo helps Boston's chances to get Giancarlo Stanton. Also, the Sox should shut down Koji if they want to re-sign him.

[0:06:06] ... don't want to trade this player. As opposed -- you know and Andrew Miller where I think there's an expectation that even though the -- that street Miller. Dad does a good chance he's gonna wind ...
[0:07:55] ... again and and you know guys like Paul I want troll and Scott Proctor. Would just be run through and Johnny ventures. Led Major League Baseball and appearances in 2011. Among the leaders in 2000 and. ...
[0:10:49] ... the right -- -- to trade for but. You know talking -- Bob Melvin in the and the other people -- the athletic they love Lester in fact. I I hadn't heard this story till the weekend you guys he's got Kazmir having success apparently. Kazmir learned -- cutters from Lester -- Lester was still the Red Sox were just walked up too many outfield that day. Can show me that cutter and and that's been part of the reason like cats -- has been so good. Are up and Oakland at pitching coach Curt Young told me that -- you been tremendous with -- teammate. I know Saint Louis -- really happy Lackey I think everyone is ...

Left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez has been dominant in five starts for Portland. (Lynn Chadwick / Portland Sea Dogs)

Left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez has been dominant in five starts for Portland. (Lynn Chadwick / Portland Sea Dogs)

A brief look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Tuesday:



– On a night when he walked his most batters (4) and threw just 61 of his season-high 105 pitches for strikes (58 percent), left-hander Henry Owens overcame his struggles to limit his opponents to three runs on eight hits. His efforts were helped by his eight punchouts in 6 1/3 innings. In his five starts with Pawtucket, Owens is now 2-1 with a 3.66 ERA, 35 strikeouts and 10 walks in 32 innings. Opponents are hitting .248 against him with three homers in that span, up from the .201 average to which he held opponents in Double-A this year. In short, there’s an adjustment to a higher caliber of opposing hitters to which Owens is still adjusting, though he’s holding his own amidst that transition.

– Right-hander Dalier Hinojosa was dominant, retiring eight of nine batters he faced. The 28-year-old has a 2.03 ERA since the beginning of June with 26 strikeouts and eight walks in 26 2/3 innings. After he entered July with a 5.51 ERA, he’s dropped that mark to 3.90.

Bryce Brentz can mash against left-handers with good stuff. He went deep against highly regarded Blue Jays prospect Daniel Norris, his 12th homer in 58 games in Pawtucket this year. Against southpaws, Brentz is hitting .304/.355/.725 with eight homers in 76 plate appearances (one for every 9.5 trips to the dish). His performance both against lefties and overall since his return from a groin injury (.260/.333/.558) suggest someone who might be getting close to capable of contributing at the big league level. Yet as much as the Sox’ recent acquisitions of outfielders such as Yoenis Cespedes, Allen Craig and Rusney Castillo has raised questions about the future of a player like Shane Victorino in the organization, the questions are just as significant for players like Brentz and Alex Hassan, who now find themselves behind a considerable crowd of corner outfielders.

– Center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. was 3-for-6 with a double, his first three-hit game and second extra-base hit in his nine games in Triple-A.

– Shortstop Deven Marrero went 2-for-5 with a pair of doubles, his first multi-hit game since August 10. He’s struggled to a .220/.271/.304 line in Pawtucket, leaving Marrero with a .264/.334/383 line for the year — with his average and OBP fairly similar to the marks of .252 and .338 that he posted in Salem and Portland last year, but with nearly double the extra-base hits (38 this year vs. 22 in 2013). Given that the average AL shortstop is hitting .256/.310/.360, Marrero has the profile of a player with the potential to deliver average to slightly better-than-average offense with tremendous defense — a skill set that could make him a big league starter for a number of years.



– Left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez continues to assert himself as one of the Sox’ top pitching prospects since his trade from the Orioles to Boston for Andrew Miller. Rodriguez worked around seven hits to limit his opponents to one run, punching out seven and walking none.

The 21-year-old, whose fastball (a pitch he’s used aggressively to both sides of the plate) has topped out at 96-97 mph in each of his starts with Portland, with flashes of a plus changeup and a slider, suffered his first loss with Portland, but after five starts, he’s 2-1 with a 0.86 ERA, 35 strikeouts (10.1 per nine innings) and just six walks (1.7 per nine) in 31 1/3 innings. He’s punched out at least seven in four of his five starts, while showing the athleticism to suggest an ability to repeat his delivery and attack the strike zone.

