Red Sox

First impressions of the Red Sox’ 9-1 win over the Indians


First impressions of the Red Sox’ 9-1 win over the Indians

BOSTON -- First impressions of the Boston Red Sox’ 9-1 win over the Cleveland Indians:

Joe Kelly maximized on his time in the minors -- and it’s showing.

Who would’ve thought that Joe Kelly would throw 6.2 innings of no-hit ball in his first outing back? Was he perfect? No. But that could show more value for Boston given their starting pitcher situation.

And as much as it would’ve been nice to see Kelly complete perfection there’s a lot of value to be found in his three-walk, scoreless fifth frame. In an inning where he was off and put himself in a jam, he found his way out, getting the second and third outs with runners in scoring position. With a staff that’s been plagued by having one bad inning, it’s promising to see Kelly avoid any damage when he could’ve easily given up.

The Red Sox need better protection for Jackie Bradley, Jr.

The streak almost died at 25 games, in large part because Trevor Bauer wanted no piece of JBJ. It didn’t help that runners were on base and Ryan Hanigan isn’t exactly a major offensive threat. But thanks to perfect placement -- on both the hit and throw to first -- JBJ extended the streak to 26 games. But if Bauer is a representation of what’s to come, Bradley’s going to find fewer opportunities to extend his lengthy streak. So putting Blake Swihart or Chris Young behind Bradley, instead of Hanigan or Christian Vazquez, could give opposing pitchers more of a reason to pitch to him.

Clay Buchholz just went on notice.

As if he hadn’t already put himself in enough of a hole, Kelly’s performance put the struggling right-hander in a much worse position than he already was. That is good for Boston because he either shapes up or doesn’t throw (or gets dealt) once Eduardo Rodriguez makes his return.

The bullpen can survive without Carson Smith.

As much as a fourth arm would be nice, mainly because Koji Uehara isn’t getting any younger, the Red Sox can be successful with him, Junichi Tazawa and Craig Kimbrel for the rest of the year. They’ll need longer starts from the staff on occasion, much like Kelly’s, but there’s no reason to rush Smith back to the bullpen. Of course, nine runs in support never hurts either.

Nick Friar can be followed on Twitter @ngfriar.

John Farrell joins ESPN’s ‘Baseball Tonight’ as analyst

File Photo

John Farrell joins ESPN’s ‘Baseball Tonight’ as analyst

John Farrell can add another job to his resume.

The former Boston Red Sox manager has joined the crew for ESPN's "Baseball Tonight," according to The Boston Globe. His debut will be on Wednesday for a season-preview show.

The Red Sox fired Farrell on Oct. 11, 2017 despite a second-straight A.L. East crown. Alex Cora will begin his first season in Farrell's old role during the 2018 season.

Farrell added the broadcast work after the Cincinnati Reds hired him as a scout and adviser with a focus on pitching. He interviewed this offseason for the Philadelphia Phillies and Washington Nationals managing jobs, but both teams passed on him.


Red Sox minor league team invites Trump, Biden to settle it in ring

File photos

Red Sox minor league team invites Trump, Biden to settle it in ring

In this corner, the challenger out of Scranton, Pa., Joltin' Joe Biden...In the other corner, straight out of Queens, the President of the United States, Dandy Donald J. Trump!

The venue: LeLacheur Park, Lowell, Mass., home of the Red Sox Class-A affiliate, the Lowell Spinners.

Ladies and gentlemen, it's The Slasher at LeLacheur!

After the former Vice-President told a crowd at the University of Miami earlier this week of the current President, "If we were in high school, I'd take him behind the gym and beat the hell out of him, President Trump fired back on Twitter Thursday morning. 

The Spinners, the Sox' short-season New York-Penn League affiliate, have offered to host a boxing match between the Republican President and Democratic former Vice President on Aug. 17 by the flagpole at LeLacheur. Former light-welterweight champ and Lowell native Micky Ward has agreed to referee.

No word yet if Trump, who'll be 72 by then, or Biden, 75, have accepted the invitation.

The Spinners' press release announcing the invitation says that if the two do accept, "the boxing match will take place regardless of the weather, no matter how stormy it may get."