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Brandon Workman 2 or 3 weeks away from throwing program after receiving PRP injection

Brandon Workman

Brandon Workman

Anytime a pitcher visits with Dr. James Andrews the news usually isn’t good.

For Brandon Workman, it could have been much worse as the right-hander avoided surgery and received a PRP (platelet-rich plasma) injection after visiting with him earlier this week.

Workman will remain in Boston and begin the rehab process.

“He’ll remain here. He’s still probably two or three weeks away from initiating any type of throwing program,” manager John Farrell said. “So he’ll remain here in Boston.”

“There are some changes to the ligament,” he added. “To what extent, or percentage of tear, I don’t have that. But that is why he received the injection he did.”

Farrell said the expectation is he will be able to pitch again this year.

Workman was set to begin the year in Pawtucket’s bullpen, but he had his optioned reversed as the injury first occurred while he was on the major league roster, so he is currently on the major league disabled list.

For more Red Sox news, visit weei.com/redsox.

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

Red Sox lineup: Shane Victorino returns, Dustin Pedroia gets ‘planned’ day off

After being scratched from the lineup Saturday with bruised ribs, Shane Victorino returns to the Red Sox lineup Sunday against the Orioles.

The right fielder spoke in the clubhouse before the game and said he feels fine after running into the right field wall Friday night. He swung in the cage during Saturday’s game and is ready to go Sunday.

Dustin Pedroia will get his first day off of the season. The second baseman is 0 for his last 7 and has committed two errors over the first 11 games.

“Just a day off. One of the benefits of Brock Holt,” manager John Farrell said.

“No, not a reaction,” to Pedroia’s recent struggles he added. “Planned day knowing we have an early morning game tomorrow and a left-hander on the mound. A chance to give him a spell.”

Holt will lead off with Mookie Betts sliding down to the No. 2 spot. Farrell said that was just a way to break up the left-handers in the order.

Sandy Leon will catch Red Sox starter Rick Porcello, as the Red Sox go up against Orioles right-hander Miguel Gonzalez.

For an extensive look at the pitching matchups, click here.

1. Brock Holt, 2B
2. Mookie Betts, CF
3. David Ortiz, DH
4. Hanley Ramirez, LF
5. Pablo Sandoval, 3B
6. Mike Napoli, 1B
7. Shane Victorino, RF
8. Xander Bogaerts, SS
9. Sandy Leon, C
Rick Porcello, RHP

Blog Author: 
Ryan Hannable

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Washington DT Danny Shelton

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2015 NFL draft. Here is one in a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

DANNY SHELTON

Position: Defensive tackle

School: Washington

Height: 6-foot-2

Weight: 339 pounds

Achievements: 2014 All-America first team (AP), 2014 All-Pac-12 first team, 2014 Academic All-Pac-12 first team, 2013 Academic All-Pac-12 first team, 2012 Academic All-Pac-12 first team

What he brings: Shelton is burly and hard to fight off. Rob Rang of CBS Sports regards him as “surprisingly light on his feet” and notes that Shelton has “generates impressive momentum to collide with ballcarriers.” Shelton has a good feel for where ball-carriers are and is always game to try and knock down some passes. According to Lance Zierlein of NFL.com, Shelton is “an above-average interior pass rusher for a man his size, thanks to his surprising athleticism” and must show improved consistency of effort if he wants to reach his potential.

Where the Patriots could get him: Round 1

Notes: Shelton has drawn comparisons to former Pats nose tackle Vince Wilfork. In 2014 he led the nation in fumble recoveries with five and had 16 tackles for loss. He also had 9.5 sacks this past season. He did not miss a single game in college due to an injury. At the combine Shelton had 34 reps on the bench press, which earned him top-performer status, and ran a 5.64-second 40-yard dash. He also recorded a 4.65-second 20-yard shuttle and a 30.5-inch vertical jump. In 2011, when Shelton was 17, two of his brothers were shot in front of him. Shennon Shelton was shot in the head and died in the hospital later, while Gaston, who had been shot in the chest, survived. Danny didn’t have the easiest childhood, as he, his sister, three brothers and mother moved around to avoid Shelton’s abusive father.