His numbers with Portland stand in marked contrast to what Rodriguez had done prior to the trade with the Orioles’ Double-A affiliate, where he was 3-7 with a 4.79 ERA, 7.5 strikeouts and 3.2 walks per nine, but reflect the potential that had made him a highly regarded prospect entering the year.

Sean Coyle went 1-for-4 with a solo homer, his 15th of the year. It’s his second straight year of 15-plus homers, suggesting unusual right-handed power potential for a second baseman. He’s now hitting .299/.375/.513 for the season.



Jose Vinicio, the usually-light-hitting shortstop, is on a tear recently. With a 2-for-4 showing on Tuesday, Vinicio now has six multi-hit performances in his last seven games. The hot stretch has boosted his batting average almost 80 points; the 21-year-old is now hitting .230, the first time he’s hit over the Mendoza line since his first game of the season with Salem. He’s even shown some very rare power lately, with three of his four extra-base hits on the season coming in his last seven contests. However, even with the stretch of multi-hit showings, Vinicio is still batting a meager .230/.255/.280 through 31 games with Salem.

Carlos Asuaje‘s 11-game hit streak was broken on Tuesday night, but the left fielder still reached base three times, drawing a trio of walks. It’s the second time this season he’s been able to work three free passes in a game. Asuaje has displayed adequate ability when it comes to drawing walks, posting a .391 OBP and walking in a little under 10 percent of plate appearances in 90 games with Single-A Greenville this season. But the ability seemed to have eluded him during his first couple weeks with Salem, drawing six free passes in 124 plate appearances (walking at about a five percent rate). His last four games, however, have been a different story. Asuaje has worked six walks in his last 18 trips to the plate. His OBP, which sat at .355 prior to this four-game stretch, has shot up to .394.

– After a couple of impressive outings, starter Simon Mercedes was roughed up in his latest performance, allowing five runs on 10 hits and three walks while striking out two. It’s the fifth time in 18 appearances (13 starts) that Mercedes has given up five or more runs. His strikeout numbers continue to be way down, with the righty fanning 10 batters over his last 21 2/3 innings of work. He owns a 5.08 ERA in 78 innings this year.



– Starter Daniel McGrath was solid through five innings, allowing a run on just one hit, though he did walk three. It was a nice bounce-back effort from the 20-year-old, who endured one of his shortest and most wild outings of the season his last time out, allowing six runs on seven walks. The command has been an issue for the young lefty all season long, as he’s averaging about five walks per nine innings, an alarmingly high rate. However, when McGrath finds the zone, opposing hitters have mustered just a .223 batting average against him through his 91 1/3 innings this season.

– Though Sam Travis‘s rapid production has tailed off a bit over the last couple of weeks, he’s still showing off some power. Travis knocked his ninth double since being promoted to Greenville at the beginning of August, bringing his slugging mark to .494 through 83 at-bats. He ended the night going 1-for-3 with a walk. His walk turned out to be pivotal, as he moved up to second on a bunt and scored on a passed ball in the ninth inning, giving the Drive the lead. The first baseman, who turns 21 on Wednesday, is hitting .277/.322/.494 with the Drive.

– McGrath wasn’t the only effective pitcher on Tuesday. Jason Garcia, who relieved McGrath after five, tossed four one-hit frames of his own, walking three and striking out five while keeping the RiverDogs off the board. Garcia owns a 4.13 ERA through 32 2/3 innings with Greenville this season.



– In his third start for the Spinners, Jeffry Fernandez was roughed up, allowing five runs (though only three earned) on eight hits in four innings of work. On the bright side, the 21-year-old righty hasn’t walked or hit a batter in nine innings since experiencing some real command issues in his first start (four walks and a hit batter). Fernandez has allowed a total of eight earned runs on 18 hits through his first 13 2/3 innings with the Spinners.

– One of the few bright spots for Lowell was reliever Williams Jerez, who tossed three scoreless innings in relief, permitting three hits and fanning five. Much like he was in the GCL earlier this season, Jerez has been racking up the strikeouts in Lowell, with 11 in just seven innings since earning the promotion. The three-inning stint on Tuesday was Jerez’s first outing without allowing a walk in his four appearances for the Spinners.

Aneudis Peralta extended his hitting streak to six games with a 2-for-4 showing. He was the only member of the Spinners’ lineup to rack up multiple hits on the evening. The first baseman has hit well since joining the Lowell squad, putting together a .291/.350/.345 line through 16 games.



