Red Sox

Key Red Sox bats don't have answer for Indians pitching in Game 1 loss

Key Red Sox bats don't have answer for Indians pitching in Game 1 loss

CLEVELAND -- In the final week of the regular season, the  Red Sox bats looked tired -- and the results showed.

Over their last seven games, they scored just 21 runs. Twice, they were limited to a single run; only twice did they score more than three.

The start of the playoffs, though, was supposed to see the Red Sox offense -- the one which led the majors in runs scored and several other categories -- awaken again.

Not Thursday night.

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The Sox did power three homers -- all solo and all from unlikely sources -- but they also struck out 14 times and were just 2-for-9 with runners in scoring position in their 5-4 loss to the Indians in Game 1 of the ALDS.

The trio of Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts and Jackie Bradley Jr. combined to go 1-for-11 with seven strikeouts.

"We expanded the strike zone,'' admitted John Farrell, "below the strike zone with hard biting breaking balls.''

Indeed, if a pattern emerged from the four Cleveland pitchers, it was an approach that saw them throw fastballs up and breaking pitches in the bottom of the zone.

Whatever they did, it worked.

"Credit where it's due,'' said Farrell. "They threw very good stuff. Their best guys came at us with power fastballs and very sharp finishing-type breaking balls. They expanded the strike zone and we offered.''

Of the 11 outs recorded by lefty Andrew Miller and closer Cody Allen, eight were by strikeout.

"Nothing we can do about it now,'' said Hanley Ramirez, who smoked two doubles in his first two trips, but was hitless in his final two plate appearances. "A couple days off can affect your timing. We've just got to come back and have a better game.''

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.