Related articles:

Redskins.com: Danny Shelton brings energy from defensive line

Akron Beacon Journal: 2015 NFL Draft: Washington nose tackle Danny Shelton overcomes tragedy to become projected first-round pick who’s drawn interest from Browns

The Seattle Times: Huskies’ Danny Shelton saw a nightmare but is living his dream

Video: Here is a video of some of Shelton’s highlights.

Blog Author: 
Judy Cohen

Sunday’s Red Sox-Orioles matchups: Rick Porcello vs. Miguel Gonzalez

Rick Porcello

Rick Porcello

Rick Porcello will take the mound Sunday afternoon in the third game of a four-game series against the Orioles at Fenway Park. He will be matched up against Miguel Gonzalez.

Porcello has had two good outings to start the season, which is something that the rest of the Red Sox pitching staff cannot claim. He has given up three runs in each game and has put up a 3.86 ERA, a 0.93 WHIP, 10 strikeouts and three walks. One area of concern is the home run ball, as Porcello has allowed three. Even with the home runs, however, Porcello has been doing a good job of keeping balls in play on the ground. His ground out to air out ratio is 2.09, and opponents are hitting just .185 against him.

Porcello’s last start was the home opener, in which he went eight innings in a victory over the Nationals. He gave up just three earned runs while striking out six and walking one. It was his first start at Fenway as a member of the Red Sox.

“I obviously wanted to go out there and put up a good start,” Porcello said after the game. “The guys swung the bats great and really I didn’t have to do a whole lot but throw strikes and keep the ball down. Definitely had some butterflies early on, I was pretty excited, but it was a lot fun.”

In nine career starts against the Orioles, Porcello is 3-5 with a 4.28 ERA and a 1.335 WHIP.

Miguel Gonzalez

Miguel Gonzalez

Porcello’s opponent on the mound will be Baltimore’s most effective starter early in the season. Gonzalez is 1-1 in two starts, but his loss was a result of his team being shut out by the Rays. He owns a 1.42 ERA and a 1.03 WHIP and has struck out 15 while walking six.

In his most recent start, Gonzalez got the win in a seven-inning outing. He gave up just one run and four hits while striking out ten and walking one.

In eight games and six starts against the Red Sox, the 30-year-old native of Mexico is 4-1 with a 2.51 ERA and a 1.279 WHIP. In two starts at Fenway last year, Gonzalez went 1-0 and allowed just one earned run in 14 1/3 innings while striking out 10 and walking five.

Orioles vs. Porcello (RHP)

Alejandro De Aza (37 plate appearances): .206 AVG/.270 OBP/.235 SLG, 1 double, 3 walks, 4 strikeouts

Delmon Young (25): .333/.360/.542, 1 home run, 2 doubles, 4 RBIs, 1 walk, 3 strikeouts

Adam Jones (24): .167/.167/.167, 6 strikeouts

Travis Snider (12): .100/.250/.100, 2 walks, 1 strikeout

Manny Machado (11): .300/.364/.300, 1 RBI, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts

Steve Clevenger (5): .800/.800/1.200, 2 doubles, 1 RBI

Ryan Flaherty (5): .400/.400/.400

Everth Cabrera (3): .333/.333/.333, 1 strikeout

Jonathon Schoop has one strikeout in four plate appearances vs. Porcello.

Steve Pearce is 0-for-3 in three plate appearances vs. Porcello.

Caleb Joseph, Ryan Lavarnway, Chris Davis, and David Lough have not faced Porcello.

Red Sox vs. Gonzalez (RHP)

Daniel Nava (18): .333/.444/.400, 1 double, 2 RBIs, 3 walks, 3 strikeouts

Dustin Pedroia (15): .214/.267/.214, 1 RBI

Xander Bogaerts (8): .125/.125/.125, 3 strikeouts

Mike Napoli (8): .143/.250/.143, 1 walk, 2 strikeouts

Mookie Betts (6): .400/.500/1.000, 1 HR, 1 RBI, 1 walk

Brock Holt (4): .250/.250/.250

David Ortiz has two walks and two strikeouts in eight plate appearances vs. Gonzalez.

