Red Sox WC lead cut to two with 8-5 loss to Rays


Red Sox WC lead cut to two with 8-5 loss to Rays

By Sean McAdam Red Sox Insider Follow @sean_mcadam
BOSTON -- Before their four-game series with the Tampa Bay Rays, conventional wisdom suggested that the Red Sox would be fine if they could just manage a split with their wild-card competitors.

Thanks to Sunday's 8-5 loss, however, the best the Red Sox could do was one win in the four games, leaving the Rays just two games behind in the standings with 10 games remaining.

Tampa beat the Sox six times in seven tries in the span of 10 days.

Tim Wakefield was shelled for six runs (four earned) in five innings and lost for the fourth time in his last five decisions.

As they had in all four games here, the Rays scored first, pushing three runs across in the second.

Boston managed two runs in the fourth on Darnell McDonald's double to right, which scored Dustin Pedroia and David Ortiz.

But the Rays answered with two in the top of the next inning against Wakefield, then added two more off Andrew Miller in the seventh.

A three-run homer by Mike Aviles -- his second homer in the last three games -- was too little, too late.

The Sox are 0-5-1 in their last six series and have dropped 13 of 17 this month.

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

Pedro Martinez tells WEEI Ortiz will make comeback this season

Pedro Martinez tells WEEI Ortiz will make comeback this season

Never say never?

While Red Sox officials said at the team's annual Winter Weekend at Foxwoods on Saturday that they'd be traveling to the Dominican Republic to talk to David Ortiz about a role with the team, Pedro Martinez told WEEI he sees Big Papi returning to his old role - designated hitter - this season.

CSN's Trenni Kusnierek and WEEI's John Tomase talked to Martinez on their show Saturday at Foxwoods and Martinez said his old teammate would be making a comeback despite the long, emotional farewell tour last season. 

For the full interview with Martinez, click here.

Red Sox executives Tom Werner, Sam Kennedy and Dave Dombrowski made no mention of Ortiz returning as a player when talking about their Dominican trip. Ortiz has repeatedly said he is going to stay retired. 

Chris Sale on leaving White Sox: 'Time for both sides to do something different, I guess'


Chris Sale on leaving White Sox: 'Time for both sides to do something different, I guess'

MASHANTUCKET, Conn. -- While there’s a deal of anticipation going into Spring training with the four Killer B’s, David Price and Pablo Sandoval’s shot at redemption and Rick Porcello looking to be something similar to his 2016 self, there’s one name that trumps them all.

Chris Sale.

The lankly lefty received an ovation from fans at the Friday night Town Hall, kicking off Red Sox Winter Weekend. With his consistent success, there’s reason to be excited.

But there’s also reason for apprehension given the way Sale’s departure from Chicago was depicted. But he’s made sure to clear the air.

“I wouldn’t say . . . ya know . . . I loved my time in Chicago,” Sale said when asked if it was time to leave the Windy City. “My best baseball memories are there [and] will be there forever. I love the city; I love the people in the organization.

“It was time for both sides to do something different, I guess. I talked to (White Sox Senior V.P.) Rick on the phone, I talked to (White Sox pitching coach Don) Coop (Cooper). We’re all cool, it’s fine. We understand where both of us are, it happens in baseball, but I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Chicago.”

He didn’t seem irritated discussing the issue, and certainly wasn’t timid -- we all know that’s not in his DNA.

He genuinely seems excited to deal with the large sum of Sox fans and to call a new place home -- in a city his wife’s fond of no less.

But ultimately, he’s focused on winning, nothing else.

“Every time I’m out there it’s gonna be all I got,” Sale said. "Every time, no matter what. Can promise you that.”