Notes: Crawford shows off his speed

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Notes: Crawford shows off his speed

By MaureenMullen
CSNNE.com

FORT MYERS, Fla. The Red Sox got their first glimpse of Carl Crawford's speed Monday when he and Kevin Youkilis engineered a double steal in the first inning.

Well . . . hopefully, Crawford stealing bases will happen a lot, said manager Terry Francona.

It was a good day for Oscar Tejeda, who is hitting .500 (8-for-16) with two triples and six RBI this spring. He got the only hit off Jon Lester in the simulated game and went 1-for-2 with two runs scored, including the winning run, on Yamaico Navarros two-out ninth-inning single, to beat the Orioles.

The Red Sox have split-squad games Tuesday. They travel to Jupiter to play the Cardinals, with the Astros coming to City of Palms Park. Josh Beckett, Jonathan Papelbon, Daniel Bard, Dennys Reyes, Matt Fox and Matt Albers are scheduled to pitch the home game. Stolmy Pimentel Brandon Duckworth, Jason Rice, Clevelan Santeliz, and Tony Pena are scheduled to pitch against the Cardinals. Regulars among the position players traveling to Jupiter are David Ortiz, Jacoby Ellsbury, Kevin Youkilis, and Darnell McDonald.

Before Mondays game, Red Sox players met with representatives of the Major League Baseball Players Association, including executive director Michael Weiner and former Sox first baseman Tony Clark, for about 90 minutes. The expiration of the current collective bargaining agreement, which is set for Dec. 11, is a large portion of Weiners presentation to the players Most of my talk is about how bargaining works and what role players will have, how they stay informed, how they have input, Weiner said. We do some updates on union matters, but its mostly just explaining to them how bargaining works. This is a big year.

Revenue sharing is one of the major topics in the negotiation sessions with the owners, which are ahead of schedule, Weiner said.

We spent as much time on bargaining revenue sharing in the last four rounds or last here rounds of bargaining as any issue, he said. From our perspective, its crucial because the industry of baseball is driven by local revenue unlike some of the other sports.

Theres not a particular issue that stands out . . . Theres a broad range of issues . . . I dont think theres a particular issue that will stand out over the others.

Other topics that could be part of the negotiations include the drug testing program, a potential world-wide draft, rules changes regarding the disabled list, and expanded playoffs.

Lester and Clay Buchholz have new charity wines, CabernAce and ChardonClay, respectively, from Longball Cellars. All money raised will benefit a charity. For Lesters vintage, proceeds will to the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center; Buchholzs will go to the Jimmy Fund. For more information, visit charitywines.com.

Maureen Mullen is on Twitter athttp:twitter.commaureenamullen

Quotes, notes and stars: Betts has first career five-hit night

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Quotes, notes and stars: Betts has first career five-hit night

BOSTON - Quotes, notes and stars from the Red Sox' 6-3 loss to the Kansas City Royals

QUOTES:

"We continually do a great job in creating opportunities and I'm confident that (the struggles with men in scoring position) will turn.'' - John Farrell

"When you start off with a five-run spot in the first, that's a tough deficit to overcome.'' - Steven Wright.

"That's how it goes sometimes. Sometimes, we score when we're not expecting to and then when we need to score, sometimes it doesn't happen.'' - Mookie Betts on the team going 4-for-15 with RISP.

 

NOTES:

* The loss was just the third in the last 13 series openers for the Red Sox.

* The game marked the first time in 20 home games in which the Sox never led.

* Boston was 4-for-15 with runners in scoring position.

* The first four hitters in the order were 13-for-19 (.684). The fifth-through-nine hitters, however, were just 2-for-21 (.095).

* Mookie Betts (five hits) leads the majors with 55 multi-hit games.

* Dustin Pedroia has reached base in each of his last eight plate appearances.

* David Ortiz's double was the 625th of his career, passing Hank Aaron to move into 10 place in MLB history.

* Ortiz leads the A.L. in doubles (41) and extra-base hits (72).

 

STARS:

1) Eric Hosmer

Hosmer cranked a three-run homer into the Monster Seats four batters into the game, and the Royals were off and running with a five-run inning.

2) Ian Kennedy

The Royals starter wasn't dominant, allowing nine hits in 5 1/3 innings, but he bailed himself out of a number of jams and limited the Sox to just two runs.

3) Mookie Betts

Betts had his first career five-hit night and knocked in two of the three Red Sox runs, though he also got himself picked off first base.

 

First impressions: Royals' five-run first inning dooms Red Sox in 6-3 loss

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First impressions: Royals' five-run first inning dooms Red Sox in 6-3 loss

First impressions from the Red Sox' 6-3 loss to the Kansas City Royals:

 

Steven Wright recovered nicely after the first inning, but the damage was done.

Wright's last five innings featured just three hits allowed -- one in the infield. But the first inning did the Red Sox in -- two walks followed by a three-run homer, then a single and a two-run homer.

Whether this was a matter of rust for Wright -- who last pitched three weeks ago Friday night -- or an early inability to command his knuckleball is uncertain.

The fact is, Wright dug an early hole for his teammates, and he had the misfortune to do so against a team with the best bullpen in baseball.

To his credit, Wright kept the game somewhat within reach thereafter, but the five-run head start proved too much of a jump.

 

It's time to worry a little about Jackie Bradley.

Bradley was just 7-for-40 in the just-completed road trip, and things didn't get any better on the first night of the homestand.

In the first, he came up with two on and two out and struck out swinging to strand both baserunners. In the third, he came to the plate with runners on the corners and, again, struck out swinging.

We're seeing the same kind of slump that Bradley fell into in previous seasons, where even contact is hard to find, with nine strikeouts in the last 16 at-bats.

Problem is, with Andrew Benitendi on the DL, there aren't a lot of options for John Farrell with the Red Sox outfield.

 

Trying to get Fernando Abad and Junichi Tazawa back on track in low- leverage mop-up didn't work.

Tazawa had a perfect seventh, but gave up a monster shot into the center field bleachers to Lorenzo Cain to start the eighth.

Abad entered, and while he did record a couple of strikeouts, also gave up a single, a walk and threw a wild pitches before he could complete the inning.

Getting some work for the two was the right idea, given that the Sox were down by three runs at the time. A good outing might help either regain some confidence and turn the corner.

But not even that could be accomplished Friday night.