When David Ortiz angrily interrupted a Terry Francona press conference last week over an RBI that had been taken away from him by the official scorer, it was the talk of the town.
Turns out, Ortiz's outburst was egged on by Dustin Pedroia. Pedroia explained to CSNNE Red Sox Insider Joe Haggerty that he had played a joke on Ortiz that ignited the blow up.
Pedroia told Ortiz that John Henry and Theo Epstein ordered the official scorer to take away Ortiz's RBI in an effort to keep Ortiz's stat totals low and therefore give him less leverage when it comes time to negotiate a new contract.
Ortiz freaked and quickly barged into Francona's press conference to bring it up with the manager.
As Haggerty put it, Pedroia successfully "busted Ortiz's cookies." Funny for Pedroia. Not so much for Ortiz, who came off as petty after the whole ordeal.
Thought to be lost for the season after shoulder surgery this past spring, Pablo Sandoval could possibly return to the Red Sox for the postseason, Red Sox manager John Farrell told reporters Saturday.
Sandoval joined the team in St. Petersburg, where the Red Sox are playing the Tampa Bay Rays. Farrell said Sandoval had played in instructional league games in Florida and was "well ahead of schedule."
He could be an option to be activated if another player is injured.
“One of the things I put in my mind that I have to work,” Sandoval told Boston Herald. “I learned a lot of things about this surgery so I had to work hard to be on the field as soon as possible.
“There are a lot of things I’ve been doing, working out, doing things so I can get better and better everyday.”
Sandoval, 30, is in the second year of a five-year, $95 contract. He lost his starting third base job to Travis Shaw in spring training and in April an MRI revealed he needed surgery on his left (non-throwing) shoulder, which was to have ended his season.
He appeared in only three games this season and hit .245 with 10 homers and 47 RBI in 126 games in 2015.
Closing in on the A.L. East title, the Red Sox look to make it 10 wins in a row tonight when they play the Tampa Bay Rays in St. Petersburg.
Right hander Rick Porcello (21-4, 3.08 ERA) goes for his 22nd win for the Red Sox, opposed by Rays right-hander Matt Andriese (8-7, 4.41). Porcello is coming off a complete game victory in Baltimore.
The Red Sox began the day with a magic number of four to clinch the A.L. East with eight games to play. They could clinch a wild-card spot tonight with a victory and a Baltimore Orioles loss.
Brock Holt starts at third base and Chris Young is in left field for Boston.
Dustin Pedroia 2B
Xander Bogaerts SS
David Ortiz DH
Mookie Betts RF
Hanley Ramirez 1B
Brock Holt 3B
Chris Young LF
Jackie Bradley Jr. CF
Sandy Leon C
Rick Porcello RHP
Logan Forsythe 2B
Kevin Kiermaier CF
Evan Longoria 3B
Brad Miller 1B
Corey Dickerson LF
Nick Franklin DH
Mikey Mahtook RF
Alexi Ramirez SS
Curt Casali C
Matt Andriese RHP