Red Sox

Kimbrel back in camp, but infant daughter on his mind

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Kimbrel back in camp, but infant daughter on his mind

Red Sox closer Craig Kimbrel has returned to Fort Myers after spending the past three weeks in Boston, where his infant daughter Lydia has undergone multiple heart surgeries at Boston Children's Hospital.

On Monday, an emotional Kimbrel spoke to reporters in Florida, including The Boston Herald's Michael Silverman, about the ordeal after throwing a batting practice session.  

"We’ll be in and out of Boston Children’s Hospital the rest of her life but for this stay, hopefully, a couple more weeks," Kimbrel said. “She’s in the recovery process but life-threatening wise, she’s in a good place that I can be down here." 

Kimbrel said he and his wife Ashley "can't say enough about how amazing Boston Children's Hospital has been." 

"There's no denying it's been the toughest thing we've ever been through," Kimbrel said.  

"In the last week, her recovery has been unbelievable and she's showing great signs and we're very blessed and we want to thank the Red Sox and Alex [Cora] for understanding they've been through this and working with us," Kimbrel said. 

He said Lydia, born in November, will need another surgery when she's around 3 or 4 years old to help ensure normal development. 

"It's been tough, I can say that. We're definitely, me and my wife, we've had each other and we've had our family, we've had a great support. Everyone is sending out prayers that have definitely been heard. Now, I'm back down here. The other day I threw a live BP up at Babson [College in Wellesley, Mass.], and me and her got to talking and seeing where Lydia is, and how she's progressed, she's in a good, comfortable place for me to be down here. If she wasn't, I wouldn't be here.

"My family comes first and then baseball comes. I have to thank the Red Sox for letting me be there with my family and then helping me continue to prepare while I was at home. Stepping away for a few hours was definitely a release. It did help to get in the weight room. It did help to throw the ball. But that's not going to take away the emotions we went through in the hospital."

Kimbrel said he and his wife talked about how fortunate they were to be in Boston and its world-class healthcare facilities. 

"We believe that everything in life happens for a reason, even if we don't understand it at the time," he said. "There's a lesson to be learned and something to be shared through every step you go through in life. As difficult as this is, and I know it will take time, hopefully, this experience and everything we've been through, we can share that with others, try to impact someone else's life. Because I know for a fact my daughter's going to be able to do that one day."



Red Sox place Eduardo Rodriguez (right ankle sprain) on 10-day disabled list; Brian Johnson activated off DL

Red Sox place Eduardo Rodriguez (right ankle sprain) on 10-day disabled list; Brian Johnson activated off DL

Red Sox starting pitcher Eduardo Rodriguez left his Saturday outing against the Toronto Blue Jays after injuring his right ankle covering first base.

Boston has now placed him on the 10-day disabled list with the injury diagnosed as a right ankle sprain. Brian Johnson was activated off the 10-day DL Sunday. 

Click here for a replay of the injury. 

Rodriguez pitched 5.1 shutout innings, striking out five before exiting the game. Alex Cora told reporters after Saturday's win the swelling in Rodriguez's ankle, "looked bad."

This injury comes at a terrible time for the 25-year-old lefty. He is 11-3 on the season with a 3.44 ERA, easily marking the best year of his career to date. 

The silver lining is the MLB All Star break is upon us. Boston will wrap up its first half Sunday with a 1:05 p.m. EST game against Toronto, and will not return to the diamond until July 20th in Detroit.

Rodriguez could use the break to get healthy with his next start scheduled 10 days from now. 


Bogaerts' walk-off grand slam lifts Red Sox over Blue Jays 6-2 in 10

Bogaerts' walk-off grand slam lifts Red Sox over Blue Jays 6-2 in 10

BOSTON -- Xander Bogaerts relaxed to the beat of his favorite walk-up song. Three pitchers later, he was stunned by excitement rounding the bases.

Bogaerts hit a game-ending grand slam with one out in 10th inning, and J.D. Martinez hit his major league-leading 29th homer to carry the Boston Red Sox to a 6-2 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday.

