Red Sox

First Impressions: Red Sox 5, Blue Jays 3

First Impressions: Red Sox 5, Blue Jays 3

First Impressions from the Red Sox' 5-3 win over Toronto:

The Red Sox would gladly take plenty of starts like the one Rick Porcello gave them.

Porcello turned in what was probably the best outing from a Red Sox pitcher this season -- and yes, admittedly, that's not a very high bar to clear.

He was tagged for two long homers by Edwin Encarnacion, but had the good sense to allow the first one with the bases empty. In fact, the homers were the only two hits Porcello allowed.

He aggressively attacked the strike zone, struck out eight and got a lot of groundouts with his two-seamer.

It's too soon to know what sort of impact Christian Vazquez will have right away, but for one game, this was pretty good.

Making his first start after being activated from a rehab stint in Pawtucket, Vazquez guided Porcello through his best start, picked off Troy Tulowitzki at first with a missile to first base and contributed a double and single in four at-bats.

But perhaps the best indication of what he can mean to the staff came in the sixth when he expertly framed a pitch that appeared outside, but got a called third strike on Josh Donaldson by pulling the pitch back with his glove. It was more of the same with a called third strike on Kevin Pillar from Koji Uehara in the eighth.

Lip-readers had a field day with Rick Porcello as he was lifted in the seventh.

Porcello seemed none-too-happy about being given the hook, and appeared to tell John Farrell about it -- to his face.

Cameras caught Porcello uttering a double expletive as he handed the manager the ball.

Players are sometimes emotional when being taken out of a game, and granted, this didn't rise to the level of the famed Wade Miley-Farrell showdown last summer in the dugout at Camden Yards. But, it was interesting nonetheless.

Koji Uehara has been almost unhittable so far.

Moved from the closer's role to the eighth inning, Uehara has pitched six innings in six games and allowed exactly one hit while striking out six. He's faced a total of 20 hitters to date and retired 18 of them.

The first-inning offensive drought is over.

In their first five games of the season, the Red Sox didn't score a single run in the first inning.

But since returning home, the Sox have scored multiple runs -- including three Friday night -- in the first inning in three of their four home games.

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."