– Left-hander Gabe Speier continues to look impressive in his return from Tommy John surgery. The 19-year-old, whose fastball is a high-80s to low-90s offering complemented by a breaking ball that he spins well, fired five innings in which he allowed a run on five hits, punched out a season-high seven and walked none. In nine games in the GCL, Speier — a 2013 19th-rounder who underwent Tommy John surgery — is 3-0 with a 1.55 ERA, 26 strikeouts and just one walk. He’s striking out 8.1 per nine innings and has gotten groundballs on 57 percent of the balls put in play against him, suggesting some interesting raw materials in his first real opportunity to pitch as a professional while healthy.

Rafael Devers went 2-for-4 with a double, giving him three straight multi-hit games, four in five contests and five in his last seven games. The 17-year-old’s .322 average is fifth in the GCL; the four players ahead of him are 18, 19, 20 and 22 years old. Though Devers has seen his walk rate drop roughly in half from the DSL (15.0 percent) to the GCL (7.7 percent), his strikeout rate has increased by only about 10 percent (from 15.7 to 17.3 percent) in his move to a level where his age makes him a rarity.

– Second baseman Victor Acosta went 2-for-4, his fifth multi-hit game in his last 10 contests, continuing an August run that has seen him boost his line from .189/.282/.289 to .271/.350/.389. The 18-year-old is hitting .407/.467/.556 this month, with his average and OBP ranking second in the GCL in that time and his slugging mark ranking sixth.

Blog Author: 
Alex Speier and Katie Morrison
Joe Kelly

Joe Kelly

Coming off two straight extra-innings victories over the Blue Jays, the Red Sox send Joe Kelly to the mound opposite rookie right-hander Marcus Stroman in Wednesday’s series finale at Rogers Centre.

Kelly (0-1, 4.09 ERA) is looking for his first win in his fifth start with the Sox since being acquired from the Cardinals on July 31. He pitched five scoreless innings in his last start, allowing just one hit, but he left the game after 86 pitches due to a shoulder concern, and Sox closer Koji Uehara proceeded to implode in the ninth inning of a 5-3 loss to the Mariners.

The Sox medical staff checked out Kelly after removing him and found nothing to prevent him from taking the ball for his next scheduled start.

“Joe came in and felt no ill effects from [Friday] night after a battery of tests that he went through after the game that didn’t reproduce any of the symptoms,” Red Sox manager John Farrell said the day after. “It was followed up with him feeling well [Saturday] morning and he’s on target to start in five days.”

Stroman (7-5, 4.11 ERA) held the Red Sox to one run over 14 innings in back-to-back wins for the rookie on July 24 and 29. The Duke product has struggled since then, however, going 0-3 with an 8.66 ERA in four starts.

In his most recent outing, Friday against the Rays, Stroman gave up six runs on a season-high 10 hits with three walks in five innings of an 8-0 loss. Despite pitching on six days’ rest, Stroman saw his winless streak reach four starts.

“It’s extremely frustrating,” he said afterward. “I couldn’t keep my team in it today to get a win.”

The 23-year-old — who at 5-foot-9 is one of the game’s shortest pitchers — has 20 games of major league experience, all coming this season.

Stroman hails from Medford, New York, and is a former winner of the Carl Yastrzemski Award, an honor that goes to the top high school player in New York’s Suffolk County (where the Red Sox legend grew up). In three seasons at Duke he went 15-13 with a 3.27 ERA and set the  school’s career strikeout record with 290 (in 220 innings). He also played outfield for the Blue Devils, hitting .252 in 301 at-bats. He became Duke’s first-ever first-round draft pick when he was selected 22nd overall by Toronto in 2012.

Stroman was handed a 50-game suspension on Aug. 28, 2012, while pitching for the Double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats. He had tested positive for methylhexanimine, a banned stimulant that was in an over-the-counter training supplement he said purchased without being aware.

Red Sox vs. Marcus Stroman (RHP)

Brock Holt (7 plate appearances): .286/.286/.429, 1 double, 4 strikeouts

Daniel Nava (6): .167/.167/.167, 2 strikeouts

David Ortiz (6): .000/.167/.000, 1 strikeout

Kelly Johnson (5): .400/.400/.600, 1 double

Christian Vazquez (5): .000/.000/.000, 1 strikeout

Yoenis Cespedes (3): .000/.000/.000, 1 strikeout

Allen Craig (3): .667/.667/.667, 1 RBI, 1 strikeout

Mike Napoli (3): .000/.000/.000, 1 strikeout

Dustin Pedroia (3): .667/.667/.667, 1 double, 1 RBI

Blue Jays vs. Joe Kelly (RHP)

Jose Reyes (6): .000/.000/.000, 1 RBI, 1 strikeout

Melky Cabrera (3): .667/.667/.1.000, 1 double

Juan Francisco and Dioner Navarro each are 0-for-1 against Kelly.

