Red Sox

First impressions: Porcello earns 21st victory in Red Sox' 5-2 win over Orioles

First impressions: Porcello earns 21st victory in Red Sox' 5-2 win over Orioles

BALTIMORE -- First impressions from the Red Sox' 5-2 win over the Orioles:


* Porcello is burnishing his Cy Young credentials.

Porcello earned his 21st victory Monday at a time when no one else in the league has 20, going the distance while allowing just two runs.

He also lowered his ERA to 3.08 and moved into third in the A.L. in innings pitched. In fact, in virtually every meaningful category other than strikeouts, Porcello is in the Top 5 among A.L. starters -- innings, wins, ERA, complete games.

But here's what might be most impressive: Porcello has lost twice in his last 23 starts.

And sure, the "win'' for starters has been devalued and debunked in recent years, given that it's too tied to run support and other things beyond the control of a starter.

Still, to go four months and lose only twice, while routinely taking his team deep into games, remains fairly impressive.


* Given some building animosity, it could get interesting at Camden Yards over the next three nights.

Maybe it's the familiarity that comes with playing 19 times per season.

But there's some testiness between these clubs, exhibited a few times Monday night.

First, Manny Machado, who seems to have a particularly low threshold when it comes to being hit or pitched inside, jawed with Rick Porcello on his way to first after being drilled in the arm by a Porcello fastball.

Porcello didn't take kindly to the message, reminding Machado that he had no reason to throw at him with Mark Trumbo on deck and the Sox in possession of a mere 2-0 lead. Porcello asked, in a fairly profane way, to re-examine his thought process.

Later, Tyler Wilson came inside on David Ortiz and caught him in the legs with a pitch. Ortiz didn't seem to object or read too much intent, but dugout shots showed that Porcello was irate.

Three more games here this week. Stay tuned.


* What is it with Mookie Betts and Camden Yards?

Betts has played seven games here this season and has hit eight homers.

Recall that back in late May-early June, Betts hit five homers here in the span of seven plate appearances.

When the Red Sox returned here in mid-August, Betts had himself another multi-homer game, hitting two on Aug. 17 while knocking in five runs.

On Monday night, Betts had two walks, and of course, another homer -- a two-run shot in the third to give the Red Sox a 2-0 lead.

Eight homers in seven games in an opposing ballpark?

Of course, Camden Yards is a homer haven, with short power alleys. But in a power-packed Red Sox lineup, no one has had (italics please) that (end italics) kind of success here. Not David Ortiz, nor Hanley Ramirez or any other power threat.


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. 



Red Sox, Yankees working to play in London in 2019

Red Sox, Yankees working to play in London in 2019

Mookie Betts and Aaron Judge are about to go global.

Red Sox CEO Sam Kennedy on Monday confirmed the Sox are interested to play the Yankees in London during next year's regular season. Bloomberg reported the clubs are nearing an agreement to play two games there in June 2019. Discussions are indeed taking place, but a deal is not done.

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“We would love to participate in a series in London against the Yankees but this is a decision that MLB and the MLBPA will make," Sox CEO Sam Kennedy said.

Bloomberg reported the games would be played at London Stadium, which was the main facility for the 2012 summer Olympics.

MLB has not played any games in Europe before. The Red Sox have made trips before, including to Japan before the 2008 season.