'Immature' offensive approach hurts Red Sox


'Immature' offensive approach hurts Red Sox

BOSTON -- The Red Sox had one more hit than the New York Yankees on Thursday night at Fenway Park, and their starting pitcher did his job. But Boston had nothing to show for it on a night in which the manager called it an "immature" offensive approach against Phil Hughes.
"Hughes pitched up in the strike zone, and we couldn't lay off of it," said Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine after the loss. "We made a lot of quick outs, swinging at some of those pitches. And, maybe a little immature in our approach at times."
Valentine spoke up and said that he wasn't calling his players immature, but most knew what he meant.
It's been a problem for them all season long. As one Red Sox player said earlier in the year, this team's biggest issue has been its preparedness.
And on Thursday night against Hughes and the Yankees, the Red Sox offense -- without Dustin Pedroia -- looked downright unprepared.
"They were swinging pretty early in the count, at pitches other than their pitch," said Valentine.
After the loss, Red Sox catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia called the offense's aggressiveness "human nature." But Doubront kept it a scoreless game through three innings, and then kept it a 1-0 game until the seventh. So the Red Sox can't necessarily make the excuse that they had to "battle" from behind.
But that's what Saltalamacchia did.
"I think it's human nature to get aggressive and try to do more than you can, when you're down and you're trying to win," he said. "But, we're just trying to battle right now. We had a pitcher go out there tonight and threw a great game, and we just couldn't get any runs for him. On the other hand, their pitcher went out there and was just throwing strikes."
Strikes that the Red Sox offense -- on Thursday night -- couldn't hit. And that cost Doubront a win.

Betts and Bradley Jr. combine for seven RBI, Red Sox roll to 9-2 win


Betts and Bradley Jr. combine for seven RBI, Red Sox roll to 9-2 win

The Boston Red Sox put up six runs in the first inning and coasted to a 9-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Tuesday night.

Mookie Betts and Jackie Bradley Jr. led the way for the Red Sox with four and three RBI respectfully. Both outfielders had two-run home runs in the Sox’ big first inning.

Knuckleballer Steven Wright gave up one earned run in four innings, his ERA for the spring is now 0.68.

The Red Sox are back in action again on Wednesday at 1:05 p.m when Rick Porcello makes his final spring training start against the Minnesota Twins.

Hernandez has chance at Red Sox opening day roster after Rutledge injury

Hernandez has chance at Red Sox opening day roster after Rutledge injury

Infielder Marco Hernandez may make the Red Sox roster after all.

Fellow infielder Josh Rutledge, the presumptive 25th man on the Red Sox, suffered a left hamstring strain on Tuesday against the Pirates, according to reporters in Florida, including Jason Mastrodonato of the Boston Herald.

If Rutledge isn’t ready for opening day, Hernandez, a left-handed hitter, may have his crack. 

The question is whether the Sox would be comfortable without a right-handed bat to complement both Pablo Sandoval and Mitch Moreland on the corners. Rutledge was going to give the Sox that right-handed look they sought. (When Hanley Ramirez's shoulder will be healthy enough to play first base is unclear, but isn't expected to be too long.)

Neither Rutledge nor Hernandez has played first base in the majors or minors.

A big-league rookie last year, Hernandez has done decently against lefties at the upper levels of the minors, hitting .328 vs. them at Triple-A Pawtucket last season in 67 at-bats. He hit .315 in 54 at-bats at Pawtucket, with a .318 average against them that season in 88 at-bats for Double-A Portland.

Rutledge is a Rule 5 draft pick who has to remain on the major league 25-man roster the whole season or the Sox risk losing him. Placement on the disabled list doesn’t affect his status unless he’s on the disabled list for a very lengthy time.

An alternative option is Steve Selsky, who has first-base experience, but he's already been optioned.