Notes: Gonzalez breaks his homerless drought


Notes: Gonzalez breaks his homerless drought

By SeanMcAdam and MaureenMullen

BOSTON -- Adrian Gonzalez had been one of the Red Sox' hot hitters before Tuesday night with a nine-game hitting streak, a .310 batting average and a team-high 18 RBI.

What he hadn't done is hit home runs. Going into Tuesday, in fact, Gonzalez had hit just one homer in 28 games -- and that came in the fifth game of the year.

By the time Gonzalez hit his second homer of the season in Tuesday night's 7-3 win over the Angels -- his first at home -- 96 at-bats had passed.

"Was I concerned?'' said Gonzalez, repeating a reporter's question. "Well, I thought I'd hit another before the end of the year.''

Gonzalez had talked about his homer drought last week in Baltimore and maintained that the long stretch without a long ball had nothing to do with his surgically-repaired shoulder and everything to do with a mechanical flaw in his swing.

''Since that day in Cleveland when he hit the first homer I was just focusing on hitting balls away,'' said Gonzalez Tuesday night. "But I've been moving in the right direction.''

Carl Crawford is showing signs that he's slowly but surely coming around at the plate.

The slumping outfielder had two hits again Wednesday, marking the third straight game in which he's collected two hits.

Crawford singled in the third inning for his 1,500th career hit, two years to the day afterhe tied modern major-league record with six stolen bases against theRed Sox. He is the fourth modern big leaguer ever to collect 1,500 hitsand 400 stolen bases before turning 30, joining Cesar Cedeno, Ty Cobb,and Eddie Collins.

In the seventh, Crawford singled again, then rode home all the way from first on Jarrod Saltalamacchia's wall-scraping double.

With the two hits, Crawford is now hitting .194, his highest average in weeks.

"It was just a matter of time,'' said Terry Francona of Crawford's emergence. "He's a good player. I think he's just starting to relax at the plate.''

The Red Sox are 6-0 against the Angels this season, outscoring them 36-13. The Sox are 15-1 against the Angels since the start of the 2010 season.

Its a good ballclub, said L.A.'s starter Tuesday night, Dan Haren. Its not losing 15 out of 16 to, no disrespect, like the Mariners or the Pirates. Its the Boston Red Sox --theyre a good ballclub.

In order to do 15 out of 16 you gotta have a little luck on your side. A lot of things have to happen because its not that easy. We got to just hope we can scratch one out tomorrow and then go from there.

Jacoby Ellsbury extended his hit streak to 12-games a team high with a sixth-inning double.

Marco Scutaros eighth-inning home run, his first of the season, passed a video review. It was the 10th time instant replay has been used at Fenway, the second time this season. It was the fourth time the on-field call has stood.

Kevin Youkilis was scratched from the lineup just before game time because of illness.

Jonathan Papelbon threw 24 pitches in the ninth inning a non-save situation three shy of his season high of 27 on April 3 in Texas, also a non-save situation, a 5-1 loss.

Sean McAdam can be reached at Sean on Twitter at http:twitter.comsean_mcadam

Maureen Mullen is on Twitter athttp:twitter.commaureenamullen

Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines, Ivan Rodriguez elected to Hall of Fame

Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines, Ivan Rodriguez elected to Hall of Fame

NEW YORK - Jeff Bagwell, Tim Raines and Ivan Rodriguez were elected to baseball's Hall of Fame on Wednesday, earning the honor as Trevor Hoffman and Vladimir Guerrero fell just short.

Steroids-tainted stars Barry Bonds and Roger Clemens were passed over for the fifth straight year by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. But they received significantly more votes this time and could be in position to gain election in coming years.

Bagwell, on the ballot for the seventh time after falling 15 votes short last year, received 381 of 442 votes for 86.2 percent. Players needed 75 percent, which came to 332 votes this year.

In his 10th and final year of eligibility, Raines was on 380 ballots (86 percent). Rodriguez received 336 votes (76 percent) to join Johnny Bench in 1989 as the only catchers elected on the first ballot.

Hoffman was five votes shy and Guerrero 15 short.

Edgar Martinez was next at 58.6 percent, followed by Clemens at 54.1 percent, Bonds at 53.8 percent, Mike Mussina at 51.8 percent, Curt Schilling at 45 percent, Lee Smith at 34.2 percent and Manny Ramirez at 23.8 percent.

Players will be inducted July 30 during ceremonies at Cooperstown along with former Commissioner Bud Selig and retired Kansas City and Atlanta Braves executive John Schuerholz, both elected last month by a veterans committee.

Bagwell was a four-time All-Star who spent his entire career with Houston, finishing with a .297 batting average, 401 homers and 1,401 RBIs.

Raines, fifth in career stolen bases, was a seven-time All-Star and the 1986 NL batting champion. He spent 13 of 23 big league seasons with the Montreal Expos, who left Canada to become the Washington Nationals for the 2005 season, and joins Andre Dawson and Gary Carter as the only players to enter the Hall representing the Expos.

Raines hit .294 with a .385 on-base percentage, playing during a time when Rickey Henderson was the sport's dominant speedster.

Rodriguez, a 14-time All-Star who hit .296 with 311 homers and 1,332 RBIs, was never disciplined for PEDs but former Texas teammate Jose Canseco alleged in a 2005 book that he injected the catcher with steroids. Asked whether he was on the list of players who allegedly tested positive for steroids during baseball's 2003 survey, Rodriguez said in 2009: "Only God knows."

Bonds, a seven-time MVP who holds the season and career home run records, received 36.2 percent in his initial appearance, in 2013, and jumped from 44.3 percent last year. Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner, rose from 45.2 percent last year.

Bonds was indicted on charges he lied to a grand jury in 2003 when he denied using PEDs, but a jury failed to reach a verdict on three counts he made false statements and convicted him on one obstruction of justice count, finding he gave an evasive answer. The conviction was overturned appeal in 2015.

Clemens was acquitted on one count of obstruction of Congress, three counts of making false statements to Congress and two counts of perjury, all stemming from his denials of drug use.

A 12-time All-Star on the ballot for the first time, Ramirez was twice suspended for violating baseball's drug agreement. He helped the Boston Red Sox win World Series titles in 2004 and `07, the first for the franchise since 1918, and hit .312 with 555 home runs and 1,831 RBIs in 19 big league seasons.

Several notable players will join them in the competition for votes in upcoming years: Chipper Jones in 2018, Mariano Rivera and Roy Halladay in 2019, and Derek Jeter in 2020.

Sam Travis among nine non-roster invitees added to Red Sox spring training roster

Sam Travis among nine non-roster invitees added to Red Sox spring training roster

The Red Sox have invited nine non-roster players to spring training, the team announced Wednesday. The team now has a total of 15 non-roster invitees. 

Added Wednesday to the spring training roster were outfielder/infielder Allen Craig, third baseman Rafael Devers, first baseman Sam Travis, catcher Jordan Procyshen, outfielders Brian Bogusevic and Rusney Castillo, and right-handed pitchers Kyle Kendrick, Chandler Shepherd and Ben Taylor.

In addition to 39 players on the 40-man roster, the Sox have the following breakdown of non-roster invitees: 

Pitchers: Kyle Kendrick, Edgar Olmos, Chandler Shepherd, Ben Taylor, Marcus Walden
Catchers: Dan Butler, Jake DePew, Jordan Procyshen
Infielders: Rafael Devers, Matt Dominguez, Sam Travis
Outfielders: Brian Bogusevic, Rusney Castillo, Allen Craig, Junior Lake