Red Sox

Notes: Red Sox ready for quick homestand

191542.jpg

Notes: Red Sox ready for quick homestand

By Maureen Mullen
CSNNE.com Follow @maureenamullen
BOSTON Through the quirks of an unbalanced schedule, the Red Sox visit Fenway Park for a brief two-day, three-game "homestand" with the Rays, in the middle of what is essentially an 18-day road trip.

The fact that I didnt unpack, yeah, its weird and the doubleheader makes it more wacky, said manager Terry Francona. Thats just the way it is. Just like a long road trip . . . a little weird.

Because of a rainout on April 13, the Sox will play a day-night doubleheader Tuesday, the first game scheduled for 1:05 and the second game at 7:10. With Wednesdays game scheduled for 1:35 p.m., the Sox and Rays will play three games in about 27 or 28 hours. But those are just adjustments that have to be made.

I dont think you really have a choice, Francona said. I always notice thats when you see guys with sniffles, sometimes tight legs. I think thats probably understandable, but everybody goes through it. You kind of have your own stories and you talk to other teams and it happens to everybody. With the unbalanced schedule thats the way its going to be.

Whatever happens the night before you're supposed to show up and play baseball. If we dont win, I dont feel its going to be because we dont show up. Sometimes you just dont win.

Tickets for the April 13 rain-out will be honored for the first game today.

Mike Aviles will start at shortstop in the first game, his second start at that position since joining the Sox, with Marco Scutaro, whose back tightened up on the off day in Seattle, getting a rest.

Marcos backs tight still so thats that, Francona said. And really want Jed Lowrie to play against the lefty (David Price) tomorrow. So were looking at probably two out of three for him. So thats why were doing it. Somebodys going to play two. I think Mikes probably better suited right now.

Francona said Scutaro would be getting treatment on his back today.

Reliever Bobby Jenks, on the disabled list since July 8 with left back tightness, remains in Fort Myers at the Sox complex where he is scheduled to throw a side session today.

J.D. Drew, on the DL since July 20 with a left shoulder impingement, will take batting practice along with the rest of the team in the indoor cages. The Sox are not planning to take BP on the field while they are at Fenway today or tomorrow.

It doesnt matter with his shoulder because hell get the same amount of swings in the cage, just like being on the field, Francona said. Hell hit in the cage today just like everybody else. Same thing tomorrow. At some point he probably needs to play a little bit. Well get to that point when its appropriate. But were not there yet. The one thing hes been doing really well, hes been tracking balls in the outfield, hes been running. So hopefully when he does come back he wont have that initial five, six, seven days of soreness, almost like spring training.

This is the second doubleheader for the Sox this season. They split the first one in Detroit on May 29. According to Elias, the Sox all-time record in doubleheaders: they have swept 494, they split 827 splits, and they were swept 444 times, with one of the games ending in a tie 33 times.

Maureen Mullen is on Twitter at http:twitter.commaureenamullen

Report: Ex-Red Sox reliever Reed gets deal with Twins

red_sox_addison_reed_080317.jpg

Report: Ex-Red Sox reliever Reed gets deal with Twins

He was dubbed "Closer B" by Red Sox manager John Farrell when acquired at the trade deadline last summer, now Addison Reed is "Closer B Gone"...to the Twins.

The right-handed reliever, 29, has agreed to a two-year, $16.75 million free-agent deal with Minnesota, pending a physical, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports and TheAthletic.com reports. 

Reed began last season with the Mets and had 19 saves and a 2.57 ERA before being traded to the Red Sox, where he had a 3.33 ERA in 29 games (27 innings) without a save as a setup man for Craig Kimbrell.  
 

Red Sox, Mookie Betts far apart on salary and heading toward arbitration

red-sox-mookie-betts.jpg

Red Sox, Mookie Betts far apart on salary and heading toward arbitration

The Red Sox and star right fielder Mookie Betts intend to go to an arbitration hearing in February, and there were signs this was coming even a year ago.

Betts was the only arbitration-eligible player on the Red Sox who did not settle on a contract with the team on Friday, when a deadline arrived for all teams and arbitration-eligible players to exchange 2018 salary figures. Jackie Bradley Jr., Xander Bogaerts and Drew Pomeranz were the biggest names to avoid hearings.

Betts filed for a $10.5 million salary and the Red Sox filed at $7.5 million.  Betts and the Red Sox agreed previously that if no figure could be settled on by the Friday deadline, they would proceed to a hearing, assistant general manager Brian O'Halloran said. 

A three-person panel of arbitrators therefore is set to determine what Betts makes in 2018: either the $7.5 million figure the Sox filed or the $10.5 million figure Betts' camp submitted. The arbitrators won't settle on a midpoint for the parties. 

O'Halloran noted to the Globe there are no hard feelings involved.

Nonetheless, such a large gap would seem to provide incentive to settle. The parties technically could still decide to do so, but that would take a change of course from the present plan. The idea was to settle any time before Friday, and they did not. 

Betts is asking for near-record money for a first-year arbitration eligible player. Kris Bryant set the record Friday with a $10.85 million settlement.

The hearings can be difficult for player-team relations because teams have to make the case in front of the player that he is worth less money than he wants.

Betts, 25, hit .264, with 24 homers, 102 RBI, 25 stolen bases and a .803 OPS in 2017, numbers that fell from his American League MVP runner-up performance in 2016, but were nonetheless very strong and coupled with first-rate defense.

This offseason is Betts' first of arbitration eligibility. In the first three years of service time in a players' career, there's no recourse if you don't like the salary a team is offering. Teams can pay players anything at league minimum or above. 

The only option a player has in those first three years is to make a stand on principle: you can force the team to technically "renew" your salary, which notes to everyone that you did not agree to the salary. Betts and his agents did that in 2017 when the Sox paid him $950,000, a very high amount relative to most contract renewals.

Some of the standard thinking behind forcing a team to renew a contract is that if an arbitration case comes up down the road — and one now looms for Betts — it's supposed to show the arbitrators that the player felt even in seasons past, he was underpaid.

Still, the Sox may have effectively combatted that perception by paying Betts almost $1 million on a renewal. Per USA Today, that $950,000 agreement in 2017 was "the second-highest one-year deal ever for a non-arbitration-eligible player with two-plus years of big league service." Mike Trout got $1 million in 2014.