News & Analysis

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Texas Rangers

Pivetta gets first victory of season, pitches Red Sox past Rangers

May 14, 2022, 3:18 AM

Photo Credit - USA TODAY Sports

Nick Pivetta finally found his stride, allowing one run in seven innings of work, and the visiting Boston Red Sox made the most of their station-to-station attack to roll to a 7-1 win over the Texas Rangers on Friday in the first of a three-game series in Arlington, Texas.

Xander Bogaerts had two hits and two RBIs while J.D. Martinez and Enrique Hernandez also had two hits each to lead the Red Sox's 10-hit attack. Eight of Boston's hits were singles.

Pivetta (1-4) gave up just three hits and walked one in earning his first victory of the season. He had four strikeouts, working the top of the zone with his curveball, as 61 of his 85 pitches were strikes. Boston has won two of its past three games after losing five in a row.

Kutter Crawford pitched the final two innings to finish the win for the Red Sox, allowing one walk and one hit in the ninth.

Dane Dunning (1-2) took the loss for the Rangers, surrendering five runs on six hits and two walks in 5 2/3 innings of work. Dunning struck out six.

Texas had just four hits, three by Kole Calhoun, and has dropped two of its past three contests.

The Red Sox opened the scoring on Rafael Devers' RBI single in the third inning that plated Hernandez.

Boston broke open the game in the sixth. Alex Verdugo ripped a double in the right-field corner to drive home Martinez. Trevor Story followed with a sacrifice fly that allowed Bogaerts to score from third base, and Franchy Cordero doubled in Verdugo. Christian Vazquez then made it 5-0 on a single to bring in Cordero.

Bogaerts expanded the Red Sox's lead to 7-0 in the seventh with a single off Garrett Richards, the third Texas pitcher, to score Devers and Martinez.

The Rangers finally produced a run in the bottom of the seventh as Calhoun tripled and then scored on a wild pitch by Pivetta.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Atlanta Braves

Teams scraping for runs meet as Rangers oppose Red Sox

May 13, 2022, 7:23 AM

Photo Credit - USA TODAY Sports

A stagnant Boston offense heads to Arlington, Texas, showing some signs of life. The Red Sox will take on a Texas Rangers team that also has experienced trouble scoring runs.

Considering some of the high-profile players on both rosters, it's baffling that both clubs rank in the bottom third of major league teams in runs.

The Rangers are riding some momentum, fresh off taking two of three from the visiting Kansas City Royals. The Red Sox, losers of six of seven, managed to split a two-game set with the host Atlanta Braves.

Boston announced that Nick Pivetta (0-4, 6.08 ERA) would make the start Friday. The right-hander is 0-2 with a 5.52 ERA in three road outings this year.

Pivetta, who began his career with the Philadelphia Phillies, has faced the Rangers once previously. He didn't get a decision an allowed one run in 4 2/3 innings on May 18, 2017.

The Rangers hadn't officially listed a starter for the series opener, multiple media outlets reported that it would be right-hander Dane Dunning (1-1, 3.38 ERA).

Dunning lacked run support in taking a no-decision Sunday during the first game of a doubleheader against the host New York Yankees. He gave up just one run on two hits in six innings with three walks and five strikeouts winding up with a no-decision in a contest Texas lost 2-1. He made a season-high 100 pitches.

Dunning has faced the Red Sox once before, taking the loss on Aug. 20, 2021, when he gave up five runs and nine hits in 4 2/3 innings.

In the Rangers' series finale against the Royals on Thursday night, a 3-1 Texas victory, second baseman Marcus Semien sat out for the first time this year.

Semien played in all 162 games last season with the Toronto Blue Jays and in 2019 with the Oakland Athletics.

However, the 31-year-old veteran is struggling at the plate, batting .165 with no homers and eight RBIs. He is in an 0-for-17 slump, so manager Chris Woodward felt Thursday was a good time to give him a breather.

Woodward said Semien, who signed a seven-year, $175 million deal with Texas in the offseason, should be back in the starting lineup Friday.

"This guy prides himself on playing 162," Woodward said on the Rangers' pregame radio show Thursday. "Give him a breather. Decompress and come back tomorrow. ...

"He feels pressure. He was brought here for a reason. He wants to win."

Semien felt he was finding his rhythm on Texas' last road trip, but he had little to show for it.

"Just a tough, tough stretch of game," he said. "I'm staying positive."