No other Red Sox have faced Gonzalez.

Blog Author: 
Nik Beimler

NFL Draft’s Potential Patriots: Wisconsin OT Rob Havenstein

WEEI.com will continue to offer daily insight and analysis regarding options that may be available to the Patriots when it comes to the 2015 NFL draft. Here is one in a series of profiles of players who could be on the board when it’s time for the Patriots to make a selection.

Rob Havenstein (Tom Lynn/Getty Images)

Rob Havenstein was recognized as the anchor of the Wisconsin line that opened holes for record-setting running back Melvin Gordon. (Tom Lynn/Getty Images)

ROB HAVENSTEIN

Position: Offensive tackle

School: Wisconsin

Height: 6-foot-7

Weight: 321 pounds

Achievements: 2014 AFCA All-America first team, 2014 FWAA All-America second team, 2014 All-Big Ten first team, 2014 Big Ten Sportsmanship Award, 2013 All-Big Ten second team (coaches)

What he brings: Considered the leader of the Wisconsin offense, Havenstein was a three-year starter and is very large. In his first year with the Badgers the right tackle weighed about 390 pounds, and he trimmed down to 321 by the time of the scouting combine. Dane Brugler of CBS Sports wrote that Havenstein has “the strength to absorb contact and hold his ground,” while also being a “physical mauler with the ideal OL mentality.” For someone his size, he has “adequate initial quickness.” Havenstein has some hip, joint and knee stiffness that impedes some of his bending abilities, which could really start affecting him once in the NFL. Brugler wrote that Havenstein also has “inconsistent body control” and can overextend himself at times.

Where the Patriots could get him: Rounds 3-4

Notes: At the combine Havenstein ran a 5.46 40-yard dash (which was better than just eight other linemen there) before posting a 7-foot broad jump and a 4.87-second 20-yard shuttle. He helped pave the way for record-setting running back Melvin Gordon. Havenstein began his sports career as a basketball player but switched to football in ninth grade and realized it was his calling.

Related articles:

Fox Sports: Havenstein has something to prove as NFL draft draws near

Fansided: NFL Draft Prospect: Q&A with Wisconsin offensive tackle Robert Havenstein

Madison.com: Badgers football: Rob Havenstein not just an offensive tackle, he’s the leader of the offense

Video: Here’s a brief focus on some of Havenstein’s blocks during Wisconsin’s game against Rutgers in November.

Blog Author: 
Judy Cohen

Sunday Skate Live Chat: Midseason Finale Edition

Should the Bruins have fired Peter Chiarelli? Are they going to fire Claude Julien? Did we really expect anything different from the NHL lottery? Does Tim Murray know the Sabres still have to… pick?

Find out the answers to all these questions and more in the midseason finale edition of the Sunday Skate live chat with Pete Blackburn, Naoko Funayama and DJ Bean. It’s the last Sunday Skate for a while, so make it count.

To listen to the show live, click here. Jump in the chat below.

Live Blog Sunday Skate Live Chat: Midseason Finale Edition
 

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean

Sunday NFL Notes: Patriots backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo ‘looks like a linebacker’ as he preps for second season

Jimmy Garoppolo is back for another season with the Patriots, but it sounds like he's bulked up a bit. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

Backup QB Jimmy Garoppolo is set for another season with the Patriots. (Jim Rogash/Getty Images)

1. Backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo didn’t get a lot of opportunities to show what he could do as a rookie with the Patriots, but that certainly hasn’t dissuaded him as the 2015 season nears. According to Garoppolo’s personal quarterbacking guru Jeff Christensen, Garoppolo is ready to attack his second season in the NFL.

