Kubiak on laments: 'We weren't fine, we got our tails kicked'

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Kubiak on laments: 'We weren't fine, we got our tails kicked'

FOXBORO -- There were moments early in the first meeting between the Texans and Patriots that, if they had gone differently, could have made the game . . . competitive.

An end-zone pick thrown by Matt Schaub on the Texans' second possession prevented Houston from drawing within at least 7-3. Two fourth-down dice rolls from the Patriots' 33 and 38-yard line in the second quarter didn't come in.

On a Wednesday morning conference call, I asked Kubiak if he needs to remind his team to steer clear of laments and not realize that they earned that 42-14 loss.

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"You're making a huge mistake if you start saying, 'If we'd have done this, if we'd have done that, we'd have been fine,' " said Kubiak. "We weren't fine. We got our tails kicked. They were very, very explosive and look at what they've done to some teams in their building this year. They're sitting there, got us down 28-7 in the third. They had Denver down 31-7 late in the third. They had Indy down, golly, I think it was 49-17. They've really gotten after some teams."

The aggression Houston showed in going for it on fourth down early when trailing 21-0 shows they understood the need to keep pace and that field goals weren't going to cut it.

"A game can get away from you there if you miss opportunities or make mistakes and we're gonna have to come in there and play a 60-minute football game, but we're gonna have to step to the plate and make some plays," said Kubiak.

The head coach added that it can't necessarily be relying upon the usual suspects to make the plays, either.

"We all got our strengths, I think everybody has people they want to touch the ball and they have people they want to take away, that's a part of this league," Kubiak said. "But one of the things that stands out to me in all my years in this league being a part of some great football games and a lot of playoff games is that at this time of year, successful teams get plays from everywhere. I don't think you can go into a game and say, 'This guy's gotta carry the load,' or 'This guy's gotta make every play,' I think everybody's gotta step up and be accountable and usually when a lot of new faces are making plays, you continue to move on. It's gotta be spread around."

Quotes, notes and stars: Buchholz in 'attack mode'

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Quotes, notes and stars: Buchholz in 'attack mode'

CHICAGO -- Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox' 5-2 win over the White Sox:

 

QUOTES

"I think the most encouraging thing was after a couple of hard-hit balls early on, he was still in attack mode.'' - John Farrell on Clay Buchholz.

"The biggest thing centers around his fastball. First inning, he might have been up a little bit. But after that, he was down in the zone and the curveball was a good compliment to that.'' - Farrell.

"Man, I tell you what -- he does it in such big moments.'' - Farrell on David Ortiz.

"If you could paint a picture, I think tonight would be just about what everybody would want to do.'' - Buchholz on his outing.

"I think everybody would be lying if they said they didn't see your numbers; you see them every day. (Being) 0-3 with a six-something (ERA) is obviously not where you want to be.'' - Buchholz.

"Hopefully, this is the start of something good coming out of him.'' - Ortiz on Buchholz.

"You feel like the luckiest man on planet earth - finally hitting the ball where no one's at!'' - Ortiz on beating the shift with a single through the shortstop hole in the seventh

 

NOTES

* When the Red Sox homer, they're 11-6.

* Clay Buchholz's win was his first since last July 10.

* Jackie Bradley Jr. extended his hitting streak to 10 games.

* Mookie Betts has scored at least one run in 10 of his last 14 games.

* David Ortiz is now one homer from tying Carl Yastrzemski for second-most homers in franchise history at 452.

* Ortiz tied Gary Sheffield for 25th place all-time in homers with 509.

 

STARS

1) Clay Buchholz

After five straight poor outings, Buchholz turned in a gem, giving up two runs in the first, then nothing else for the next six innings.

2) David Ortiz

As he so often does, Ortiz delivered when the Red Sox needed him most, clocking a two-run homer in the fifth to turn a one-run deficit into a two-run lead.

3) Jose Abreu

The White Sox slugger belted a two-run homer in the first to give him five RBI in the two games in this series.

 

First impressions: Buchholz finishes strong vs. White Sox

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First impressions: Buchholz finishes strong vs. White Sox

CHICAGO - First impressions from the Red Sox' 5-2 win over the White Sox.

 

If this was some sort of must-win proposition for Clay Buchholz, he passed his test.

Buchholz found himself behind 2-0 just three batters in when he allowed a two-run homer to Jose Abreu, but he righted himself nicely after that.

Buchholz pitched seven innings and didn't allow another run. In fact, Buchholz only yielded two more hits after the first - both singles.

John Farrell said he wanted to see Buchholz attack the strike zone with his fastball, pitch with a quicker tempo and not rely so much on his secondary stuff. To varying degrees, Buchholz accomplished all three and finished strong - retiring the last 10 hitters in a row and 16 of the last 17.

 

Josh Rutledge had a nice night off the bench.

Rutledge was a last-minute addition to the lineup when Hanley Ramirez was scratched with the flu and Travis Shaw was shifted from third base to first base.

Rutledge reached base three times with two singles and a walk. One of the singles drove in the fourth run, scoring Chris Young with an important insurance run.

 

David Ortiz broke out of his U.S. Cellular slump in a big way.

Coming into the game, Ortiz was hitless here in his last 19 at-bats and when he hit into a double play in the first and flied to center in the third, that stretched to 0-for-21. Since the start of 2014, those first two at-bats made Ortiz 1-for-26.

But in the fifth, Ortiz hammered a pitch from Carlos Rodon into the seats in right for a two-run homer, giving the Red Sox their first lead of the series.

For all the talk about Ortiz's difficulty hitting lefties, he's now third among lefty batters in homers off lefthanded pitchers since last July 2.

 

The home run power continues to be in short supply beyond Ortiz.

Last season, the Red Sox didn't have anyone hit 20 homers other than the (then) 39-year-old Ortiz.

Might the same thing happen again this year?

Ortiz hit his sixth homer last night, again leading the club. Mookie Betts is the only other hitter on the Sox with more than three homers -- and he hasn't hit one in his last 58 at-bats, dating back a week and a half.