Red Sox

Red Sox issue statement: 'Torii Hunter's experience is real'

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Red Sox issue statement: 'Torii Hunter's experience is real'

The Boston Red Sox released a statement Wednesday night in support of Torii Hunter after he recently spoke about hearing racial slurs at Fenway Park.

Hunter said last week on ESPN's "Golic and Wingo" that he experienced racial abuse from fans during games at Fenway Park in Boston throughout his career. Hunter also admitted he included the Red Sox in the no-trade clauses in his contracts due to the racial abuse he encountered in Boston.

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Here's the Red Sox statement:

Torii Hunter’s experience is real.

If you doubt him because you’ve never heard it yourself, take it from us, it happens.

Last year there were 7 reported incidents at Fenway Park where fans used racial slurs. Those are just the ones we know about.

And it’s not only players. It happens to the dedicated Black employees who work for us on game days. Their uniforms may be different, but their voices and experiences are just as important.

We are grateful to everyone who has spoken up and remain committed to using our platform to amplify the many voices who are calling out injustice.

There are well-established consequences for fans who use racial slurs and hate speech in our venue, and we know we have more work to do. This small group of fans does not represent who we are, but are rather a reflection of larger systemic issues that as an organization we need to address.

True change starts from within, and as we identify how we can do better, please know we are listening. We hear you, and we believe you.

Hunter responded to the Red Sox's statement with the following tweet:

Hunter made his MLB debut in 1998 and played the first 10 seasons of his career with the Minnesota Twins. He also played for the Los Angeles Angels and Detroit Tigers before retiring after the 2015 season.

WATCH: Alex Verdugo notches first home run with Red Sox

WATCH: Alex Verdugo notches first home run with Red Sox

Alex Verdugo tallied his first home run with the Boston Red Sox during Wednesday night's game against the Tampa Bay Rays.

Verdugo's homer was a two-run shot in the fourth inning off of Rays starter Ryan Yarbrough that gave Boston the lead.

Watch below:


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Verdugo was, of course, acquired in the blockbuster trade that sent Mookie Betts and David Price to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The 24-year-old hit .294 with 12 homers in 106 games with L.A. last year.

With home run No. 1 out of the way, Red Sox fans will hope to see many more where that came from during Verdugo's tenure in Boston.

Incredible stat shows how historically awful Red Sox starting pitching has been

Incredible stat shows how historically awful Red Sox starting pitching has been

When the 2019 MLB season started, the defending World Series champion Red Sox boasted an impressive rotation.

Perennial Cy Young contender Chris Sale. Former Cy Young winners David Price and Rick Porcello. World Series hero Nathan Eovaldi. Eduardo Rodriguez, who would go on to win 19 games.

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But the 2020 Sox rotation is a far cry from that collection of talent. 

Instead, with Sale sidelined with Tommy John surgery, Price and Porcello on different teams, and Rodriguez out for the season with myocarditis, the Sox have been forced to rely on a flotsam and jetsam rotation that has been exposed as not MLB-worthy.

Through 11 games, the Red Sox have already used seven starting pitchers, and they've combined to allow a whopping 32 earned runs in 42.2 innings pitched, often putting the Sox in early deficits they've been unable to overcome. It all adds up to a 6.75 ERA, which isn't just bad; it's actually on pace to be the worst starting rotation in the last 120 years, according to Boston Sports Info.

Only Nathan Eovaldi with a 3.94 ERA in three starts and Austin Brice, who pitched one scoreless inning in his only start of the season as an opener, have ERAs below 5.00, while Josh Osich, Ryan Weber, Matt Hall and Zack Godley all have ERAs of 9-plus.

Pitcher ERA as starter
Austin Brice 0.00
Nathan Eovaldi 3.94
Martin Perez 5.06
Josh Osich 9.00
Matt Hall 10.13
Ryan Weber 11.57
Zack Godley 13.50

And with the supposedly strong Boston offense underachieving through 11 games, it's no wonder the team is off to a horrific 3-8 start, the 28th best record out of 30 MLB teams. If that starting pitching doesn't turn around — and turn around quickly — the Red Sox are in danger of digging a hole that will be too deep to climb out of in a shortened 60-game season.