Ellsbury adds to MVP-worthy resume in Game 2

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Ellsbury adds to MVP-worthy resume in Game 2

By Sean McAdam
CSNNE.com Red Sox Insider Follow @sean_mcadam

NEW YORK -- It's likely that it's too late to change voters' minds, but Jacoby Ellsbury made a nice last-minute push for himself for American League MVP Sunday night.

Hours after hitting two homers in the afternoon game, a loss, and becoming the first Red Sox player to have 30 steals and 30 homers in the same season, Ellsbury launched a three-run homer to right-center to give the Red Sox a pulsing 7-4, 14-inning win over the Yankees.

"I don't care who hit it," said Terry Francona, "but it's kind of fitting (that it was Ellsbury)."

Of the nine runs the Red Sox scored in the two games Sunday, five came as the result of homers by Ellsbury.

Over the last 37 games, Ellsbury has hit safely in 35 of them, during which he's hit .348. In those 37 games, he's hit 11 homers and 29 RBI.

"With runners on first and second and two outs," said Ellsbury, "Yankee pitcher Scott Proctor threw me a first-pitch breaking ball and I was sitting on a fastball. Fortunately, he threw something over the plate and I was able to drive it out."

Asked to put his day in context, Ellsbury remarked that he didn't have time to think too much about what he accomplished in the first game, including becoming just the seventh player in history to steal 30, hit 30 homers, score 100 runs, knock in 100 and collect 200 hits.

"I didn't have time to think about it after the first game," he said. "It was a quick turnaround. Hopefully, I'll have the time to reflect on it at some point."

Ellsbury has been mentioned as a possible AL MVP candidate along with teammate Adrian Gonzalez, Curtis Granderson and Robinson Cano of the Yankees, and Detroit's Justin Verlander, with Verlander seen as the prohibtive favorite.

But days like Sunday can't hurt Ellsbury's chances.

Sean McAdam can be reached at smcadam@comcastsportsnet.com. Follow Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam

Price struggles in third inning, but otherwise shines in first start

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Price struggles in third inning, but otherwise shines in first start

CHICAGO -- Everything was going smoothly until the No. 9 hitter.

Protecting a 1-0 lead in the third inning Monday in his first start of 2017, David Price walked two straight batters with none on and one out in the third inning. Ninth-place hitter David Engel walked, as did leadoff man Tim Anderson -- who had drawn just four walks in 181 plate appearances entering the game.

Price, whose command was in question coming off just two rehab starts for Triple-A Pawtucket, immediately paid for the consecutive free passes.

Melky Cabrera jumped on Price's first pitch, a middle-in fastball, for a three-run homer and a 3-1 lead.

The Sox got Price two runs back in the top of the fourth inning, giving him something of a fresh slate with a tie game at 3-3. He took advantage of the second chance, striking out two of the three batters he faced in the bottom of the inning and keeping the game tied, and was rewarded when Mookie Betts homered to lead off the fifth and put the Red Sox back on top, 4-3.

Back from an elbow injury, Price was impressive out of the gate in his first major league game since last year's playoffs. He struck out Anderson to begin his season and needed just 14 pitches in a 1-2-3 first inning.

The lefty touched 96 mph on the final pitch of the first inning, which produced an easy groundout to shortstop from first baseman Jose Abreu.

Price was staked to a 1-0 lead before he threw a pitch.

Betts' leadoff double against Chicago's David Holmberg gave way to a run thanks to some great Betts base running. He took third base on Dustin Pedroia's ground out and then scored on a foul pop up that Abreu, the first baseman, snagged in foul territory with a basket catch — a rare sacrifice fly to the first baseman.

Home runs were a big problem for Price last year. So too was the third inning, when he had a 6.03 ERA.

Pedroia lifted in second inning after hurting wrist in collision

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Pedroia lifted in second inning after hurting wrist in collision

CHICAGO -- Injury scares are finding Dustin Pedroia in all the wrong places.

The Red Sox second baseman was pulled in the second inning Monday afternoon against the White Sox because of a left wrist sprain, an injury he seemed to suffer on a collision running to first base in the top of the first inning.

He and White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu converged on the bag at the same time on a grounder to Abreu, and Pedroia tumbled over Abreu

Pedroia had season-ending surgery on the wrist in September 2014, addressing a tendon issue. Pedroia had surgery on his left knee this year, and missed time after Manny Machado's slide caught him in that leg in April.

Pedroia during the last homestand was pulled as a precaution because of concern for that leg.

Josh Rutledge took over for Pedroia at second base.