“I talked to Bill (Belichick) at the combine, and I asked him how Jimmy was doing,” recalled Christensen in a recent phone call. “He said ‘(Jimmy) looks like a linebacker. He works out like a linebacker. He acts like a linebacker. I really like him a lot, coach. You did a great job with him. Thank you.’ ”

Christensen, who said he’ll work closer with Garoppolo to help fine tune his mechanics shortly before the start of training camp in July, was happy with the performance of his pupil in his first year in the NFL. “He got very few opportunities, but I think he made the most of them,” Christensen said of Garoppolo, who finished 19-for-27 for 182 yards and a touchdown in six games in 2014. “I think he did very well. Over the first two weeks of camp he didn’t look good, but I think over the third and fourth week of the preseason, he made real improvement, and that’s what Bill wants to see. Jimmy is a smart kid who just wants to learn, and he’s well aware of how good a situation he’s in right now.”

2. One more note from Christensen, who has become an acknowledged leader in the field when it comes to developing quarterbacks — he was fascinated to watch the evolution of Tom Brady over the course of the 2014 season, particularly the week between the ghastly loss to Kansas City and the thunderous win over the Bengals that really jump started New England’s Super Bowl season.

“I told Jimmy that after that bad game in Kansas City when you get back, Tom isn’t going to want to talk to you,” recalled Christensen. “You’re going to think he’s going to be in World War 6. He won’t be friendly with you. He won’t talk to you. Stay away from him and let him have his space.’ That’s what happened, he got on a roll, and he stayed that way for the next 13 or so weeks. Tom has that nasty place where he says, ‘This is my job, and don’t any of you writers or coaches or players try and take this thing away from me.'”

3. Our good friend Aaron Schatz of Football Outsiders put together a really interesting look at offensive line play last season, and in his research, he discovered an astounding stat: no team in the league had the same starting five offensive linemen for all 16 regular-season games in 2014. It goes without saying that part of that was because of injury, but there was also the issue of players getting benched and shuffled in and out of the lineup over the course of the year because of scheme fit. As all of this relates to New England, there was an interesting debate on “Dennis & Callahan” on Friday morning, where Gary Tanguay argued that center Bryan Stork should get more acknowledgement than he does because of his stabilizing presence on the offensive line. And while it’s true that Stork was able to bring some stability up front, as is the case with most offensive line play, it comes down to how well the five players work together. Skill and technique and approach are obviously all key, but continuity matters when it comes to making a good offensive line, and so it’s no surprise that in 2014, the Patriots’ passing game posted far better numbers in the regular season when it was able to send the five starters out there: Nate Solder, Dan Connolly, Stork, Ryan Wendell, Sebastian Vollmer, as opposed to anyone else. The stats are courtesy of Ryan Hannable.

— Solder, Connolly, Stork, Wendell, Vollmer (7-1 record) — Weeks 5, 8-14: Brady: 214-320 (66.9 percent), 2,433 yards, 21 TDs, 6 INTs, 103.6 QB rating, 4 sacks.

— Any combination besides above (5-3 record) — Weeks 1-4, 6, 7, 15, 16: Brady: 160-263 (60.8 percent), 1,675 yards, 12 TDs, 3 INTs, 89.8 QB rating, 17 sacks.

Aaron’s story is here, and is a terrific and informative read about continuity along the offensive line. Well worth checking out.

4. While teams with new coaches have been back to football since April 6, the Patriots (and the rest of the teams with returning staffs) will open their offseason program this week — the first day they are allowed back in the facility to meet with coaches is Monday. We’ve published this before, but with New England heading back to work this week, it’s worth revisiting the regulations that each team has to abide by when they conduct their offseason programs:

According to the Collective Bargaining Agreement, each club’s official, voluntary nine-week offseason program is conducted in three phases:

Phase 1 consists of the first two weeks of the program with activities limited to strength and conditioning and physical rehabilitation only.

Phase 2 consists of the next three weeks of the program. On-field workouts may include individual player instruction and drills as well as team practice conducted on a “separates” basis. No live contact or team offense vs. team defense drills are permitted.

