Results tagged ‘ Dustin Pedroia ’

Papi at crossroads

The David Ortiz saga remains a hot topic, even after a 5-1 win over the Angels. Ortiz’s slump  extended with an 0-for-4 on Tuesday night that included two strikeouts and two double plays, the latter of which came with the bases loaded and nobody out in a tie game.

It is a tough situation for manager Terry Francona, particularly with Mike Lowell seemingly spraying line drives in every at-bat. Francona really would like Ortiz to get hot, but there’s a fine line with how long he can wait. The Red Sox, to a man, hope that Big Papi snaps out of it.

In the meantime, Jeremy Hermida stepped into the hero’s role tonight after Ortiz’s DP.

“It’s 25 guys, man. We met the other day,” Dustin Pedroia said. “We need everybody to win. This isn’t two or three guys that’s going to carry a team. We need everybody to help us win games. We have each other’s back, and we’re ready for the long haul. We started out [poorly], but we’re going to come out of it. We believe that.”

Pedroia — in his typically animated way — also expressed confidence that Ortiz will snap out of it.

“David’s fine. He’s one of our teammates,” Pedroia said. “It could have been me that hit into a double play. It happens to everybody, man. He’s had 60 at-bats. A couple of years ago, I had 60 at-bats I was hitting .170 and everybody was ready to kill me too. And what happened? Laser show.”

“I’m tired of looking at the NESN poll –  Why is David struggling? David’s fine. He’s one of our teammates. We believe in him. He came out of it last year, he’s going to come out of it this year. I’m going to go online and vote. NESN.com. Papi’s fine. Thanks for playing.”

Pedroia healthy, happy upon return

It was pretty clear that Dustin Pedroia had no ill effects from the left wrist he strained on Tuesday. After making his return to the lineup, the little second baseman was clearly in a good mood in the clubhouse.

As John Lackey was holding court across the way, Pedroia couldn’t resist doing some chirping.

“He would have signed for five years at the league minimum to come here and not to have to face me [anymore],” Pedroia said.

Lackey was swift with his rebuttal, clearly re-playing a scene that the two players have had at times when the media has not been in the clubhouse.

“I’m scared of singles to right,” chuckled Lackey. “He’s been saying that for two weeks. Don’t give him credit for that.”

In truth, the humor that Pedroia displayed was only another example of what a non-issue his wrist is. The Red Sox gave him three days off because it’s Spring Training, making it a perfect time to be conservative with a nagging injury. Pedroia went 1-for-4 on the day.

“I got on the ground a few times and dove, so it was fine,” Pedroia said. “Swinging, I was fine. My first at-bat, I was just getting my timing back. He kind of blew the ball by me a little bit. But my next three at-bats were good, hit the ball on the barrel, so that’s the only thing I was trying to do today, make sure it felt great and see some pitches.”

Pedroia felt that his last at-bat, when he flew out, was probably his best of the day.

“My last at-bat, that was good. I felt good,” Pedroia said. “He was throwing me some pretty good pitches on the corners and I was fouling them off and it was good.  I was seeing a lot of pitches. I saw a lot all day which was good.”

In other news, Jeremy Hermida left the game with minor soreness in his right hamstring.

“It just didn’t seem like a good thing to keep him in the game,” said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. “He just came up and he said, ‘I feel it.’ I said, ‘that’s enough.”

Hermida didn’t seem the least bit concerned about the ailment after the game.

One pitcher who isn’t quite in sync at the moment is reliever Manny Delcarmen, who has been battling his mechanics for a couple of weeks. The righty got two outs and didn’t give up any runs on Saturday, but he’s not quite there yet.

With that in mind, the Red Sox will pitch Declarmen for a couple of innings in a more controlled environment on Monday, in a Minor League game.

“That’s still a work in progress,” Francona said. “I think we’re going to take him down to the minor league side on Monday and give him a couple, try to get him enough reps where [he's more comfortable]. Still watching his warm-ups, he’s not driving the ball downhill yet. We’ve got to stay on that.”

A Francona slip?

The Red Sox have still not announced the rotation for the first handful of games of the 2010 season, mainly because of the unique dilemma of having three off-days before the eighth game. But it sure stands to reason that Josh Beckett is pitching Easter Sunday night against the Yankees. All you have to do is look at the way the schedule lines up, and Beckett’s last Grapefruit League start is Monday, meaning he would have five days of rest before Opening Night.

Asked if all the pitchers would be making the trip to Washington D.C. for the one exhibition game on April 3, Francona said, “Everybody will go with us. I think even Beckett.”

Veteran Red Sox scribe Sean McAdam kiddingly asked Francona why he would single Beckett out. Everyone laughed. Francona was then asked if this was a good time to announce his Opening Night starter. But he respectfully declined, saying that the staff is still going through the process of communicating with each pitcher and that players should be informed of all decisions before the media is informed. Fair enough.

