Red Sox

Shaw gets three more hits in battle for job


Shaw gets three more hits in battle for job

JUPITER, Fla. -- At first glance, the Red Sox lineup for Monday raised some eyebrows.

It had Travis Shaw playing third, with Pablo Sandoval as the DH.

But with the Red Sox shuffling players in and out of the lineup on their three-day trip to Florida's East Coast, manager John Farrell noted that Tuesday, when the Sox play the Miami Marlins in the same ballpark, the two would flip-flop, with Shaw as the DH and Sandoval at third.

However, Farrell later acknowledged that one of the reasons that Shaw has not been tried in left field -- something the Sox said they wanted to look at -- was so they could get as many looks as possible of him at third base.

"It is,'' confirmed Farrell. "To be as candid with you as possible, yes.''

Both players enjoyed strong games Monday in the Red Sox' 5-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.

Shaw was 3-for-4 with two doubles, upping his average to .474 for the spring. Sandoval, meanwhile, was 2-for-3 with two RBI, lifting his Grapefruit League average to .290.

"My swing feels really good right now, both sides of the field,'' said Shaw. "I'm just trying to stay in this groove the last couple of weeks of camp. Really, the only other [streak] I can compare this to is when I came up last August, but that was more power-wise than it was hit-wise. This is pretty good. I feel like I'm in a good spot right now.

"I'm confident in what I can do at the plate. I don't think this is a fluke. I think I can continue to carry this over.''

Farrell hinted Saturday that there's an active competition for the starting third-base job, but Shaw isn't trying to analyze things too much.

"It's hard for me to say,'' said Shaw. "I would like to think that I am (in competition for a starting spot). But I'm just trying to let my at-bats do the talking, and hopefully they'll speak for themselves. But I don't really know. I've never really been in this situation. We'll see how it plays out.''

Farrell also conceded that it's difficult to evaluate the two this spring because they're such different hitters. While Shaw is a patient, steady, line drive hitter, Sandoval is far more aggressive and unconventional hitter, prone to streakiness.

"I think that's where you have to look at the broader scope,'' said Farrell, "and not base things solely on spring training, even though that's going to give you the most recent information. You have to look at a bigger period of time and factor in last year as part of that.

"That's probably the best answer I can give you. If we were evaluating the position solely on offense (that would make it harder). But that's not the case. That's where you look at the broader scope and a longer period of time.''

Shaw entered Monday with glowing offensive numbers, but his defense has also impressed.

"He's shown good range, particularly to his glove side,'' said Farrell. "I think there's an internal clock there, like most infielders, where there's an understanding (of how much time he has to make plays), with the exception of one play. Might have been home against Marlins, where a well above-average runner (beat out) a base hit. But the internal clock and the range has been good.''

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."