SARASOTA, Fla. — Felix Doubront completed his simulated game Wednesday successfully in Fort Myers and has passed the final hurdle for starting a spring game, according to Red Sox manager John Farrell. That start will come Monday afternoon at JetBlue Park against Tampa Bay.
The lefty was slowed at the start of camp due to fatigue in his left [throwing] shoulder and was held back. He began throwing a week later than the other four projected starters in the rotation. He threw live batting practice earlier this week before throwing his simulated game on Wednesday.
“He was very good. Two sim innings and he’s on tap for Monday,” Farrell said before Wednesday’s game against the Orioles.
After some confusion, another pitcher, Alfredo Aceves, will indeed pitch for Mexico for the upcoming World Baseball Classic. Farrell had initially informed his right-hander, who was initially on the provisional roster, that he was not selected for the regular roster and would not be playing. That apparently was not the case.
Farrell said it’s likely that Aceves will start for Mexico, which is part of the reason the Red Sox wanted to stretch him out to start camp.
David Ortiz left the team Wednesday for the Dominican Republic to take care of a personal matter.
“He’s taking a couple of personal days,” Farrell said. “He’s got a personal issue he’s taking care of right now.”
Other pregame notes included Farrell’s reaction to St. Louis manager and former catcher Mike Matheny instructing his catchers to avoid all contact at the plate when possible: “You want the aggressiveness to always remain in the game,” Farrell said. “But at the same time, when a catcher can be opened up, in some cases, for a very severe injury, you almost have to listen to the comments of Mike and Bruce Bochy, former catchers who have sustained a serious injury from it. Their comments probably resonate more than those of who have not been back there. I guess I take the view of the game from the traditional standpoint that you want good, hard play as long as it’s not a cheap shot. Where do you draw the line on a play at the plate? If it’s a hard slide that makes contact. Maybe just a mandatory slide rather than just a head-up, full-on collision, I can see the merit in preserving guys’ health. They can be scary, no doubt about. [Jorge] Posada took one from Hinske that I still don’t know how it got up from it but he did. I think the last thing anyone want is to hurt anyone in the game. “The way they’re schooled, the way they’re taught, there’s a way to receive that blow and still protect the plate and themselves.”
Farrell confirmed the report earlier in the day that Mike Napoli has been cleared following base-running drills on Wednesday in Fort Myers. He will start at first base Friday night against Pittsburgh and get at least two at-bats: “Yeah, he’s on tap to start and get a couple of at-bats on Friday. He’ll play first base and look forward to getting him on the field. Play under control, particularly if he gets on base. The one thing we’re still be a little cautious with is just the sliding. We’re not in a position to say, ‘Don’t slide’ but if he does, just give himself ample time to stop before jarring himself on the bag.”
Farrell on Napoli playing first: “I think instinctually, that will take over. But the most important thing is that he initiates that well before the bag and not get into a really jamming situation with the hip.
“Just in talking with him, I know that is still an ongoing process with him and he’s gaining a little bit more comfort with it, probably as much the cuts and relays as it is fielding a ground ball. By his own admission, he’s talked about when he was with Texas and or sparingly with the Angels, when he was put out there knowing that he was a catcher first, and he would play first on occasion. But, in this case, where he’s been able to go through the drill work and talk at length with Butter, that’s put a lot of those unknowns at ease with him.
Already, you can see his hands work very cleanly with balls in the dirt. He plays low to the ground, I think by virtue of having spent so many years behind the plate. So you see his footwork. For a guy his size, he’s still got quick feet; he’s agile. In time, I think he’ll become a very good first baseman.
On Franklin Morales starting against the Orioles: “It’s going to be one inning of work. Again, just to get out in competition for the first time in spring training, going to see how the ball comes out of his hand, knowing that he finished last year with some shoulder discomfort but there hasn’t been any effect or evidence of that throughout spring training. First chance to get back on the mound in live competition.
On Red Sox minor league pitching in “B” game against Twins Thursday at JetBlue Park: “The Twins had asked to see if we could put together a “B” game. they’re in need of the innings from a pitching standpoint. Get some time on the field for Marrero and Henry on the infield. This is a chance to help out the Twins a little bit and get our pitchers who we continually bring over from the minor league complex in games, keep them in the mix.”
On Buck Showalter: “Very consistent. Obviously, he did a great job with their bullpen last year, when you consider the number of one-run games they won. There were clearly roles established in that bullpen and they performed very well, probably much in part to knowing what their role was and when they’re going to be called on late in the game. It was clear that they gained a lot of momentum, a lot of confidence despite what everybody saw in the run differential. They defied that. When you look at the last two years, the culture has certainly changed with the Orioles.”
Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick joins Dale and Steve DeOssie to talk about cutting the roster down to 53 players. Jimmy Garoppolo is set to start and play most, if not all of the preseason contest against the Giants. Bill also expressed his thoughts about the kicking game and how some of the new rules have affected the importance of it.
