Buchholz hurls Sox past Yanks, 5-4

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Buchholz hurls Sox past Yanks, 5-4

By Sean McAdam
CSNNE.com

NEW YORK -- For all their struggles in the first six weeks of the season, the Red Sox don't seem to have any trouble beating the New York Yankees.

The Sox held off the Yanks 5-4 Friday night for their third win in four tries this year. The win snapped a two-game losing streak for Boston.

Clay Buchholz turned in his best start of the season, limiting the Yankees to just two runs in seven innings. Buchholz fanned seven and walked just one to earn his second career win against New York.

The Yankees scratched together a run in the eighth off Daniel Bard and had two runners in scoring position with two outs. But Bard got Jorge Posada on an inning-ending groundout to second.

Jonathan Papelbon allowed a run in the ninth, but picked up his sixth save.

Adrian Gonzalez knocked in two runs -- one with a solo homer into the upper deck in right, another on a sacrifice fly -- upping his league-leading RBI total to 31.

Kevin Youkilis provided a huge opposite-field homer to right in the seventh. Youkilis' homer came off Joba Chamberlain, against whom Youkilis has had a number of confrontations.

The only runs off Buchholz came in the fifth when catcher Russell Martin belted a two-run homer to left-center.

STAR OF THE GAME: Clay Buchholz

Buchholz entered Friday with a career ERA of 6.25 against the Yankees, but dominated them over seven innings, allowing just two runs on five hits.

Buchholz used his fastball, change and cutter effectively, getting more swings and misses than he has in any start this season.

HONORABLE MENTION: Kevin Youkilis

The Sox were ahead by a run when Youkilis drove a pitch the other way to right for a two-run homer off New York reliever Joba Chamberlain.

Delivering the big blow off Chamberlain had to be extra satisfying for Youkilis, who has been a target of the Yankee reliever in the past. On numberous occasions, Chamberlain has come up and in around Youkilis's head, but Friday night, Youkilis had the last laugh.

The homer snapped a homerless stretch of 45 at-bats.

GOAT OF THE GAME: Joba Chamberlain.

Starter Bartolo Colon had limited the Red Sox to just three runs -- two earned -- in his start and the Yankees were looking for Chamberlain to keep them in the game in the
seventh.

Instead, after Colon gave up the go-ahead homer to Adrian Gonzalez, Chamberlain compounded things by giving up the two-run shot to Youkilis.

TURNING POINT

In the eighth inning, Jorge Posada got ahead of Daniel Bard 3-and-0 with two teammates in scoring position and the Yanks trailing by two.

But Bard battled back to a full count with Posada then reached back for something extra. On a 101-mph fastball, he got Posada to hit a chopper to second for the final out, stranding two.

BY THE NUMBERS: Dating back to the start of the 2010 season, the Red Sox are now 10-2 when facing former Cy Young Award-winning pitchers.

QUOTE OF NOTE: "He was very impressive...especially against a lineup like that.'' Terry Francona on Clay Buchholz.

Sean McAdam can be reached at smcadam@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam

Sam Travis among nine non-roster invitees added to Red Sox spring training roster

Sam Travis among nine non-roster invitees added to Red Sox spring training roster

The Red Sox have invited nine non-roster players to spring training, the team announced Wednesday. The team now has a total of 15 non-roster invitees. 

Added Wednesday to the spring training roster were outfielder/infielder Allen Craig, third baseman Rafael Devers, first baseman Sam Travis, catcher Jordan Procyshen, outfielders Brian Bogusevic and Rusney Castillo, and right-handed pitchers Kyle Kendrick, Chandler Shepherd and Ben Taylor.

In addition to 39 players on the 40-man roster, the Sox have the following breakdown of non-roster invitees: 

Pitchers: Kyle Kendrick, Edgar Olmos, Chandler Shepherd, Ben Taylor, Marcus Walden
 
Catchers: Dan Butler, Jake DePew, Jordan Procyshen
 
Infielders: Rafael Devers, Matt Dominguez, Sam Travis
 
Outfielders: Brian Bogusevic, Rusney Castillo, Allen Craig, Junior Lake

Floyd looks to improve rapport with Brady: 'Tom likes things a certain way'

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Floyd looks to improve rapport with Brady: 'Tom likes things a certain way'

FOXBORO -- Michael Floyd has been with the Patriots for about a month, and he admits he still has a lot to learn.

Specifically when it comes to his rapport with Tom Brady, Floyd knows there's room for improvement. Against the Texans last weekend, he was targeted three times. One led to a pick. Another was almost picked. One was caught for nine yards. 

On the intercepted pass and the near-interception, Floyd ran slant routes from the left side of the Patriots formation, but he appeared to run them in ways that Brady didn't anticipate. Instead of coming back toward the ball as it approached, Floyd leaked up the field, perhaps hoping to turn what would be an intermediate gain into a bigger play. 

On WEEI earlier this week, Brady took the blame for the pick. But Floyd shouldered his share of responsibility for the turnover on Wednesday.

"You just gotta come downhill," he said. "Obviously at this time of the year, a lot of guys are really checked in on film work and how you play and splits and stuff like that. You gotta make sure you're really fundamentally sound and come downhill to every single ball."

It's one of many lessons Floyd has tried to absorb since being claimed off of waivers by the Patriots in mid-December.

In the regular-season finale against the Dolphins, he looked to be learning at an impressive rate as he caught three passes for 36 yards and laid a monster block that helped spring Julian Edelman for the longest touchdown reception of his career. 

As he prepared for the AFC title game, though, he acknowedleged that he has a way to go -- particularly when it comes to understanding the nuances of how his ever-demanding quarterback wants things done.

"I've only been here a month so I think that's every single day," Floyd said of getting to know Brady's preferences. "I gotta keep my head in the playbook and ask questions. That's what I do every single day. There's nothing wrong about asking a question. They see that I'm the new guy here, and I -- for the most part -- get all the answers that I need."

He added: "Tom likes things a certain way. Me being the new guy, or any of us, we make sure that we do it that way."