Blog Author: 

On Sunday, Mike Napoli talked about the importance of treating the remainder of the schedule as meaningful, of respecting the game in a fashion that maintained the integrity of the team’s who s

Mike Napoli and Dustin Pedroia drove in five of the Sox' seven runs in the 11th innings. (Getty Images)

Mike Napoli and Dustin Pedroia drove in five of the Sox’ seven runs in the 11th innings. (Getty Images)

On Sunday, Mike Napoli talked about the importance of treating the remainder of the schedule as meaningful, of respecting the game in a fashion that maintained the integrity of the team’s who still have something to play for in 2014. The veteran said that the Red Sox were mindful of the teams that had fallen out of the race last year that nonetheless still fought for wins against contenders; the Sox, Napoli hoped, would do the same.

Through the first two games against the Blue Jays in Toronto, the Sox have done just that, delivering a potentially terminal pair of losses on the Jays, the latest an 11-7 victory in 11 innings on Tuesday. The Sox scored seven or more runs in an extra-inning frame for just the second time in at least the last 30 years, the previous such instance coming on August 16, 2005, then held on for dear life as reliever Heath Hembree struggled to secure the final three outs.

Still, secure them he did, as the Red Sox left the Blue Jays reeling, seven games out of the wild card race.


– For the second straight game, Dustin Pedroia went deep, launching a two-run homer in the top of the first against knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. It was the first time since last July 30-31 that he’s gone deep in consecutive games. He later delivered a bases-loaded, two-run single in the 11th to set in motion the Sox’ victory. His four runs batted in matched a season high.

– Napoli smoked a three-run homer (his 16th of the year) to blow the game open as part of a 2-for-5 game.

– Yoenis Cespedes had his third straight multi-hit game, going 3-for-6 with a trio of singles including a go-ahead RBI single in the top of the seventh. He also now has a five-game hitting streak that has included at least one run in in each contest, a run during which he’s 10-for-22 with a pair of walks. His stretch of five straight games with a hit and RBI is the longest by a Red Sox this year. Cespedes is 10-for-31 with a walk and 18 RBIs with runners in scoring position since joining the Sox.

– Will Middlebrooks continued his tremendous success against knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. He drove a first-inning RBI double to center against Dickey, improving to 4-for-11 against him, with all four of the hits (two doubles, two homers) having been for extra bases — the most extra-base hits Middlebrooks has against any big league pitcher. However, Middlebrooks’ strong night was somewhat qualified by the fact that in the 11th, he struck out against infielder-turned-pitcher Steve Tolleson.

– Brock Holt singled against tough left-handed reliever Aaron Loup, thus improving to .311/.360/.430 against southpaws this year.

Allen Craig hit his first homer since joining the Sox, a two-run shot in the 11th.


– For the first time in his 24 big league starts, right-hander Rubby De La Rosa did not strike out a batter. While he had plenty of velocity, he fooled no one over the course of his 4 2/3 innings in which he allowed three runs on seven hits and two walks.

While it would be natural to wonder whether De La Rosa has fatigued due to a career-high innings log, he had struck out eight in his last outing and indeed in two of his prior three. Moreover, it’s worth noting that the Blue Jays have been all over De La Rosa this year, having whiffed just twice in a total of 14 2/3 innings spanning three starts against Toronto.

There’s been some discussion throughout the year about whether De La Rosa has been tipping his pitches. If so, it would appear that Toronto has developed a very keen sense of when he’s throwing his fastball.

It’s also worth noting that De La Rosa, whose success this year had derived largely from his ability to elicit ground balls and work down in the strike zone, operated at the top of the zone throughout the night. He got just four groundouts, and in some respects, was fortunate to limit the damage to just three runs during his outing.

– Alex Wilson’s streak of nine straight scoreless innings came to an end when he allowed a game-tying solo homer in the bottom of the seventh. He also gave up a walk, the first free pass he’d given up since May 25. He’d made six subsequent appearances spanning 13 1/3 innings without walking anyone.

Blog Author: 
Alex Speier

There have been points this season when the Red Sox outfield depth has been nonexistent, to the point where it seemed as though anyone who could catch a fly ball in Pawtucket would have a shot to earn some playing time.



David Ortiz is out against the Blue Jays for the second straight day due to his injured right foot. In his absence, Mike Napoli will serve as DH, while Allen Craig will play first base.