FORT MYERS, Fla. — John Lackey worked his way out of a bases-loaded jam in the first inning, allowing one run in 20 pitches, while Jose Iglesias hit a two-run homer over the Monster as the Red Sox fell to the Rays, 4-3, Saturday afternoon at JetBlue Park in the Grapefruit League opener for both clubs. Xander Bogaerts, in his final at-bat before leaving for the WBC, singled home a run in the ninth to make it close. Daniel Nava struck out looking with the tying run on base to end the game before a sellout crowd of 9,680 at JetBlue Park.
Lackey was making his first outing since Sept. 25, 2011 and his first since Tommy John surgery on his right elbow.
He allowed one run, one hit, walked one, struck out one and a hit a batter as the Rays managed just one run after loading the bases with none out in the first.
Ryan Roberts drove in the game’s first run with a sacrifice fly to right off Lackey, scoring Ben Zobrist. The Rays added another in the third as Jarrod Saltalamacchia had an inning to forget. He dropped a foul pop that extended the at-bat of Jack Cust. On the next pitch, Desmond Jennings stole third and Saltalamacchia’s throw sailed into left field, allowing Jennings to score, making it 2-0.
The Red Sox went quietly in the first six innings before Jeremy Hazelbaker walked with one out. Iglesias followed by driving a first-pitch fastball over the Monster in left for Boston’s first homer of the spring, tying the game, 2-2.
The Rays got those two runs back in the eighth when Leslie Anderson drilled a two-run homer to right off Red Sox righty Oscar Villarreal (0-1) with two outs.
Saltalamacchia, Jacoby Ellsbury and Hazelbaker had doubles as extra-base hits accounted for four of Boston’s seven hits on the day.
The Red Sox return to action across the state on Sunday as they take on the St. Louis Cardinals in Jupiter at 1:05 p.m. as lefty Jon Lester makes his spring debut. Boston plays split-squad games on Monday with Steven Wright starting against Toronto in Dunedin at 1:05 p.m. and Alfredo Aceves starting against Tampa Bay in Port Charlotte at 1:05 p.m.
POST-GAME NOTES from John Farrell:
On the homer from Iglesias: “Wish there were a couple more like it. As we have commented on him as camp has unfolded, he’s a little bit more upright, a little more free in his overall swing. He got a fastball up in the zone and did what he’s capable of doing. I think more than anything, it’s just the freeness and aggressiveness of the swing.”
On Xander Bogaerts, RBI single, nice defensive play in rundown: “A good heads up play on the rundown we executed. He’s got a good swing through the zone and like I said the other day, he’s a bright-looking young player. He’s heady. He’s got field awareness. Good things are ahead for him.”
On Daniel Nava first base defense: “As we’ve seen in the work, that wasn’t an easy play on that ground ball by [Ben] Zobrist. He looks fine over there for right now. The little things, even on the errant throw [by Iglesias] that you see the footwork where he adjusted on the bag, some things that are more instinctual. To have him step in and the last time he played first base was in junior college, and he’s handled it well.”
On Clay Buchholz 37-pitch simulated game: “He’ll have a side on Monday and then he’s set to go Tuesday or Wednesday. It’s yet to be determined. We’ll fit that into how it starts to plan out for the start of the regular season. He’s gradually ramping up the intensity [on fielding], not only just with field tests as far as straight-ahead running or any kind of cuts, but in time, that’ll take its place. We want to prioritize the work he does on the mound right now.”
For more, visit the Red Sox team page at weei.com/redsox.
Price calls Butch to discuss the March 2nd deadline for franchise tags, free agency and the Pats' plans going forward.
Shortly after the NFLRA released its statement demanding an apology from ESPN, Jim Quirk, the NFLRA's Executive Director, joined Mut to talk about the statement
WEEI's Chris Price joins Mut to talk about his experience of being in yesterday's Patriots championship parade, and which New England free agents could return to play for the Pats next season.
Flannery joins Mut to break down the Isaiah Thomas trade to Boston and what it means for the Celtics this season and in the future. Paul also chats with Mut about the other deals that happened at the NBA's trading deadline
We talk to Chris Mannix from SI to break down the C's acquisition of Isaiah Thomas and the crazy trade deadline in the rest of the NBA.
Jessica Camerato of basketballinsiders.com joins the show to talk about Marcus Smart, the starting lineup, and trade deadline.