As for other matters, Boof Bonser’s groin tightness from the other day was nothing more than a minor ailment. He is long tossing today and should throw a bullpen tomororw. No word yet on when he will get back into game action.

Staying in the minor injury department, Dustin Pedroia (sprained left wrist) will be back in the lineup for Friday’s home game against the Blue Jays.

“He actually probably could have gone today,” Francona said. “I don’t know if that makes a lot of sense. He’s already in the cage. The medical staff has no problem with him going through his normal day. If there’s any red flag at all, we wouldn’t play him tomorrow but I don’t see that happening. He’ll drive everybody crazy if we don’t play him.”

Opening Day lineups set (in a way)

FORT MYERS, Fla. — OK, so it’s not really Opening Day, per se, but it is the first game of the 2010 season (never mind the fact that it doesn’t count, and it’s a doubleheader against two college programs). Anyway, the Red Sox finalized the lineup for that Wednesday exhibition-opening doubleheader at City of Palms Park. Victor Martinez will bat third in the opener, and captain Jason Varitek will make his spring debut in the nightcap.
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Here it is …
Against Northeastern (1:05 p.m. ET)
Jacoby Ellsbury, LF
Bill Hall, 3B
Victor Martinez, C
David Ortiz, DH
Jed Lowrie, SS
Lars Anderson, 1B
Darnell McDonald, RF
Che-Hsuan Lin, CF
Gil Velazquez, 2B
SP: Casey Kelly
Against Boston College (6:05 p.m.)
Marco Scutaro, SS
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
Kevin Youkilis, 1B
Adrian Beltre, 3B
Jason Varitek, C
Jeremy Hermida, LF
Tug Hulett, DH
Josh Reddick, CF
Ryan Kalish, CF
SP: Boof Bonser
By the way, I’m filling in for Ian Browne on Red Sox duty today. Follow along if you’re on Twitter (@Alden_Gonzalez), and feel free to drop me a line via e-mail (Alden.Gonzalez@mlb.com).
– Alden Gonzalez

Spring Training, meet boot camp

This wasn’t one of the most glamorous days for Red Sox position players, but it was a necessary part of camp, as they all went through conditioning drills, which included the shuttle relay, among other activities.

David Ortiz walked off the field, claiming kiddingly, “I was the champ out there!”.

All kidding aside, manager Terry Francona appreciated Ortiz going through the drills like a professional.

“That’s a lot of body,” said Francona. “I got tired watching those guys. I laugh at them, but he did it. I don’t know how many players of his stature [would do that] – but that’s a lot of body to move twice 300 yards and he did it and I know his teammates probably really appreciate it. It means something. It’s not the end all. It doesn’t mean he’s going to hit home runs. It doesn’t mean he’s not. But it’s part of being a team going in one direction and that’s important.”

It wasn’t all business for Ortiz, who had some fun on the field with his little buddy Dustin Pedroia, as captured in this photo by Brita Meng Outzen.
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Pedroia, who works out fanatically during the winter, got to put his supreme shape on display in the drills. Here he is, setting the pace with teammates Marco Scutaro and Jed Lowrie.
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Back when Red Sox manager Terry Francona was a player, these type of tests did not occur during Spring Training.

“We were just happy to get BP. I do agree with it though,” Francona said. “[Strength coach] Dave Page [suggested it] a few years back, because we’re always worried about ‘let’s get on the field, let’s throw, pitch, let’s hit, let’s take groudners.’ It’s really a good day. It gives us baseline testing for where everybody is. It’s just really important and our guys do a good job with it. no [whining] and moaning, they go out and do it. I would not enjoy doing it. but they do it and we appreciate it.”

Wednesday will mark the first full-squad workout for the Sox. Red Sox manager Terry Francona will hold his annual team meeting before the workout. General manager Theo Epstein will also appreciate, and so will the ownership trio of John W. Henry, Tom Werner and Larry Lucchino.

More rumblings from the Stove

While the Red Sox continue to discuss how to best align their middle infield for the 2010 season, one intriguing name that has surfaced is second baseman Placido Polanco.

However, by the end of Wednesday, MLB.com learned that the Phillies had the inside track on Polanco, making him their top target to replace Pedro Feliz at third base. The Astros are another team that has inquired about Polanco’s services.

According to a Major League source, the Red Sox expressed interest in Polanco when the Tigers declined to offer him arbitration by Tuesday’s midnight deadline.

In other words, if the Red Sox do decide to move Dustin Pedroia to shortstop, a move the player said he would welcome, they could sign Polanco to play second base and not have to give up any draft compensation.

