Hanley Ramirez

Hanley Ramirez

ANAHEIM, Calif. — The explanation was simple and succinct. But it didn’t make anything easier to digest for the Red Sox.

“I tried to get two before I got one,” said Hanley Ramirez after the Red Sox’ 2-1, walk-off loss to the Angels Thursday night. “That can’t happen. I know better than that. I know that I’ve got [Mike] Trout on third and it was a tough ground ball but I’ve got to make sure of one. I kind of started running before I threw it.”

What Ramirez was talking about was the final, and pivotal, play in the Red Sox’ fourth loss in a row. He had botched what could have been a game-ending, double-play grounder off the bat of pinch-hitter Daniel Nava, sailing the throw home over the head of catcher Sandy Leon after failing to set his feet when releasing the ball.

With the errant toss, both Trout and pinch-runner Ji-Man Choi scored, capping a wild ninth inning the Red Sox could have done without.

“That’s mental right there,” Ramirez said of the throw. “That’s a mental mistake right there. I know what I did wrong and I’ll come back tomorrow and hopefully it won’t happen. But if it happens, it won’t happen again. I rushed it a little bit.”

With closer Brad Ziegler on the mound, the ninth-inning issues began with a slow grounder down the third base line off the bat of Trout. Third baseman Travis Shaw gathered in it, but had to rush his throw, resulting in a short-hop Ramirez couldn’t handle.

“You see the original hop. Couldn’t get it on the original hop so you have to wait for that second bounce,” Shaw explained. “You try and make the transfer as quick as you can. And even in that spot right there I think a perfect transfer he still beats that out. He gets down the line pretty good. Just try and get it out of my hand as quick as I can.

“You know as soon as that ball takes that second bounce, the scouting report is he can run. I didn’t look at him at all. I just know you have to make that transfer and that throw as quick as you can.”

Albert Pujols followed with a line-drive single to left field. Then, after pinch-hitter Carlos Perez failed o three straight bunt attempts, Andrelton Simmons loaded the bases with a base-hit into center field. That set the stage for Nava’s at-bat.

“The only [pitch] that I thought was semi-bad was to Pujols,” Ziegler said. “It was up a little bit. It was still off the plate, but he got his barrel to it. Pitch to Simmons was down. Pitch to Trout was a pretty good pitch. Last one there, they’re all down. Simmons was the one guy who took a pitch that was down and elevated it a little bit. I really, I felt good throwing the ball.”

“You anticipate everything before it happens,” said Ramirez, who now has four errors on the season, committing his first since June 25. “The only thing I can say is I tried to get two before I got one. That can’t happen. You have to make sure of one and go from there.”

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

One bad throw ruined what was supposed to be a momentum-turning night for the Red Sox.

David Price turned in an ace-like performance Thursday night. (Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports)

David Price turned in an ace-like performance Thursday night. (Kirby Lee/USA Today Sports)

One bad throw ruined what was supposed to be a momentum-turning night for the Red Sox.

With one out and the bases-loaded in the ninth inning, pinch-hitter Daniel Nava grounded what should have been a game-ending double play to first baseman Hanley Ramirez. But the Sox infielder’s throw home sailed over the head of catcher Sandy Leon, allowing two runs to score, handing the Angels a walk-off, 2-1 win over the Red Sox at Angel Stadium.

It marked the first time this season the Red Sox have lost four games in a row.

The ninth-inning collapse came against Red Sox closer Brad Ziegler. The reliever had been immediately greeted by back-to-back singles from Mike Trout and Albert Pujols. Then, after three failed bunt attempts by pinch-hitter Carlos Perez, Andrelton Simmons loaded the bases with a base-hit to center.

It spoiled what had been one David Price’s best outings with the Red Sox, with the lefty pitching eight shutout innings, striking out seven while scattering seven singles. He threw 109 pitches.

For a complete box score, click here.

Closing Time note

With his first-inning single, Dustin Pedroia extended his streak of reaching base to 31 games.

WHAT WENT RIGHT

– Leon made things happen in the third inning. The catcher led things off with single, and then moved to third with an aggressive baserunning play on Brock Holt’s base-hit to right field. The extra base resulted in the game’s first run, with Leon scoring on Mookie Betts’ sacrifice fly to left field.