Phase 3 consists of the next four weeks of the program. Teams may conduct a total of 10 days of organized team practice activity, or “OTAs.” No live contact is permitted, but 7-on-7, 9-on-7, and 11-on-11 drills are permitted.

Article 22 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement stipulates that clubs may hold one mandatory minicamp for veteran players. This minicamp must occur during Phase Three of the offseason program.

5. Strange days in San Diego, where there’s talk about the Chargers trading Philip Rivers to Tennessee for the second overall pick. When combined with the ongoing battle regarding a new football stadium for Southern California, it feels like the Chargers are approaching some sort of franchise crossroads. San Diego was one of the most up-and-down teams in the league last year, as they rolled to a 5-1 start while Rivers made his bones as a bonafide MVP candidate. Then came the fall, as the quarterback and team stumbled to a 9-7 finish, a slide that included an astoundingly ugly 37-0 road loss to the Dolphins. There is some familiarity in Tennessee for Rivers, who had Titans coach Ken Whisenhunt as his offensive coordinator in 2013, and he could be catching a Tennessee team that’s on a bit of an upswing. From a Chargers perspective, San Diego is a team that has many of its fundamental elements on the plus-side of 30, including tight end Antonio Gates (35 before the start of the 2015 season) and wide receiver Malcom Floyd (who will turn 34 before the first regular-season snap this year), as well as depth questions at a number of spots including offensive and defensive line, linebacker and running back. If the Chargers do decide to deal Rivers for multiple picks (including the No. 2 selection, which would likely be Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota), it would feel a little like the team deciding to hit the reset button, a big change from where San Diego was midway through the 2014 campaign.

6. A year ago, there were several people around these parts salivating at the thought of a Rob Gronkowski-Jace Amaro tight end combo. But Amaro ended up being taken by the Jets, and maybe in retrospect, it was a wise move on the part of the Patriots to forego the Texas Tech product. In addition to an occasionally sluggish rookie season, he made headlines this week when he took some shots at ex-Jets coach Rex Ryan, saying that the 2014 Jets lacked “accountability.” Ryan fired back this week, saying that Amaro was “€œfull of (expletive)” and promising to remember that comment when the Bills face the Jets in 2015.

“Look, we weren’t perfect, and I never said we were going to be perfect,” Ryan told MMQB when asked about Amaro’s statements. “But that’s a (expletive) b.s. comment. But, hey, he’s happy that he’s got a different coach in place. We’ll see how happy he is when I play against him.”

Regardless of what you think of Rex, from this viewpoint, Amaro’s comments were out of line. For a guy who had spent 15 minutes in the league to make claims like that against a coach who is already out the door isn’t a professional move. (It was also telling that no one left in New York felt the need to publicly echo Amaro’s comments, which might tell you just how he’s viewed in the Jets locker room.) While he’ll probably have better numbers in the New York offense than he did as a rookie, he’s put a big target on his back for at least two games in 2015.

7. Change keeps coming in Pittsburgh, as veteran cornerback Ike Taylor announced this week that he will retire after a 12-year career with the Steelers. This offseason, the Pittsburgh defense has lost longtime defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau, as well as safety Troy Polamalu and linebacker Jason Worilds (retired) and cornerback Brice McCain (free agent). Taylor and Polamalu maintained a tight bond — they came into the league together in 2003, and they will leave together. It was no coincidence, according to Taylor.

“That is how we rock,” he said after making it official. “We came in, we are leaving together. That is my loyalty to that man. I said once Troy does his, I will decide. That is what I owe to Troy.”

Going forward, one of the sure things in the draft is the fact that the Pittsburgh defense, which was so poor defending the pass last year (27th overall), will seek out a corner early on. But overall, it will be interesting to see where the Steelers’ defense goes from here. It had been such a rock-steady cornerstone of the franchise for so long under LeBeau (with veteran pieces like Polamalu). Now, it’s the dawn of a new era in Pittsburgh.