Brad Miller has provided a spark for the Rangers. In the Thursday game, Miller had two hits, including a home run, and he scored twice. He went 5-fort-8 with two homers in the Kansas City series.

Despite their sluggish results, the Red Sox enter the road series encouraged by some signs they showed on Wednesday in a 5-3 loss to the Braves.

Trevor Story hit his first home run since signing a six-year, $140 million deal with Boston, and J.D. Martinez went 2-for-4, extended his hitting streak to 13 games.

"Story is putting together good swings," Red Sox manager Alex Cora said. "To see him hitting the ball to straight center, that's a good approach. Good swing."

Story had gone 125 plate appearances between home runs, the longest drought of his career.

The lack of runs for the Red Sox is baffling, because they have some of the top hitters in the American League. Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers are tied for second in the American League with 40 hits apiece.

"I do believe that the last few days, offensively, as far as swinging and being patient, working counts, all that, has been a lot better compared to before," Cora said. "So hopefully we can bring that to Texas and do the same thing."

--Field Level Media

MLB: Houston Astros at Texas Rangers

Rangers C Mitch Garver headed to 10-day IL

May 10, 2022, 10:30 PM

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Texas Rangers catcher Mitch Garver is heading to the 10-day injured list because of a sprained flexor tendon.

Garver has not played since Sunday because of the injury. The 31-year-old is in his first season with the Rangers after spending the previous five seasons with the Minnesota Twins.

In 22 games this season, Garver is hitting .205 with three homers and eight RBIs. He has thrown out two of 12 runners from behind the plate.

To take Garver's spot on the roster, the Rangers recalled catcher Sam Huff from Triple-A Round Rock. Huff has appeared in 11 career games with the Rangers, hitting .353 (12-for-34) with three homers and five RBIs.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Detroit Tigers

Red Sox RHP Michael Wacha (ribs) lands on 15-day IL

May 8, 2022, 3:41 PM

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The Boston Red Sox placed right-hander Michael Wacha on the 15-day injured list with left intercostal irritation.

He was scratched from Sunday's start against the Chicago White Sox after experiencing soreness in his side. His injury designation is retroactive to Thursday.

Right-hander Tanner Houck started in place of Wacha for the series finale at Fenway Park.

The Red Sox also recalled right-hander Tyler Danish from Triple-A Worcester in a corresponding transaction.

Wacha, 30, has been Boston's best starter so far this season. He is 3-0 with a 1.38 ERA through five starts.

Danish, 27, appeared in four games for the Red Sox last month and posted a 3.86 ERA in 4 2/3 innings.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Boston Red Sox

Chris Sale’s return waylaid by ‘personal medical issue’

May 8, 2022, 1:00 AM

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Boston Red Sox left-hander Chris Sale's return from a rib cage injury has been paused by a "personal medical issue."

The team said Saturday that it's not orthopedic or COVID-19 related.

"We want to respect his privacy and it's not baseball-related," Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Boom said. "He should be back throwing in a matter of days."

Sale was expected to return from the 60-day injured list in early June. Now his expected return is roughly the third week of June.

An MRI in March revealed the fracture in Sale's eighth rib. He suffered the injury during the lockout but wasn't allowed to communicate it to the Red Sox until the new collective bargaining agreement was struck last Thursday.

Sale, 32, went 5-1 with a 3.16 ERA last season in his return from Tommy John surgery. The seven-time All-Star missed nearly two years.

Sale is 114-74 with a 3.03 ERA in his career with the Chicago White Sox (2010-16) and Red Sox.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Boston Red Sox at New York Mets

Red Sox activate Kike Hernandez from COVID list

May 7, 2022, 5:00 PM

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The Boston Red Sox activated infielder/outfielder Kike Hernandez from the COVID injured list on Saturday.

In a corresponding move, outfielder Jarren Duran was optioned to Triple-A Worcester.

Hernandez, 30, is batting .189 with one home run, 12 RBIs and 12 runs scored in 24 games this season.

Duran, 25, had a triple and scored a run in four at-bats in Friday night's loss to the Chicago White Sox, his season debut.

Left-handed pitcher Rich Hill remains on the COVID injured list for Boston.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Game Two-New York Mets at New York Yankees

Rangers-Yankees rained out again Saturday

May 7, 2022, 2:37 PM

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The visiting Texas Rangers and New York Yankees were rained out for the second straight day on Saturday.

