Sox notes: Bogaerts crushes home run off Sale

Sox notes: Bogaerts crushes home run off Sale
April 18, 2014, 12:45 am
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CHICAGO - For the first eight innings Thursday night, the Red Sox only had one hit. But it was hit far enough that it should have counted for two.

Xander Bogaerts drilled a pitch from Chris Sale deep into the left field seats off Chris Sale to account for the first run for either team and the only hit the Sox had until the ninth.

It was measured at either 425 feet or 444 feet. Either way, it was crushed.

"I was looking for that pitch,'' said Bogaerts of his first homer of the season, "and he threw it right where I was looking for it.'' 

Bogaerts had faced Sale twice previously before the homer. In the fourth, he was hit by an inside pitch and in the first, he had struck out swinging, one of 10 strikeouts that Sale recorded.

"I had never faced him before,'' said Bogaerts, "so I just went up there trying to see as many pitches as I could and see where his arm angle was because he's a bit sidearm. I had a strikeout, but I saw the pitches (better) afterward.''

Bogaerts came to the plate two down in the sixth looking for "a pitch close to me."

"In the first at-bat, he was trying to pound me in and I went up there trying to be aggressive.''

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The Red Sox got an insurance run from an unlikely source in the ninth inning.

With the bases loaded, the Sox leading 2-1 and lefty Scott Downs coming in for the White Sox, John Farrell sent up switch-hitter Jonathan

Herrera to bat for Ryan Roberts.

Herrera got a bunt down toward first, the ball stayed fair and pinch-runner Grade Sizemore scored easily from first as Herrera reached first safely.

It was just the third RBI of the season for Herrera.

"I think it was the perfect time for me,'' said Herrera, "to get that RBI and try to help the team. It's better to be up two runs than one and it was a really big opportunity for me to get the ball down.''

Herrera said executing a bunt as he did "is part of my job, part of my game that I've been doing in my career the last few years -- get the bunt down, move the guy over and have quality at-bats.''

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Koji Uehara returned to the mound for the first time since last Thursday, having missed the last five games with some shoulder stiffness.

Uehara was his usual efficient self, though he gave up a two-out single to Alexi Ramirez before closing things out.

He needed just 13 pitches to notch his third save of the season.

"As much as anything,'' said Farrell, "he comes out of tonight physically fine and that's a confidence lift for him. He sets our bullpen up so well to be able to anchor in that ninth inning.''