David Ortiz

David Ortiz

In the past few days, there has been plenty of conversation concerning the chance that David Ortiz might not actually retire after the 2016 season.

First, there was the fact that he is third in the majors in OPS, heading into Friday night at 1.044. And then there was the comment to Yahoo! Sports recently, saying, “Hopefully nobody comes to me and offers $25 million, either. I don’t even want to talk about it. Like I said, I’m good with the decision that I made right now. But would you leave $25 million on the table? I don’t want nobody to offer me that.”

When asked Friday by WEEI.com if he would indeed start thinking differently if such an offer was extended, Ortiz simply said, “That is not going on right now. I’m not thinking about that right now.”

But then, he offered a more definitive response.

“Listen, the thing is that people need to understand, in my mind I’m 100 percent sure I’m going to retire,” he said. “There are so many reasons for me that I want to retire. That is what is my mind right now. I don’t people to get the wrong idea.”

Before heading out for treatment, Ortiz finished one last observation.

“If I wasn’t [doing well] people wouldn’t even be talking about it,” he said.

Ortiz is off to the best start of his career, leading the majors in slugging percentage (.652), while hitting .312 with 10 homers.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

With right-hander Corey Kluber on the mound for the Indians in their series-opener against the Red Sox, Friday night, the Red Sox will begin the Blake Swihart in left field experiment right away.

Swihart, who played in left for 11 games with Triple-A Pawtucket, gets the start against Kluber, who walked the switch-hitter twice in the season opener.

Blake Swihart

Blake Swihart

With right-hander Corey Kluber on the mound for the Indians in their series-opener against the Red Sox, Friday night, the Red Sox will begin the Blake Swihart in left field experiment right away.

Swihart, who played in left for 11 games with Triple-A Pawtucket, gets the start against Kluber, who walked the switch-hitter twice in the season opener.

Here is the Red Sox lineup with Clay Buchholz starting for the hosts:

Mookie Betts RF
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Travis Shaw 3B
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
Christian Vazquez C
Blake Swihart LF

For all the matchups, click here.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

The Red Sox will look a little different as they return home Friday.

The team announced that reliever Carson Smith has been placed on the 15-day disabled list due to a right elbow ailment (retroactive to May 15), while Brock Holt will head to the 7-day concussion disabled list (retroactive to May 19).

Carson Smith

Carson Smith

The Red Sox will look a little different as they return home Friday.

The team announced that reliever Carson Smith has been placed on the 15-day disabled list due to a right elbow ailment (retroactive to May 15), while Brock Holt will head to the 7-day concussion disabled list (retroactive to May 19).

Noe Ramirez is being recalled from Triple-A Pawtucket to fill Smith’s spot, while Blake Swihart may be getting his first opportunity as a major league left fielder, also getting the call from the PawSox.

Smith made only three appearances for the Red Sox since originally coming off the disabled list on May 3. In five games with the PawSox, Ramirez allowed four earned runs over nine innings, giving up 12 hits while going 0-3.

Holt had been struggling mightily as of late, hitting .158 (6-for-38) in his last 13 games. He did participate in both ends of Wednesday’s doubleheader, getting four at-bats in Game 2 after pinch-hitting in the first game.

Swihart had been hitting .243 with a .655 OPS and one home run in 29 games with Pawtucket since his demotion. In his last 10 games, however, the switch-hitter managed a .310 batting average. He has also manned left field for 11 games with the PawSox.

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

Here’s a look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Thursday.

TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX (20-21): L, 7-5, at Buffalo (Blue Jays)

Here’s a look at the action in the Red Sox farm system on Thursday.

Allen Craig

Allen Craig

TRIPLE-A PAWTUCKET RED SOX (20-21): L, 7-5, at Buffalo (Blue Jays)

— First baseman Allen Craig hit a three-run homer (video here) in his second game back after a stint on the disabled list and finished 2-for-2 with a walk and two runs scored. The home run, Craig’s first of the season, came in the first inning on an 0-2 breaking ball pulled over the left field wall and gave the PawSox a 4-0 lead. The 31-year-old Craig would later walk and score in the fourth and single in the sixth before being removed for a defensive replacement in the eighth.

Acquired by Boston in the summer of 2014 along with RHP Joe Kelly in exchange for John Lackey, Craig missed 30 games this season (over a month in duration) before being reinstated from the DL on May 16. In 2015 Craig slashed .274/.368/.350 with four homers and 14 doubles over 93 games played with Pawtucket,

— Third baseman Chris Dominguez doubled home Craig in the fourth and finished 2-for-4 in his second game back off the DL as well. The 29-year-old Dominguez is 12-for-41 (.293) on the season over 11 games, missing 26 games with a right oblique strain. Signed by Boston as a minor league free agent last December, Dominguez made Cincinnati’s opening day roster last year and played in 14 games in the Majors, going 6-for-23 with a homer, triple and double.