The game will be made up Monday afternoon with a single-admission doubleheader starting at 1:05 p.m. ET.

Friday's scheduled series opener was one of six postponements in baseball, the most in one day since April 15, 2018.

That game will be made up in a single-admission doubleheader Sunday at Yankee Stadium, starting at 1:35 p.m. ET.

Both teams have been off since Wednesday.

The Yankees won 11 straight before a 2-1 loss in Toronto on Wednesday. Texas is on a four-game winning streak following a two-game sweep in Philadelphia.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Boston Red Sox at New York Yankees

Rangers-Yankees postponed, rescheduled for Sunday DH

May 6, 2022, 3:50 PM

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Friday night's game between the Texas Rangers and New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium has been postponed due to a forecast of sustained inclement weather.

The game will be made up on Sunday as the second half of a single-admission doubleheader, starting at 1:35 p.m. ET. The second contest will start approximately 30 minutes after the first game ends.

The Yankees, who had an 11-game winning streak snapped in a 2-1 loss at Toronto on Wednesday night, have the best record in the majors at 18-7.

The Rangers are on a four-game winning streak, including a two-game sweep in Philadelphia.

Both teams were off Thursday.

--Field Level Media

MLB: St. Louis Cardinals at San Francisco Giants

Red Sox claim OF Jaylin Davis off waivers from Giants

April 28, 2022, 8:00 PM

Photo Credit - USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Red Sox claimed outfielder Jaylin Davis off waivers Thursday from the San Francisco Giants.

Boston optioned Davis to Triple-A Worcester.

Davis, 27, was designated for assignment exactly one week earlier after not appearing in a major league game this season. In 26 major league games for San Francisco over the previous three seasons, he batted .159 with two home runs and four RBIs.

In three-plus seasons at the Triple-A level, Davis is a .293 hitter with 38 home runs. He batted .295 with two homers and seven RBIs in 10 games at Sacramento this season.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Boston Red Sox

Red Sox manager Alex Cora (COVID-19) returns

April 27, 2022, 11:18 PM

Photo Credit - USA TODAY Sports

Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora is back with the team after missing six games due to testing positive for COVID-19.

Cora was cleared by Major League Baseball to rejoin the team for Wednesday night's road contest against the Toronto Blue Jays.

The Red Sox went 1-5 without the 46-year-old Cora. Bench coach Will Venable ran the team during Cora's absence.

Cora, who said he is fully vaccinated, tested positive last Thursday prior to a home loss to the Blue Jays.

The Red Sox traveled after that contest to Florida for a weekend series against the Tampa Bay Rays.

"I didn't want to be the guy that hopped on a plane feeling bad and putting the whole team in a bad spot," Cora told reporters on Wednesday. "You have to be smart about it, you have to be responsible."

Cora said he isolated at home while the rest of his family was in Puerto Rico.

Wednesday's contest is the third of a four-game set in Toronto. The Blue Jays won the first two.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Texas Rangers at Seattle Mariners

Rangers' Jon Gray (knee) returns to IL

April 22, 2022, 2:26 AM

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Texas Rangers pitcher Jon Gray is headed back to the injured list, this time with a left knee sprain.

Gray was hurt during his start Tuesday night vs. Seattle. He had just returned from the IL after being out with a blister on his right middle finger.

Gray, who has made two starts this season, is 0-1 with a 7.00 ERA. He gave up four runs on three hits in a 6-2 loss to the Mariners on Tuesday.

Gray, who signed a $56 million, four-year deal with the Rangers in the offseason, said the knee injury occurred on his first pitch vs. the Mariners as he reacted to a fake bunt attempt. He is expected to go on the IL on Friday.

Rangers general manager Chris Young said right-hander Glenn Otto will be brought up from Triple-A Round Rock to start Friday night's game at Oakland. Otto was 0-3 with a 9.26 ERA in six starts for the Rangers last season in his big league debut.

Spencer Howard had been scheduled to start on Friday but will be moved into Gray's spot in the rotation on Sunday vs. the A's.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Boston Red Sox

Red Sox skipper Alex Cora tests positive for COVID-19

April 21, 2022, 6:49 PM

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Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora missed Thursday's matinee against the visiting Toronto Blue Jays after testing positive for COVID-19.

