Red Sox

Alex Cora plans team meeting to address Red Sox' final two months of 2019

Alex Cora plans team meeting to address Red Sox' final two months of 2019

BOSTON -- One day after the Red Sox did nothing at the trade deadline, manager Alex Cora said he plans to hold a team meeting in New York on Friday to address the final two months of the season.

"We'll see," Cora said. "I'll make it up tonight on the way to New York. But I think it's important, not because of what people think, it's just what's coming now. It's Aug. 1, Aug. 2, whenever we talk. This is the reality of where we're at. They know, but it's just a reminder, and we do that most of the time, but probably in a different setup."

Cora described such meeting as "not common at all," but felt now was a good time to bring the group together. On Wednesday, president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski admitted that had the team been closer to first place, he might have approached the deadline differently.

Shortstop Xander Bogaerts, in turn, admitted his surprise that the team had stood pat.

"A little surprised, but not disappointed," Bogaerts said. "We hear a lot of chatter. We're human, and there's a lot of chatter about your guys, a little excitement – maybe this, it's a game that you don't know what's going to happen. And then in the end nothing happened, but we've got to trust the guys we have. We did it last year already. Everyone keeps talking about last year, but we did it with the same team we have, and I mean just right now everybody is kind of getting hot at the right moment, but these past couple days have been a little tough."

A smiling Cora said he couldn't remember holding a similar team meeting this season, but stressed the importance of the home stretch.

"I mean, we meet on a daily basis to go over pitchers and I use that sometimes to send a message or we need to do this better, or we're doing this great, just keep going," he said. "Not too often."

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Ever Wonder Series: Why did the distance of Fenway Park's Green Monster change?

Ever Wonder Series: Why did the distance of Fenway Park's Green Monster change?

Of all of Fenway Park's quirks, my favorite might be how the 315-foot sign on the Green Monster suddenly became 310.

It's possible I love this story because the sportswriter gets to be the hero.

In 1995, the Globe's Dan Shaughnessy decided to settle one of the most persistent rumors of his career. He remembers hearing it as a cub reporter during the 1975 World Series, when the Reds insisted to a man that Fenway's famed left field fence couldn't possibly be 315 down the line.

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They all believed it was closer, but no one could prove it, because the Red Sox resisted periodic efforts to measure and answer the question once and for all.

That didn't stop the Globe from accessing the park's original 1912 blueprints, which showed the wall at 308 feet. They enlisted a World War II reconnaissance pilot to examine aerial photos, and he pegged it at 304. The author George Sullivan crawled up the foul line with a yardstick and settled on 309-5.

None of those numbers ever became official, though, because 315 by that point had been well-established as part of the park's lore. Fenway opened in 1912, was extensively renovated in 1934, and added bullpens in 1940, giving us the dimensions we essentially recognize today. For more than 60 years, the 315 sign at the base of the foul pole beckoned right-handed sluggers, terrified pitchers, and lived in what felt like perfect accuracy.

But Shaughnessy had other ideas. He finally decided to take matters into his own hands in March of 1995. His friends on the grounds crew looked the other way as he hopped a fence in an empty Fenway and unfurled a 100-foot Stanley SteelMaster tape measure.

It only took a matter of minutes to prove his hunch correct: 315 wasn't 315 at all.

It was 310, or 309-3, to be precise. Shaughnessy wrote about his findings in late April, and within a month, the Red Sox had quietly changed the sign to 310, which it remains to this day.

"My whole life looking at that wall, it was 315," Shaughnessy said. "Shortly after the story appeared, they changed it to 310, which surprised me. It was very un-Red Sox like in those days, and these days.

"Now when I see 310, I take some pride in that."

Red Sox join growing list of MLB teams to release minor leaguers amid COVID-19

Red Sox join growing list of MLB teams to release minor leaguers amid COVID-19

Minor League Baseball is getting hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic.

ESPN reported that hundreds of minor leaguers were released Thursday, and that hundreds more cuts are likely to follow in the coming weeks.

It's also possible the 2020 minor league season doesn't happen at all. Regardless, teams are looking for ways to trim costs, and one place that's being impacted is minor league rosters.

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The Boston Red Sox have become the latest Major League Baseball team to announce the release of minor leaguers. Here's the list of players from Friday's announcement:

Pitchers : Matthew Gorst (RHP), Alex Demchak (LHP), Dylan Thompson (RHP), Robbie Baker (RHP), Chris Machamer (RHP), Connor Berry (RHP), Eddie Jimenez (RHP), Kelvin Sanchez (LHP), Zach Schneider (RHP), and Mason Duke (RHP)

Catchers: Joe DeCarlo, Samuel Miranda, and Breiner Licona

Infielders: Nick Lovullo, Juremi Profar, Korby Batesole, Andre Colon, and Nilo Rijo

Outfielders: Edgar Corcino, Keith Curcio, Trenton Kemp, and Marino Campana

Here's a list of other MLB teams making these kinds of cuts. 

One of the many unfortunate aspects of this development is that a lot of the players around the league who are being released might never play professional baseball again. 

Several major league players are going into their own pocket to financially assist minor leaguers, including former Red Sox pitcher David Price, who's giving $1,000 of his own money to each Los Angeles Dodgers minor leaguer in June.

It's still possible the 2020 MLB season will happen in some form. Both the league and MLBPA reportedly have been discussing and negotiating on several different issues, but there's been no public agreement on a return proposal at this time.