Red Sox

Emotional homer for Piscotty helps A's beat Red Sox, 5-3

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AP Photo

Emotional homer for Piscotty helps A's beat Red Sox, 5-3

BOSTON -- With a hand on his heart and a quick glance to the sky, Stephen Piscotty made an emotional salute to his late mother and helped the Oakland Athletics win in his return to the lineup.

Hours after being reinstated from the bereavement list and flying cross-country to join the A's in Boston, Piscotty hit a towering home run out of Fenway Park in his first at-bat Tuesday night as Oakland beat the Boston Red Sox 5-3.

"It was pure joy. It's been an emotional week," said Piscotty, whose mother, Gretchen, died May 6 after a one-year battle with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease. She was 55.

Piscotty had missed four games to be with his family as they grieved the loss and celebrated Gretchen's life. He slowly made his way around the bases, then after rounding third placed his right hand over his heart and patted it with a glance to the sky.

"Coming around third, I just immediately started thinking about my mom and kind of put my hand over my chest like she would do," Piscotty said.

It was a touching moment for anyone aware of what Piscotty and his family had been through.

"To hit a home run in his first at-bat like that, there's something in the air. Probably Gretchen," Oakland manager Bob Melvin said. "It was like a walkoff. The guys just embraced him when he got in the dugout."

Melvin actually gave Piscotty the option to sit out Tuesday, when he got a ride to the airport around 3:45 a.m. in California for a flight to Boston. Piscotty, who said he still felt like he was on West Coast time, declined the option.

"He wanted to play. He's on little sleep, a lot of adrenaline," Melvin said. "I know he was really looking forward to that first at-bat. To be able to do what he did tells you a little something about him."

Piscotty drove an 0-and-2 pitch from Eduardo Rodriguez out to left in the second inning. Piscotty's third homer of the season was his only hit of the night and put the A's up 3-0. Matt Chapman and Mark Canha had two RBIs apiece for the A's, who took the first two games of the series against the struggling Red Sox.

Andrew Benintendi homered for Boston and Mitch Moreland finished with a pair of doubles for the Red Sox, who have struggled since their torrid start to the season.

Daniel Mengden (3-4) pitched six solid innings for Oakland, scattering eight hits and holding Boston to two runs - one earned - and struck out three. Blake Treinenfinished it off for his eighth save of the season and Oakland improved to 4-1 against Boston this season.

"We haven't been able to put them away," Boston manager Alex Cora said. "They're young and it seems like they're turning a corner. Whatever they're doing over there is pretty good."

Rodriguez (3-1) took his first loss of the season after getting roughed up in the first few innings. Oakland had six hits through the first three innings, starting with back-to-back singles by Marcus Semien and Chad Pinder to start the game. Both scored on a double by Chapman, who drove a pitch from Rodriguez over the head of Mookie Betts in right field.

Rodriguez was pulled after throwing 98 pitches in five innings.

"They were swinging a lot and getting a lot of foul balls," Rodriguez said. "I was getting a lot of like 0-2 counts and then going to 3-2. I need to work at putting guys out quicker than that."

Benintendi's solo homer in the fifth pulled Boston back within 3-2, but the A's tacked on a pair of runs in the eighth.

The game was scheduled to begin at 7:10 p.m., but didn't get under way until 8:52 p.m. because of heavy rain and lightning.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Athletics: To make room on the roster for Piscotty, Oakland optioned RHP Kendall Graveman to Triple-A Nashville.

Red Sox: Placed RHP Carson Smith on the 10-day disabled list Tuesday with a dislocated pitching shoulder, which he injured during a tantrum Monday night. Smith was upset after Khris Davis led off the eighth inning with a home run to put Oakland up 6-4. ... The Red Sox also recalled LHP Bobby Poyner from Triple-A Pawtucket.

UP NEXT

Athletics: RHP Trevor Cahill (1-1, 2.25 ERA) is expected to get the start after being reinstated from the 10-day disabled list with an impingement in his pitching elbow.

Red Sox: LHP Chris Sale (3-1, 2.17) is coming off a no-decision despite tying a career high with 15 strikeouts while pitching nine innings Friday at Toronto.

MLB rumors: Mets have talked to Red Sox about trade for a catcher

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MLB rumors: Mets have talked to Red Sox about trade for a catcher

The Boston Red Sox have great depth at catcher with three Major League-caliber players at the position, so it's not surprising that at least one team has contacted the 2018 World Series champions about a potential trade.

The New York Mets are one such team, as reported Wednesday by MLB.com's Anthony DiComo.

DiComo also was asked about the Mets' possible interest in other Red Sox players, and he gave the following response:

The Mets haven't had the best success with catchers since Mike Piazza left the franchise after the 2005 season.

Sandy Leon and Christian Vazquez are good behind the plate, but neither of them are quality hitters. Leon batted .177 over 89 regular season games in 2018, while Vazquez batted .207 in 80 games. Swihart isn't as good defensively, but he's a slightly better hitter. He batted .229 in 82 games but is a career .256 hitter.

The Red Sox lost reliever Joe Kelly to the Los Angeles Dodgers in free agency and could lose closer Craig Kimbrel, too. Trading one of these catchers could clear some salary for a free-agent bullpen arm or be enough to get a Major League reliever in return. Either way, catcher is a position of depth the Red Sox should consider using to address some of their roster weaknesses.

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Red Sox fans give great replies to MLB tweet on Yankees' Manny Machado meeting

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USA TODAY Sports Images

Red Sox fans give great replies to MLB tweet on Yankees' Manny Machado meeting

The New York Yankees will meet with third baseman Manny Machado this week, and Major League Baseball's official Twitter account asked fans for their best free-agent pitch. 

As you might expect, many Red Sox fans, fresh off a World Series celebration, chimed in with responses. Several of them were pretty funny. Here's a round up of the best ones.

Machado, of course, was the final out of the 2018 World Series when Boston Red Sox ace Chris Sale struck out the Dodgers star on a nasty breaking ball in Game 5. Machado didn't play well in the Fall Classic and was accused of dirty play when he was seen stepping on Red Sox first baseman Steve Pearce in Game 4. It certainly wasn't the best show he could have put on for potential free-agent suitors.

Still, Machado is expected to get a massive long-term contract as an elite player in the prime of his career. The Red Sox vs. Yankees rivalry was reinvigorated last season when Boston eliminated New York in the American League Division Series, and the tensions between these teams only will increase if Machado takes his talents to the Bronx in free agency. 

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