Morales makes solid debut for Red Sox

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Morales makes solid debut for Red Sox

BRADENTON, Fla. -- After missing the first 2 12 weeks of Grapefruit League play with shoulder weakness and then a scare about an irregular heartbeat, Franklin Morales has some catching up to do.

Wednesday, he made his first game appearance, throwing an inning of relief in the Red Soc' 6-5 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Morales pitched a scoreless eighth inning, allowing a walk and recording a strikeout.

"I feel good, feel strong,'' reported Morales. "I need to throw my pitches and everything's going to be fine.''
Earlier in the day, manager Bobby Valentine said Morales had enough time to get ready for the April 5 opener in Detroit, and the lefty reliever concurred.

"If I feel good, it doesn't matter about the spring workload,'' he said. "If my shoulder's good, all I need to do is see some hitters and let it go."

Morales was able to throw his sinker, his split-finger fastball and curve with decent command, making Wednesday a good first step.

"I feel confident and I feel comfortable," he said. "I was able to throw any one of my three pitches for a strike."

Players, analysts weigh in on Chris Sale trade

Players, analysts weigh in on Chris Sale trade

The Red Sox made a major splash with Tuesday’s Chris Sale, the second swap of the day after acquiring Tyler Thornburg from the Brewers. 

MORE ON THE TRADE

While Boston had to give up top prospect Yoan Moncada and three other legitimate prospects in the trade, the deal gives them a very deep starting rotation that figures to see last offseason’s big acquisition -- David Price -- end up as Boston’s No. 3 starter. 

Here’s what the reaction looked like as the trade came down: 

CSN baseball analyst Lou Merloni gave the deal his stamp of approval. 

Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan cautioned against thinking the Red Sox at a discount. 

Blake Swihart was not one of the four prospects involved in the deal, and he’ll have a heck of a team to work with going forward. 

In Tampa, Chris Archer realized the AL East has a new ace. 

And one Sox fan pointed out that Dave Dombrowski has absolutely dumped out what was once a large and top-heavy chest of prospects.