FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Principal owner John Henry said Monday morning that he believed the Red Sox are a playoff contender. His new manager, John Farrell, wouldn't offer that assessment directly, but left little doubt that he expects the Sox to be more competitive in 2013.
"The roster's filled with talent," said Farrell. "And the players who are coming in new, they come from winning teams. They come from playoff experience. I think we've got a balance team. There's speed, there's power, there's left-right capability. I think the bullpen is a strength. We know there's talent in that rotation and yet we have to get some guys on track, rebuild some confidence in certain areas.
"But the most important thing is, the talent that was brought in, the guys are noted team players. They put the other guy first and the team first before their own view of the game. The thing I'd like to put back as the focal point is the game. The game on a nightly basis is the most important thing and not the individual things that might lead up to it."
CLEVELAND -- David Ortiz is heading into retirement with some more hardware.
The Boston Red Sox slugger captured the Hank Aaron Award on Wednesday as the top hitter in the American League this season. Budding Chicago Cubs star Kris Bryant was honored as the top hitter in the National League.
The award was presented before Game 2 of the World Series between the Cubs and Cleveland. It was determined through a combination of fan voting and a panel that includes Aaron and other Hall of Fame players.
The 40-year-old Ortiz hit .315 with 38 home runs, 127 RBIs and 48 doubles in the 20th and final season of his major league career. His 541 career home runs rank 17th all-time.
The 24-year-old Bryant hit .292 with 39 home runs and 102 RBIs while helping the Cubs cruise to the NL Central title and eventually a spot in the World Series. Shortly after being honored, Bryant singled in the first inning for his first Series hit.
The Chicago Cubs get men on base early and often to win their first World Series game since 1945, a 5-1 victory over the Cleveland Indians
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