Although Ryan Dempster missed out on an opportunity to make Red Sox strikeout history, he garnered something that he values even more highly: A win.
Dempster — who joined Pedro Martinez as the only two pitchers in franchise history to punch out seven or more batters in their first five starts for Boston — didn’t record his first strikeout until the fourth inning, and finished with just four strikeouts on the night. However, while pitching to contact, after Brett Lawrie led off the first with a homer, he shut down Toronto over the duration of his six-inning outing, limiting Toronto to three singles and three walks over the duration of his efficient outing in positioning the Sox for a 3-1 victory in the Rogers Centre.
When the Sox signed Dempster to a two-year, $26.5 million deal this offseason, he was expected to offer a reliable source of innings. Increasingly, he’s been that, with four straight outings of at least six innings.
At the same time, there were questions about how he would adapt to the AL East. With Thursday’s outing, he’s now faced all four of his divisional opponents, with a 2.34 ERA in 23 innings, 29 strikeouts and 11 walks.
WHAT WENT RIGHT FOR THE RED SOX
– In an unexpected turn of events, when the Red Sox looked to lock down a 3-1 lead in the ninth inning, it was Joel Hanrahan rather than Andrew Bailey who secured the save. Hanrahan tossed a scoreless ninth for the 100th save of his career, working around a leadoff single by getting an infield pop-up and a game-ending double play.
– Mike Carp continued his dazzling early-season performance as a role player, going 1-for-3 with an RBI single and a walk. In 31 plate appearances, Carp has driven in eight runs while forging a .464/.516/1.000 line.
– Mike Napoli launched his major league-leading 15th double of the season, though that was his only hit as part of a 1-for-5 night in which he punched out twice and grounded into a double play.
– Junichi Tazawa once again came into a game and extinguished a rally. Summoned with two on and two outs in the bottom of the seventh, he initially wavered, issuing a walk to Brett Lawrie to load the bases, but recovered to blow away Adam Lind with a 95 mph fastball to end the inning. Tazawa has now stranded 10 of the 11 runners he’s inherited.
That said, there may be questions about whether he’s dealing with some early season fatigue. Tazawa did not walk a batter in any of his first 11 appearances this season while throwing 69 percent of his pitches for strikes. Thursday marked his third straight outing in which he permitted a walk, and his second appearance in his last three in which he threw more balls (6) than strikes (5); he has a 50 percent strike rate in that time (23 of 46 pitches for strikes).
WHAT WENT WRONG FOR THE RED SOX
– Dustin Pedroia went 0-for-5 (though he did reach on an error), snapping an eight-game hitting streak. It was just his second game this year in which he’s failed to reach base by hit or walk.
– Though the Sox had plenty of opportunities with runners on base, they failed to capitalize on most of those. The team went 2-for-13 with runners in scoring position, leaving 12 runners on base.
Christian and Chris talk about overrated Pats players this season and in the past and then get into the QB issue on the team. They talk about all three guys, what they bring to the table and if they can keep their head above water without the best QB in the league for 4 weeks. Then...Karlos Williams was released by the Bills - should the Pats consider adding the overweight second year running back? Christian also brings up Dante Scarnecchia and gets Price's opinion on if this one man can truly improve a shaky offensive line.
Christian Arcand is in for Tanguay for NFL Sunday with Chris Price. The guys talk about the victory over the Bears, Jimmy G's progress and their expectations for the Pats defense this season. Arcand thinks that there are more holes on the D than some fans realize.
We check in with Bill Belichick after the first Preseason game for our weekly "Patriots Monday" discussion.
Sam Packard is joined by Celtics 2nd Round draft pick Abdel Nader to discuss his path to the the NBA and how he plans to improve his game. Sam then talks to Player Development Coach Nick Friedman from Elite Skills Training, the pre-Draft camp Nader attended. Friedman also gives his opinion on the Celtics performance at summer league and the development of Jaylen Brown.
Isaiah Thomas talks to Glenn and Lou about why he loves Boston, the NBA Money Bump, oh, and some Durant guy
Danny Ainge joins Glenn and Christian to explain the Celtics draft process; and he also discusses the trade rumors that permeated the night.
Joe and Tim talk with Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts after the Red Sox beat the Tampa Bay Rays 2-1
David Price pitched a gem and Andrew Benintendi makes one of the top highlight catches of the year as the Sox take the first game of four against the Rays, 6-2. Christian Arcand recaps the game and takes all of your Sox calls.
