Red Sox

Chris Sale says bad homecoming was 'seven o'clock batting practice'

Chris Sale says bad homecoming was 'seven o'clock batting practice'

CHICAGO — He’s skilled at making fun of himself when he’s bad at pitching.

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The most positive element of Chris Sale’s homecoming in Chicago, a 13-7 Red Sox win, is an indication that in the future, he might have a real offense that can hit home runs behind him. 

Because he definitely didn’t stick it to his old bosses on Wednesday night.


An expected scratch-and-claw pitchers’ duel between Sale and a pitcher he said is like a brother to him, Jose Quintana, fell short of the billing. Both lefties were disappointing, and Sale delivered his worst start since the Red Sox traded for him.

“We were both off,” Sale said. “I think people were expecting something a little different, but they came to a seven o’clock batting practice session tonight. We were off.”

Sale did hit 99 mph and took the mound to an ovation, but a 42-pitch second inning sunk his day. He managed to eke out five innings, with five earned runs on 10 hits. He struck out nine and walked two.

“I wasn’t smiling a whole lot tonight, that’s for sure,” Sale said. “I kept them to a touchdown. I didn’t let them get the extra point. But no, it is what it is. I stunk tonight. I know it’s a big deal because I’m facing my old team and this is where I played and all that stuff, but I was just bad. I really was. And my guys picked me up tonight. That says a lot. For me to be able to walk out of this building with my chin up in a good mood, good spirits, music playing in the locker room after the game, I had nothing to do with that. And that says a lot about my teammates and who we got in that clubhouse.”

Sale was at 99 pitches after allowing two runs in the fourth inning, but seemed to tell manager John Farrell in the dugout in a very quick exchange that he was definitely going back out for the fifth. Sale turned in a 1-2-3 inning and exited with the Sox ahead 10-6.

He had help when he needed it in an ugly game.

Sale was given a 4-0 lead going into the long second inning. The White Sox cut the lead to 4-3, and the Red Sox kept coming, pulling ahead 7-3 in the third. After four innings, the lead had dwindled to 7-6, and Sale wanted the ball for one final frame after the Sox scored three in the top of the fifth.

The usually powerless Red Sox just kept going deep. Deven Marrero, who hit one home run in all of 2016 between Triple-A and the majors and is known only for his glove, homered twice. The Sox hit a season-high six home runs — their most since 2013, when they went deep eight times against the Tigers in a game started by Rick Porcello.

"I think you take back those minor league years and you just learn from them," said Marrero, who's a lifetime .220 hitter at Triple-A. "That’s what I’ve done with them. Each year, I kind of learn different things about myself as a hitter and as a player. I just want to be ready when I get my chance up here to be ready to take advantage of it. That’s what the minor leagues is for. That stuff doesn’t count. All that matters is what you do here on the big club."

Marrero said he had about 120 texts waiting for him, more than he had when he was drafted by the Red Sox as their top pick in 2012.

Xander Bogaerts, Mookie Betts, Mitch Moreland and Jackie Bradley Jr. also went deep. The Sox have just eight multi-homer games after putting together 51 last year.

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."