Ortiz, Red Sox 4 million apart in arbitration filings

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Ortiz, Red Sox 4 million apart in arbitration filings

If the Red Sox and David Ortiz are to settle on a salary for the 2012 season without having the matter settled in arbitration, they've got a gap of almost 4 million to close in the next few weeks.

One of four Red Sox players still eligible for salary arbitration, Ortiz filed a request for 16.5 million, while the Red Sox countered at 12.65 million. Should the matter go to a hearing, an arbitrator must choose either one figure or the other, with no middle ground as an option.

The 16.5 million is the highest salary requested by a full-time DH, while the Red Sox filed a figure only slightly higher than Ortiz's base salary of 12.5 million from 2011.

In fact, when Ortiz's performance bonuses are added to his base last season, he earned exactly 12.65 million in 2011, meaning the Red Sox are effectively not offering him a raise at all.

Ortiz finished fourth in the American League with a .952 OPS in 2012 while hitting 29 homers and knocking in 96 RBI. It was his best season since 2007, but the Red Sox are betting that the depressed market for DHs -- only Adam Dunn and Travis Hafner are scheduled to make more than 12.65 million in 2012 and no other full-time DH will make an eight-figure salary.

Increasingly, American League teams are utilizing several players in the DH spot, providing payroll and lineup flexibility.

Three other Red Sox players also filed for salary arbitration Tuesday.

Reliever Andrew Bailey, obtained from Oakland last month, filed a request of 4.7 million while the Red Sox countered at 3.35 million. Daniel Bard, arbitration eligible for the first time, filed at 1.825 million with the Sox coming in at 1.4 million.

Finally, Alfredo Aceves requested 1.6 million, with the Red Sox filing a figure of 950,000.

The Red Sox can continue to negotiate with the four players up until the date of scheduled hearings, which are scheduled to run between Feb. 1-21 in St. Petersburg, FL.

The Sox haven't gone to a hearing since 2002, when they beat pitcher Rolando Arrojo.

Quotes, notes and stars: Farrell sticks with Price

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Quotes, notes and stars: Farrell sticks with Price

BOSTON – Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox’ 8-7 win over the Yankees:

 

QUOTES

“I was talking to Chili Davis before he got to the mound, so I was trying to get a fastball.” - Christian Vazquez said on his game plan against Dellin Betances before he hit his go-ahead two-run home run in the seventh.

“He was still in good shape in terms of the number of pitches thrown. It didn’t seem like his stuff was backing up . . . I thought he was still strong . . . We knew what Alex had done in the previous couple of at-bats, but I just went out to check with him.” - John Farrell on his decision to leave David Price in the seventh to face Alex Rodriguez after he’d hit a home run and double in consecutive at-bats.

“I appreciate him leaving me out there in that situation against a guy that [had] hit the ball well against me twice . . . For them to stick with me today I really appreciate it.” - Price on Farrell leaving him in against Rodriguez in the seventh.

“He’d started me off with first pitch breaking ball both times. I was having a hard time picking it up all day. So I thought, let’s see if he does it again – and he threw it again.” - Travis Shaw on his two-run home run off Nathan Eovaldi in the fifth inning.

 

NOTES

* Of Travis Shaw’s 16 career home runs, seven have been on the first pitch. All three of his home runs against the Yankees have either tied the game or given Boston the lead.

* Both of Christian Vazquez’s career home runs have been two-run, tie-breaking shots at Fenway, with the other one coming in September of 2014.

* With his single to the left side in his second at-bat, Jackie Bradley, Jr. extends his hitting streak to eight games.

* Boston has stolen 22 bases in 24 attempts. The 2016 group is only the second Red Sox team in the last 20 years to steal as many as 22 bases in the first 25 games (2013 being the other team).

* Nathan Eovaldi notched three strikeouts, snapping his 6+ strikeout streak at eight games. He was tied with Rick Porcello for the longest active streak.

 

STARS

1) Christian Vazquez

His second career home run gave Boston the lead and insurance it needed.

2) Travis Shaw

After striking out twice against New York’s starter, Travis Shaw hit a no-doubt two-run homer to tie the game at 6-6.

3) Alex Rodriguez

After missing out on an RBI opportunity in his first at-bat, the Yankees’ DH took advantage of two big mistakes by David Price, blasting a homer and a double, knocking in three runs in the process.

First impressions: Red Sox get to Yankees bullpen

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First impressions: Red Sox get to Yankees bullpen

First Impressions from the Red Sox' 8-7 victory over the Yankees.

 

All of a sudden, David Price is having issues at Fenway.

When the Sox signed Price last December, they cited his past

success in their home ballpark (1.95 ERA) as evidence that he could thrive here. But six starts into his Red Sox career, his three worst starts have come here. He's pitched 22 2/3 innings and allowed 21 earned runs.

Even stranger is that so much damage was done by Alex Rodriguez, who previously had compiled a .237 career average against Price with just one homer in 57 at-bats.

 

It's highly unusual for John Farrell to go to the mound and not take the starting pitcher out.

But that's what happened in the top of the seventh. David Price was in the mid-90s with his pitch count and Rodriguez -- who had homered and doubled off Price in his previous two at-bats -- was due. It seemed obvious that Price was coming out of the game.

Instead, Price was left in and grounded out to second to end the inning. It says something about Farrell's trust in Price - or Price's powers of persuasion -- that the lefty stayed in the game.

 

Credit Travis Shaw with making some in-game adjustments.

In his first two at-bats against New York starter Nathan Eovaldi, Shaw struck out twice. Both times, Eovaldi started him off with a curve ball.

But when Eovaldi tried it again in the fifth, Shaw hammered the pitch deep into the right field seats for a two-run homer.

 

The Red Sox bullpen far outshone that of the Yankees in this series.

In the three games just played, Boston relievers tossed seven shutout innings in the series, while Yankees' righthander Dellin Betances twice yielded two-run homers to cost the Yanks both games.

 

Dustin Pedroia insists he's not focusing on hitting the ball the other way, but the results suggest otherwise.

Pedroia banged out three singles Sunday night and all three were hit to right. On the current homestand, Pedroia has a total of eight hits; five were hit to right field.