Joe and Tim talk with Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi, who made a highlight reel catch nearly going over the wall in left field robbing Steven Souza Jr of a home run
Joey Mac joins Ken Laird on his Saturday show to discuss the David Backes addition and Loui Eriksson departure in NHL free agency
DJ and Pete continue to assess the season that was for the Bruins and look toward the future for the franchise and how they can improve.
DJ and Pete are together for the final Sunday Skate of the season. They get into their overall thoughts on the season, the Bruins keeping Claude Julien on as head coach and the end-of-season press conferences last week. They discuss the rebuild process, what the Bruins need and how they can obtain it. Plenty of callers have their own theories and opinions on all of these topics as well.
Minihane, Callahan and Mutnansky dive further into the Brady - Belichick dynamic as Tom's four-game suspension gets closer.
Gerry, Kirk, and Mut take NY Giants coach Ben McAdoo and SI writer Peter King to task for not addressing the Josh Brown domestic violence story.
Kirk and Callahan with Mut discuss the Tom Brady and Bill Belichick pressers from Tuesday and whether they reveal signs of a rift between the coach and QB.
NESN has hired a new anchor who has a history dating pro players. With the trend of that happening in Boston the last few years, does NESN need to keep an eye on Kacie McDonnell?
Now that center Bryan Stork has been cut, should we be concerned with the Patriots O-Line? Glenn, Lou and Christian talk about the Patriots O-Line and how Jimmy G will handle it in the first 4 weeks.
Sam Kennedy of the Red Sox calls in to talk to the guys about the proposed renovations at Fenway Park and if Jonathan Papelbon will ever sign.
We check in with the red hot rook of the Red Sox live from Tampa and talk to him about his first experiences in the big leagues.
We check in with John Farrell from Tampa for our weekly feature as the red hot Red Sox look to keep it going for two more wins at the Trop.
In honor of the announcement that the Sox will be among the team's at Tim Tebow's workout next week, we look at four pro athletes who tried their hand in a second sport and it didn't work out too well for them.
Kirk Minihane sits down with former producer Chris Curtis? Or is it current producer Chris Curtis? Either way, Kirk and Chris talk about what happened in their previous tenure together, where it went wrong, and why Curtis is now back with the show.
Kirk Minihane and Gary Tanguay sit down together on Enough About Me for the first time. These two divisive figures talk about Gary's career and his late evolution into a controversial broadcaster. Nobody is spared from Kirk and Gary's wrath on this episode and it will surely make some people at the two sports radio stations very uncomfortable.
Kirk Minihane sits down with Mut to answer questions from the fans. Kirk and Mut get into the issues with Dino, the other hosts at the station, Kirk's issues with drugs in the past, and the love fest between Kirk and Mut.
Jerry is joined by Red Sox legend Bill Lee to talk about his new biopic "Spaceman," Lee's unique philosophy, political beliefs, drug use and what makes him a cultural icon decades after he retired from baseball.
Christian Fauria and Dr. Gill talk about the process and steps football players have to take when rehabbing injuries during the off season. Focusing on Dion Lewis, Nate Solder, and Sebastian Vollmer
Week two of the Preseason is underway so Jim Hackett and Pete Davidson of the “Fantasy Football Hour” to offer some mid-August updates and opinion. In today’s show Jim and Pete offer analysis from the Thursday Night Patriots game and discuss LeGarrette Blount and the Patriots Running Attack in depth. Jim and Pete key on some recent news surrounding lots of players including Seattle’s and Chicago’s backfield, then get into the incredibly deep Wide Receiver position. Make sure to tune in for more on Sunday morning at 8:00am for “The Fantasy Football Hour.” Enjoy!
Tom Brady returned to practice after his unexplained days off to shed some light into his mysterious scissors injury that prevented him from playing last Thursday's preseason game.More from this show
Gerry, Mut, and Kirk discuss the Benintendi catch from Monday and what's looking like an incredible outfield for years to come; also the guys discuss the probation sentence given to an East Longmeadow youth charged with sexual assault.More from this show
Kirk & Callahan with Mut react to the latest Roger Goodell NFL wheel of justice rulingMore from this show
Kirk, Gerry and Mut start off the Tuesday show back in studio discussing the strange absences of Tom Brady throughout training camp, as well as all the sponsors that have bailed on swimmer Ryan Lochte.More from this show