Sox lose prospects Fields, Pressly in Rule 5 Draft; acquire three

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Sox lose prospects Fields, Pressly in Rule 5 Draft; acquire three

NASHVILLE -- As an organization, the Red Sox were busy in the Rule 5 draft Thursday morning. Whether the activity will translate into anything meaningful remains to be seen.

With their own pick in the first round, seventh overall, the Sox selected second baseman Jeff Kobernus from the Washington Nationals, then dealt him to the Detroit Tigers for outfielder Justin Henry.

The trade was pre-arranged before the start of the draft. Because the Sox had a high pick, but no room on their 40-man roster -- they're at 38 currently, but will soon add Mike Napoli and Shane Victorino once they take physicals and officially sign contracts -- the Sox took a player on the Tigers' behalf.

They then swapped him for Henry, who doesn't need to be placed on the 40-man roster.

In the minor league phase of the draft, Boston then selected two pitchers: righthander Jonathan Bachanov from the Chicago White Sox organization and Jack McGeary from the Nationals.

McGeary is from West Roxbury and attended Roxbury Latin. McGeary signed with the Nationals for 1.8 million and attended Stanford before undergoing Tommy John surgery.

"We're hoping he bounces back,'' said director of pro scout Jared Porter. "He's a good kid, good makeup. Why not? He's a lefty with good command. His fastball gets up to 91 mph. His secondary stuff is still a work in progress, but he can spin a breaking ball. He's got a good delivery and good makeup.''

Bachanov was a supplemental pick of the Los Angeles Angels in 2007, when Eddie Bane -- hired earlier this fall by the Sox -- was the scouting director of the Angels.

"Eddie likes him, so that's one of the reasons we took him,'' said Porter. "He's got a big fastball but needs to continue to improve his strike-throwing. He was up to 96 mph when we saw him, but he's got to improve his (command)."

The Sox also lost two pitchers in the first handful of picks, with righthanded reliever Josh Fields selected by Houston with the first selection overall. Not long after the Sox lost righty Ryan Pressly to the Minnesota Twins.

Fields, who was part of the deal in which the Sox obtained Erik Bedard from Seattle at the trade deadline in 2011, posted good numbers in Portland and Pawtucket, allowing just 48 hits in 75 23 innings in the last two seasons while compiling an ERA of 2.26.

At the end of last season, some in the organization thought Fields would compete for a bullpen spot in Boston next spring, but the Red Sox couldn't find a way to protect him on the 40-man roster.

Pressly, a high school pick in the 11th round of the 2007 draft, pitched at Portland last year (2.93 ERA), but opened some eyes in the Arizona Fall League two months ago.

"He's always had a good arm," said Porter. "He's got good stuff -- good fastball, good curveball -- and had a good (showing in the) Fall League."

David Ortiz has new interpretation of 'spring training'

David Ortiz has new interpretation of 'spring training'

Big Papi's "spring training" involves a beach chair -- not a baseball bat.

The former Boston Red Sox slugger made it clear on Instagram that he has no interest in returning to Jet Blue Park to begin training for the 2017 MLB season.

He announced in Nov. 2015 he would be retiring after the 2016 season, and he appears completely content with that decision despite speculation of his return to MLB. Ortiz posted a video on Sunday of himself in a beach chair reclined and relaxed.

"What's up [Instagram]. Oh, so good be retired. At the beach with the familia, the ladies. Big Papi in the bulding. This is my spring training. How 'bout dat? Enjoy. See you when I see you. Peace," he said, and then chuckled.

Ortiz's video came a few days after Hanley Ramirez said that if Ortiz made a return to baseball, he would be doing it, in part, for Ramirez, because they miss each other.

WBZ's Dan Roche then tweeted out Ramirez's comment on Thursday, and Big Papi waited no time to respond. Within 16 minutes, Ortiz had responded to reiterate he would not be returning to the Sox.

Jackie Bradley Jr. explains why he wouldn't skip White House visit

Jackie Bradley Jr. explains why he wouldn't skip White House visit

Jackie Bradley Jr. will likely have a spotless attendance record for White House trips.

The Boston Red Sox outfielder began discussing those championship trips to meet the president after Red Sox chairman Tom Werner referenced the New England Patriots' Super Bowl win at a team get-together on Friday morning.

“If my team is going, yes, I’m going,” Bradley Jr. told WEEI.com's Rob Bradford, adding later, “I don’t like politics, not even a little bit.”

The Patriots so far have six players who have openly stated they will not attend New England's White House trip to meet President Donald Trump. Team leaders like Dont'a Hightower and Devin McCourty are among those unwilling to attend.

For Bradley, the White House trip is not about making a political statement.

“The reason why we’re going there is because we did something together as a team. The White House is cool,” he said. “I’m with my team."

The 26-year-old outfielder has twice attended the championship trip to the nation's capital. In college, he went with the South Carolina Gamecocks after they won the College World Series. He later attended with the Red Sox in 2013. Bradley Jr. said he enjoyed attending the White House to meet Barack Obama, but added he wasn't concerned with which president was hosting the event.

He said: “How many people can say they’ve been to the White House? That alone. There is a lot history there, and I’m a big fan of architecture. I think the whole thing is unique.”