Red Sox

Orioles catcher excited 'to get the hell out of Boston'

Orioles catcher excited 'to get the hell out of Boston'

There’s still one more game to go for the Orioles in Boston in this series. Catcher Caleb Joseph has had enough.

Joseph flipped his lid Wednesday when home-plate umpire Sam Holbrook tossed his pitcher, Kevin Gausman, in the second inning because of a curveball that didn’t curve and instead caught Xander Bogaerts in the lower back.

Joseph thought the ejection was ridiculous, which it was. But the sideshow that's been attached to this Orioles-Red Sox series has gone over the top, in his mind.

"I think the video shows I was probably the most shocked person in the stadium. I could not believe that he ejected,” Joseph said. “I am not trying to bury Sam here, but we're so ready for this thing to be over. We're so ready — I am the most excited person to get the hell out of Boston. I mean, let's get on with it and get out of here. Let's get out of here and play ball. That's all we want to do in here is play ball. 

“I hope it dies down, but who knows. When the decisions are in the hands of the umpires, you don't know. These teams are good. And to pitch, you have to pitch to certain parts of the plate. Period. And you have to establish certain pitches. It's freezing outside. The balls are slick, guys are trying to make pitches. Certain guys stand certain places on the plate. You have to execute pitches. What if a guy is on the plate standing on the white chalk and his elbows are leaning over and it's a strike and you throw it near his elbow. Is it an automatic ejection?”

Joseph suggested collaboration between the umpires, as is seen in other instances. But ejections aren’t exactly the kind of thing umpires have a history of undoing.

“There's too much gray area right now,” Joseph said of what his pitchers can and can’t do. “It prohibits us playing the game. It prohibits pitchers doing what they are trying to do to get outs. We don't have the Chris Sale who throws 97 and strikes out the world. We have guys who use their pitches in certain locations to get guys out. We have Gold Glove caliber defense, period. They have to go in there and make certain pitches and a curveball got away from a guy and he got ejected. It's malarkey. It's freaking BS.”

Bogaerts said he thought it was possible that because the pitch was straight at him the whole time, Holbrook couldn’t see that it was a breaking ball rather than a fastball. Sox manager John Farrell said he was surprised by the ejection.

Holbrook held steady after the game, though.

“Just given the situation and the tension between the two clubs and all the stuff that’s gone over the past few weeks, we’re all on high alert with anything,” Holbrook told a pool reporter, Ken Powtak of the Associated Press. “I know that the ball was a curveball, but it hit him square in the back and just making a split decision at that point right there, there needs to be an end to this stuff, and I felt like an ejection was the right thing to do at that time, and that’s what we did. Thankfully, we didn’t have any more problems the rest of the game.” 

Gausman called the ejection “bush league,” and noted that if he’s going to get tossed for a breaking ball hitting someone in the back, a warning should have been issued before the game. Gausman pointed out the injustice of Chris Sale not being tossed for a high-90s fastball that went behind Manny Machado on Tuesday.

Of course, one was, in a sense. The commissioner, Rob Manfred, spoke to both Farrell and O’s manager Buck Showalter on the phone.

MLB Rumors: Rick Porcello, Mets agree to one-year contract worth $10M

MLB Rumors: Rick Porcello, Mets agree to one-year contract worth $10M

The Rick Porcello reunion is off the table.

The free-agent right-hander has agreed to a one-year contract with the New York Mets pending a physical, The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal and Eno Sarris reported Thursday.

The one-year deal is worth $10 million, per MLB Network's Jon Heyman.

The Red Sox were rumored to be interested in re-signing Porcello after his contract expired in 2019, but New York also was eyeing the 30-year-old veteran and appears to have gotten its man.

Porcello was a workhorse during his five seasons in Boston, starting 32 or more games in four of those campaigns. His brilliant 2016 season -- 22-4 with a 3.15 ERA -- earned him American League Cy Young Award honors.

The New Jersey native struggled to a 5.52 ERA last season, though, and with the Red Sox looking to cut payroll, it seemed unlikely they would open their checkbooks for a starter north of 30.

Porcello's departure leaves a hole in Boston's rotation behind Chris Sale, David Price, Eduardo Rodriguez and Nathan Eovaldi.

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Chaim Bloom reacts to Gerrit Cole signing with Yankees

Chaim Bloom reacts to Gerrit Cole signing with Yankees

Chaim Bloom is well-aware of just how big of a move the Yankees made when they signed Gerrit Cole to a nine-year, $324 million contract on Tuesday. But the Red Sox chief baseball officer is staying patient.

Speaking to reporters Wednesday at the Winter Meetings in San Diego, Bloom addressed the Cole signing and noted the importance of the front office not being too reactionary in their approach to the offseason.

"Look, we want to beat the Yankees as badly as anybody, trust me,” Bloom said. “I think it’s just a question of us being able to step back and say, ‘What is the best approach for us to do that?’ The more we feel like we’re being reactive to other teams’ moves, I think the more we’re playing their game. We might be pushing ourselves further from that objective rather than helping ourselves.”

Bloom was the Tampa Bay Rays' senior vice president of baseball operations prior to joining the Red Sox, so he's no stranger to seeing both Boston and New York making noise in the offseason. His experience with a much lower payroll in Tampa helped him learn to not be distracted by the big splashes made by division rivals.

“Having had the good fortune of being in this division for a long time, I’m kind of used to seeing the Yankees, and the Red Sox for that matter, do things over the years,” Bloom said. “It didn’t change things that much in terms of how I reacted to that. I think it’s one of the great things about the challenges of being in, what has been over the course of time probably the toughest division maybe in all of pro sports. You expect the standards to be very high and you expect your rivals to be constantly looking to improve, constantly find ways.

"The approach from team to team might vary, but you expect them to constantly be doing things to make themselves better. It’s important to not get distracted by that. It’s important to focus on your own club and how you can accomplish your goals.”

The Red Sox have made it clear they're aiming to shed payroll ahead of the 2020 season, so don't expect any Cole-like deals for Boston any time soon. Instead, prepare for stars like David Price and/or Mookie Betts to be shipped out of town before Opening Day.

TOMASE: Bogaerts torn over 'little brother' Betts' uncertain future with Sox>>>

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