Mookie Betts opened the winning rally by reaching on an error against Chris Rowley (0-1) when shortstop Gurriel, who moved there in the beginning of the inning, had his grounder go right through his legs. Brock Holt had a hit-and-run single and Martinez was intentionally walked before Bogaerts hit his shot to left-center that caromed around the edge of the bleachers.

Before he came up, Bogaerts heard `X Gon' Give It To Ya' by DMX.

"The music. I'm going to be honest," he said, smiling. "It was a good time for it. I have certain spots where I like to hear that. It really helped me. I kind of smiled going up there."

He said he barely recalled running the bases.

"A walk-off homer is different, a walk-off grand slam even more," he said. "Running the bases, I didn't even remember I hit a homer to be honest."

It was Boston's first game-ending slam in extra innings since Hall of Famer since Jim Rice on July 4, 1984, and Bogaerts' third slam of the season.

Martinez increased his major league-leading RBI total to 80 with a solo shot and red-hot Betts extended his hitting streak to 12 games with three singles to raise his majors' best average to .362 for Boston.

"They're tough, man," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "They got different ways they can beat you. They got a little bit of everything."

The AL East-leading Red Sox had their 10-game winning streak halted Friday. They haven't lost two straight since June 19 and 20.

Boston starter Eduardo Rodriguez had to leave the game with a sprained right ankle after stumbling to the ground when his left foot hit the helmet of Lourdes Gurriel Jr., who was diving into the bag on his infield hit.

"It looks bad, but we'll see," manager Alex Cora said. "He's moving around which is encouraging."

The Red Sox had tied it in the ninth when Jackie Bradley Jr. had an RBI double after Bogaerts opened the inning with a double.

Craig Kimbrel (2-1) pitched a hitless 10th for the victory.

Rodriguez, who gave up four hits with five strikeouts and no walks in 5 1/3 shutout innings, arrived nearly the same time as Gurriel and reached for a wild throw by first baseman Blake Swihart. The left-hander was on a run with three straight scoreless starts, covering 19 innings.

Blue Jays center fielder Kevin Pillar left the game with a right clavicle injury after making a diving catch on Holt's shallow fly when he rolled before throwing to second for an inning-ending double play.

"He's at the hospital getting checked right now," Gibbons said.

Martinez homered over the Green Monster in the fourth off starter Sam Gaviglio, who worked on two days rest after getting tagged for six runs in 1 2/3 innings in his last start at Atlanta.

In the seventh, Toronto scored twice off reliever Joe KellyKendrys Morales singled and advanced on Dwight Smith Jr.'s double. Aledmys Diaz's run-scoring ground out into the shortstop hole tied it.

Matt Barnes then relieved and Gurriel grounded a hit-and-run single through the vacated second-base position.



Blue Jays: Closer Roberto Osuna, currently serving a 75-game suspension for violating major league baseball's domestic violence policy, started a rehab assignment with their Gulf Coast League team Saturday and gave up one hit and struck out one in an inning. . Highly-touted prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (left knee injury) played defense for the first time with the GCL team, getting in five innings at third and going 1 for 3 with a double.

Red Sox: Cora said LHP Drew Pomeranz (10-day DL, left biceps tendinitis) would make another rehab start with Triple-A Pawtucket on Wednesday. "We need the good Drew Pomeranz, the guy that can be good consistently and with his breaking ball," Cora said. . Cora also said that knuckleballer Steven Wright (DL, left knee inflammation) is "not having great days. He's still throwing and all that, but he's still sore."


Gibbons elected to walk Betts intentionally with a 3-0 count and a runner on first with two outs in the fifth.


The Red Sox recalled LHP Bobby Poyner from Pawtucket to add depth to their tired bullpen and optioned LHP Robby Scott back after he threw two innings Friday.

The Blue Jays made changes, too, recalling RHP Rowley from Triple-A Buffalo and sending down LHP Ryan Borucki, who gave up seven runs, four earned, in three innings in Friday's win.


Blue Jays: RHP Marcus Stroman (2-6, 5.90 ERA) looks to win his second straight.

Red Sox: LHP Brian Johnson (1-2, 4.23) is set to go in the series finale.