8. Colt Lyerla was one of the more intriguing prospects coming out of Oregon in the spring of 2014 — the 6-foot-5, 246-pound tight end had speed, size and soft hands. But he was also toting plenty of baggage with him along the way, including multiple drug-related suspensions, which ultimately got him kicked out of school and caused a tumble from elite-level status to undrafted free agent. He eventually signed with the Packers, but a lower-body injury ended his 2014 season last summer. He was released with an injury settlement, but two weeks later, he was arrested for a DUI in Oregon, effectively ending his chances of making a roster in 2014. He popped up on the NFL radar again recently when he was seen in a video showing off a 62-inch leap, and on his Twitter feed, he promised “big things to come… #TheResurrection.” Lyerla, who was a teammate of several of the members of the Oregon team that made it to the national championship game this past season, could certainly get another shot at the NFL this time around, and is a name to watch for as personnel moves get made after the draft.

9. Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson continues to hint that he’d be open to taking up baseball if his looming contractual situation isn’t remedied to his liking. While it was a good try, and a semi-logical answer to Seattle GM John’s Schenider’s ambiguous statements about the possible future of Wilson with the Seahawks, Wilson’s statement rang hollow — a negotiating ploy that has no earthly possibility of happening. Several folks weighed in on the topic over the course of the week, including Bo Jackson, who said Wilson is fooling himself if he thinks ANYONE can play both baseball and football at a high level at the same time in 2015.

“Twenty-five or 30 years ago when I did it, I’m not trying to say anything negative about other athletes, but the talent pool wasn’t that deep,” Jackson told CSNChicago when asked about Wilson’s gambit. “In this day and age, with all the high-tech training, computer-engineered workouts and the proper food and diet, if you try to concentrate on two sports, I guarantee you’re going to ride the bench in both because the talent is that deep.  Stick to whatever sport you’re comfortable with and let everything else go.”

Bottom line? Wilson should stick to football.

10. Speaking of Wilson, teams react to Super Bowl losses in different ways. When the Patriots lost to the Giants in Super Bowl XLVI, several of them said the following spring they had yet to go back and watch the game, with some players indicating that they had zero interest in going back and revisiting the loss in any form or fashion, even as a potential teaching tool. On the other hand, there’s Wilson. The Seattle quarterback told HBO’s “Real Sports” that he’s watched his ill-fated pass for Ricardo Lockette — the one that was picked off by Malcolm Butler at the end of the game — a “hundred” times since that evening in the desert. Check out a portion of his interview with Bryant Gumbel, which is set to air Tuesday on HBO.

Blog Author: 
Christopher Price

Buck Showalter, Chris Tillman take swipes at ‘forever’ pace of Clay Buchholz

Clay Buchholz has earned a reputation as one of the slowest pitchers in baseball with runners on base. The Baltimore Orioles felt the Red Sox pitcher Saturday reached a new low – or long – as he slowed the game down to a crawl in the fourth and fifth innings.

Buchholz threw 30 pitches in the fourth, when the Orioles loaded the bases twice but could only score twice. That inning also featured four throws to first and a coaching visit to the mound. It took over 20 minutes to record three outs. But to Buchholz’s credit, he limited damage to two runs by getting of the jam with strikeouts of Alejandro De Aza and Steve Pearce.

In the fifth inning, it was another tedious inning for Buchholz. He loaded the bases with none out. But a 3-2-3 double play sped things along and then Ryan Flaherty struck out. No runs. Amazingly, Buchholz allowed 11 hits over his five innings, taking 89 pitches to complete his day’s work.

But Orioles manager Buck Showalter couldn’t believe that the two half innings by Buchholz took nearly 40 minutes of the three hours, 24 minutes it took to complete the game. More annoying to Showalter was the impact it had on his starter Chris Tillman.

“Let’s put it this way, Chris was good, had good stuff,” Showalter said. “I think he was challenged by the tempo that was set by things out of his control. Wow. I think it kind of froze things up there a little bit.”

Tillman confirmed the observation of his manager when asked how long the delays in between innings felt like with Buchholz on the mound.