– Overaggressiveness once again caught up to Angels manager Mike Scioscia, this time in the form of Jefry Marte getting caught stealing third base for the second out of the fifth inning. It seemed like an odd stolen base attempt considering Los Angeles had runners on first and second with one out, down by just a run. As it turned out, the play was followed with base hits from Gregorio Petit and Johnny Giavotella to load the bases. Price would escape thanks to an inning-ending ground out to shortstop by Yunel Escobar.

WHAT WENT WRONG

– There were some instances where Angels’ starter Jered Weaver’s velocity-free style flummoxed Red Sox hitters.

– The Red Sox couldn’t do much damage against Weaver, who came into the game with a 5.32 ERA. THe soft-throwing righty only gave up a run over 5 2/3 innings, with JC Ramirez protecting his line by inducing a deep fly out to left by Ramirez with a pair of Weaver’s runners on in the sixth inning.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

ANAHEIM, Calif. — There hasn’t been many retirement gifts given to David Ortiz that have truly stood out. And the Angels’ offering of a portrait before Thursday night’s game at Angel Stadium pretty much continued the trend.

But the Angels’ presentation did prove to be somewhat unique thanks to outfielder Mike Trout …

ANAHEIM, Calif. — There hasn’t been many retirement gifts given to David Ortiz that have truly stood out. And the Angels’ offering of a portrait before Thursday night’s game at Angel Stadium pretty much continued the trend.

But the Angels’ presentation did prove to be somewhat unique thanks to outfielder Mike Trout …

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

ANAHEIM, Calif. — It seemed like a distinctively strong stance by Red Sox manager John Farrell when he said on the Red Sox radio broadcast’s pregame show Wednesday afternoon that he might have to consider scratching Steven Wright if the elements were a factor.

John Farrell and Steven Wright continue to try and find a solution to the pitcher's problems with the elements. (David Butler/USA Today Images)

John Farrell and Steven Wright continue to try and find a solution to the pitcher’s problems with the elements. (David Butler/USA Today Images)

ANAHEIM, Calif. — It seemed like a distinctively strong stance by Red Sox manager John Farrell when he said on the Red Sox radio broadcast’s pregame show Wednesday afternoon that he might have to consider scratching Steven Wright if the elements were a factor. (Click here for the comment, which can be heard at the 2:08 mark.)

But, according to Farrell Thursday, that was never really considered.

“We’ve got to figure out a way to get through 90 degrees,” the Sox manager said prior to his team’s series opener against the Angels. “I’m not being critical. I’m being obvious. Realize that resin creates a sticky feeling in the hand and that it has an adverse effect on the consistency of the knuckleball. But your rotation is set up as it is, every fifth day. I don’t know that we can go through and look at the weather and forecast if we’re going to change the rotation. That’s not likely.”

In most of Wright’s subpar starts, the elements have seemingly played a role, with the knuckleballer struggling to deal with any kind of moisture on his hands and forearms.

Wright has taken some precautions to manage the issue, applying an over-the-counter combination of glycerin and rosewater to help dry his hands.

Farrell also surfaced another solution: sleeves.

“To me, we talked about it the other day, to wear long sleeves and keep the sweat from running down the back of his hands,” he said. “We see him many times trying to wipe it off, trying to do what he can to maintain the consistency to the feel. I don’t know if there’s any other talc or any other drying adhesive, or drying ointment. It’s not legalized.”

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

ANAHEIM, Calif. — With right-hander Jered Weaver on the mound for the Angels, and David Price getting the start for the Red Sox, Sandy Leon is back behind the plate for the visitors at Angel Stadium Thursday night.

Here is the Red Sox’ lineup in the first of what will be a stretch of 43 games in 44 days:

ANAHEIM, Calif. — With right-hander Jered Weaver on the mound for the Angels, and David Price getting the start for the Red Sox, Sandy Leon is back behind the plate for the visitors at Angel Stadium Thursday night.

Here is the Red Sox’ lineup in the first of what will be a stretch of 43 games in 44 days:

Mookie Betts RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
Travis Shaw 3B
Sandy Leon C
Brock Holt LF

For all the matchups, click here.

Betts RF, Pedroia 2B, Bogaerts SS, Ortiz DH, Ramirez 1B, Bradley Jr. CF, Shaw 3B, Leon C, Holt LF, Price LHP.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

It makes sense for the Red Sox to ask about Wade Davis.

The 30-year-old closer is actually what the Sox need, another game-ender to go along with Brad Ziegler and Craig Kimbrel. (We still can’t really target a return date for Koji Uehara.) Davis has been dominating once again this season, managing a 1.60 ERA while going 21 for 23 in save chances.