Joe Kelly

Joe Kelly

Joe Kelly said during spring training that the only time he had ever pitched any kind of no-hitter was when using David Price’s character in a video game.

That almost changed Saturday.

Making his first start since coming off the 15-day disabled list with a right shoulder impingement, Kelly no-hit the Indians for 6 2/3 innings before Juan Uribe rifled a two-out double into the right-center field gap.

The first-pitch, 96 mph fastball to Uribe would be the last pitch of Kelly’s afternoon, finishing up having thrown 104 pitches. He would give way to Junichi Tazawa after having struck out seven and walking three.

Kelly left with the Red Sox holding a 4-0 lead.

The only real threat against Kelly came in the fifth inning when he walked the bases loaded. But the righty managed to escape after lunging at Chris Gimenez’s slow roller, firing home for the out that ended a 30-pitch inning.

Kelly lowered his ERA from 9.35 to 5.28 with the outing.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

At first, it looked like it might not be Jackie Bradley Jr.’s day.

The first two times at-bat against the Indians, Bradley Jr. drew an intentional walk and four-pitch free pass, in which none of the offerings were close from Indians’ starter Trevor Bauer.

Jackie Bradley Jr.

Jackie Bradley Jr.

At first, it looked like it might not be Jackie Bradley Jr.’s day.

The first two times at-bat against the Indians, Bradley Jr. drew an intentional walk and four-pitch free pass, in which none of the offerings were close from Indians’ starter Trevor Bauer.

But leading off the sixth inning, against Bauer, Bradley Jr. finally got his chance to hit, and he took advantage of it.

The Red Sox center fielder grounded a 2-2 cutter from Bauer toward the middle, where Indians’ second baseman Jason Kipnis dove and gathered it in. But the subsequent throw from Kipnis drew Carlos Santana off the bag just enough to allow for a Bradley Jr. single.

The hit marked the 26th game Bradley Jr. had collected at least one hit, raising his batting average to .345.

The streak is now just one game shy of David Ortiz’s stretch of 27 straight in 2013. The club record stands at 34, set by Dom DiMaggio in 1949. Second on the list is Nomar Garciaparra’s 30-gamer in ’97.

Others to carry notable hit streaks for the Red Sox include Johnny Damon (29, 2005), and Manny Ramirez (27, 2006).

The Red Sox held a 4-0 lead at the time of Bradley Jr.’s single.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

Jackie Bradley Jr.

Jackie Bradley Jr.

At first, it looked like it might not be Jackie Bradley Jr.’s day.

The first two times at-bat against the Indians, Bradley Jr. drew an intentional walk and four-pitch free pass, in which none of the offerings were close from Indians’ starter Trevor Bauer.

But leading off the sixth inning, against Bauer, Bradley Jr. finally got his chance to hit, and he took advantage of it.

The Red Sox center fielder grounded a 2-2 cutter from Bauer toward the middle, where Indians’ second baseman Jason Kipnis dove and gathered it in. But the subsequent throw from Kipnis drew Carlos Santana off the bag just enough to allow for a Bradley Jr. single.

The hit marked the 26th game Bradley Jr. had collected at least one hit, raising his batting average to .345.

The streak is now just one game shy of David Ortiz’s stretch of 27 straight in 2013. The club record stands at 34, set by Dom DiMaggio in 1949. Second on the list is Nomar Garciaparra’s 30-gamer in ’97.

Others to carry notable hit streaks for the Red Sox include Johnny Damon (29, 2005), and Manny Ramirez (27, 2006).

The Red Sox held a 4-0 lead at the time of Bradley Jr.’s single.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

While Eduardo Rodriguez was saddled with some bad news earlier in the week — having to skip his scheduled start with Triple-A Pawtucket Thursday due to knee discomfort — he seemingly has rediscovered some optimism.

Eduardo Rodriguez

Eduardo Rodriguez

While Eduardo Rodriguez was saddled with some bad news earlier in the week — having to skip his scheduled start with Triple-A Pawtucket Thursday due to knee discomfort — he seemingly has rediscovered some optimism.

After throwing a successful bullpen session Friday, and then participating in pitcher’s fielding practice Saturday, Rodriguez seems on track to make a start for the PawSox, Tuesday.

One of the chief reasons for the turnaround may have been something as simple as wearing a knee brace.

“He had a strong work session today with the PFP that he went through. Feels good coming out of it,” said Red Sox manager John Farrell. “He was fitted for a brace. The confidence that he’s got from that is substantial. There’s even-ness to his running gate. He might have favored it a little bit prior. But change of direction, his footwork, all that was very good.”

Rodriguez initially didn’t feel comfortable with the brace on his right knee, but after adjusting the size of the support system he agreed to give it a try.