The team said Cora, who is vaccinated and boosted, is experiencing mild symptoms and will not travel to Florida for Friday's opener of a three-game weekend series with the Tampa Bay Rays.

Bench coach Will Venable will manage the team in Cora's absence.

This week began with catcher Kevin Plawecki and two Red Sox staff members testing positive. Catcher Christian Vazquez and infielder Jonathan Arauz landed on the COVID injured list Tuesday. Vazquez was removed from the list Wednesday.

Cora, 46, is in his fourth season with Boston. He led the Red Sox to a World Series championship in his first season in 2018 and was suspended for the 2020 season for his role in the Houston Astros' sign-stealing scandal.

Cora told reporters on Tuesday that he has been staying a hotel because one of his children had tested positive for the coronavirus.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Boston Red Sox at Detroit Tigers

Red Sox's J.D. Martinez exits with adductor tightness

April 21, 2022, 12:51 AM

Photo Credit - USA TODAY Sports

Boston Red Sox designated hitter J.D. Martinez was lifted for a pinch runner in the third inning on Wednesday against the visiting Toronto Blue Jays due to left adductor tightness.

Martinez, who had a first-inning RBI single, collected his second hit of the night off Toronto starter Jose Berrios. Martinez grimaced on his way to second on his double to left field, appearing to favor his left leg. He was replaced by Christian Arroyo.

In the same frame, the Red Sox received another scare when second baseman Trevor Story was plunked on the side of his helmet by a 93 mph Berrios fastball. After being tended to by the Boston medical staff, Story remained in the game.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Texas Rangers at Toronto Blue Jays

Rangers activate Jon Gray from IL, DFA Greg Holland

April 19, 2022, 9:25 PM

Photo Credit - USA TODAY Sports

The Texas Rangers activated right-handed pitcher Jon Gray from the injured list ahead of his start Tuesday night against the Seattle Mariners.

Texas also designated right-hander Greg Holland for assignment in a corresponding move.

Gray joined the Rangers after spending his first seven major league seasons with the Colorado Rockies. In his debut start for the team April 8, he went four innings and allowed three runs and three hits while dealing with a blister on his right middle finger. He did not factor into the decision in a 10-8 loss to Toronto.

Gray was moved to the 10-day IL due to his blister and activated Tuesday, the first day he was eligible to return.

Holland has made five appearances out of the bullpen in 2022, his first season with Texas. He is 0-1 with a 7.71 ERA, giving up three home runs and striking out five batters in 4 2/3 innings.

The 36-year-old has a 30-28 career record and a 3.14 ERA in 556 career games with the Kansas City Royals (2010-2015, 2020-21), Rockies (2017), St. Louis Cardinals (2018), Washington Nationals (2018), Arizona Diamondbacks (2019) and Rangers. He made Texas' Opening Day roster as a non-roster invitee to spring training.

--Field Level Media

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Boston Red Sox

Christian Vazquez becomes second Red Sox catcher on COVID list

April 19, 2022, 7:47 PM

Photo Credit - USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Red Sox added two more players to the COVID-19 injured list, assigning catcher Christian Vazquez and infielder Jonathan Arauz on Tuesday.

Those moves come one day after catcher Kevin Plawecki and two unnamed team staff members tested positive for COVID-19. Boston is now without its top two catchers.

Catcher Connor Wong is on the active roster, with catcher Ronaldo Hernandez expected to be called up from Triple-A Worcester.

The Red Sox already were facing personnel shortages for series that begins Monday at Toronto. Multiple unvaccinated Red Sox players will not be able to enter into Canada for the series, which begins Monday.

Only right-hander Tanner Houck has been reported as a player who will not face the Blue Jays next week.

To replace Vazquez and Arauz, Boston recalled right-hander Tyler Danish from Worcester and selected the contract of outfielder Rob Refsnyder from the same affiliate.

Vazquez, 31, was batting .208 with one home run and three RBIs in seven games this season. Arauz, 23, did not have a hit in seven at-bats over five games.

Danish, 27, will return to the major leagues for the first time since 2018. He appeared in 11 games for the Chicago White Sox from 2016-18 and had a combined 4.85 ERA.

Refsnyder, 31, has six years of major league experience with the New York Yankees, Toronto Blue Jays, Tampa Bay Rays, Texas Rangers and Minnesota Twins. He batted .245 with two home runs and 12 RBIs in 51 games for the Twins last season.

--Field Level Media