However, the Phillies are making Polanco their top priority to take over for Pedro Feliz at third base so it seems more likely he will go there. He is just one of several scenarios for the Red Sox, so the Phillies might be able to close a deal sooner than Boston can commit. The Astros are also said to be interested.

Polanco has won the Gold Glove two of the last three years. Pedroia broke up his string in 2008.

Of course, Polanco is also a solid hitter with a career average of .303. He hit .285 in 2009, including 10 homers and 72 RBIs.

Polanco is 34 years old, the same age as another middle infield Type A free agent the Red Sox are pursuing – Marco Scutaro.

If the Red Sox sign Scutaro, it would require a draft pick because the Blue Jays offered him arbitration.

Sunday in St. Louis

While the Red Sox are completing their first half behind Josh Beckett in a game against the Royals, I have arrived in St. Louis for the Futures Game.

Nice view of the arch from the press box by the way.

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Casey Kelly will work in relief today, completing his season as a pitcher. The dynamic athlete will convert back to shortstop later this week and then decide after the season where his future is best suited.

Junichi Tazawa is starting for the World Team, so it’s a pretty compelling day from a Future of the Red Sox standpoing.

Back in Boston, Dustin Pedroia understandably gave up his spot on the All-Star Team due to the situation involving his wife, who is in the hospital after going into premature labor a week ago. Obviously Pedroia’s top priority is to have a healthy baby boy, whenever the boy ends up being delivered, and a healthy wife. Best wishes to the Pedroia family.

Here was Dustin’s statement released by the Red Sox.

 “After consulting with Tito, Theo, Phyllis Merhige of
Major League Baseball and my wife, Kelli, I have decided to withdraw from this
year’s All-Star Game in St. Louis.  I will instead stay in Boston with my
wife as we tend to a family health matter.

 

This was certainly not an easy decision.  I have a
tremendous amount of respect for the game of baseball and for the All-Star Game
and am incredibly honored that the fans voted me this year’s starting second
baseman for the American League.  I am disappointed that I will not be
able to enjoy the amazing experience with the other All-Stars, especially with
my Red Sox teammates, but it is important that I put my family first at this
time.

 

I want to thank Major League Baseball as well as Tito and
Theo for supporting me in this decision.  I also want  to thank the
fans for their understanding and the continued support they have shown
throughout my career.”

 

Pedroia back in there; Nomar on the bench

Twenty-four hours after a last-minute scratch due to a personal issue, Dustin Pedroia is back in the Sox lineup tonight, batting second.

But Boston’s former favorite son Nomar Garciaparra will be on the bench for Game 2.

Aaron Bates will play his second Major League game tonight, again starting at first base and batting ninth. Against the lefty, J.D. Drew will lead off, David Ortiz will bat fifth and Jacoby Ellsbury is hitting seventh.

Checking in from … Boston

Sorry guys and gals, I did not make the trip to the land of the crab cakes. I’m home in Boston for some downtime. Figured I’d check in because a little birdie told me a new thread would be helpful for commenting purposes.

It looks from afar like Terry Francona has not lost his touch. A little lineup tweak and J.D. Drew, batting leadoff tonight with Dustin Pedroia to the two-hole, is in the midst of a big night.

Jon Lester putting up zeroes yet again.

I think John Smoltz’s start tomorrow night will be far more telling than the one against the Nats the other night when he had what I’m sure was an overpowering combination of rust, adrenaline and nerves.

As for Mike Lowell, the news seems good. Just the fact that they were able to drain all that fluid before the shot shows you there was cause to all the discomfort he has had of late. Best case scenario, Lowell returns to the lineup on Friday night at Fenway. Worst Case scenario, they put him on the DL and he returns for the first game after the All-Star break.

Anyway, talk to everyone soon.

Ian.

Pedroia on the bases

After stealing two bases last night, Dustin Pedroia is on pace to snag 30 bags this season, 10 more than he finished with last year.

The interesting part of this is that Pedroia was in a steals slump earlier in the year. In April, he had three steals and was caught three times.

“You know what, I actually thought early in the season, he got thrown out a couple of times and I thought he was not as aggressive for a while,” said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. “Was trying to tell him, it’s a hard conversation because we don’t like making outs on the bases but he’s such a good baserunner and he’s so conscientious, it’s like, not that he panicked, but he looks in like,’I can’t get thrown out like that.’ I’m like, ‘you’re alright, you’re a good baserunner.’”

“And he’s a very good basestealer. I thought it was more of an anomaly. It just happened a couple of times early in the season. I like when he runs. He’s a very good baserunner. If our guys, like Ellsbury, are good at what they do, we don’t want to stop them. I think that’s a little bit of a misrepresentation. We like the guys to steal but we just want to make sure they’re  safe.”

In May, Pedroia was 5-for-6 and he’s 4-for-4 this month.

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