While Jacoby Ellsbury has had a brilliant season -- "Phenominal, magical. Diary stuff. Scrapbook. God bless him," says the Boston Herald's Steve Buckley -- his failure to catch Robert Andino's drive to center with two outs in the bottom of the sixth Monday, which wound being an inside-the-park, three-run homer and was the key hit in the Orioles' 6-3 win, was emblamatic of the Sox' failures down the stretch this year.
"I'm sorry, but the missed catch? It's not an error, but . . . good outfielders make those plays in late September," Buckley said on Mohegan Sun's Sports Tonight.
When asked by co-host Michael Felger if Ellsbury should have caught the ball, CSN's Lou Merloni, the ex-Red Sox infielder who also serves as a radio host on WEEI, agreed.
"In this situation, where this team is right now? Yeah, he's got to step up and make that play," said Merloni. "To say that it's easy? No. But an All-Star-caliber, American League MVP makes that play.
Roster flexibility, something of substance, or a combination of both?
The Red Sox on Thursday placed Drew Pomeranz on the brand new 10-day disabled list because of a left forearm flexor strain.
"It's become more and more clear he's not ready to begin the season," John Farrell told reporters, including The Providence Journal's Tim Britton, on Thursday morning.
The Sox don’t need a fifth starter, Pomeranz’s potential spot, until April 9. He can be activated before then. So, in effect, the trip to the DL frees up an extra roster spot.
Farrell said the team hopes Pomeranz will be able to make his scheduled start but "is certainly not guaranteeing it."
The situation could prove an interesting look at how MLB handles its new 10-day disabled list. If Pomeranz continues on his previously planned schedule, the Red Sox could be seen as simply be using the 10-day DL to their advantage. But Farrell spoke earlier this spring about how he expected MLB to highly scrutinize trips to the DL.
Pomeranz’s forearm is known not to be in the best of shape, considering he went for a stem-cell injection this offseason.
Rick Porcello and Drew Pomeranz combined to allow all five of the Red Sox' runs in Boston's 5-3 loss to the Minnesota Twins.
Porcello finished his start by fanning four, allowing four hits and earning two runs over four innings. Pomeranz followed in the next four innings with four strikeouts, five hits allowed and three earned runs. Pomeranz allowed ByungHo Park's eighth-inning, two-run homer, which ended up being the game-winner.
Porcello, however, was optimistic after the loss.
"The buildup was good," Porcello told reporters, via RedSox.com. "Today I felt as good as I've felt all spring. At this point, I'm ready to go. I'm looking forward to the start of the season."
While the Sox offense was able to get three runs off Ervin Santana in his 4 2/3 innings, they struggled against the Twins' next five pitchers. Xander Bogaerts (2 of 3) and Pablo Sandoval (1 of 3) managed homers. Hanley (3 of 3) Ramirez had a double, and Dustin Pedroia (2 of 3) had two singles.
Kyle Kendrick will start Thursday in the Sox' final Spring Training series against the Washington Nationals. First pitch is at 1:05 p.m. ET.