Red Sox

First impressions: Red Sox offense continues to roll in 11-1 win

First impressions: Red Sox offense continues to roll in 11-1 win

First impressions from the Red Sox' 11-1 win over the Houston Astros


One start does not an ace fix. But David Price took a big step forward Thursday.

Price had a few hiccups in the first two innings, allowing four hits and a run. But even in the early going, there was more life on his fastball and better finish to most of his pitches.

He occasionally hit 95 mph -- and touched 96 mph once, on a pitch to Carlos Correa -- but mostly was 93-94 with his fastball, a significant upturn from recent starts in which he was more 90-91 mph.

The stuff was better, and undoubtedly Price will get a boost in confidence from this outing.

A bigger test will come Tuesday against Kansas City, a team adept at making contact and putting balls in play.


The Red Sox' lineup has been rolling without much contribution from Mookie Betts. That may be about to change.

After another downward stretch at the plate, Betts is showing signs of breaking out. He homered Tuesday, had a two-hit night with two RBI Wednesday, and Thursday launched a three-run homer in the sixth inning.

It helps, too, that Betts has hit his last two homers off lefty starters -- Sean Manaea Tuesday night and Dallas Keuchel on Thursday -- since he had been stuck in a 0-for-17 slump against lefties before the homer against Oakland.


The Red Sox offensive juggernaut continues to roll on.

On Thursday, for the fourth game on this homestand, the Sox scored double figures in runs and now have 51 runs in the last four games for an average of just under 13 runs runs per contest.

At home, that's six straight games at Fenway in which they've collected a minimum of 14 hits and scored at least eight runs - a franchise record.

The power switch is on, too - with two more homers Thursday night, the Sox have hit 29 in their last 17 games and 14 in their last five games.


They only come out at night.

The Sox are 16-3 in their last 19 road games, which is almost certainly a stat that proves little -- other than the fact that the Sox have been playing a lot of night games of late, while they've been raking at an incredible pace.

Then there's this sobering bit of news: half of their games in the next week (three of the next six) are day games, with two this weekend at home with Houston and a getaway day game Wednesday in Kansas City.


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."


As expected, it's Sale, Price and Porcello to start Sox season

As expected, it's Sale, Price and Porcello to start Sox season

New Red Sox manager Alex Cora has announced that, as expected, left-hander Chris Sale will be the Opening Day starter when the Red Sox begin their season nine days from now against the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg, Fla. David Price will pitch the second game and Rick Porcello the third. 

Cora told reporters in Fort Myers, Fla. that Eduardo Rodriguez would be in the fourth starter's spot if he's ready as he continues to recover from off-season knee surgery and left-hander Brian Johnson is preparing to be the fifth starter for now.

In Price's second Grapefruit League start on Tuesday, he pitched five innings and allowed two runs on three hits, walked one and struck out four in the Red Sox' 12-6 victory over the Pirates. Third baseman Rafael Devers, hitting .349 this spring, hit his third home run of the spring. Andrew Benintendi (.405) had a double and two RBI and first baseman Sam Travis drove in three. 

Sale had a much rougher outing Monday, giving up four runs on five hits, with three walks and six strikeouts in five innings against the Phillies.