Bailey open to any role upon return


Bailey open to any role upon return

BOSTON His return isnt imminent, but Andrew Bailey is edging into the close category.

The man who would be closer for the Sox hasnt thrown a pitch for them all season after undergoing thumb surgery during spring training, but hes getting ready to make his third rehab appearance for the Sox this weekend.

It will be for the Double-A Portland Sea Dogs on Sunday afternoon after hitting 92-mph in his two stints with the Gulf Coast League to kick things off. Bailey took Saturday off to meet with his family in Boston and take a breather before the next step in his rehab process. The hard-throwing righty will need at least three or four more rehab appearances at a minimum before he could even be considered for Major League activation, and will need to pitch in back-to-back games andor multiple innings before being cleared for takeoff.

But Bailey feels goods, and thats the most important thing.

We had to shut it down for a little bit when he first tried to come back, but Im feeling good now, said Bailey, who has notched four strikeouts and surrendered only one hit in his two innings of rehab work in the GCL. Ive got that good extension on my fastball. I just need to go out and get outs, and keep feeling good. Now its just a matter of working my way back here. Hopefully that will be soon.

Im getting ready for a month-long season and then hopefully the playoffs afterward.

Its uncertain what role Bailey would slide into for a Sox team thats fading off into the sunset as August gets underway, and getting a solid workman-like performance at the closer spot from Alfredo Aceves. He also doesnt much seem to care as long as good health follows him after a star-crossed first season in Boston.

In my second game I was throwing fastball, split and curveball, and that was a good sign, said Bailey. I dont give a expletive, frankly what the role is. I just want to pitch. Aceves has been an ace in the hole for the bullpen all year, so whatever role they need me to do is perfectly fine.

It will certainly give the bullpen a boost with the return of a power-armed 28-year-old thats averaged 25 saves a season over the last three years for the Oakland As. But it also appears to be too little, too late for a Sox team that couldnt quite get it going this season.

Cardinals pull away late for 7-2 victory over Red Sox

Cardinals pull away late for 7-2 victory over Red Sox

The Cardinals broke open a close game with four runs in the last two innings against Red Sox relief prospect Chandler Shepherd and went on to a 7-2 exhibition victory over Boston yesterday at JetBlue Park in Fort Myers.

Red Sox-Cardinals box score

The loss dropped the Sox to 1-3 for the exhibition season.

Boston had jumped on top, 1-0, on an RBI single by Mitch Moreland in the bottom of the first, but St. Louis countered with two runs in the second and one in the third, all against starter Brian Johnson. It remained 3-1 until the Cards touched Shepherd for two runs in the eighth and two in the ninth. The Red Sox added their final run in the bottom of the ninth when catcher Jordan Procyshen, who spent last season at Single-A Salem, hit a sacrifice fly.

Moreland, Xander Bogaerts and Chris Young each had two hits for the Red Sox. who also got scoreless relief from Teddy Stankiewicz, Noe Ramirez, Robby Scott, Kyle Martin and Brandon Workman. It was Bogaerts' last game before leaving to compete for The Netherlands in the World Baseball Classic.

The Sox host the Yankees on Tuesday at 1:05 p.m.

Dustin Pedroia taking cues from Tom Brady to extend his career

Dustin Pedroia taking cues from Tom Brady to extend his career

Dustin Pedroia is no stranger to injuries. That's a big reason why he's no longer a stranger to the sometimes peculiar practices of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.

In an interview on WEEI's "Bradfo Show," Pedroia told Rob Bradford that he's been taking cues from the five-time Super Bowl-winning QB to help extend his playing career and make his body healthier and more durable.

“I understand what he does and know what he does. I think it’s awesome,” Pedroia told Bradford. “There’s a reason why he’s successful at his age (39), and he looks better now than he did when he first came to the league. You have to be smarter as you get older and learn different styles -- the way to train and the way you take care of your body to be able to perform and stay on the field. It doesn’t matter what sport you’re playing. He’s definitely got that figured out.”

Pedroia, of course, played the entire 2013 World Series-winning season with a torn ligament in his thumb. He's battled through various other lower body and hand injuries over the past few seasons, as well. But in 2016, he had his best season in recent memory, posting his highest OPS since 2011, as WEEI notes.

Part of that is with his own take on the Brady approach -- which focuses more on pliability and resistance training than extensive, heavy weight lifting -- and a healthier overall lifestyle, something Brady is notoriously infamous for having.

"There’s tons of ways to take care of your body. It’s not just get in the weight room and throw weights around,” Pedroia explained. “As you get older, the human body can’t take the pounding if you’re going in there and power lifting. When you’re younger, you can handle some of that. But as you get older, you got to be smarter. Sometimes less is more -- whether that’s weight or reps or whatever. You’ve just got to be smart. And eating wise, that’s a big part of recovery. If you put the right foods in your body, you’ll heal faster if you’re injured or recover faster. It’s like a car, man. Put bad gas in, bro. It’s not going to be the same as good gas.”

He hopes the approach can, at the very least, keep him moving for quite some time.

“I plan on living until I’m 100," he said. "So we’re not even halfway home."