— Right fielder Bryce Brentz (Boston’s No. 30 prospect at MLB.com) had the other PawSox RBI, with a run-scoring single in the first to plate second baseman Mike Miller. Brentz, 27, has a six-game hit streak and over 10 games in Triple-A this year is 10-for-33 (.303) with three doubles.

— RHP Mike McCarthy took the loss with a final line of: 3 1/3 IP, 9 H, 7 R, 6 ER, 2 BB, 0 SO (66 pitches, 37 strikes). Reliever Mitch Atkins, just called up from Double-A Portland, was sensational in relief of McCarthy as he walked the first batter he faced and then retired 14 straight in order with six via strikeout. Atkins, 30, appeared in 10 games in the Major Leagues from 2009-2012 with the Cubs and Orioles before pitching in the Chinese Professional League last season. In 9 games (2 starts) this year with Portland Atkins has struck out 30 over 23 innings of work.

DOUBLE-A PORTLAND SEA DOGS (15-26): Scheduled off day. Next action Friday at Altoona (Pirates)

Yoan Moncada

Yoan Moncada

HIGH-A SALEM RED SOX (28-12): W, 7-6 in 10 innings, at Lynchburg (Indians)

— Second baseman Yoan Moncada (Boston’s No. 1 prospect at MLB.com) had the go-ahead sacrifice fly in the 10th inning and another busy day on the bases as he finished 1-for-3 with two walks, two steals, two RBIs and a run scored. The 20-year-old Moncada stole his 27th and 28th bases on the year — tied for the minor league lead with Yefri Perez, a Marlins prospect in the Double-A Southern League — after a single in the fourth and a walk in the sixth, respectively; Moncada would also score after the later sequence via a passed ball. In the 10th, Moncada’s fly to left was deep enough to plate DH Bryan Hudson who had walked, stolen a base, and advanced to third on an error.

With a hitting streak now at eight games, Moncada’s slash line sits at .328/.460/.504 through 38 games played. Moncada leads the Carolina League in runs (41), walks (33), steals and on-base percentage; he also has three homers, two triples, 11 doubles and 23 RBIs.

— Shortstop Mauricio Dubon (Boston’s No. 12 prospect at MLB.com) reached base four times, going 2-for-4 with a walk and a double; he also reached via error and stole his 11th base on the season. Dubon, 21, has hit safely in 31 of 36 games played this season and is slashing .333/.402/.410 with two triples and seven doubles. His 48 hits are three shy of the Carolina League lead.

— Catcher Jordan Procyshen has hits in all three games since being activated from the disabled list, going 3-for-5 Thursday with two runs scored. Selected by Boston in the 14th round of the 2014 draft out of Northern Kentucky University, the 23-year-old Canadian is 10-for-23 this season in just six games played.

— RHP Travis Lakins (Boston’s No. 11 prospect at MLB.com) was touched up for the third consecutive start, finishing with a no-decision final line of: 3 1/3 IP, 4 H, 5 R, 5 ER, 2 BB, 3 SO (76 pitches, 46 strikes). After two perfect innings, the 21-year-old Lakins allowed a double and a single ahead of a three-run homer in the third. Then, in the fourth, Lakins walked two sandwiched around a single and was replaced with the bases loaded; reliever Ben Taylor allowed a two-run single with both markers charged to Lakins.

Selected by Boston in the sixth round of last year’s draft out of Ohio State University, Lakins is 4-2 with a 5.12 ERA this season over eight starts. After allowing just six earned runs over his first five starts, Lakins has surrendered 16 in his past three outings and has failed to reach the fifth inning in his past two.

Taylor, 23, rebounded from allowing the two inherited runners to score to pitch 4 1/3 innings of relief with just one more run crossing on two hits and with six strikeouts. Selected by Boston in the seventh round of last year’s draft out of the University of South Alabama, Taylor has struck out 15 batters over 11 1/3 innings in his last four outings with just one earned run allowed.

Anderson Espinoza

Anderson Espinoza

SINGLE-A GREENVILLE DRIVE (19-20): L, 6-0, vs. Lexington (Royals)

— RHP Anderson Espinoza (Boston’s No. 4 prospect at MLB.com) suffered the loss (2-4, 4.54 ERA) with a final line of: 5 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 4 SO (79 pitches, 53 strikes). The 18-year-old Espinoza allowed single runs in the second, third, and fourth, with the later two runs coming via RBI doubles from left-handed batters. Espinoza is in the midst of his first tough stretch as a professional with losses in three of his past four starts, including one with six earned runs allowed on April 30th and his last outing with just 1 2/3 innings pitched (pulled due to a rising pitch count) on May 10.

“He just needs to learn how to pitch,” said Greenville hitting coach Walter Miranda told GreenvilleOnline. “It’s been only a few times to have a guy like him with that type of talent. We’ve got all kinds of talent, but his talent is unique. He’s what we call in baseball a phenom. He’s a guy that’s a phenom because at 18 years old, he can hit 100 miles per hour. He can throw strikes. (He’s) able to throw his changeup, curveball.”