“He went through a bullpen [Friday] with it and felt very good,” Farrell said. “He had a powerful ‘pen yesterday so I know he’s encouraged and just the support that it provides gives him a lot more confidence.”

In four rehab outings, Rodriguez has totaled 4.29 ERA over 21 innings. He last pitched May 14, allowing three runs over 5 2/3 innings.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

The Red Sox announced Saturday that Triple-A starting pitcher Brian Johnson was being placed on the club’s temporary inactive list while seeking help for anxiety issues.

The 25-year-old will continue non-baseball activities at the organization’s facility in Fort Myers, Fla.

The Red Sox announced Saturday that Triple-A starting pitcher Brian Johnson was being placed on the club’s temporary inactive list while seeking help for anxiety issues.

The 25-year-old will continue non-baseball activities at the organization’s facility in Fort Myers, Fla.

Johnson last pitched May 14, giving up five runs over five innings to push his ERA with the PawSox to 4.64 in seven starts. The lefty has struggled with his command as of late, issuing five walks in each of his last two outings.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

In the middle game of the three-game series between the Red Sox and Indians, the Sox will welcome back Joe Kelly while the Indians will be depending on Trevor Bauer.

Last Monday was a good day for Kelly. In his rehab start for Triple-A Pawtucket he struck out 10 Norfolk Tides batters, allowing no runs in 6 1/3 innings.

“He had command of the zone and was explosive tonight,” Pawtucket manager Kevin Boles said after Kelly’s start. “He attacked hitters and it was a good step forward.”

Meanwhile, rain struck in Kansas City where the Red Sox were supposed to take on the Royals, which meant that the big league club would play a doubleheader Wednesday, creating a need for another starter on Saturday. Kelly’s name quickly got tossed in the ring as a possibility to fill that role. On Tuesday, manager John Farrell made Kelly Saturday’s official starter.

Kelly was placed on the 15-day DL back on April 19 with a shoulder impingement. In three starts with Pawtucket while on a rehab assignment Kelly had a 1.26 ERA, 1.05 WHIP and 16 strikeouts in 14 1/3 innings pitched.  Prior to going on the DL the 27-year-old right-hander was 1-0 with a 9.35 ERA and a 2.76 WHIP in three starts with Boston.

Kelly will be trying to regain a permanent spot in the rotation, and luckily for him on Saturday he will be facing a team that he has had success against. In two career starts against the Indians, Kelly has a .082 ERA with a 1.45 WHIP, seven strikeouts and four walks. Kelly’s last start against Cleveland was last Aug. 19, when he went six innings and gave up five hits and one run that was unearned in Boston’s 6-4 victory.

Bauer is 3-1 this season with a 3.89 ERA and a 1.24 WHIP. In his last start, the 25-year-old right-hander gave up three runs, but struck out eight in 6 2/3 innings in what ended up being a 5-1 loss to the Twins.

Against the Red Sox Bauer has a whopping 23.63 ERA with a 3.75 WHIP in two games. Bauer faced the Sox earlier this season in a relief role. Back on April 5 Bauer pitched the ninth inning of his team’s 6-2 loss and gave up a two-run home run to David Ortiz while striking out two. Last Aug. 18, Bauer started a game at Fenway, and that outing didn’t go well for him. Bauer was yanked from the game after just 1 2/3 innings after giving up six hits and five runs.

“I threw everything on the edge of the strike zone tonight, and they hit it,” Bauer said after that 2015 start. “So maybe next game I’ll try to throw it down the middle, since that’s something they didn’t hit tonight.”

Indians vs. Kelly (RHP)

Juan Uribe (11 plate appearances): .364 AVG./ .364 OBP/ .455 SLG, 1 double, 1 RBI, 1 strikeout

Marlon Byrd (7): .333/.429/.333, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 1 strikeout

Jason Kipnis (6): .400/.500/.600, 1 double, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts

Carlos Santana 0-for-5 with 1 RBI and 1 strikeout.

Lonnie Chisenhall is 1-for-1 with 2 walks.

Yan Gomes is 0-for-3 with 1 strikeout.

Francisco Lindor is 1-for-3

Jose Ramirez is 1-for-2.

Red Sox vs. Bauer (RHP)

Xander Bogaerts is 0-for-3 with 2 strikeouts.

Brock Holt is 2-for-3 with 1 RBI.

Mookie Betts is 1-for-2 with 1 double and 3 RBIs.

David Ortiz is 2-for-2 with 1 double, 1 HR and 3 RBIs

Hanley Ramirez is 1-for-2.

Travis Shaw is 1-for-2 with 1 strikeout.

Ryan Hanigan is 0-for-1.

Dustin Pedroia walked in his only plate appearance.

Blog Author: 
John Hand
Mut recaps the 4-2 loss to the Indians.