Red Sox

Surprise! Poyner and Walden make Red Sox pitching staff

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Surprise! Poyner and Walden make Red Sox pitching staff

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Pitchers Marcus Walden and Bobby Poyner are your surprise 2018 Red Sox, clearing up the Red Sox’ 25-man roster picture ahead of Opening Day.

Brandon Workman was optioned to Triple-A Pawtucket, leaving the righty Walden as a long man. Poyner is the lone lefty in the bullpen. (Justin Haley was also re-assigned to minor league camp on Monday).

The Red Sox rotation has also been named, in order of games they are scheduled to pitch: Chris Sale, David Price, Rick Porcello, Hector Velazquez and Brian Johnson.

“As long as they’re healthy Thursday, but they won it. They pitched well,” manager Alex Cora said Monday afternoon. “They did an outstanding job throughout spring training. When I talked about it yesterday, when you talk about spring training stats and you get caught up: it’s not about the numbers. You see the stuff and how they went about the hitters, the weapons, the pitches they can use and we feel they’re going to help us out right now. 

“I know [Workman] has been here for a while and he’ll be part of this. It takes more than 25 guys to win a World Series. It takes more than 40. You have guys, you never expect them in the offseason that they were going to be part of this. . . . Obviously, [Workman's] disappointed. He’ll be all right. He’ll go to Pawtucket, he’ll compete, and at some point we’re going to need him and he’s going to get outs at the big league level.”

Walden, 29, had a 3.92 ERA in 29 games at Triple-A Pawtucket last season, 15 of them starts. Poyner, 25, had a 1.49 ERA across High-A and Double-A last year. He’s skipping Triple-A.

A few other roster notes:

•  Steven Wright went to the 10-day disabled list on Monday, and he also got a PRP injection in his surgically repaired left knee. Wright cannot serve his 15-game suspension for violating MLB’s domestic violence policy unless he is healthy and able to be on the active roster. So, whenever his time on the DL is up, he still has the suspension looming. He’s out of the picture until late April at the earliest.

• Eduardo Rodriguez and Drew Pomeranz were officially listed on the DL, as expected. E-Rod is to buy the whole team dinner on Tuesday, Cora emphasized, because coach Carlos Febles gave him No. 57, which is what E-Rod wanted. He wanted No. 57 because it belonged to Johan Santana.

• Dustin Pedroia will be traveling with the Red Sox as opposed to remaining in Florida to rehab his right knee. Cora thinks it will be "special" to have Pedroia on hand as Cora’s managerial career begins. “It’ll be special for me, I think it’s special for him too,” Cora said. “He hates the fact that he’s not going to be in the lineup. I know it’s special, it means a lot to both of us. And the rehab is very important to be around us . . . So he’ll travel with us. He’ll get close, then he’ll disappear and go somewhere, either here or wherever he has to go to get his at-bats and we’ll go from there.” Pedroia is to be in Boston as well.

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Report: Former Red Sox infielder Eduardo Nunez to join Mets as non-roster invite to spring training

Report: Former Red Sox infielder Eduardo Nunez to join Mets as non-roster invite to spring training

Midway through the 2019 MLB season, the struggling Boston Red Sox made an attempt to shake things up on their bench and get them back into the playoff race. That decision involved designating Eduardo Nunez for assignment.

Nunez spent parts of three seasons with the Red Sox after he was acquired at the 2017 MLB trade deadline. Nunez quickly endeared himself to Boston fans by batting .321 and smashing eight homers in 38 games with the team.

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But after his first season, Nunez's production tailed off. He was still productive during the team's 2018 World Series run, though he was hampered by a knee injury, before things bottomed out in 2019. He was hitting just .228 at the time of his release and his defensive range was declining because of his balky knee.

Now, after remaining out of MLB work for almost half a year, it looks like Nunez is getting one more shot at sticking around in the MLB.

According to MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez, the New York Mets have invited Nunez to join them as a non-roster invite at spring training in 2020. 

It may be tough for Nunez to ultimately win a spot with the Mets, who also have former Red Sox shortstop/third baseman Jed Lowrie on the team. But he is going to be on a minor league deal as a result of this signing.

And if injuries strike and Nunez proves himself, perhaps he could eventually earn a roster spot.

We'll soon see what happens with Nunez, but it is nice to see the 32-year-old get another chance to play at the MLB level, even if it is just a spring training invite.

Dodgers president on Red Sox, Astros sign-stealing: 'I'd like to have answers'

Dodgers president on Red Sox, Astros sign-stealing: 'I'd like to have answers'

Los Angeles Dodgers team president Stan Kasten, in his first public comments on the sign-stealing scandal that has rocked baseball, lamented that he still has many unanswered questions after Major League Baseball's punishment of the Houston Astros. 

Kasten noted that the investigation isn't over, with MLB continuing to look into the Red Sox' alleged sign-stealing using video - a system that Alex Cora reportedly brought to Boston as manager after serving as Astros bench coach.

"This investigation isn't over," Kasten said, via Evan Drellich of The Athletic, who along with colleague Ken Rosenthal broke the stories detailing the Astros' and Red Sox' schemes.  "I’d like to have answers to many questions about what happened, by whom and when."

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Kasten saw his Dodgers lose World Series in 2017 to Houston and 2018 to Boston, only to have those two championships called into question after MLB's report on the Astros' tactics led to the firing of manager A.J. Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow. Cora also parted ways with the Red Sox amid the controversy and Carlos Beltran, a player on the '17 Astros involved in the scheme, was fired just months after being named manager of the New York Mets.  

Houston was also fined $5 million and docked draft picks. The Red Sox could face similar penalties.

Here are Kasten's full comments, via Drellich:

Earlier this week, baseball commissioner Rob Manfred shot down suggestions that the World Series titles could be stripped from the Astros and Red Sox, a request made by, among others, the L.A. City Council. 

Speaking specifically about losing to the Astros in the 2017 Series, Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner, at the team's Fan Fest on Saturday, questioned the legitimacy of Houston's title.  

"We know how hard it is to win a World Series," Turner said. "We know that it's something you really have to earn, and with the commissioner's report and the evidence and what they had, it's hard to feel like they earned it and they earned the right to be called champions."