The one and only Rob Bradford calls Butch to discuss his early thoughts on this Red Sox team, the potential in the rotation, how the outfield will shake out and more.
David Ortiz takes a few minutes to talk with Mut, Bradford, and Tomase about some of his new teammates, who Pablo Sandoval reminds him of, and the rules aimed at speeding up the game of baseball.
Mut, Bradford, and Tomase are talking Red Sox spring training. and talk with Red Sox DH David Ortiz about the rules aimed at speeding up the pace of the game
In the second of Sunday Skate, DJ and Joe discuss the approaching NHL trade deadline and what the B's will do. They get into the Boychuk move at the beginning of the season and Boychuk's brother venting on Twitter this morning about complaining B's fans. There is more discussion on the 3rd and 4th lines, their playoff chances and then they are joined by ESPN's Scott Burnside.
Another edition of Sunday Skate is upon us and DJ and Joe get into the B's big win over Arizona last night and the improvement of Ryan Spooner. They get into the Blackhawks giving up a 1st round pick for C Antoine Vermette - someone the B's could certainly use but weren't willing to give up the steep price of a 1st rounder. DJ and Joe also get into Claude's willingness to switch up lines as well as the performance of the 3rd and 4th lines. Finally, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman sits down with the boys.
Scott Burnside joins the boys to discuss the Bruins and the NHL trade deadline.
Curt Schilling didn't back down when twitter trolls took shots at his daughter. Dino, Gerry and Kirk applaud Schill's stand.
Mookie sat in with Dino, Gerry and Kirk to discuss the upcoming season and his preparation for playing in the outfield. Mookie also details one of his favorite hobbies, bowling.
All the latest stories brought to you by Kirk Minihane.
On this weeks Aloha Friday, Tim apologizes to our producer Tom for not knowing who Leonard Nimoy was, Christian bashes Kanye West, and Joey makes amends for mistaking camel noises for llama noises
DJ Bean joins Middays with MFB to talk everything going on with the struggling Bruins
On this week's Fauria Five, Christian asks what the over/under on how many times Ortiz will be fined for stepping out of the batter's box this season, will the Bruins make the playoffs, will the Patriots use the franchise tag on Devin McCourty, where does Adrian Peterson play next year, and what color was the dress that went viral yesterday
We discuss the good week that was for the prosecution in the Aaron Hernancez murder trial with attorney and professor of law Michael McCann.
Dale and Michael discuss the plight of the Bruins as the trade deadline looms.
Dale and Michael go back and forth on the circumstances around Vandy coach Kevin Stallings verbally berating a player on national TV, and using harsh language like "I'll kill you"
Mikey, Mut, and Lenny are joined by the Rev girls, who are revealing the New Revolution uniform Tuesday at the House of Blues in Boston and talking about the Revs.
Mikey, Lenny, and Maggie talk Red Sox baseball with Red Sox Hall of Famer Bill Lee, who is in Florida and out of the snow that's perpetually burying the area.
Mikey gets a call from Kirk Minihane, who wants to clear the air with Mikey and get everything settled. It goes better than you think.
Boston University coach David Quinn joins WEEI’s Scott McLaughlin to discuss the Terriers’ Beanpot title and how he feels about his team as the postseason approaches. Quinn also discusses reports about NHL interest in goalie Matt O’Connor and briefly touches on a recent misstep by Jack Eichel.
After a wild trade deadline, Ben Kichen and Sam Packard breakdown the Celtics and the rest of the NBA. Then Sam yells at Ben about the use of analytics in basketball. Ben yells back.
Chris and Nate from Barstool Sports review the events of Fast Lane and Raw while discussing the potential card at Wrestlemania.
We discuss the good week that was for the prosecution in the Aaron Hernancez murder trial with attorney and professor of law Michael McCann.More from this show
Mookie sat in with Dino, Gerry and Kirk to discuss the upcoming season and his preparation for playing in the outfield. Mookie also details one of his favorite hobbies, bowling.More from this show
John Rooke and Scott Cordischi take your calls, texts, tweets and emails on the week's hot topics. Today’s show we vent over the sale and vagaries of the Pawtucket Red Sox possibly being uprooted from their home field for years in Pawtucket. We also look ahead to NCAA selection Sunday focusing on the local teams. We say goodbye to our friend Leonard Nimoy in "Three Things"More from this show
The other day we fixed the leagues, now we fix the four major professional local teams.More from this show