Red Sox 'have a little bit of anxiety' with players in World Baseball Classic

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Red Sox 'have a little bit of anxiety' with players in World Baseball Classic

PROVIDENCE Provisional rosters for each country in the World Baseball Classic were announced on Thursday. Four Red Sox players are on rosters including right fielder Shane Victorino for the United States, right-hander Alfredo Aceves (Mexico), highly regarded prospect Xander Bogaerts (Netherlands, by way of Aruba), and right-hander Jose De La Torre (Puerto Rico).Final rosters are due Feb. 20, with pool play beginning March for the 28 teams in the tournament.Having players out of camp for an extended period, not under the eyes of their organizations, is not easy for teams.Its case by case, but the guys right now that are candidates to play were OK with, Sox general manager Ben Cherington said. And those are guys that weve talked to and talked about and are comfortable with their participation.Still, theres a degree of anxiety involved.I guess whenever you have less control over a player you have a little bit of anxiety, Cherington said. But, look, theyre going to be playing games one way or another. Theyre either going to be playing game in Fort Myers or in the WBC. I guess perhaps the intensity level is a little bit different but you take it case by case.If you have real concerns about a guy, sometimes its taken out because of an injury, sometimes you can have a conversation with a player and it makes sense to sit it out and the player decides himself, which weve had this year, and other times its not really much riskier and were comfortable with it. So I think its case by case but I think the organizations and each federation they really do a very good job. And each time its gotten better at including safeguards for players and managing workload and timing it at the right time of spring training so guys are kind of naturally ready anyway so its a pretty well-oiled event at this point and certainly one we support.It can be particularly nettlesome for a new manager, such as John Farrell, who is still trying to get to know his players, especially those new to the organization who werent with the team while Farrell was pitching coach from 2007-10.Well theres a couple of things that quickly come to mind, Farrell said. In this first spring training for us, for the new staff, with a number of new players, the time that we spend together will be critical for us as personally feel how we identify each other is going to be key. But were not going to stand in the way, nor can we stand in the way of the WBC and representing countries that our players are from. So what that final roster looks like, who we might miss, probably reserve judgment till we see the total number of players that might be out of camp.Several players will be leaving Fort Myers with questions. Aceves is expected to be in the Sox bullpen this season, but will be stretched out in case he is pressed into duty as a starter. How he will be used on Mexicos staff is uncertain.I dont know, Cherington said. Its safer to assume he is going to be a starter just from an innings standpoint so wed probablyunless were told hes nottry to get him stretched out and get his pitch count up before he reports.Theres probably two approaches, Farrell said, of what he would like Aceves to work on during the WBC. One, if youre a reliever, youre probably a little bit more accepting rather than that gradual build-up over time that a starter needs to go through. Our intent in spring training was to stretch Alfredo out. He and Franklin Morales will join five other guys as starting pitchers to get a number of guys with multiple innings under their belt. Well take the necessary steps to, if in fact, he does go and do what we can with the time allowed.Bogaerts, the Sox much-heralded shortstop prospect, will be on a Netherlands team that includes two other prized shortstop prospects, the Rangers Jurickson Profar and Braves' Andrelton Simmons
I dont know, Cherington replied when asked where Bogaerts would play. Im sure well have a conversation. I wouldnt expect him to put on catchers gear or anything like that. Im sure theyll find a spot on the field where he can be safe.I think wed probably mostly be concerned with safety and putting him in a spot where he can be comfortable. Im sure they want his bat in the lineup.

Bryan Holaday: David Price 'takes a lot of pride in what he does'

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Bryan Holaday: David Price 'takes a lot of pride in what he does'

BOSTON -- There have been a significant amount of question marks surrounding David Price throughout his inaugural season with the Boston Red Sox.

Is he an ace? Is he mentally tough enough? Can he handle Boston?

Just to name a few.

Much like any player imported to Boston, the claim “He can’t handle the pressure in Boston” arises every so often.

And Price hasn’t always been his own best friend, frequently relying on the line “It’s me going out there and making pitches,” in addition to the claim that he’s never satisfied.

Price’s mellow demeanor isn’t something Boston fans are accustomed to -- they prefer Rick Porcello snarling at opponents.

Sometimes it might have seemed as if he lacked a killer instinct or didn’t have a sense of urgency, but Bryan Holaday, who played with Price in Detroit, has seen that’s not the case.

‘I’m sure he [pressing], it’s the nature of this game,” Holaday said about Price’s struggles earlier in the season. “Everybody wants to be at their best all the time and it’s not easy to do.”

However, he says that knowing full well that Price won’t display those emotions -- to anyone.

“He does such a good job on the mental side of things that even if he was, you wouldn’t be able to tell,” Holaday said before Price’s start Saturday night. “He’s never going to express anything like that. If he was [pressing], it’s nothing that anyone would be able to notice.”

There’s a lot to be said for that, too. Although baseball is driven on analytics, there’s no question that mental game is crucial, especially in the clubhouse. And a fly on the wall can easily see that Price’s presence is not only respected, but enjoyed by his teammates in the clubhouse.

“Everyday he gets up he wants to get better and that’s what makes him so good,” Holaday said. “He has that drive to be better everyday and come out and do his job. He takes a lot of pride in what he does and works his ass off. That’s why he is who he is. Any pitcher at that level, you don’t get that way by luck.”

Price may never be Boston’s favorite pitcher.

He may never be the “ace” in everyone’s eyes.

But based on Holday’s interpretations from his time in Detroit and Boston, Price will work hard to turn his first few months with the Red Sox into a minor footnote of his career.

Saturday's Red Sox-Royals lineups: Young in LF, Hill at 3B vs. KC lefty Duffy

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Saturday's Red Sox-Royals lineups: Young in LF, Hill at 3B vs. KC lefty Duffy

The Red Sox look to end their three-game losing streak tonight when the play the middle game of their three-game series with the Kansas City Royals at Fenway Park.

Against Royals' left-hander Danny Duffy (11-1, 2.66 ERA), the Red Sox start right-handed hitters Chris Young in left field and Aaron Hill at third base. Duffy has won his past 10 decisions and came into Saturday with the fifth-best ERA in the American League. He joined the rotation from the bullpen on June 1.

Left-hander David Price (12-8, 4.00) gets the start for the Red Sox. Price has won his past three decisions, going eight, six and eight innings and not allowing more than three runs in each start. 

The Royals won the series opener 6-3 Friday night.

The lineups:

ROYALS
Paulo Orlando CF
Cheslor Cuthbert 3B
Lorenzo Cain RF
Eric Hosmer 1B
Kendrys Morales DH
Salvador Perez C
Alex Gordon LF
Alcides Escobar SS
Christian Colon 2B
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Danny Duffy LHP

RED SOX
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Mookie Betts RF
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Sandy Leon C
Chris Young LF
Aaron Hill 3B
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
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David Price LHP