Farrell: Pitch execution root of Lackey's struggles

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Farrell: Pitch execution root of Lackey's struggles

BOSTON -- It's not that John Lackey has lost his stuff. According to former Red Sox pitching coach John Farrell, the struggling starter's pitch execution is causing his ineffectiveness.

Farrell, who now manages the Toronto Blue Jays, told Comcast SportsNet New England's Carolyn Manno he notices little change in Lackey between 2010 and 2011.

"There's not a drastic difference. You still see the same quality of stuff," said Farrell, whose Blue Jays have tagged Lackey for 20 earned runs in three starts this season. "When you look at the three starts that John made against us this year, he's pitched with similar velocity as last year. It's just the consistency of location inside the strike zone."

Lackey has a 5-8 record with a 7.47 ERA in 2011, a marked decline from his 14-11, 4.40 ERA 2010 campaign. He was voted Theo Epstein's biggest mistake by CSNNE.com visitors.

When asked how Lackey can fix his problems on the mound, Farrell coyly refused to give away any trade secrets, as any opposing manager would.

"I'm sure he and new Sox pitching coach Curt Young are working very hard to get that done," he said.

Merloni: Pablo Sandoval is the key to the bottom of Red Sox order

Merloni: Pablo Sandoval is the key to the bottom of Red Sox order

The guys on The Baseball Show discuss Pablo Sandoval lighting it up in spring training and if he could continue that in the regular season.

Sale hurls five shutout innings, Sandoval has two hits as Sox romp, 7-2

Sale hurls five shutout innings, Sandoval has two hits as Sox romp, 7-2

Chris Sale threw five shutout innings and Pablo Sandoval continued his torrid spring with two more hits as the Red Sox routed the Twins, 7-2, Sunday at the Twins' Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers.

Red Sox-Twins box score

Sale allowed six hits, with one walk and six strikeouts, in his 91-pitch outing. Manager John Farrell had told reporters before the game that Sale was scheduled to throw between 95 and 100 pitches. He has 26 strikeouts and 2 walks in 21 spring-training innings.

Sandoval lifted his exhibition average to .370 with a 2-for-3 performance, which included a double.

The Red Sox also got home runs from Christian Vazquez, Andrew Benintendi and Steve Selsky as they rallied from a 1-0 deficit with three runs in the seventh inning and four in the eighth.