“Forever. I couldn’t even tell you how long they felt. They felt like forever,” Tillman said.

“There were a couple of innings there where he’s sitting around for 20, 30 minutes over here,” Showalter said. “It’s cold and we finally found a couple of heaters. It took him a little while to get loose. It’s sad in a way because he had stuff to go deep in that game. We needed at least five or six innings.”

The reason the Orioles felt they needed five or six innings from Tillman was the untimely ejection of Friday starter Ubaldo Jimenez in the fourth inning.

“They had the four-corner stall going there,” Showalter said. “It’s tough to keep concentration. It’s really tough. It seemed like Buchholz had thrown 120 but he had only thrown 80 or 90. It’s all about getting that last base touched and we weren’t able to do it.”

“I wouldn’t say it’s mentally tough,” added Tillman. “It’s more physically challenging. I’ve been in that situation enough to prepare myself in the dugout to go back out to make pitches from the get-go. First couple of times it was tough.”

Blog Author: 
Mike Petraglia

Hanley Ramirez not worried about adventures in outfield

It remains a work in progress.

There was an understanding that it was going to take time for Hanley Ramirez to grow accustomed to playing his new position, left field. But instances like the one that occurred during the Red Sox‘ 4-1 loss to the Orioles Saturday tests the patience of all involved.

With runners on first and second in the fifth inning, and Clay Buchholz trying to manage a 2-0 deficit against Baltimore, Jimmy Paredes lofted a high fly ball toward the left field wall. With the wind pushing the ball toward the left field line, Ramirez seemed to have the catch lined up.

As the ball arrived at the base of the wall, Ramirez executed what was probably an unnecessary small jump. The outfielder then saw the baseball bounce off the heel of his glove, resulting in a single to load the bases for the Orioles.

This came after Ramirez seemingly pulled up on a ball in the left field corner the inning before (also of Paredes’ bat), ending up as the only extra-base hit allowed by Buchholz. (For video of that play, click here.)

After the game, Ramirez insisted the wall was at least partly to blame.

“It hit the wall and then hit my glove so make sure you see the replay person and ask him about it,’€ he said. (Note: After further review, upon Ramirez’s suggestion, the ball never did touch the wall.)

“There was nothing I could do on that play,” he added. “I jumped and the ball just hit the wall. I went back inside and saw the replay.

“You just have to come back tomorrow and win the game. We’€™re playing pretty good baseball right now. There’€™s nothing we have to be concerned about.We take everything as a positive Everybody is just happy we’€™re here, we’€™re going to keep working and give 100 percent every game. There’€™s nothing we have to be concerned about right now.”

After the game, Red Sox manager John Farrell reiterated the evolution of Ramirez’s defensive existence would take some time to get comfortable with.

“We knew it was going to be a transition for him,” he said. “There was going to be work to be done. The wall here is going to be different than what we had the ability to work with in Fort Myers just because of the way it’€™s constructed. To me, there’€™s nothing alarming and the more games played, the more comfortable he’€™s going to get.”

Blog Author: 
Rob Bradford

Bruins to select 14th overall after Oilers win lottery again

The Oilers won the NHL draft lottery Saturday night, doing so with the third-best odds to finish with the first overall pick. The Oilers, who will almost certainly select Erie (OHL) center Connor McDavid, have the first overall pick for the fourth time in the last six years.

The Bruins, who had a one-percent chance of the first pick, will select 14th overall. Should they stay at No. 14, it will mark the highest they have selected in the first round since drafting Dougie Hamilton ninth overall in 2011.

Buffalo will pick second overall after missing out on the top pick. The Sabres finished with the lowest points in the NHL and had a 20 percent chance at the first pick. Barring a trade, they will select Chelmsford native Jack Eichel, who recently concluded his freshman (and likely only) season at Boston University. Eichel became the first freshman to win the Hobey Baker since Paul Kariya.

The draft will take place June 26 and 27 in Sunrise, Fla.

Blog Author: 
DJ Bean