WEEI.com's Mike Petraglia and Chris Price discuss the news that Jimmy Garoppolo will get the start Thursday and play most of the game. They talk about what it might mean for Ryan Mallett.
Julian Edelman joins Christian and Danny Picard to talk about his approach going into the season, his performance this preseason, as well as the VMAs, and preventing cramps using mustard.
Jackie Mac joins the guys to discuss her thoughts on a possible mid-season tournament in the NBA, LeBron's return to Cleveland, trade rumors with the Celtics and Red Sox, and Darrelle Revis' contract situation.
Jackie MacMullan of ESPN Boston to talk about the Lebron James Saga, the possibility of Rajon Rondo being traded, and the future of Marcus Smart.
Former coach of Celtics 1st-round pick Marcus Smart, Travis Ford joins MFB to talk about what Celtics fans should expect from the strong point guard. Among other things, Coach Ford says Smart will be a hard worker, and will improve his shooting ability.
Kevin Millar checks in to talk about the Castillo signing, Giancarlo Stanton, and the MLB's pace of play.
The Sox outfielder joined Dave and Lou after the comeback win, in which he had three hits and knocked in the tying run.
On today's Bradfo Show we talk to Dr Ken Polivy, Spine Surgeon at the Newton Wellesley Orthopedic Associates, about Shane Victorino's recent back surgery.
Rob Bradford is joined by WEEI.com Bruins beat writer DJ Bean, as well as Boston sports fan/blogger Turtleboy to talk all things Bruins free agency. With the B's recent moves, the conversation turns to where the Bruins might next turn and what kind of dent losing Jarome Iginla and Shawn Thornton might make.
DJ discusses Shawn Thornton's new deal, and the on going negotiations with Jerome Iginla
DJ Bean joins the program to dismiss the recent rumors that the Bruins are in discussions to trade Brad Marchand to the Sharks for Patrick Marleau
The top stories of the day as recounted by Buck.
Buck discussed his old time baseball game and the money raised for ALS in honor of Pete Frates.
John, Gerry and Buck opened the show discussing the Mankins deal.
Tim is feeling closer God after a rough plane ride. Lou goes to Storyland and barely lives to tell about it. And Christian gets surprised with an early birthday present.
After acquiring Yoenis Cespedes and Rusney Castillo, the Red Sox outfield was considerably upgraded for the 2015 season. But with Miami likely looking to deal Giancarlo Stanton, Lou wants the Sox to go for the best outfield in the majors and says they should trade ANY prospect they have to get him.
In a little over one full season, Wes Welker has already been diagnosed with three concussions. After years of absorbing big hits in NE, many are thinking that Welker should consider retiring. MFB talks about the hit and what the league could do to prevent more concussions.
Dale, Field Yates, and Andy Hart give a brief preview of the AFC East.
Taylor Twellman, who had to end his career early due to concussions, discusses Wes Welker's most recent concussion.
Dale, Andy Hart, and Field Yates react to the Logan Mankins trade.
Co-founder and chairman of the Boston Beer Company, Jim Koch, talks about his Sam Adams beer and the history of his brewery.
Danny picard is filling in for Mikey and talks with CSNNE's Mike Giardi about Clay Buchholz heading up the Red Sox pitching rotation, and how the Patriots have looked through training camp so far.
Mut and Villani are talking about whether the Red Sox will give Jon Lester the type of contract he is looking for, or whether they might be shopping him with rumors of the Red Sox scouting Cole Hamels.
How can teams acquire players who are entering their primes without having to live through the potentially massive transition of prospects coming from the minors to the big leagues? The Red Sox have two such case studies. The signing of Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo represents one effort to acquire a player for his prime years for whom the transition to big league-caliber competition might not be turbulent. Red Sox assistant director of player personnel discusses the scouting process involved with landing Castillo. The episode also features Brock Holt, the one rookie who played at a consistently high level for the Red Sox this year. Holt explores some of the distinctions that might help to explain why he did not experience some of the struggles that characterized the seasons of Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr.
Rob Bradford is joined by Turtleboy of TurtleboySports.com to discuss which current major leaguers might be in line to become Hall of Famers. The duo dive into the difficulties facing the current crop of big leaguers when trying to reach Hall of Fame status.
Fantasy Football Drafts are now happening every day, so Pete Davidson and Jim Hackett have you covered. This Podcast focuses on the High Value Targets you can get in your drafts if you draft smartly. These players can slip to you and make a great impact on your roster as the season moves on. The draft is won in the middle to late rounds when the best upside players are taken. Jim and Pete give you in depth analysis on the High Value Targets to seek along with the Rookies that can make an impact this year. Jim and Pete will be back this Sunday morning too, on-air at WEEI FM 93.7 with even more. Prepare and enjoy!
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