Red Sox

First impressions of the Red Sox’ 5-3 win over the Yankees


First impressions of the Red Sox’ 5-3 win over the Yankees

NEW YORK -- First Impressions from the Red Sox' 5-3 win over the Yankees:

* Steven Wright has run into a sixth-inning rut.

Two starts ago, Wright pitched six scoreless innings, then couldn't get an out in the sixth against the Angels, allowing four runs.

In his last start, against Texas, Wright had allowed a solo run in the first five innings and then gave up three hits and two runs in the sixth.

It was more of the same Friday night, when Wright retired the first 14 hitters he faced and had allowed only one baserunner through five innings, then allowed three of the first four hitters in the sixth to reach as he lost command of the knuckler. He got out of the inning, but not before allowing three runs.

He then didn't return for the sixth.

Was it rust from not pitching for more than a week? Was it the result of sitting in the dugout for almost 30 minutes when the Sox had a long top of the sixth?

The answer is unclear, but something the Sox need to pay attention to.

* Ryan Hanigan snapped a homerless streak.

Through the entire first half of the season, Hanigan didn't have a homer. He had played in 23 games, and had just 14 hits in the first half that was marked by injuries (a DL stint because of a stiff neck) and offensive struggles.

But let the record show that Hanigan broke that streak in his first at-bat of the second half, lashing a line drive off a pitch by Michael Pineda into the left field seats to give the Sox a 1-0 lead.

* The other two "Killer B's'' had their long hitting streaks. Now, it may be Mookie Betts's turn.

Xander Bogaerts hit safely in 26 games earlier this season. Bradley had a 29-game streak of his own.

Betts finished the first half in strong fashion, hitting .408 in his final 11 games.

He extended his hitting streak to an even dozen with an infield hit to third in the third inning.

If Betts could keep it going for another week or so, he would give the Sox three players with hitting streaks of 20 or more games in the same season. I'm guessing that's never done before.

Sean McAdam can be followed on Twitter: @Sean_McAdam

Red Sox moves leave Poyner as likely lefty in pen

Red Sox moves leave Poyner as likely lefty in pen

The Red Sox optioned three players, including lefties Robby Scott and Roenis Elias to Triple-A Pawtucket on Saturday, leaving rookie Bobby Poyner as the leading candidate to make the team as a lefty reliever.

Infielder Tzu-Wei Lin was also sent to Pawtucket and catcher Dan Butler, infielder Iván De Jesús Jr., and outfielders Rusney Castillo and Aneury Tavárez were re-assigned to minor league camp.

Poyner, 25, dominated at Double-A Portland last season. The 14th-round pick from the University of Florida in 2015 held opponents to a .142 batting average with a .094 ERA in 27 appearances for the Sea Dogs. Poyner has an 0.96 ERA with eight strikeouts in 9 1/3 spring training innings. 

Red Sox manager Alex Corea told reporters in Florida on Saturday that left-handers Drew Pomeranz (left forearm) and Eduardo Rodriguez (offseason knee surgery) will begin the season on the disabled list, leaving Hector Velazquez, Justin Haley or Marcus Walden to make the team as the fifth starter. 

A few decisions remain with the opener approaching Thursday at Tampa Bay, including whether Blake Swihart, Brock Holt or Deven Marrero will make team as bench players. 



Vazquez gets 3-year extension from Red Sox

Vazquez gets 3-year extension from Red Sox

The Red Sox and catcher Christian Vazquez have agreed to a three-year contract extension that runs through 2021 with a team option for 2022, the team announced Saturday.

Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald reported the contract details:

Vazquez, hitting .323 this spring with two homers, appeared in a career-high 99 games (85 starts) last season and hit .290 with five homers and 32 RBI. Vazquez also threw out 42 percent of attempted base stealers in 2017, the highest rate since 1987. 

Vazquez split time with Sandy Leon (85 games) behind the plate last season. The Red Sox will carry three catchers on the Opening Day roster if Blake Swihart, who can also play the outfield, makes team.