Miranda continued: “To be a young pitcher like him, that’s something he’s been challenged by every outing – keeping his mechanics under control. That way he can execute his pitches. The only (other) thing is the mental game. He’s 18 years old. He’s got a lot to learn. The game is going to challenge him a lot, and he has to learn how to respond and just gain experience. That way he can get better in every aspect.”

— The Drive offense was held to just five hits — all singles — with third baseman Mitchell Gunsolus the lone multi-hit batter of the day. Gunsolus, 23, finished 2-for-3 with a walk to raise his slash line to .319/.398/.527 in 24 games with Greenville this season, where he’s also hit five homers and four doubles. Selected by Boston in the 10th round of last year’s draft out of Gonzaga University, Gunsolus had a seven-game stint with High-A Salem earlier this season but hit just 1-for-23 and was sent back to Greenville on May 2.

— Center fielder Luis Alexander Basabe (Boston’s No. 8 prospect at MLB.com) continues to struggle at the plate this season after his breakout 2015 campaign; Basabe went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts on Thursday and has now gone down via strikeout 11 times in his past five games and has whiffed 41 times on the season, 12th most in the South Atlantic League. Through 31 games, Basabe is batting just .213 (26-for-122), although he is slugging .418 with four homers, four triples, and five doubles.

Blog Author: 
Ken Laird

In the first game of a three-game series vs. the Indians, the Red Sox will send Clay Buchholz to the mound Friday night to square off against 2014 Cy Young winner Corey Kluber.

In eight starts this season, Buchholz is 2-3 with a disappointing 6.11 ERA and a 1.47 WHIP. He also has walked 20 batters this year, the 10th-most walks by a pitcher in the American League. In his last start, a no-decision, the right-hander allowed five earned runs and seven hits to the Astros in a 6-5 Red Sox win. Buchholz also let up two home runs in the game, one of them being a grand slam to George Springer.

In his nine-year career, Buchholz is 2-1 against the Indians with a 4.91 ERA and a 1.14 WHIP. He last faced Cleveland on April 6 in his first start of the 2016 season. The Texas native lasted four innings and surrendered five earned runs, six hits and three walks.

Kluber sits at 2-5 with a 4.30 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP. Sixth in the American League in innings pitched (52 1/3) and seventh in the AL in strikeouts (52), Kluber has suffered from inconsistency in his starts. The 30-year-old right-hander took the loss in his last appearance, allowing four earned runs and seven hits despite striking out seven through 6 2/3 innings in a 6-3 loss to the Twins.

“I think there have been times where he’s been really good, there have been times where we haven’t scored, there have been times where he’s made some mistakes,” Indians manager Terry Francona said regarding Kluber’s inconsistency. “That’s pretty much with everybody. I still know when he pitches, we really like it.”

Kluber is 1-3 in his career vs. the Red Sox, totaling a 5.14 ERA and 1.26 WHIP in eight games. His ERA against Boston is his third highest against a team, trailing only the Mets and Angels. His last start against the Red Sox was on April 5, his first loss of the year. The righty allowed four earned runs and nine hits and was pulled after 5 1/3 innings in his team’s 6-2 defeat.

Indians vs. Buchholz (RHP)

Rajai Davis (16 plate appearances): .188 AVG/.350 OBP/.188 SLG, 1 RBI, 4 walks, 3 strikeouts

Mike Napoli (12): .250/.438/.500, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts

Michael Brantley (9): .000/.000/.000, 1 strikeout

Juan Uribe (8): .125/.125/.125

Carlos Santana (7): .429/.500/1.000, 1 double, 1 HR, 4 RBI, 1 walk

Jason Kipnis is 3-for-5 with a double, an RBI and 2 walks.

Marlon Byrd is 0-for-4.

Jose Ramirez is 2-for-3 with an RBI.

Francisco Lindor is 0-for-3 with 2 strikeouts.

Red Sox vs. Kluber (RHP)

Brock Holt (15): .333/.375/.333, 3 RBIs, 3 strikeouts

David Ortiz (14): .286/.333/.786, 1 double, 2 HR, 4 RBIs, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts

Dustin Pedroia (14): .143/.200/.214, 1 double, 2 RBIs, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts

Jackie Bradley Jr. (11): .182/.308/.455, 1 HR, 3 RBIs, 2 walks, 2 strikeouts

Travis Shaw (8): .500/.556/.875, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts

Ryan Hanigan (8): .250/.250/.625, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 5 strikeouts

Xander Bogaerts (8): .000/.111/.000

Mookie Betts (6): .333/.429/.833, 1 HR, 2 RBIs, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts

Josh Rutledge is 0-for-5 with 2 strikeouts.

Blog Author: 
Nicholas Frazier

Craig Kimbrel has been dominant for the Red Sox. (Bob DeChiara/USA Today Sports)Baseball terminology embraces simplicity. A fastball moves fast. A curveball curves. A slider slides.



According to a story on Bleacher Report, the Lakers will seriously entertain offers for the No. 2 pick in the draft, which is widely expected to be Duke shooter Brandon Ingram. Such a move could seriously impact the Celtics.