Farrell: Chemistry lessons important to Red Sox

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Farrell: Chemistry lessons important to Red Sox

FORT MYERS, Fla. Much is made of the importance of good chemistry in baseball clubhouses. A long season can takes its toll on even the most patient of uniformed personnel. But is it really that important?

I do think so, Red Sox manager John Farrell said. Particularly in this sport, when weve got seven and a half straight months of being with one another every day. That doesnt mean that guys have to go out to dinner with one another every night. But I think theres an atmosphere thats created inside that clubhouse: One of tolerance, one of encouragement, one of holding one another accountable. And I think if youre sincere and respect one another and you're sincere in your work and how you go about it, I think those are the attributes that lead up to what chemistry is. I think it goes a long way.

The Sox have suffered from poor team chemistry since their horrendous end to the 2011 season. While many new players have been brought in to help improve the clubhouse culture, the players who have been with the team can be just as important in fixing it.

You cant underestimate any one person here or any core of players that have been holdovers that have had success here that have won World Series here that know firsthand what Boston has to offer, the expectations and what its like to play here, Farrell said. But at the same time when youre bringing in fresh blood, new players, theres certainly an excitement on their part to come in here. And thats not to say that holdover players arent excited to be here. I think when you have that combination, ones going to kind of lead the way for the other about playing here, playing for the Red Sox. And I think we just have a very good mix of players right now.

Red Sox’ quotes, notes and stars from 2-1 loss to Rays

Red Sox’ quotes, notes and stars from 2-1 loss to Rays

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Notes, quotes and stars from the Red Sox' 2-1 loss to the Rays:

QUOTES:

* "There's not much I can do about it now. It's kind of a waiting game and hopefully, the tests come back clean.'' -Andrew Benintendi, on the uncertainty surrounding his knee injury.

* "Sometimes, I like that, sometimes I don't because I'd kind of take a couple of quick outs in place of those to get a couple of more innings out there.'' -Drew Pomeranz on his career high 11 strikeouts.

* "That's probably the spot that looms the largest. Jackie's become more aggressive early in the count, but at the same time, that aggressiveness can work against you.'' -Farrell on Jackie Bradley Jr. swinging at the first pitch following a walk with the bases loaded.

NOTES:

* Drew Pomeranz recorded a career-high 11 strikeouts

 * Since moving to the leadoff spot, Dustin Pedroia has a slash line of .397/.418/.460 in 16 games.

* Pomeranz has yielded two runs or fewer in five consecutive starts.

* On the just-completed road trip, the Red Sox led in all but one game.

* Thursday's loss was the fourth this season in which the Sox allowed two runs or fewer.

 * The past 18 Red Sox losses have come by a combined 37 runs.

* Until Thursday, the Red Sox had won 20 of their past 31 day games.

* The bottom third of the makeshift Red Sox lineup combined to go 2-for-12.

* The Sox missed out on a chance to have an eight-win road trip, which would have been their first since 2011.

STARS:

1) Jake Odorizzi

The Rays started, facing a depleted Red Sox lineup, limited the Sox to a single run over seven innings, allowing just five hits and getting out of a bases-loaded, no-out jam by allowing just one run.

2) Mikie Mahtook

Mahtook was 0-for-34 when facing Drew Pomeranz in the seventh inning, but that didn't stop him from doubling home Steven Souza Jr with what proved to be the winning run.

3) Dustin Pedroia

The Sox couldn't generate much of anything at all offensively, but don't blame Pedroia. The leadoff hitter had three hits and a walk and was on base four times for the Sox.