Ross makes amends with four-RBI game

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Ross makes amends with four-RBI game

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Cody Ross felt somewhat responsible for the Red Sox loss in the series opener at Tropicana Field Wednesday night.
Thursday night, he made amends.
Ross, who had trouble picking up a routine fly ball from the dome's roof and wasn't in position to make a strong throw to the plate as the go-ahead run scored in Wednesday's 2-1 loss, drove in all but one of the team's run in a 5-3 victory Thursday.
He walked walked with the bases loaded in the first, belted a solo homer in the third and added a critical two-run single in the eighth to provide some breathing room.
"I obviously felt really bad about (Wednesday) night," said Ross. "To come out today and pick up the team and get a victory, split the short series, was big for us."
The at-bats:
In the eighth, with Dustin Pedroia on third and David Ortiz at second, Ross faced Wade Davis.
"He threw me a curve ball first pitch and I swung at it," he said. "I was just trying to battle. I looked out there and saw the shift and I was just trying to hit a hole, and luckily, hit it right to the shortstop and he wasn't there."

In the third, with two out and the bases loaded, he faced Tampa Bay starter Matt Moore.
"He threw me two really good (changeups) right before that," recounted Ross, "that had some movement them, moving away from my barrell. I took both of them. The (next) one kind of stayed flat. I was just trying to square it up. I definitely wasn't trying to hit a home run to center. I just hit it hard and got some air under it."

In the first inning, with the bases loaded, Ross fell behind 0-and-2 to Moore, before battling back for a walk, forcing in the first run of the night.
"(That kind of at-bat) definitely gives you confidence," said Ross, "being down 0-and-2 and battling back and fighting off some tough pitches. That definitely gave me confidence going up in my second at-bat.
"I was down quickly 0-2 (the next time when he homered), but I didn't panic. I just stayed with my approach."
The four-RBI game was the second of the season for Ross, who didn't have one all of last year. Both of those games have come against Tampa, and three of his seven homers have been hit off Rays' pitching.

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Farrell angered after Castillo fails to run out grounder

Farrell angered after Castillo fails to run out grounder

The Red Sox signed Cuban outfielder Rusney Castillo to a seven-year, $72.5 million contract bn August 2014. Over parts of three seasons, the 29-year-old has a .679 OPS across 337 plate appearances in the majors and spent the vast majority of the 2016 season at Triple-A Pawtucket.

Castillo had a chance to start things off on the right foot in 2017, but that ship has already sailed. On Thursday against Northeastern at JetBlue Park, Castillo didn’t run out a routine ground ball. He claims he lost track of the outs. Manager John Farrell isn’t happy about the situation. Via Evan Drellich of the Boston Herald:

“Disappointing for a couple of reasons,” Sox manager John Farrell said. “One, he has lost the number of outs. Still, regardless of another of outs, getting down the line is controllable. And for a player in his situation, every little aspect of the game is important. That’s something that was addressed in the moment. He needs to execute the game situation. And for that matter, every player. But that one obviously stood out.”

Everyone always makes far too big a deal about running out grounders. It’s a real nit to pick when it’s February 23 and your team just finished playing an exhibition game that is even more meaningless than the other exhibition games that will be played in the coming month.

That being said, Castillo has to prove himself to merit inclusion on the 25-man roster and that means dotting all his i’s and crossing all his t’s. Even if he went hitless all spring, Castillo could have at least said he couldn’t have done anything else better. But on day one, he already gave his team a reason to count him out.